Press Release

June 2011

Chinook Seasons Open on Upper Salmon

Chinook salmon seasons are set to open in sections of the upper Salmon River in addition to the area near Salmon that opened June 25.

A season in the Salmon area reach of the river opens July 2, and a jacks-only season opens July 9 in the Stanley area.

Salmon River, Section 16, Salmon Area - Open July 2 until further notice.

  • From the posted boundary by the private bridge crossing about 1.5 miles upstream from the confluence of the main Salmon River and North Fork Salmon River upstream to the posted boundary by the cable car crossing at the USGS flow gauging station, about 150 yards downstream of Island Park in Salmon.
  • The daily bag limit is six Chinook, no more than two of which may be adults, and the possession limit is 18 Chinook, no more than six of which may be adults. Only Chinook with a clipped adipose fin, as evidenced by a healed scar, may be kept.

Salmon River, Section 19, Stanley Area - Jacks only, open July 9 until the end of legal fishing July 17.

  • From a posted boundary about 20 yards upstream of Valley Creek in Stanley, upstream to the posted boundary about 100 yards downstream of the weir at the Sawtooth Hatchery south of Stanley.
  • The daily limit is two jack salmon per day and six in possession. No adult Chinook may be taken. Only Chinook less than 24 inches long, with a clipped adipose fin, as evidenced by a healed scar, may be kept.

Fishing hours in the Upper Salmon River are from 5 a.m. to 10 p.m. MDT. All other salmon fishing rules remain in effect.

The statewide season limit remains 20 adult Chinook during any 2011 salmon seasons occurring before September 1, 2011. All salmon anglers 14 years old and older must have a 2011 Idaho fishing license and salmon permit. All other salmon fishing rules remain the same and are listed in the 2011 Chinook seasons and rules brochure.

Fish and Game Commission to Meet in Salmon

The Idaho Fish and Game Commission will consider wolf hunting and trapping seasons during the July 27 and 28 meeting in Salmon.

A public hearing will begin at 7 p.m. Wednesday, July 27, at the Idaho Fish and Game regional office in Salmon.

Proposed wolf seasons would use hunting and trapping to reduce the population to a level that is sustainable, meets federal recovery goals and reduces conflict levels statewide. Fish and Game plans to release the proposal for public review on the Fish and Game website later in the week of July 4. A news conference to discuss the proposal will be announced later in the week.

Other agenda items include:

  • Rules for all game animals and protected wildlife.
  • Nonresident deer and elk tag quotas and nonresident deer and elk tag outfitter set-asides.
  • Season setting for sandhill cranes and for fall Chinook salmon.
  • Release of bighorn sheep tags for auction and lottery.
  • Expenditure of Animal Damage Control funds.
  • Legislative proposals and land acquisitions.
  • A briefing on migratory game birds and sage-grouse.

A detailed agenda will be posted on the Fish and Game website when it becomes available.

Individuals with disabilities may request meeting accommodations by contacting the director's office at Idaho Fish and Game at 208-334-5159 or through the Idaho Relay Service at 1-800-377-2529 (TDD).

Second Drawing Results for Moose Available

The results of the second drawing for controlled moose hunts now are available along with drawing odds.

To find the results go to the Idaho Fish and Game website at http://fishandgame.idaho.gov or to local Fish and Game offices.

For results: http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/apps/ch/results.cfm; to check on moose hunts: http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/apps/ch/msg_lft.cfm; for drawing odds: http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/apps/ch/odds.cfm.

For those hunters who need it, help with planning hunts can be found on the Fish and Game website at: http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/ifwis/huntplanner, to zero in on where, when and what species to hunt this fall.

Enter Super Hunt Now

It's time to apply for a second chance at the hunt of a lifetime.

Entries in the second Super Hunt and Super Hunt Combo drawing must be received at the Fish and Game headquarters by August 11 with the drawing set for mid-August.

A "Super Hunt Combo" entry and entries for two elk, two deer, and two pronghorn hunts along with one moose hunt will be drawn. The entry period for the second drawing is June 2 through August 11.

So what's a Super Hunt?

It is a fund-raising drawing for 40 big game tags. The tags are handed out to winners in two drawings. Entries are drawn for elk, deer, pronghorn and moose tags. Winners can participate in any open hunt in the state for deer, elk, pronghorn or moose. That includes general hunts and controlled hunts.

Hunters can take an animal or animals on their Super Hunt or Super Hunt Combo tags in addition to any general season or controlled hunt tags they also hold. All other rules of individual hunts apply.

The special drawings began in 2004 as a way to raise money for the Access Yes! Program, which helps assure hunter and angler access to and across private lands by compensating willing landowners.

