Press Release

October 2004

Ask Permission the Right Way

By Clay Hickey, Landowner/Sportsmen Coordinator, Idaho Dept. of Fish and Game

As an avid hunter and an Idaho Department of Fish and Game (IDFG) employee who works closely with landowners every day, my experience in asking for and working with those who give permission to hunt has been considerable.

Over the years, I have experienced that there is clearly a "right way" and a "wrong way" to ask for the opportunity to hunt someone else's land.

Although there is no guarantee that you will receive permission to hunt, following the suggestions listed below will definitely increase your chances of obtaining permission to hunt from the landowner.

The first step is to be courteous and respectful. Common courtesy and good manners still go along way, especially in Idaho. Using yes sir, no sir, Mr., and Mrs. shows proper respect when speaking with someone you do not personally know. You will also greatly increase your opportunity to gain permission if you look like someone who is a responsible individual.

Whenever possible, ask the landowner in person rather than over the phone. People like to see who they are dealing with. In addition, it is always harder to tell someone no in person than it is to tell them no over the phone.

Also, the hunter who plans ahead and asks permission well in advance is usually welcome, while those who do not ask or wait until the day of the hunt, may not get the same kind of welcome. Don't show up at a landowner's door at 6:00 a.m. on the day you want to go hunting and expect the landowner to allow you access.

It is usually best to contact a landowner at least a week before you want to hunt on their property. You probably also want to follow up a day or two prior to actually hunting just to make sure it is still okay to hunt there. This may seem bothersome to you, but landowners appreciate a thoughtful hunter.

Ask Fish and Game

Q. I would like to take my kids on their first pheasant hunt to one of the WMAs where we should be able to find a farm-raised bird. Do they need the $21.50 permit?

A. If the kids are under 17, they do not need the permit, but they do need a license. If they are age 17 or older, they are subject to the same limits and rules and must have a valid hunting license and the $21.50 permit.

White-tailed Deer Subject of Open Houses

White-tailed deer hunters have a chance to comment on the proposed new white-tailed deer management plan at two upcoming open houses hosted by Idaho Fish and Game.

On Wednesday, October 27 from 4:00 pm to 7:00 pm, Fish and Game personnel will be on hand to visit with the public at both the Nampa and McCall Fish and Game offices. The open house format allows visitors to attend anytime during the session. Call 465-8465 (Nampa) or 634-8137 (McCall) for more information.

The white-tailed deer management proposal is available for review on Fish and Game's website at http://fishandgame.idaho.gov. A link to the survey is featured on the right front page of the website. A comment form is also available for those unable to attend one of the open houses.

The draft plan has been shaped by considerable public comment already. Just last year, two thousand hunters and landowners were asked their opinion of current white-tailed deer management in the state. Most were generally satisfied, but many indicated that some changes were likely needed. One proposed major change in management - the creation of a new white-tailed deer tag for the 2005 hunting season - was the product of this input. "The tag would replace the current Clearwater tag, allowing white-tailed deer hunters to pursue their quarry in other parts of the state as well as the Clearwater Region," Fish and Game wildlife manager Jeff Rohlman said. "The general deer tag would remain unchanged, except that it could also be used for hunting white-tailed deer in the Clearwater Region during October."

The seven-member Fish and Game Commission will review proposal comments from around the state at their November 18 meeting in Orofino.

Steelhead Run Looks Better

Better late than never, Idaho's fall steelhead run size may be close to the first forecast after a slow start made fisheries biologists and anglers think the original prediction had been too high.

First estimates were for a better than average run but the outlook dimmed in September when fish counts at dams on the Columbia River were smaller than expected. Recent counts of fish crossing Lower Granite Dam on their way to Idaho have raised projected numbers as well as spirits.

Ed Schriever, regional fisheries manager of the Idaho Department of Fish and Game at Lewiston said "now it looks like we are more on track with the preseason prediction".

Schriever said 75 percent of the steelhead counted at McNary Dam on the Columbia River had entered the Snake River and crossed Ice Harbor Dam. As many as 130,000 to 140,000 steelhead may be returning to the Snake River. Already this year more than 120,000 steelhead have been counted crossing the Lower Granite Dam.

McNary Dam, near the Tri-Cities, is the last dam on the Columbia encountered by Snake River-bound fish and Ice Harbor Dam is the first on the Snake River.

Bat Program Set

A live bat will be on hand at the MK Nature Center in Boise Saturday, October 23 for a kids' bat program.

Wildlife educator Brenda Beckley and bat rehabilitator Beki Olsen will present a bat program at 10:30 a.m. in the Nature Center auditorium. The program is for all ages. Following the program, kids will have the optional opportunity to make a batty craft.

