Frequently Asked Questions

We get a lot of questions. We post here answers to questions we're being asked frequently. If you have a question not answered here, please contact us. Urgent questions should be directed to your nearest office. Some answers change over time; please take note of the "answered" date.

Displaying 376 - 400 of 3501 questions

Q: Maximum wolf harvest allowed per person

Your rules are confusing. A person can buy 5 wolf trapping tags and 5 wolf hunting tags. Does that mean the maximum number of wolves one person can kill in a year is 10?

A: 

Wolf hunting tags can be used for either hunting or trapping, while wolf trapping tags can only be used for trapping. Thus, hunters may take up to 5 wolves, and trappers may take up to 10.
answered 8/16/2015

Q: super hunt tags

Have the 2015 2nd chance draw winners been notified?

A: 

Winners of the second super hunt drawing have been notified. Thank you.
answered 8/15/2015

Q: Removing river bank

New neighbor wants to remove 400 feet of trees along a river bank and slope to have a beach. Can they do that? We have turkey and pheasants that live in this area. Geese and ducks here all the time. If not you who do we need to report it to? Thanks, Allen

A: 

In most instances, the removal or alteration of stream bank substrate is regulated by the Idaho Department of Water Resources (stream channel alteration) and the US Corps of Engineers, requiring a joint permit. Water quality certification of the activity by Idaho's DEQ is likely to be required also. Idaho Department of Fish and Game may be asked to comment on the proposed activity for potential affects on fish and wildlife.
answered 8/14/2015

Q: Coho salmon season in Idaho.

A news release dated Aug 11, 2015 says setting a season for coho salmon is difficult, because they don't have early maturing Jacks, but jack coho salmon are being counted at the dams on the Columbia. Which is incorrect? Thank you.

A: 

Yes, you found our mistake in that news release. Coho do produce jacks, males that mature and return after only one year in the ocean, just like Chinook salmon. What was meant is that coho returns to the Snake River are difficult to predict because we don't have a lot of years of returns to use in our forecast models, most importantly the jack returns one year and the adult returns in the next year. The return of coho salmon to the Snake River is still quite new. After we acquire a few more years of data, we should be able to start making some forecasts of the coho return.
answered 8/14/2015

Q: Unit 40 early tags.

Is Unit 40 still going to be open on August 15th to hunters? For deer and antelope early archery?

A: 

Hunts opening Saturday in the Owyhees unlikely to change With controlled deer and pronghorns hunts opening in Unit 40 in portions of Owyhee County Saturday, Aug. 15, Idaho Fish and Game is monitoring the Soda Fire, but not closing or altering hunts at this time, nor expecting to in the immediate future. Like all wildfires, situations with the Soda Fire in Owyhee County can change quickly, but the fire is burning mostly in the northwest portion of the unit, leaving much of the south and eastern portions open for hunting. There are road closures in Owyhee County affecting access into the unit, and updates on the fire and road situation are available on http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/state/13/# under “Soda Fire.” The Owyhee County Sheriff’s Office issued road closures on Aug. 13 for all roads leading into the Silver City area, except for fire-fighting activity and residents. The closure affects the Silver City, Trout Creek and Cow Creek roads. Upper Reynolds Creek Road is also closed, along with Jump Creek recreation sites and all trailheads from Silver City to Jump Creek. Trail closures are in effect on the Owyhee Front Range. As of Aug. 14, the following roads are open and provide access to the western, eastern and southern portions of Unit 40: Flint Creek/Triangle Road, Mud Flat Road, Poison Creek Road, Shoofly Road, Sinker Creek Road and Collett Road. Fish and Game has two hunts scheduled to open Saturday, Aug. 15. A mule deer hunt involving 50 hunters opens for all of Unit 40 and runs through Sept. 30. “There’s still a bunch of area available and really good deer country accessible that hasn’t burned,” said Scott Reinecker, Fish and Game’s Southwest Region supervisor. He also noted the fire could be out and roads reopened before the hunts ends on Sept. 30. An archery pronghorn hunt also opens Saturday and runs until Aug. 30 involving 200 hunters, but is open for units 40, 41 and 42 and only a small portion of that hunt is likely to be affected. Typically, Idaho Fish and Game does not close hunts or alter season dates in response to fire restrictions. Most fires are not large enough to affect an entire hunting unit. Hunters affected by a fire closure can either adjust their hunt plans (timing, location), or exchange controlled hunts for general tags in a different area. The exchange must take place before the season begins.
answered 8/14/2015

Q: Trout vs Koi

In a private pond, are trout and koi compatable?

