Idaho Fish and Game will host a public meeting to take comment on proposed grizzly bear rules at 7 p.m., Oct. 12 at the Washington Group main auditorium at 720 E. Park Blvd in Boise.
People who cannot attend the meeting can submit written comments to: P.O. Box 25, Boise, ID, 83707 on or before October 26, 2016.
Currently, there is no hunting season for grizzly bears in Idaho, and neither the Fish and Game Commission nor the department is proposing a grizzly bear hunt.
As part of the federal process for taking bears off the threatened species list, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service wants states to show how they would conserve the Greater Yellowstone grizzly bear population if they opt to allow limited hunting after federal protection ends.
Fish and Game commissioners in August proposed rules to administer hunts they might authorize in the future once the Greater Yellowstone population is delisted, including:
• 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.
Any grizzly bear hunts the Fish and Game commission may authorize after federal delisting would be tightly regulated and extremely limited. The commission, which will not be present at the Oct. 12 meeting, will review public comments and determine whether to adopt the proposed rules as pending for legislative review at its November 17 meeting.