Bat show tickets are $3 per person and batty craft tickets are $5 per child. All tickets are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Tickets may be purchased at the door or in advance at the MK Nature Center Tuesday through Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and weekends 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Space is limited for the program and for the craft session. Call 334-2225 for details.

The program will include discussion of Idaho bats and other bats from around the world. Beckley and Olsen will explain the role of bats in their ecosystems and the help they provide in nature's balance including insect control, flower pollination and dispersal of seeds. They will also discuss the bats' place in myth and legend as well as the diversity of the nearly 1,000 different varieties of bats worldwide. Interesting facts such as the ability of little brown bats to consume about 1,200 insects or their own body weight each day will enliven the presentation.

Fish and Game to reclaim Connor Pond, Emerald Lake

JEROME - The Idaho Department of Fish and Game will be eliminating the entire fish population in both Connor Pond and Emerald Lake in order to re-establish better game fish populations. The reclamation effort will be conducted on October 20 and 21.

Currently, the majority of the fish populations in both ponds are made up of carp, suckers, and chubs. After removing all fish, Fish and Game will restock the waters with game fish, enhancing the public's fishing experience.

"Our goal with this project is to establish productive fishing waters for the area anglers," said Doug Megargle, Magic Valley Regional Fisheries Manager. "Unfortunately we have no means of eradicating only the carp and suckers, so we have to eliminate the entire fishery to start over with a blank slate."

The reclamation effort will be completed using the chemical Rotenone¨. It is a pesticide and fish control agent that works quickly and then breaks down into harmless residue. It is not toxic to the people, birds, or animals that may consume the dead fish or insects."

Rotenone¨ chemically inhibits the ability of fish to use the dissolved oxygen in water. Concentrations of approximately 2 parts per million of Rotenone¨ are typically used for fish control.

The speed with which Rotenone¨ breaks down varies with temperature, light, oxygen content and alkalinity of the treated water. At water temperatures of 80 degrees, the breakdown can occur in as little as four days; if the water is as cold as 45 degrees the Rotenone¨ may last up to a month.

"In the early spring we will be restocking both Emerald Lake and Connor Pond with rainbow trout," said Megargle. " We will also be stocking bluegill, largemouth bass, and channel catfish into Connor Pond when they become available in 2005."

Joint Idfg/Usfs Ohv Patrols Continue To Focus On Travel Plan Enforcement

IDAHO FALLS - While no major changes have been made to the Targhee National Forest Travel Plan in a number of years, IDFG & USFS continue to work together to educate the public concerning proper use of motorized vehicles. According to Caribou-Targhee National Forest Public Information Officer Lynn Ballard, "Since the start of the year we have completed 315 incident reports in relation to travel plan violations. These 315 incidents resulted in 242 written warnings and 99 citations." For the remainder of the hunting season both agencies will be jointly patrolling to insure that not only is the travel plan followed, but also the newer hunting regulations put in place on certain units to restrict the use of motorized vehicles as an aid to hunting.

In order to prevent problems, forest users who wish to hunt need to be sure and obtain a copy of the current forest travel plan and this year's hunting regulations before heading out into the field. A key to staying clear of problems is to remember that on the Targhee portion of the Caribou-Targhee National Forest; all routes are closed unless posted open. Many people mistakenly think that just because a two-track has existed for years, that it is open to travel. It is important to consult the travel plan and be clear of the status of all roads and trails in a given area.

For those forest users with OHVs (Off-Highway Vehicles) that are planning to hunt, it is important that they review current hunting regulations to make sure the status of the unit they are planning to hunt. The current motorized vehicle rule pertains not only to those who are hunting big game, but upland game as well.

Hunters Reminder To Properly Dispose Of Game Waste

LEWISTON - With several big game rifle seasons nearly underway, hunters that butcher their own game are encouraged to dispose of their wastes properly.

Authorities at the Nez Perce County Solid Waste Station in Lewiston remind hunters that they can place their game waste in a good heavy bag, seal it, and place in their garbage can. The weekly garbage service will then dispose of the waste free of charge. Hunters can also haul their bagged game waste to the transfer station located at 560 Down River Road in Lewiston. Operating hours are from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. daily.

Residents of Latah County can do the same, or use several waste sites that accept animal and game wastes. The Solid Waste Processing Center, know as the transfer station is located five miles east of Moscow on Highway 8. Summer hours (April through October) are Monday through Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and Saturdays 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Winter hours (November through March) are 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

The communities of Deary, Genesee, Juliaetta and Potlatch each have a waste site that is open from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on alternating Saturdays. The Deary and Genesee sites are open on the 2nd and 4th Saturdays of each month, with the Juliaetta site open on the 1st and 3rd Saturday. The Potlatch site's summer hours (April through October) is open the first four Saturdays only, and the winter hours (November through March) is open the 1st and 3rd Saturdays only. For questions, please call the Latah County Solid Waste Department at (208) 882-8580 ext. 3344.

