The Idaho Fish and Game Commission Thursday, January 17, adopted seasons for moose, bighorn sheep and mountain goats for 2013 and 2014.
In response to moose population changes, primarily in the Clearwater and Panhandle regions, the commission approved seasons that overall decreased bull moose tags by 46 and increased antlerless tags by 11.
Moose populations are declining in part of Idaho as well as parts of the other lower 48 states in areas with and without wolves, including Minnesota, Wyoming, North Dakota, Montana and elsewhere, Fish and Game's state wildlife manager Jon Rachael told the commissioners.
In contrast, moose appear to be increasing in much of northeast U.S., Alberta, BC, Washington, and other parts of Montana. Suspected causes vary but include predation, harvest, and changes in habitat, disease and parasites, and climatic factors.
Fish and Game has only a little data on collared moose calf mortality and collared adult moose survival in Idaho.
Few changes were made to bighorn sheep and mountain goat seasons.
- overall add two bull tags and add five antlerless tags.
- Hunt area 1 - reduced 10 bull tags.
- Hunt area 2 - add 10 bull tags and five antlerless tags.
- Hunt area 3 - add two bull tags for the late season.
- overall reduce 51 bull tags, increase four antlerless tags
- Close hunt areas 15, 16A, 17, 19, 20 - reduce 27 tags.
- Combine areas 12-3 and 12-4, 14-1 and 14-2, 16-1 and 16-2 - reduce 12 tags.
- Reduce tags in 10-4, 10-5, 10-6, 10A-1, 10A-2, 10A-5, 12-2, 12-5 and 12-6 - reduce 16 bull tags.
- Increase tags in Hunt areas 8, 8A - add two bull tags and two antlerless tags in each hunt area.
- No change.
- No Change.
- add one bull tag and two antlerless tags.
- Hunt area 70 - add one bull tag.
- New hunt area 70 - add two antlerless tags.
- add two tags.
- Reinstate hunt area 63 - add two bull tags.
- Hunt area 27-4 was split into two separate hunt areas, the portion of hunt area 27-4 within unit 27 will have two tags, and the portion of 27-4 that falls in the Yankee Fork Drainage in unit 36 will be a new hunt area with one tag.
No change except in the Upper Snake where hunt area 51 would be closed, eliminating three tags.
The 2013-2014 Moose, Bighorn Sheep and Mountain Goat seasons and rules brochure will be available in late February.