Press Release

April 2021

During the spring wildlife baby boom, young animals are better off left alone

Spring is here, and so is the peak of baby wildlife season. People are bound to see young wildlife when they venture outdoors during the spring and early summer, and there is a pretty good chance that they will see a baby animal that appears to be alone. Fish and Game officials have a simple suggestion to people who discover baby animals that appear to be abandoned: Just leave them be.

Youth-only controlled hunts offer kids exclusive opportunities for big game tags

Controlled hunt tags are available for many of Idaho's best hunts, including 17 youth-only deer hunts, 15 elk hunts, five pronghorn hunts, and one black bear hunt. Youth-only controlled hunts include opportunities for extra tags. 

April 26 Upper Salmon River Steelhead Fishing Report

Steelhead angler effort continued to decline on the upper Salmon River during the past week. Angler interviews were obtained from downstream of the Pahsimeroi River in location code 17 and upstream of the East Fork Salmon River in location code 19. Angler effort and catch remained highest in location code 19, and anglers interviewed in that area averaged 12 hours per steelhead caught. Anglers interviewed near the confluence of the Pahsimeroi River in location code 17 averaged 37 hours per steelhead caught.

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Idaho, Utah wildlife agencies to conduct lake trout research project on Bear Lake

The Idaho Department of Fish and Game in cooperation with the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources will be taking a close look at the 20-year-old lake trout stocking program in Bear Lake.  And, in conjunction, Fish and Game will be transferring 400 sterile lake trout from Bear Lake to Stanley Lake in Idaho. 

Grab your fishing gear, Salmon Region waters to be stocked in May

Idaho Department of Fish and Game will stock over 3,500 catchable-sized (10 to 12-inch) rainbow trout at the following location in May.

Blue Mountain Meadow Pond May 10-14 300
Hayden Creek Pond May 3-7, May 24-28 1,000
Hyde Creek Pond May 3-7, May 24-28 400
Kids Creek Pond May 3-7, May 24-28 500
Mosquito Flat Reservoir May 24-28 1,000
Squaw Creek Pond May 10-14 300

The number of trout actually released may be altered by weather, water conditions, equipment problems or schedule changes. If delays occur, trout will be released when conditions become favorable.

Anglers can find more detailed information on each of these waters, including maps, facilities, species present, stocking records and fishing rules by visiting the Fishing Planner on Fish and Game’s website.

Commission meeting May 5-6 in Coeur d’Alene

The Fish and Game Commission will meet in Coeur d’Alene on May 5-6, with the public hearing at 7 p.m. PDT Wednesday, May 5, at the Panhandle Region Office, 2885 W. Kathleen Ave. People can address the Commission about any matters related to Fish and Game at that time. The public hearing will not be streamed live, but the business meeting will on May 6.

Due to the Governor’s Stage 3 Stay Healthy Order, gatherings are limited to 50 persons or less in attendance. With staff and Commissioners present and space limitations for adequate social distancing, no more than 25 members of the public will be allowed in the meeting room at one time during the public hearing, but commenters will be allowed to cycle through to stay within the limit.

People wishing to testify may be asked to wait in a separate room (subject to a capacity limit and social distancing) or at another location until it is their turn to speak. Those who attend the public hearing and wish to and speak to the Commission will have a three-minute time limit, with additional comments accepted in writing.

The Commission’s business meeting will resume at 8 a.m. PDT May 6 at the same location. Public comments are not accepted during the business meeting, but it is open to the public. In-person attendance will remain limited to 25 people or less, which includes the Commission and Fish and Game staff, but members of the public can also attend remotely via Zoom:

Live stream via Zoom:
Meeting ID: 936 8235 8350
Call-in number: 253-215-8782

See the full agenda and details for action items.

Agenda action items include:

Big game controlled hunt application period runs May 1 through June 5

Hunters with a valid 2021 Idaho hunting license may apply for controlled hunts at any license vendor, Fish and Game office, or with a credit card online at or by calling 1-800-554-8685. Here is some new information that hunters should keep in mind for the upcoming controlled hunt application period.

Moughmer Point deer shot and wasted near Cottonwood, ID

Information is being sought for a male white tail deer shot and left to waste in the Moughmer Point area outside Cottonwood, Idaho.

The deer was discovered on the morning of April 21, 2021 by a local landowner and reported to the Cottonwood Fish and Game officer. The officer determined the deer had been shot in the head sometime between 7:00 p.m. April 20, 2021 and 9:00 a.m. April 21, 2021.

The last several years there has been a marked increase in deer and other animals shot and left to waste in the Keuterville/Cottonwood area. Most notably two white tail does shot in May 2020 in the American Bar area and over a half a dozen bucks and does shot and wasted in the fall of 2019. Fish and Game needs the public’s assistance in resolving these cases.

Anyone with information on this, or other wildlife crime, is encouraged to report it to the CAP line (1-800-632-5999), the Lewiston Fish and Game office (208-799-5010) or the Cottonwood officer, Erin Landers (208-792-7807). Tipsters will remain anonymous and may be eligible for a monetary reward.

Six deer/elk controlled hunts in Unit 54 will have fewer tags available in 2021

After the wildfires in 2020, some hunters opted to take “rainchecks” on their controlled hunt deer and elk tags in six hunts in Unit 54 south of Twin Falls, so there will be fewer tags available in those hunts for this year’s drawing. 

Hunters should be aware of the reductions when deciding which hunts to apply for because rainchecks will account for up to 30 percent of the tags that would normally be available, and reductions will not be reflected in the 2021 Idaho Big Game Seasons and Rules booklet. 

2021 controlled hunts adjusted for rain checks

2020 controlled hunt number rainchecks 2021 controlled hunt number 2021 tag count listed in regs 2021 tag count adjusted for rainchecks
2037 5 2038 20 15
2103 60 2096 200 140
2130 3 2125 20 17
2145 6 2140 20 14
1083 11 1082 Unlimited for residents, 59 tags for nonresidents Unlimited for residents, 55 tags for nonresidents
1113 22 1110 90 68

Controlled hunt application period for deer, elk, pronghorn and fall bear is May 1 through June 5, and hunters can apply at Fish and Game offices, license vendors, online, or by calling 1-800-554-8685.

Lake trout work in Stanley Lake resumes in 2021

Idaho Fish and Game has contracted with a company to net lake trout in Stanley Lake for 10 days in early May to reduce their population and reduce risk to endangered sockeye salmon populations. After the netting, sterile lake trout will be restocked in the summer and fall to continue to provide anglers a lake trout fishery at Stanley Lake. This is the second year of a three-year project and is the first netting event of 2021.

Stanley Lake
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Lake trout are mostly predatory fish that feed on smaller fish, such as kokanee salmon and young sockeye. In other lake and river systems across the West, lake trout have also migrated long distances and colonized connected lakes. Lake trout in Stanley Lake are currently reproducing, and therefore pose a risk to establishing populations in nearby waters.