Posts tagged: Idaho hunting
HUNTING — A general cow elk season will not return in North Idaho, but controlled permits for antlerless elk hunting will be increased statewide under the 2013 hunting seasons for deer, elk, pronghorn, black bear, mountain lion and gray wolf adopted today in Boise by the Fish and Game Commission.
The new seasons also include an increase in pronghorn tags and expanded wolf hunting and trapping seasons.
Wolf hunting on private lands in the Idaho Panhandle will be allowed year round.
Read on for highlights of rule changes provided by the Idaho Fish and Game Department.
HUNTING — The general season cow elk hunt is not proposed to return in the Idaho Panhandle this fall as Idaho Fish and Game managers stay fairly conservative with their recommendations for 2013 big game seasons.
Increases in controlled hunts for antlerless elk and deer are proposed, but for the most part seasons will stay the same as last year for mule deer, whitetails and elk.
Biologists will be on hand to explain the season proposals and gather public comment during an open-house meeting 4 p.m.-8 p.m. on March 7 at the Best Western Plus on the corner of Highway 95 and Appleway in Coeur d’Alene
Proposals for Idaho's 2013 big-game hunting seasons and an online comment form have been posted on the Fish and Game Department's Website.
Jim Hayden, IFG regional wildlife manager, said the elk seasons would resemble last year's hunts in North Idaho with minor tweeks to the controlled huntfor antlerless elk:
“The net result for next year's antlerless elk hunting would be no cow harvest in Units 4, 4A, 6, 7, and 9, lower than average harvest in Unit 1, and near average in Units 2, 3, and 5, where depredations are becoming a bit of a concern.”
The Idaho Fish and Game Commission will set final big game hunting season rules at the quarterly meeting in Boise on March 18.
Speak up, get on the list
As the old saying goes, the world is ruled by those who show up.
Two years ago, IDFG mailed out a questionnaire on hunting seasons in Unit 1 to a random selection of Unit 1 elk hunters. The process provided a statistically valid cross-section of hunters’ opinions, and proved to be a tool IDFG jused in decision-making. That effort is being expanded this year, and 1,000 hunters who purchased hunting licenses in the Panhandle Region will receive a survey in the mail. Their comments will help make decisions for the 2013 seasons.
HUNTING — Sportsmen in Idaho and Washington are required to file online or on-phone reports on whether they filled their big game tags. The information is critical to wildlife biologists trying to manage big-game herds.
IDAHO requires hunters to file a report on their deer, elk and pronghorn hunts within 10 days after harvest or within 10 days after the end of the hunt if they did not harvest.
Hunters are required to file a report for each tag they bought whether they went hunting or not.
Idaho Fish and Game has a 24-hour, toll-free phone line to speak to a live operator when filing reports. Call (877) 268-9365 to file reports 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Or go to the Fish and Game Website to file a report online.
The information from past years is available online to help hunters plan their hunts. See the following web pages for the Idaho data.
WASHINGTON requires hunters to submit a hunter report for each big game or turkey transport tag and special hunting permit acquired for the previous hunting season by Jan. 31.
Get the details for online reporting here.
Hunter Reports also can be filed by toll-free phone, (877) 945-3492.
See data compiled from Washington's game harvest reports.
HUNTING — My friend, John, has bagged two bull elk in Idaho this year, owing to skill, luck and investing in resident and nonresident tags. His friends have made a lot of jokes on how much he's hated for showing us up, but of course we're all envious and praising his effort, if not directly to him.
Here's his explanation:
Generally I am the beneficiary of the good luck of others in my hunting “co-op”. This year I get to bring the goods to larder. Also I may have more say in what sausages and fine meat snacks we decide to make.
Last year I spent about 50 days afield trying to get an elk, nothing in archery, rifle, muzzeloader or late archery, I had to eat tag soup not once but twice, cause I bought the extra non-resident tag to hunt all those seasons. It fosters my belief that you need to spend the days out there to have the luck, then you need to have some skill to capitalize on those lucky situations.
This year the stars aligned. Yee Haw.
WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT — More than 800 hunters and anglers, birders and wildlife watchers and others interested in wildlife conservation have signed up to participate in the Idaho Wildlife Summit that starts Friday and runs through Sunday (Aug. 24-26).
“It is extremely gratifying to see so many Idahoans care enough about their wildlife to be involved with the Wildlife Summit,” Fish and Game Director Virgil Moore said in a media release.
The three-day event will convene at the Riverside Hotel in Boise and six concurrent satellite sites in Coeur d’Alene, Lewiston, Salmon, Twin Falls, Pocatello and Idaho Falls. People also may participate online in real time.
The agency hopes to involve as many people as possible in helping to set the direction for how wildlife is managed in Idaho, to find common ground, and ultimately to build a broader base of support for wildlife conservation.
Part of the conversation involves the question: Where will the funding come from to manage game and non-game critters alike? Currently virtually all of the funding for Idaho's wildlife management comes from hunter and anglers.
Participation is free, but registration is required because of limited seating.
The Boise venue is at capacity, but an overflow room, which will feature a live video feed, is available.
Click here for more details and background.
HUNTING — Sportsmen who didn’t draw in the first round of Idaho big-game tag drawings can apply for the second controlled hunt drawing for unclaimed tags.