The first entry costs $6; additional entries for the same species cost $4 each when purchased at the same time. Super Hunt Combo entries cost $20 for one; additional entries are $16 when purchased at the same time. Enter at license vendors, all Fish and Game offices, or on the Internet at http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/cms/hunt/superhunt/, and on the phone at 800-824-3729 or 800-554-8685.

Fill out entry order forms and mail them to: Fish and Game License Section, P.O. Box 25, Boise, ID 83707.

Ask Fish and Game: Leftover Tags

Q. When will the leftover controlled hunt deer tags be listed?

A. Hunters who drew deer, elk or pronghorn can pick up their tags through August 1. After that, Fish and Game can release a list of leftover controlled hunt tags. The application period for the second drawing is August 5 through 15.

Two Moose Captured in Inkom

On Wednesday morning, June 22, Idaho Fish and Game responded to a call about an adult cow moose and her year-old male young discovered behind Bisharat Market in Inkom.

Fish and Game personnel darted both moose with tranquilizers to load the animals in a trailer for transport and release out of the immediate area. The tranquilizing drugs used typically take effect in a moose within three to five minutes.

The small bull moose succumbed to the tranquilizer drug fairly quickly. The adult female, however, jumped a fence after being darted and ended up staggering into Rapid Creek that runs through town.

Worried that she would take in water and possibly drown, Fish and Game personnel jumped in with the moose and worked to keep her head above water.

They carried her about 100 feet before several personnel and a couple of bystanders were able to pull her from the water.

Fish and Game biologists worked to revive the moose. They administered a drug to reverse the effects of the tranquilizer. They also attempted to manually expel creek water from her lungs by placing her on her chest and stomach and pressing on her sides.

Unfortunately, the moose had taken in too much water and died in the trailer.

"This is not the ending we wanted for this moose," said Toby Boudreau, regional wildlife manager for Fish and Game's southeast region. "Going into these situations, there is always the chance something can go wrong, but we have been able to successfully dart and move 10 other moose in southeast Idaho this year without major incident."

Boudreau added: "Losing an animal is a tough part of this job. The upside is that the little bull recovered nicely, and releasing him to a more secluded quality habitat was no problem."

The young bull was released on national forest lands south of Pocatello.

F&G Seeks Comments on Proposed Fishing Rules

Idaho Fish and Game seeks public comments on a series of proposed changes to fishing rules.

All proposed rules are available on the Fish and Game website at: http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/cms/fish/misc/NonbiologicalFishRules_5_19_2.... Comments may be submitted at the links on the web page.

Highlights of Fish and Game's recommendations include:

  • Allowing filleting of hatchery salmon and steelhead harvested and recorded on a salmon or steelhead permit when certain conditions are met.
  • Allowing use of a gaff hook while archery fishing for nongame fish.
  • Modifying the definition of a "steelhead" in the Salmon, Snake and Clearwater River drainages.
  • A new definition for when a fishing contest permit is needed.
  • New definitions used in the 2011-2012 fishing rules booklet.
  • Making it illegal to mark and release fish.

Written comments also may be sent to IDFG Fisheries Bureau, P.O. Box 25, Boise ID 83707.

The deadline for comments is July 8.

The Idaho Fish and Game Commission will act on these proposed rules at the July 28 meeting in Salmon. Adopted rules would not take effect until April 2012.

F&G Seeks Comments on Big Game Rules, Wolf Hunting

The southeast regional office of the Idaho Department of Fish and Game is planning an open house to gather public comments on "nonbiological" rules for big game hunting as well as proposals for the upcoming wolf hunting season.

The public is encouraged to stop by the Fish and Game office at 1345 Barton Road in Pocatello anytime between 9 a.m. and 7 p.m. on July 13 P.M. for the open house.

There is a difference between biological and nonbiological rules. Biological rules are those rules 1 annually in the hunting proclamations that include seasons, limits, size, sex and harvestable species. Nonbiological rules include all other rules adopted by the Fish and Game Commission.

Examples of nonbiological rules include methods of take, tagging requirements, evidence-of-sex requirements, and controlled hunt eligibility requirements.

Two nonbiological rules proposals to be discussed at the open house in Pocatello have to do with boundary designations for hunting units in the southeast region. Fish and Game proposes fixing the boundary description for Units 69 and 66A as there is an incorrect road mentioned in the proclamations.

Likewise, correction of the description for Unit 77's boundary is being proposed.

Other proposals related to nonbiological rules will be added to the list of discussion items for the open house as they become available and posted on Fish and Game's website within the coming weeks at fishandgame.idaho.gov.

During the open house, proposals for the wolf hunting season will also be presented. These proposals are for biological rules associated with wolf hunting, and will include, in part, discussions of season structure, quotas, and method of take.

