Press Release

April 2011

F&G Commission Extends Steelhead Season

The Idaho Fish and Game Commission Thursday, april 28, extended the steelhead season on the Upper Salmon River.

Commissioners approved a Fish and Game recommendation to extend the steelhead season closing date from April 30 to May 15 this year for the section of the upper Salmon River from Salmon to Sawtooth Hatchery south of Stanley.

The fishery extends from the cable car crossing at the USGS flow gauging station, about 150 yards downstream of Island Park in Salmon, upstream to a posted boundary about 100 yards downstream of the weir at Sawtooth Hatchery south of Stanley.

All other limits and rules would be unchanged from the 1 2011-2012 Fishing Seasons and Rules, available at license vendors, Fish and Game offices and online at http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/cms/fish/steelhead/.

Correction for 2011 Chinook Salmon Seasons and Rules

Under Special Restrictions for the Lower Salmon and Little Salmon rivers the listed fishing boundaries are incorrect.

Fishing from any watercraft is prohibited within 30 yards of the west shoreline of the Salmon River from the Riggins City Park boat ramp upstream to a posted boundary about 50 yards upstream of the mouth of the Little Salmon River. Fishing from any watercraft is also prohibited in the Little Salmon River from the mouth upstream about 200 yards to a posted boundary.

Take Me Fishing Trailer Scheduled To Appear At Area Lakes

Stocked with fishing tackle, Idaho Fish and Game's "Take Me Fishing" trailers travel to local ponds across the state.

Wrapped with vibrant fish illustrations, they're hard to miss.

Twenty-eight events have been scheduled in the Idaho Panhandle during the months of May and June to get the spring fishing season off to a jump start.

The first week's events are scheduled from 4-6 p.m. Tuesday, May 3, at Post Falls Park; from 4-6 p.m. Thursday, May 5, at Cocolalla Lake; and from 1-5 p.m. Saturday, May 7, at Fernan Lake.

Fishing equipment and bait can be checked out for free during the scheduled times listed. Reservations are not needed and equipment is checked out on a first-come, first-served basis.

Participants will be granted a permit to fish without a license during the hours of the events, however all other rules such as size limits and species limits do apply.

Idaho children 13 years old and under can always fish for free. These events give their parents, older siblings and friends the opportunity to try fishing without purchasing a license.

Getting kids excited about fishing will help build a new generation of anglers. The only thing kids and their parents have to do is show up!

For a complete list of trailer dates for the months of May and June, visit the Idaho Department of Fish and Game website http://fishandgame.idaho.gov, or contact the nearest Fish and Game office.

Youth Outdoor Skills Day set for May 7 at Beaver Dick Park

In what is becoming a springtime tradition, area sporting groups will once again be joining with the Idaho Department of Fish and Game to host a Youth Outdoor Skills Day on Saturday, May 7, at Beaver Dick Park on Highway 33.

The entire event is free and open to the whole family. Registration begins at 9 a.m. and ends at 2 p.m.

"This event is fun, interactive and informative. Over the past several years we have had up to 200 kids and their parents attend," said Michell Shropshire of Fish and Game, who is helping to arrange the event.

Area sportsmen's groups are sponsoring this event to teach youths some of the skills they need to safely participate in the hunting, fishing and other outdoor activities that can be found in our area. The seminars are all free and will cover such topics as fishing, archery, trapping, turkey calling, boat safety, muzzleloading, hound dogging and survival. A trailer with a portable air-gun range will also be on hand for youngsters and their families to test their shooting skills.

These sportsman groups will be participating this year:

Idaho Native Plant Sale at the MK Nature Center

Idaho Native Plant Society's annual native plant sale will be from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, April 30, at the Morrison Knudsen Nature Center in Boise.

This year's edition of this popular event will feature more plants, improved presentation and shorter lines. The sale will be in the area behind the Idaho Fish and Game headquarters building at 600 S. Walnut.

In response to the popularity and demand for native plants, the sale will include more and a wider variety of these hardy, drought tolerant native plants. The plants will be arranged by their preferences for water, sun and soil to make it easy to select species that will survive in the buyer's location.

A members-only sale for Idaho Native Plant Society members from 4 to 7 p.m.

Friday should ease the traditionally slow moving lines for Saturday customers.

Ask Fish and Game: Chinook Season

Q. The Chinook fishing season is open, but where are the fish?

A. Lots of environmental conditions affect when the salmon arrive at Lower Granite Dam. Fish and Game opens the season in late April to make sure that in years when the run is early, anglers are able to fish for the salmon. In 2001, a year with a large return, more than 38,000 Chinook salmon had been counted at Lower Granite Dam by this date. The run appears to be late this year. Only 25 salmon have been counted crossing Lower Granite Dam through April 24 this year. But the recent five-year average count for the same date is 497 salmon counted. Even if the run is not late, we typically don't see many salmon at Lower Granite Dam by this date anyway.

