Press Release

Commission Considers Wildlife Salvage, Grizzly Statement

The Idaho Fish and Game Commission meeting, November 18, directed Fish and Game to develop rules for salvage of accidentally killed wildlife.

Current rules do not allow private citizens to salvage usable parts of accidentally killed wildlife, including road kill. Nor do rules allow commercial sale for salvaged parts.

The commission directed Fish and Game to develop rules that would allow public salvage for personal use and commercial salvage such as the pelts that could be salvaged and sold.

Assistant Director Sharon Kiefer presented an update on proposed legislation that would give the commission authority to create a mentored hunting program.

She also presented two interstate projects involving Idaho, which are part of the Western Governors' Wildlife Corridors and Crucial Wildlife Habitats Initiative.

The projects, one involving Idaho, Oregon and Washington and the other involving Idaho and Montana, would help identify key migration corridors, crucial habitat and recommend tools for landscape conservation as part of a state based integrated decision support system.

The projects would help ensure wildlife information is considered early in planning and decision making processes. And they allow states to develop a transboundary picture of crucial habitat and corridors across jurisdictions. They would look regionwide, rather than just statewide, include climate change adaptation strategies and develop a standard framework for mapping wildlife corridors.

The commission also adopted the state's Bighorn Sheep Management Plan. Fish and Game Director Cal Groen noted that the interest in hunting bighorn sheep in Idaho has been growing. And the biggest ram ever taken in the state was taken this year, he said.

Commissioners also adopted a position statement on Yellowstone grizzly bears, expressing the commission's contention that increased bear mortalities are a sign of an increased bear population. The statement also holds that nuisance bears killed outside primary conservation area in Idaho should not count against mortality thresholds established in grizzly bear conservation strategy.

The commission also does not support any "actions that curtail or limit hunting opportunities outside the primary conservation area, to enhance the expansion of grizzly bear populations," the statement says.