The comment period for both the nonbiological rules as well as the proposals for the wolf hunting season will conclude sometime in late July.

Ask Fish and Game: Angler Access

Q. Do I need permission to fish along a side channel of the Boise River?

A. No. Under Idaho law, anglers do not need permission to fish along a navigable stream as long as they stay within the normal high-water marks and enter and exit the stream from a public right-of-way, such as a road or bridge. Anglers may cross private land only with permission, except to go around an obstruction with no other means of getting around - but they must use the shortest most direct route around the obstruction. For details, refer to Page 48 of the current Idaho 2011-2012 Fishing Seasons and Rules booklet, available at fishing license vendors, Fish and Game offices and online at http://fishandgame.idaho.gov.

Pocatello Deer Fence Fund Program end July 1

Donations to Farm Bureau Insurance's Pocatello-Inkom deer fence fund matching program are at the halfway mark with one week remaining before the program ends.

Farm Bureau Insurance will match up to $5,000 in individual monetary donations made to the fence project before Friday, July 1.

A $100 donation was recently made by a Three Forks, Montana, resident after his car hit a deer on I-15 between Inkom and Pocatello. The deer smashed through the passenger side of the windshield and hit his wife in the head. She recovered after spending several days in the hospital.

Each year, according to Idaho Fish and Game estimates, at least 100 deer are killed on the section of Interstate 15 between Pocatello and Inkom. These deer-car collisions also cause hundreds of thousands of dollars in property damage and personal injuries.

To make a donation to the Pocatello-Inkom deer fence or for information about volunteer opportunities, please contact Jim Teare, wildlife staff biologist and Mule Deer Initiative coordinator at the Idaho Fish and Game's Pocatello office, at 208-232-4703.

To report a wildlife collision observation or for more information about wildlife collisions in Idaho, please visit www.fishandgame.idaho.gov/cms/wildlife/manage_issues/collision

Jacks Only Salmon Season on Lower Clearwater and North Fork

After Sunday, June 26, anglers on the lower Clearwater River and on the North Fork Clearwater River will be allowed to catch and keep only jack salmon less than 24 inches long.

The change takes effect at the close of fishing on Sunday, June 26 in the North Fork Clearwater and the Clearwater downstream of the Orofino Bridge. The new bag limits for these waters are six jack Chinook salmon per day and 18 in possession. No adult Chinook may be kept.

Anglers may not fish in these sections if they have adult Chinook in possession, even if they were legally caught in other river sections.

Idaho Fish and Game fishery managers estimate that by the end of fishing on June 26, anglers will have taken about 80 percent of the nontribal harvest share of the adult Chinook returning to the Clearwater drainage. Most of this harvest has occurred in the Clearwater River downstream of the Orofino Bridge and in the North Fork Clearwater River.

To ensure opportunities for upstream anglers in communities including Orofino, Kamiah, Kooskia and Grangeville to fish for adult salmon, Fish and Game recommended this jacks-only season in the downstream areas.

The bag limits on the upstream portion of the Clearwater, the Middle Fork and South Fork rivers remain unchanged.

Ask the Conservation Officer (CO)

by Gary Hompland, Regional Conservation Officer, Idaho Department of Fish and Game

Question: "I heard about someone that found an orphaned deer fawn and raised it to an adult. I'd like to do this, what kinds of permits are required?"

Answer: The short answer is, only under very rare circumstances would the Department authorize anyone to possess a wild fawn deer or calf elk.

In the past it may have been common in Idaho to allow a "Good Samaritan" to raise an orphaned fawn and "release it back into the wild." When Idaho's human population was sparsely distributed, deer that were habituated to humans were often released on large ranches and farms. Gracious landowners tolerated these deer that often lived out their lives within the security of the ranch. These deer were usually not marked so the success of these animals returning to the wild could not be evaluated. No doubt some were successful and some were not, but nature decided, not people.

Idaho's population is no longer sparsely distributed. Deer habituated to humans in urban environments damage property and threaten personal safety. Several years ago a buck deer that was raised in captivity as a fawn attacked and injured several people. One elderly lady was charged repeatedly, knocked down and left with numerous bruises on her legs. In the end the deer was euthanized due to the danger it posed to the public.

To add a layer of complexity of the issue, several wildlife diseases, unknown in the past, now pose a threat to other wild deer, domestic livestock, and people. Examples include chronic wasting disease, brucellosis, epizootic hemorrhagic disease, and tuberculosis.

Chronic wasting disease has devastated wild deer populations across country and caused several states to prohibit importation of the carcass or skull of deer taken by hunters. Some think its spread is by contact with infected animals or body fluids.