An exploding turkey population in northern Idaho and the rising cost of raising pheasants for upland bird hunters are among the issues the Idaho Fish and Game Commission will take up May 16 through May 18 at the Sun Valley Resort.
The commissioners' three-day meeting includes a public hearing at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, May 16.
Commissioners will consider rules for sandhill cranes and doves, upland game birds and animals, falconry, furbearers, and the department's 2008 budget.
With the anticipated increase of 32 to 69 percent in the per-bird cost of pen-raised pheasants stocked on nine wildlife management areas, the Idaho Department of Fish and Game will present a recommendation to seek public comment on reducing stocking rates or raising the cost of hunting stocked pheasants on wildlife management areas.
The commissioners are also expected to consider proposed changes to turkey rules in the Panhandle Region that would drop the price of turkey tags and raise the limit in that region.
The commissioners will consider department recommendations to:
- Extend the September 15 through October 31 turkey season in the Panhandle Region-except in Farragut State Park and the Farragut Wildlife Management Area-to December 15.
- Create a fall general season turkey tag valid for units 1, 2, 3 and 5 for $5, including the vendor fee. Hunters would be able to buy up to five tags.
- Increase the bag limit to five turkeys, either sex, in units 1, 2, 3 and 5 for the 2007 fall season.
Commissioners also will hear an update on wolf management and plans for hunting seasons after wolves are removed from endangered species status, and a summary of legislative actions.
Friday morning commissioners will hear an update on the spring Chinook season, which opened May 11. And they will hear about the timeline for developing fishing rules for 2008-2009.