A: 

I'm not sure if you mean from a predator-prey perspective or water quality. Large trout (10"+) typically add small fish to their diet - and this could include koi.  Prior to achieving 10", they feed on insects, zooplankton, detritus, and other organic substances.  Large trout with small koi will definitely lead to koi being eaten. Koi are more tolerant of reduced water quality than trout.  They withstand higher water temperatures and lower dissolved oxygen levels better than rainbow trout.  Koi can also tolerate stagnant wate for longer peiods of time than rainbow trout. It would need to be just the right condition of inflowing water at the upper tolerance limits for trout in order for them to coexist in the same pond.  The bigger the waterbody - the greater the chance both species can find a niche that will suppor their needs.  
answered 8/12/2015

Q: Transporting Kokanee. Can i filet Kokanee in the field for storage and transport home? I will go to deadwood for a few days at a time and can bring home 50 fish. Can they be filet out and the carcasses put in their own cooler?

I will go to Deadwood for a few days at a time and can bring home 50 fish. Sometimes it is so hot they will start to go bad in a day. Can I filet them out with skin on and keep carcasses in their own separate cooler? It is easy to determine species and quantity. I can keep filets bagged and packed much cooler than whole fish.

A: 

Greetings,  When it comes to transporting fish, there are some specific (but often overlooked) rules to keep in mind. Your question is very good, as it addresses a gray area when interpreting the head/tail rule for transporting fish. The intention of the rule is for the fish to remain whole while in the field or transport. We recommend you keep the fish intact (gutting is OK) to avoid any law enforcement problems. This is intended to make it clear the number, species, and lengths of fish being kept.    The Idaho Fish and Game Commission has recognised the confusion over this rules and is proposing to make changes to make it easier for anglers to process fish in the field. If you would like to comment on the proposed changes to the "heads/tail rules", you can find our online public comment survey here: https://fishandgame.idaho.gov/content/public-involvement   Page 53 of the current fishing regulations states the rule for transporting trout and bass: "Head and Tail Removal:  It is illegal to have in the field or in transit any trout, char, coho, kokanee, grayling, tiger musky, or bass from which the head or tail has been removed."   You can find the current 2013-2015 Fishing Rules at this link: http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/public/fish/rules/seasonsRules.pdf   Good luck fishing at Deadwood!
answered 8/12/2015

Q: Bait Limitations

Recently I've been wanting to target flathead catfish & after doing some research I've found that they almost exclusively eat live bait & cut bait. But when cut bait isn't available why can't I use live bait? Is it the worry of invasive species? I mean you guys let us use live cray fish as long as they're caught in the same body of water you're fishing, why not do the same with the bait? Is there any such thing as a live bait permit? Thanks in advance.

A: 

Hello, thanks for your question about using live bait.  The IDFG rules prohibiting using live fish for bait is a cautious approach for reducing the risk of introducing unwanted species. No LIVE bait fish is relatively easy to enforce. Allowing even capture and use of live fish where one is fishing makes enforcement very difficult. We are more restrictive than most states, but we also have suffered less nuisance species introduction than most states. Another significant reason for the rule is to reduce the risk of disease transmission from far away sources to Idaho’s fish populations.  Some of the diseases spread by live baitfish would not only have negative impacts on sportfishing, but they could also devastate Idaho's aquaculture industry.  We realize that prohibiting live bait is an inconvenience to some anglers, but feel the it is necessary to reduce the risks associated with transporting live fish. At this time, there is no "live bait permit" program. 
answered 8/11/2015

Q: Pacific Press Pond

I'm aware you guys don't stock this pond but you guys happen to know the full list of fish & aquatic life in here? To be specific I'd like to know if there are any cray fish in here and what lures to choose?

