The Idaho Fish and Game Commission on Monday, Aug. 8 approved a plan to limit the take of grizzly bears in Idaho as part of removing the Greater Yellowstone population from the federal list of threatened and endangered species. The plan supports an agreement among Idaho, Montana and Wyoming for state management of this grizzly bear population upon federal delisting.
Currently, there is no hunting season for grizzly bears in Idaho, and neither the commission nor the department is proposing a grizzly bear hunt. Any grizzly bear hunts the Fish and Game commission may authorize after federal delisting would be tightly regulated and extremely limited.
As part of the federal process for taking bears off the threatened species list, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service wanted states to show how they would conserve the Greater Yellowstone grizzly bear population if they opt to allow limited hunting after federal protection ends.
Idaho Fish and Game commissioners proposed rules to administer hunts they could authorize in the future. The proposed rules will be published in the Idaho Administrative Bulletin in early October for public comment, after which the commission will decide whether to forward them to the Idaho Legislature for review.
Proposed hunting rules include:
• Establish rule to limit harvest of a grizzly bear in Idaho to once per lifetime.
• Establish that either sex of grizzly bears may be taken, except adults accompanied by young and young accompanying adults may not be taken.
• Establish that immediately after harvest of a grizzly bear, the tag must be validated and securely attached to the hide.
Add grizzly bear to the list of species for which evidence of sex must be left naturally attached to the hide until mandatory check requirement has been fulfilled.
• Establish requirement that any hunter who kills a grizzly bear must report the harvest within 24 hours by calling a toll-free grizzly reporting number.
• Establish mandatory check requirement for grizzly bears. Skull and hide must be presented to IDFG regional office for checking within five days of harvest.
Add grizzly bear to the list of species that may not be hunted within 200 yards of any designated dump ground or landfill.
Here’s the proclamation limiting take of Greater Yellowstone grizzly bear and Memorandum of Agreement among Idaho, Montana and Wyoming.