Press Release

March 2017

Bighorns euthanized after contacting domestic sheep in Challis

Two bighorn sheep rams that were in immediate proximity to domestic sheep near Challis were euthanized Thursday, March 30, to prevent the sheep from potentially carrying disease back to the wild herd. One ram was a five-years-old and the other a six-year old.

challis_bighorn.jpg
Creative Commons Licence
Idaho Fish and Game

Idaho Department of Fish and Game officials euthanized the two rams after attempts to dart and radio collar the animals failed on Wednesday afternoon and Thursday morning. The bighorn sheep were removed from a hillside adjacent to a small flock of domestic sheep on the outskirts of Challis.

Samples were taken immediately after the sheep were euthanized, and the samples and carcass have been transported to a wildlife health lab for analysis.

Southwest Region 'Take Me Fishing!' Trailer Schedule

Stocked with equipment and information, Fish and Game’s fishing trailer will soon be making more than 25 appearances at local ponds across the region, promoting fishing as part of a healthy outdoor lifestyle.

To learn more about the trailer program, contact the Fish and Game Nampa office at 465-8465. More information regarding the fishing trailer program, including other regional trailer schedules, is also available on Fish and Game’s website at https://idfg.idaho.gov/event/fishing-trailers.

With its exterior wrapped completely with vibrant fish illustrations, the trailer is hard to miss. “The big fish and vivid colors make the trailer a kid magnet,” Fish and Game conservation educator Evin Oneale said. “That’s what we’re after; a focal point to help get a kid excited about fishing.”

Youth turkey hunt begins April 8

Youth turkey hunters get an early shot as Idaho's general season youth turkey hunt runs Saturday, April 8 through Friday, April 14.

Young turkey hunter with prize tom turkey / Photo by Kelton Hatch
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Kelton Hatch for IDFG

Licensed youth who are 10 to 17 years old on April 8 may participate in the general season youth hunt. Resident hunters under 12 and nonresident hunters under 18 must be accompanied by a licensed adult 18 years of age or older to participate.

“Idaho’s youth hunts were created to increase opportunities and promote hunting as a safe, enjoyable family-oriented activity,” said Bill Seybold, Fish and Game volunteer coordinator based in Lewiston. “Plus they are great ways to introduce young people to hunting without the pressure of competing with lots of other hunters.”

Spring chinook seasons set

Idaho Fish and Game commissioners approved the spring chinook seasons and rules for the Snake, Clearwater, Salmon and Little Salmon rivers during its regular meeting Thursday, March 16 in Boise.

Fishing will open April 22, with a four-day-a-week season on the Clearwater River, and daily fishing on the Snake, lower Salmon and Little Salmon rivers. Once open, the seasons will continue as set until further notice. The season typically ends when the sport anglers' share of the run is caught, which varies by river.

Chinook have just started entering the Columbia River and less than 15 have crossed Bonneville Dam, which is the first of eight dams the fish cross in the Columbia/Snake river systems. The forecast for this year is adult 49,400 hatchery fish to cross Lower Granite Dam about 25 miles downstream from Lewiston, which is the last dam the fish cross before reaching Idaho. Last year, an estimated adult 58,200 hatchery chinook crossed Lower Granite.

Because the projected return to the Clearwater River basin is down this year, and the sport anglers share is about 1,900 adult fish, fishing will be open Thursdays through Sundays and closed Mondays to Wednesdays.

“Fishing four-days-a-week will extend the season, which anglers told us they wanted,” said Joe DuPont, Fish and Game regional fisheries manager at Lewiston. “This will also allow us to calculate real time harvest rates so that harvest can be better distributed to all the communities throughout the basin.”

Anglers should note that the section of the Clearwater from Five Mile Boat Ramp to Kamiah will be closed this year to make it easier for fisheries officials to monitor harvest rates. 

Anglers should consult the 2017 spring chinook salmon seasons and rules brochure for other rules and special restrictions regarding fishing from shore and watercraft.  Brochures will be available at Fish and Game offices, license vendors and online prior to season opener.

Annual fur auction set for April 22 in Lewiston

You don’t have to be a taxidermist to find a treasure at Idaho Fish and Game’s annual fur auction.

This year’s auction of furs, hides, antlers, and other items is set for Saturday, April 22 at the Idaho Fish and Game office located at 3316 16th Street in Lewiston. Items may be viewed beginning at 8 a.m., with the live auction beginning promptly at 10 a.m. (PDT).

Auction items include furs, whole carcasses, antlers, skulls and other items. All items were either found, seized as evidence or salvaged. All carcasses are considered unfit for human consumption and are sold for use of the non-edible portions only. Antlers may be sold as small bundles by weight or as single sets attached to skull plates.

A taxidermist-furbuyer license is required in advance to bid on bear parts, mountain lion parts, or any furbearer. Anyone who buys or sells raw hides is also required to possess a taxidermist-furbuyer license. Resident licenses are $40 for one year, and nonresident licenses are $170. The licenses can be purchased at any Idaho Fish and Game office.

The Fish and Game office in Lewiston will be open during the auction. Only cash, cashier’s check or personal check will be accepted. No credit card service will be available.

Nonresident purchasers should be aware that their state may not allow import of the hides or parts of bear, mountain lion, bobcat or otter. Be sure to check state regulations before purchasing these items.

A person who has killed an animal illegally and that animal has been confiscated and put up for sale at the auction, may not buy that animal or any part of it at the auction. Nor may another person buy the animal or any part of it on their behalf. Both of these examples would be an illegal purchase of wildlife.

For more information, contact Fish and Game’s Clearwater Region office at 208-799-5010.