A: 

Hello,  Thanks for your question about Pacific Press Pond. The pond is primarily a bass and bluegill pond, but may have other species of sunfish like pumpkinseed. IDFG does do not know if there are any crayfish in the pond. Soft plastic baits like senkos, worms, and creatures fished with a weedless Texas rig would be a good bet. This is a private pond owned by Pacific Press and is not managed by IDFG. Please contact Pacific Press for more information about their specific access and fishing rules. They can be reached at 208-465-2500.  Thanks    
answered 8/11/2015

Q: Moose Scent

In the Big Game Regs it says "Bait is defined as any substance placed to attract game animals, except liquid scent for deer and elk." However in the MGS regs this sentence is conspicuously absent--both the definition of bait and the exception to the rule. Is it legal to use liquid scents for Moose Goats & Sheep?

A: 

Good question and good catch! The language in the big game regulations and seasons booklet and the moose, bighorn sheep, and mountain goat booklet don't match--and they should. The Idaho Administrative Procedures Act contains regulations (e.g., IDAPA 13.01.08.410.5.b ) that prohibit the use of bait for hunting big game animals (which includes moose, bighorn sheep, and mountain goats) with the exception of special rules regulating baiting for black bears and baiting wolves for trapping purposes. However, that regulation also excludes liquid scent from the definition of "bait." So the short answer is: Yes. Because liquid scents are not considered "baits" for purposes of this rule, it would be legal to use liquid scent to attract and hunt moose, bighorn sheep, or mountain goats.
answered 8/11/2015

Q: Trophy species controlled hunt info

I read on a previous question that if I have a moose, bighorn, or mountain goat tag that I can still apply for leftover tags for deer, elk and pronghorn. I was just trying to clarify if the leftover tags meant that I could apply for the 2nd controlled hunt drawing or if it meant what was left over after the 2nd drawing?

A: 

Those who apply for a trophy hunt (moose, sheep or goat) can submit an application for deer, elk or pronghorn in the second application period. That person may also participate in the leftover first-come, first-served tag sales as long as they meet all of the other requirements and criteria.
answered 8/11/2015

Q: Do i need to attend a trapping class to get a trapping license?

Do i need to take a general class in order to trap in Idaho other than the wolf trapping class?

A: 

We do recommend that trappers take a trapping course to learn important skills such as avoiding non-target catch, best management practices, ethics and responsibilities. Our trapping course includes both classroom time taught by a trapper and outdoor trap setting skills. A trapping course is not required in Idaho.
answered 8/10/2015

Q: Controlled hunt

I just applied for the second chance controlled hunt tag for hunt 1083. I have never applied for any kind of controlled hunt. Where do I find information on these hunts. And when/ how will I know if i get one?

A: 

Information on the hunts can be found in our big game rule booklets or by accessing the Departments hunt planner at http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/ifwis/huntPlanner/. Results of the drawing will be posted on our website and we will mail a postcard to those individuals who are successful in drawing a tag.
answered 8/10/2015

A: 

Page 98 of the 2015-16 Big Game rules pamphlet states that a broadhead cannot measure less than 7/8 inch, and that the entire arrow must weigh at least 300 grains.
answered 8/10/2015

A: 

Yes. Any person hunting in an archery only hunt must have an archery permit in possession. The same rule applies for muzzleloader hunts too. Any person hunting in a muzzleloader only hunt must have a muzzleloader permit in possession.
answered 8/10/2015

A: 

No, you do not need a muzzleloader permit to hunt with your muzzleloader in a short range weapons hunt.

answered 8/10/2015

A: 

Yes. You can use a bow in a general hunt without the archery validation.  However, any archery-only hunt requires the validation.
answered 8/9/2015

Q: Air Rifle Hunting

I was wondering what game are allowed to be taken with Air Rifles, and if there are caliber restrictions? (.177 - .50) (Small Game-Big Game) (Varmint)

A: 

You can hunt forest grouse with an air rifle with a valid hunting license and when they are in season. You can shoot preditory animals such as starlings, ferral pigeons, english sparrows, and Eurasian Collared doves. There are no other species or seasons for air rifles.
answered 8/9/2015

Q: Controlled hunt tags

I was drawn for controlled Elk hunt #2136 which is either sex elk in unit 1. The dates on the tag says September 6 - Oct 24. I am assuming that I can use it during the archery season and any weapon seasons during that time period. It seems to be a general tag and not specific for A or B tag seasons. Is that a correct assumption? Thanks.

