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Comments Sought on Fish and Game-Harris Land Exchange

The Idaho departments of Fish and Game and Parks and Recreation are seeking public comments on a proposal to exchange 45 acres of the 34,000 acre Boise River Wildlife Management Area for 180 acres of private land nearby owned by the Harris Family LTD Partnership.

Adjacent urban activities have affected big game winter use of the 45 acre parcel. The replacement 180 acres, about a mile away, is more secluded big game winter range. Its acquisition by Fish and Game would enlarge the Boise River Wildlife Management Area, connect an isolated 80-acre Fish and Game parcel to the rest of the wildlife management area and would prevent development in critical big game winter range.

The 180 acres to be acquired by Fish and Game would become part of the Boise River Wildlife Management Area. Public use of the Homestead Trail, part of the public Ridge-to-Rivers trail system, would continue to be managed by Fish and Game on the 45 acre parcel after it is exchanged to Harris.

Because the 45 acres was purchased with federal Land and Water Conservation Funds in 1964, the "conversion and replacement" land requires National Park Service approval and an environmental assessment of the proposed land exchange.

Fish and Game and Parks and Recreation are requesting public comments on the environmental assessment.

Public comments will be accepted from December 15 through February 15, 2012. Comments will be submitted to the National Park Service along with the Fish and Game and Parks "conversion and replacement" application.

E-mail comments to: caywoodjs@cableone.net, or mail them to: IDFG-Harris Land Exchange, c/o John Caywood, 8864 Kiowa Drive, Boise ID 83709.

For further information contact John Caywood, exchange coordinator at 208-761-8845 or at caywoodjs@cableone.net.

(Map and environmental assessment available on request)