Fish & Game Director to Attend Lewiston Breakfast Meeting

Virgil Moore, newly appointed director of the Idaho Department of Fish and Game will attend a Sportsmen's Breakfast meeting beginning at 6:30 a.m. May 3 to discuss wildlife issues and answer questions.

The meeting will be at the Clearwater Regional office, 3316 16th St.

Fish and Game will also report on the upcoming salmon season and recent changes in wolf management. Sportsmen's group representatives are also welcome to give reports of their group's activities.

The informal meetings are designed to stimulate discussions about local and statewide wildlife issues. The informative breakfasts are open to anyone with fish and wildlife-related questions. The breakfast will run until 8:30 a.m., with coffee and donuts provided.

Kids Fishing Day Scheduled for Hordemann Pond in Moscow

To help families with youths discover the joys of fishing, the 20th annual Kiwanis Kid's Fishing Day will be from 8 a.m. to noon Saturday, April 30, Moscow's Hordemann Pond.

Volunteers will be on hand to help young anglers, and Idaho Fish and Game's "Take Me Fishing" trailer will be stocked with rods and reels available for loan on a first-come, first-served basis.

The free event is sponsored by the Moscow Kiwanis Club, Palouse Chapter of American Fisheries Society and Idaho Department of Fish and Game. Prizes from Tri-State Distributors will be awarded, as well as free hot dogs, chips, soda and cocoa.

Hordemann Pond is located off Eisenhower Street between D and F streets.

Youths under 14 years of age do not need an Idaho fishing license, but all other regulations apply.

Egin-Hamer Closure Area Set to Open May 1

As of sunrise on May 1, the remainder of the Egin-Hamer closure will open, but public land managers want to remind users that certain rules still remain in effect.

The portion of the Egin-Hamer Closure Area that is south of the Egin-Hamer Road opened on schedule at sunrise on April 1.

The efforts of county, state and federal agencies to protect wintering big game herds outside of St. Anthony have once again paid off. Persistent winter conditions have kept deer and elk down on the desert in large numbers this spring, making the closure more important than ever.

Again this year, as part of a concerted effort to conduct public outreach and education, employees of the BLM and Fish and Game, along with the Fremont County Sheriff's Office, will be working in the area to contact users and provide information. Citations may be issued to violators.

To inform recreational users, a special flier was created and is available online from the BLM and Idaho Fish and Game. A key concern is that users stay on designated routes to protect the habitat and that everything is done to reduce the spread of noxious weeds.

The flier may be viewed and downloaded from the following site:

BLM: http://www.blm.gov/pgdata/etc/medialib/blm/id/recreation/sites/st__antho....

Fish and Game Offers Trapper Education Class

The Idaho Fish and Game will be offering a two-day trapper education class from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. May 7 and 8, at the Magic Valley Region office, 324 South 417 East, Jerome, about 2.5 miles north of the Flying J on Highway 93.

The class is structured as a 16-hour program. Students will spend part of their time in the classroom learning about safety, history, ethics and responsibility, species specific techniques and furbearer management.

The rest of the time will be in the field working on specific sets, trapping equipment and safety, set locations, habitats, and also fur handling. It will also include instruction on skinning, fleshing, cleaning, stretching and drying pelts.

The class costs $8 and students will need to register by calling the Jerome Fish and Game office at 324-4359.

Spring Chinook Season to Open This Week

Idaho anglers will be able to start fishing for Chinook salmon on Saturday, April 23.

But this year's return of Chinook salmon appears to be late, and anglers shouldn't expect many fish to be in Idaho waters when the season opens.

Chinook fishing seasons will open in the Clearwater River, Snake River, Little Salmon and part of the lower Salmon rivers. As of April 17, however, only 11 adult Chinook had been counted crossing Lower Granite Dam, the last dam fish pass as they migrate up the Snake River.

Closing dates will be announced by Fish and Game.

In the Clearwater River drainage the daily limit is three Chinook; only one may be an adult (24 or more inches long). The possession limit is nine; only three may be adults.

In the Snake River from Dug Bar to Hells Canyon Dam, the lower Salmon and the Little Salmon rivers, the daily limit is four Chinook; only two may be adults.

The possession limit is 12; only six may be adults.

The statewide annual limit is 20 adult Chinook in the 2011 seasons closing before September 1.

Daylight fishing hours will be 1 in the season brochure available at fishing license vendors and Fish and Game offices.

Waters that open April 23 are:

Clearwater River, mainstem:

Come Learn About Native and Exotic Snakes in Idaho

Slither on into the Morrison Knudsen Nature Center at 1 p.m. Saturday April 23 and learn about native and exotic snakes in Idaho, including rattlesnake awareness and safety.

Wildlife educators Frank Lundburg and Scott Smith will present a special program for the public with live snakes. Lundburg and Smith educate the public on topics such as the care and safe handling of reptiles as well as the natural history of the animals.

Doors open at 12:30 p.m. and the program starts at 1. The cost is $5 per person over the age of 3. Cash or checks only will be accepted for admission.

The Nature Center is behind Idaho Fish and Game headquarters at 600 S. Walnut St. in Boise.