A: 

Congratulations on your controlled hunt draw success.  Your assumption about the dates for your hunt are mostly correct.  Your tag has nothing to do with the A/B tag system.  There is one item to take note of however.  The actual seasons for your tag are Sept. 6 thru 30 for archery, and October 10 thru 24 for any weapon.  The period of October 1 thru 9 is closed.  Please see the regulations pamphlet for clarification.
answered 8/9/2015

Q: Migratory Bird Approved Weapons

Can I use a MKA 1919 12ga Shotgun to hunt migratory ducks?

A: 

There are weapon restrictions for the taking of migratory birds.  Code of Federal Reguations 20.21 prohibits the taking of migratory birds with any shotgun capable of holding more than 3 shells, unless it is plugged with a one-piece filler, incapable of removal without disassebling the gun, so its total capacity does not exceed three shells.  This rule does not apply in Idaho during the light-goose-only season (greater and leser snow geese and Ross's geese) when all other waterfowl and crane hunting seasons, excluding falconry, are closed.  Any shotgun capable of holding more than three shells that did not meet this requirement would be unlawful for the hunting of ducks. 
answered 8/7/2015

Q: Can you use a semi-automatic assault rifle to hunt big game (deer, elk, bear, etc.)?

Can you use a semi-automatic assault rifle to hunt big game (deer, elk, bear, etc.)?

A: 

Yes you can, as long as it complies with the other restrictions in code and rule, (copied below). There is no restriction in idaho on the number of rounds a firearm can carrry, or restrictions against use of semi-automatics. 410.UNLAWFUL METHODS OF TAKE. No person shall take big game animals as outlined in this section. (7-1-93) 01. Firearms. (7-1-93) a. With any firearm that, in combination with a scope, sling, and/or any other attachments, weighs more than sixteen (16) pounds. (7-1-93) b. With any shotgun using any shot smaller than double-aught (#00) buck. (7-1-93) c. With any rimfire rifle, rimfire handgun or any muzzleloading handgun, EXCEPT for mountain lion and trapped gray wolf. (4-4-13) d. With a fully automatic firearm. (10-26-94) e. With any electronic device attached to, or incorporated in, the firearm (including handguns and shotguns) or scope; except scopes containing battery powered or tritium lighted reticles are allowed. (4-2-08) - Josh Royse, Regional Conservation Officer, Magic Valley Region
answered 8/6/2015

Q: Are turkeys "upland game animals" and can you use cross bow in general season?

Are turkeys classified as a upland game bird and can you use a crossbow to hunt turkeys during both the spring and fall?

A: 

Turkeys are classified as an upland game bird. Turkeys can not be hunted with a crossbow.  
answered 8/6/2015

Q: bow hunting weapons

Can you use a crossbow for archery hunting

A: 

Great question.  The answer is it depends, so stick with me a moment and I will try and clear it up.  During an archery only season crossbows are illegal. (Except, disabled hunters possessing a permit available at IDFG offices may use a crosbow) Crossbows are legal during short-range and any weapon seasons Page 98-99 in the 2015-2016 Big Game rules covers archery restrictions If you have any other questions please feel free to ask, thanks and good luck hunting
answered 8/5/2015

Q: The wildlife collision salvage rule

What statute under Idaho Code does violations of the wildlife collision salvage rule fall under? Where can I find the legislative rule that outlines the wildlife collision salvage rule?

A: 

General information about salvaging wildlife is at: idfg.idaho.gov/species/roadkill Idaho Administrative Code IDAPA 13.01.10.300.02 contains the rules for salvage of certain types of wildlife found dead. You may view this rule at: adminrules.idaho.gov/rules/current/13/0110.pdf Please note that only some species may be salvaged. They are listed at: idfg.idaho.gov/species/roadkill/salvage/list
answered 8/5/2015

Q: squirrels disappeared

Hoping you can tell me why the squirrels have disappeared. I have fed them for years with no problems. I would say for months now they have not been at my feeder and I have not seen any in the trees around my house. I live along the Portneuf River in Pocatello

A: 

Hello, I'm thinking there could be some predation occurring in your neighborhood. Perhaps there is a neighborhood cat on the prowl. If you or your neighbors have an outside cat, they really can be problematic. Domestic cats kill millions of birds and small mammals, including squirrels, every year. Another explanation could be hawks and owls.There are a lot of large trees that support hawk and owl nests down along the Portneuf, and squirrels would be a good source of prey for those birds. It could be a combination of both. Please keep your cat or encourage your neighbors to keep their cats inside to help. Thanks for the question.
answered 8/4/2015