Press Release

July 2022

F&G welcomes first sockeye of 2022 to the Sawtooth Basin, and more are on the way

Idaho Fish and Game trapped two sockeye at fish traps in the Sawtooth Basin near Stanley on July 28, which are the first fish for 2022 and part of what could be the largest sockeye return in years. Through July 28, there were 2,041 sockeye counted at Lower Granite Dam about 30 miles downstream from Lewiston.

Rabid bat discovered in downtown Boise; public health officials urge residents to take precautions

Editor's Note: The following is a joint press release from Central District Health and the Idaho Department of Fish and Game.

A bat tested positive for rabies after it was found Tuesday, July 26 on a sidewalk on Bannock Street, across from Cecil D. Andrus Park in downtown Boise. Reports suggest that two other dead bats had been seen in the same area last week. Tests confirming
the rabies virus came back positive Wednesday, July 27.

The rabies virus can cause a fatal illness in both people and pets. Although most bats do not have rabies, they are the species most often found to be rabid in Idaho. Central District Health (CDH) and the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare urge residents to avoid all contact with any bat.

“If you handled a bat in the downtown Boise area in the last week, it is important that you contact your primary care provider immediately to discuss the situation and determine if rabies shots are warranted,” said State Public Health Veterinarian Dr. Leslie Tengelsen. “Bat bites are extremely small and hard to see, so if there is any chance you handled a bat near the park, talk to your healthcare provider. If your pet picked up a bat near the park, even if currently vaccinated against rabies, talk to your veterinarian about getting your pet a rabies booster.”

If you or your pet did have an encounter with a bat on a sidewalk on Bannock Street across from the park, please also call (208) 375-5211 to speak with a Central District Health epidemiologist.

Sage-grouse and Sandhill crane tags go on sale Aug. 1, F&G Commission increases grouse tags available for 2022

Hunters wanting to hunt Sage-grouse or Sandhill cranes can buy tags starting at 10 a.m. MDT on Aug. 1, and both will be available in limited numbers on a first-come, first-served basis. Hunters can buy tags at Fish and Game offices during normal business hours, at license vendors, with a credit card online at, or by calling (800) 554-8685.

Niagara Springs Creek day-park to be closed for construction until mid-August

The ever-popular Idaho Power Company Niagara Springs Creek day-park located directly across and adjacent to the Niagara Springs Steelhead Hatchery will be closed to all public access beginning July 29, 2022 due to construction. The park will remain closed until the construction is completed which is anticipated to be in mid-August, 2022.

The construction project includes work that will stabilize the streambank from an ongoing erosion issue. To protect the streambank, contractors will be installing rock riprap and planting riparian vegetation.

The public closure of the upper section of the creek will continue even after this project is completed due to the presence of threatened Bliss Rapid snails residing in this section of the Niagara Springs Creek.

Anglers will be provided a specific access point to Niagara Springs Creek.

The construction project will not affect public access to Niagara Springs State Park or their hours of operation.

For more information contact the Magic Valley Regional Office at (208) 324-4359.

Rainbow trout stocking schedule for August 2022 in the Magic Valley Region

Hatchery personnel from Fish and Game’s Magic Valley Region will be stocking approximately 24,575 10-12” catchable-sized rainbow trout in August. All stocking dates and numbers of fish are approximate.

Stocking of all waters is tentative and dependent on river/lake/pond conditions (angler safety concerns); dates may change due to weather or staffing constraints.


Body of Water

Week to be Stocked

Fish and Game announces upcoming hunter, trapper and wolf trapper education classes in Jerome

The Magic Valley Region will be offering several education classes in the coming months in Jerome. These classes are required for individuals who have never trapped before, or would like to trap wolves, and for anyone born after January 1, 1975 and who has never had a hunting license.

To sign up for any class go to the Fish and Game website, and select either Hunter Education in-person courses, trapper education courses or wolf trapper education courses.

Trapper Education

Conflicts continue with black bears in the Wood River Valley

On Monday, July 25, 2022 Fish and Game’s Magic Valley Region received a report of a black bear incident in a residential area in East Fork, south of Ketchum. Conservation officers who investigated the report found that on Friday, July 22, a woman was walking her Great Pyrenees near her home when she and the dog encountered a black bear at close proximity on the trail. It was estimated to be 120 pounds by the woman, who noted the bear was approximately the same size as her dog.

Once encountered, the woman began to walk backwards while talking to the bear. Her dog, who was off trail came back and the bear engaged with the dog. The bear and dog scuffled. The dog suffered multiple bite puncture wounds and was treated by a local veterinarian. It is currently recovering from its wounds at home. The bear left the area and it is unknown if it suffered any injuries.

Officers could not determine the age or gender of the bear. They also report that this incident does not appear to be the result of unsecured garbage in the neighborhoods, but rather a bear living in its natural habitat in close proximity to rural residential development.

No efforts to trap the bear will be taken by Fish and Game.

Other residents in the East Fork neighborhood reported seeing a bear and cubs in the area.

Residents are encouraged to be vigilant while outdoors to avoid any surprise encounters with bears. 

“When a bear or any wildlife has direct contact with an unleashed pet in wildlands we tend to not take management actions against wildlife” according to Mike McDonald, Regional Wildlife Manager, “in many situations, wildlife and pets, especially dogs, don’t mix, and can actually make an encounter rise to an attack or fight between the two. We don’t want that to happen. Dog owners should be aware that they are responsible for their pets and their actions when recreating on public land.”

F&G staff relocate moose from Hidden Springs community near Boise

On Thursday, July 20, Southwest Region wildlife and enforcement staff successfully darted and relocated a two-year-old cow moose that had spent the prior few days in a community just north of Boise. Staff moved the moose to a more suitable area near Smiths Ferry, away from town and people.