The sites are located as follows: Deary - behind the elevators on Line street; Genesee - south of Chestnut street on Oak street near City shop and Union Warehouse; Juliaetta - turn south off Main onto Third Street, go to the railroad tracks and turn left; Potlatch - 1/2 mile east of the Potlatch "Y" on Highway 6.

Registration For Lewiston Area Hunter Education Courses Begins Oct. 18

LEWISTON - Although many hunting seasons are already in progress, the Idaho Department of Fish and Game (IDFG) is already busy preparing for next year by encouraging first-time hunters to register for one of a number of upcoming hunter education course scheduled for November and December.

"Spring turkey hunting is right around the corner, and these upcoming classes are ideal for those wanting to ensure they can hunt both next spring and fall." said Kent Henderson, IDFG hunter education coordinator. "Hunters should register early in the week because the classes will fill fast."

Students or parent of students can register for an upcoming class at the IDFG office, 1540 Warner Avenue, beginning Monday, October 18 at 8 a.m. or until classes are filled. Registration will also be accepted by phone beginning at 1 p.m. by calling 208-799-5010. A fee of $8.00 is required as well as the student's social security number, phone, date of birth and mailing address.

Students who will reach the age of 10 or older prior to the next general hunting season can choose from the following three courses:

Hunters Urged to Obtain Boundary Maps When Hunting Near State Parks

LEWISTON - With several historical parks located throughout the area, hunters planning on pursuing game near them are encouraged to obtain boundary maps to ensure they remain on the right side of the law.

Hunting is prohibited on several area historical parks, including the Nez Perce National Historical Park at Spalding, Heart-of-the-Monster in Kamiah and the Whitebird Battlefield north of Riggins.

Park officials have expressed concerns to the Idaho Department of Fish and Game about re-occurring problems with persons hunting on park property. Because of the irregular shapes and sizes of the parks, the posting of boundaries with signs has been difficult. Additionally, vandals tear down many of the signs shortly after placement.

Regardless of whether signs are present, hunters may be cited for hunting on Park Service property. Boundary maps for each park can be obtained at the Spalding Visitor Center north of Lapwai.

Recreationists Reminded Of Craig Mountain Motorized Restrictions

LEWISTON - The Idaho Department of Fish and Game reminds those planning on entering the Craig Mountain Wildlife Management Area south of Lewiston that motorized access of much of the area is restricted in order to reduce the spread of noxious weeds and to provide security to big game. However, non-motorized travel is permitted on all IDFG lands in this area.

The following roads through the area will remain open to motorized travel:

  • Eagle Creek to the Salmon River and downstream to Wapshilla Creek;
  • Black Pine road out Wapshilla Ridge to the posted gate;
  • The road beginning _ mile south of Robert Springs east of the Wapshilla Ridge Road east to China Saddle, except all spur roads leading from this road are closed.
  • Madden Corral road northwest to top of Billy Creek, except all spur roads leading from this road are closed.

Motorized use of roads that are posted or behind locked gates is prohibited. All off-road motorized travel is also prohibited, even if not posted. Use of a motorized vehicle for the retrieval of game does not constitute an exception to these regulations. Citations will be issued to those not following the access regulations.

Idfg Seeks Input On White-Tailed Deer Plan

IDAHO FALLS - White-tailed deer have always been a part of Idaho's wildlife heritage, but for the most part they were considered to be a central & north Idaho phenomenon. Growing numbers of white-tailed deer statewide and the role they play in interacting with mule deer has caused the Idaho Fish & Game Commission to request that the Idaho Department of Fish & Game work with the public to develop a statewide management plan. That process is underway across the state and an open house is planned locally in Idaho Falls on Wednesday, October 20 to provide information to the public about proposed management options.

The new plan has implications for both white-tailed and mule deer hunters. Options in the plan will affect the structure of all deer tags in the state. The new plan will be available for review October 15th on the department's website at (http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/) along with a public survey to provide input and select a preferred deer tag structure.

According to Regional Wildlife Biologist Jeff Short, "Surveys are also available to pick up at the Idaho Falls office. 2000 surveys are also being sent randomly to deer hunters across the state." The Idaho Department of Fish & Game is having an open house to discuss the new plan on Wednesday October 20th from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm at the Idaho Falls Office located at 4279 Commerce Circle (off of St. Leon near Highway 20 in the St. Leon Industrial Park). Department personnel will be available to answer questions on the plan and distribute surveys.

According to Short, "Now is the time to comment on this new plan. Comments will be reviewed by the commission and a decision made at the mid-November commission meeting."