The application period for the second drawing for deer, elk and pronghorn hunts started Sunday and through Aug.15. The application fee is $6.25 for residents and $14.75 for nonresidents for each species.
The drawing will be Aug. 20. Any left over tags will go on sale Aug. 25.
Apply for the drawing at license vendors or online.
HUNTING — Because some controlled hunt already have started, Idaho Fish and Game just announced it will not include leftover tags for those hunts in a second drawing in late August.
Rather than include them in the second drawings, which comes near the end of these hunts, Fish and Game has designated certain leftover controlled hunt tags to become available on a first-come, first-served, over-the-counter basis starting Aug. 7 at 9 a.m.
Read on for the list of hunts and numer of tags available.
HUNTING — The suspense is almost over for Idaho big-game hunters.
Results of special drawings for big-game controlled hunt tags will be available any day on the Idaho Fish and Game Department drawings web page.
Postcards will be mailed to successful applicants by July 10.
Ultimately, hunters must bear the responsibility to determine whether they've been drawn, state officials say.
Unsuccessful applicants will not be notified.
Winners must buy controlled hunt tags by Aug.1; any tags not purchased by that date will be forfeit.
Unclaimed and leftover tags from the first drawing will be available in a second application period Aug. 5-15.
After the second drawing, any tags left over are sold over the counter.
Washington already has conducted its special hunt drawings.
HUNTING — Idaho Fish and Game has updated its Hunt Planner interactive online tool that allows hunters to search for and create maps for hunting areas of interest.
Hunters simply answer a few questions about what game they would like to hunt, how, where and when they would like to hunt it, and a list of all the available hunts that meet their criteria will be generated.
Select a hunt area from this list and the Hunt Planner will create a map that can be printed or provide links to an interactive map that can be customized further.
The Hunt Planner also generates helpful information for the hunt area selected, such as:
In addition, hunters may download current and past controlled hunt boundaries, from the Idaho Fish and Wildlife Information System “Open Data” page. It helps to have a little horsepower in your computer, and you'll need to view the information in Google Earth and GIS programs.
Hunters can also download data for game management units, elk and wolf management zones, generalized game animal distributions and current and past Access Yes! property boundaries.
HUNTING — The Idaho Senate, in a rare 17-17 tie vote, killed a bill that sought to allow landowners to sell special hunting tags they receive because their properties provide important habitat for deer, elk, or pronghorn.
The measure that died Wednesday was sponsored by Sen. Jeff Siddoway, a Republican rancher from Terreton.
Currently, the Idaho Fish and Game Commission allows eligible landowners to participate in drawings for “Landowner Appreciation Tags.”
According to the Associated Press, Siddoway wanted to allow landowners the chance to cash in on these controlled hunting tags by letting them sell them to other hunters, at any price they negotiate.
The bill raised concerns that Siddoway sought to extend to landowners like himself a lucrative new option that violates the spirit of Idaho’s hunting legacy — preserving opportunities for everyone, not just the privileged, the Associated Press reported.
HUNTING — The amount of money Idaho is taking in through the sale of nonresident deer and elk tags is down nearly $3 million from its peak in 2008, state wildlife officials say.
Jim Unsworth, deputy director for the Idaho Department of Fish and Game, said the agency has put in place a six-month hiring freeze on all open positions, eliminated at least two high level positions, and is looking at cutting some programs, the Associated Press reports.
He said the economic downturn is why fewer out-of-state hunters are heading to Idaho. Most of the agency’s money comes from the sale of tags, licenses and permits.
“It’s hard to put a finger on specifically what’s not happening,” Unsworth told the Post Register. “What’s happening is just less of everything. At some level, somewhere, something’s not getting done, and eventually the public’s going to notice it.”
Unsworth said items that could be cut include aerial surveys of big-game populations. That could lead, he said, to a reduction in the number of deer or elk that game managers would allow to be killed because regional supervisors tend to be more conservative when setting harvest numbers if they don’t have reliable estimates about herd populations.
He said the result is a downward spiral in revenue.
“You do put yourself in a spin,” he said. “At some point you become irrelevant politically. The great old tried and true ‘hit the nonresidents up for revenue’ isn’t working.”
Besides state revenue from out-of-state hunters falling, Idaho guides have seen fewer clients and small communities are losing revenue from fewer hunters.
HUNTING — Check station results indicate slightly more elk are being taken by a slightly smaller number of hunters this year in the Idaho Panhandle.
“In VERY general terms, bull elk success rates are looking decent at both check stations (Enaville and St. Maries), and hunter participation has been declining through both stations since about 1992,” said Jim Hayden, Idaho Fish and Game regional wildlife manager.
Hayden says check stations are just one snapshot wildlfie biologists use for gauging wildlife populations. Because of the variables associated with check station results, he prefers the mid-winter aerial surveys for getting the best numbers on big-game populations.
HUNTING — The application period for Idaho's spring turkey and black bear controlled hunts is open and runs through Feb. 15.
Spring turkey and spring black bear seasons start April 15 – some controlled hunts open later. Leftover tags for spring turkey and bear controlled hunts go on sale April 1.
Information on spring hunts is available in Idaho's new upland game and turkey rules. Spring 2011 bear hunts are listed in the 2010 big game rules brochures. New controlled hunt numbers can be found online here.
Online applications can be made here. You must have a 2011 Idaho hunting license to apply.