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 76 - 100 of 136 questions

A: 

Idaho requires that all hunters have an Idaho hunting license to hunt.  If you are hunting turkey or big game (deer, elk, pronghorn, moose, sheep, goat, mountain lion, bear) you must have a tag for the animal in addition to the Idaho hunting license.

answered 1/26/2013

A: 

Children can fish without a license until they are 14.
Hunting is more complex. 
If they haven’t had hunter education yet, they can get a hunting passport (detailed information is on our website at http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/public/licenses/?getPage=332.).
Idaho’s Hunting Passport is a component of Fish and Game’s mentored hunting program. The Hunting Passport allows any first-time hunter, resident or nonresident, age 8 and older to try hunting for one year with an adult mentor without first having to complete an Idaho hunter education course.
Hunting Passport Highlights:
Hunting Passports are only available to first time hunters. Those that have previously held a hunting license in any state are not eligible.
Hunter Education certification is not needed to obtain a Hunting Passport. If an individual has completed a Hunter Education course but has not yet purchased a license, they are eligible for a Hunting Passport.
The minimum age to hold a Hunting Passport is eight years of age; there is no maximum age.
The Hunting Passport is a calendar year item just like a hunting license and expires on December 31 of the year in which it was obtained.
Only one Passport can be purchased in a lifetime. To continue hunting after the Passport expires, completion of a hunter education course and license purchase is required.
Hunting Passports are available at license vendors and Fish and Game regional offices.
Cost is $1.75.
Must be 12 years of age to hunt big game; 10 years of age to hunt turkey and sandhill crane; 8 years of age to hunt other game birds, upland game animals, furbearers, predatory or unprotected species.
If they have taken hunter’s education classes, they must get a license to from age 10.  They cannot hunt big game until they turn 12.

answered 1/19/2013

A: 

List of Species that Can be Salvaged

Big Game Animals

Black Bear (Ursus americanus)
California Bighorn Sheep (Ovis canadensis californiana)
Elk (Cervus canadensis)
Gray Wolf (Canis lupus)
Moose (Alces americanus)
Mountain Goat (Oreamnos americanus)
Mountain Lion (Felis concolor)
Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Pronghorn Antelope (Antilocapra americana)
Rocky Mountain Bighorn Sheep (Ovis canadensis canadensis)
White-tailed Deer (Odocoileus virginianus)

listSpecies("https://fishandgame.idaho.gov/ifwis/taxonomy/ws_fetch_vocab/orin.asp?out...", "biggame", function () { });

Upland Game Animals

Mountain Cottontail (Sylvilagus nuttallii)
Snowshoe Hare (Lepus americanus)

Upland Game Birds

 
// listSpecies("https://fishandgame.idaho.gov/ifwis/taxonomy/ws_fetch_vocab/orin.asp?out...", "uplandgamebird", function () { });
Blue Grouse (Dendragapus obscurus)
California Quail (Callipepla californica)
Chukar (Alectoris chukar)
Columbian Sharp-tailed Grouse (Tympanuchus phasianellus columbianus)
Gray Partridge (Perdix perdix)
Greater Sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus)
Northern Bobwhite (Colinus virginianus)
Ring-necked Pheasant (Phasianus colchicus)
Ruffed Grouse (Bonasa umbellus)
Spruce Grouse (Falcipennis canadensis)
Wild Turkey (Meleagris gallopavo)

Furbearing Animals

 
//listSpecies("https://fishandgame.idaho.gov/ifwis/taxonomy/ws_fetch_vocab/orin.asp?out...", "furbearer", function () { });
American Badger (Taxidea taxus)
American Beaver (Castor canadensis)
American Marten (Martes americana)
Bobcat (Lynx rufus)
Fisher (Martes pennanti)
Mink (Mustela vison)
Muskrat (Ondatra zibethicus)
Northern River Otter (Lontra canadensis)
Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes)

Predatory Animals

Black-tailed Jack Rabbit (Lepus californicus)
Common Raccoon (Procyon lotor)
Coyote (Canis latrans)
Ermine (Mustela erminea)
European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris)
Long-tailed Weasel (Mustela frenata)
Striped Skunk (Mephitis mephitis)
Western Spotted Skunk (Spilogale gracilis)
White-tailed Jack Rabbit (Lepus townsendii)

listSpecies("https://fishandgame.idaho.gov/ifwis/taxonomy/ws_fetch_vocab/orin.asp?out...", "predatory", function () { });

Unprotected Animals
Unprotected animals are all remaining animals in Idaho that are not listed as protected, endangered, or threatened AND all animals listed in categories above without a season. 

 

answered 12/26/2012

A: 

There are several nonresident license options:
If you are also hunting big game, you can get a combination hunting/fishing license for $240.00 or a hunting license for $154.75.
If you are only going to hunt turkeys and other small game, you can get a small game hunting license for $97.75. 
If you only plan to hunt small game for 3 days, you can purchase a 3-day small game license for $35.50.
In all these cases, you must purchase a turkey tag in addition to the hunting license...turkey tags are $80.00.  If you want two turkey tags, the extra turkey tag is also $80.00

answered 12/21/2012

Q: Thought I read in the regs that you can take a goose with the weapons you can take a turkey with.

Cannot find it but I thought that I read in the regulations that you can take a goose with any weapon it is leagal for a turkey.
Meaning with a bow. Is that right?

A: 

The actual federal regulations state the following:
It is against the law to take migratory game birds:
• With a trap, snare, net, rifle, pistol, swivel gun, shotgun larger than a 10 gauge, punt gun, battery gun, machine gun, fishhook, poison, drug, explosive, or stupefying substance.
• With any shotgun capable of holding more than three shells unless it is plugged with a one-piece filler which is incapable of removal without disassembling the gun.

answered 12/14/2012

A: 

Nonresident Disabled Veterans
Nonresident disabled veterans participating in a hunt in association with a qualified organization may be eligible for reduced fees for licenses and tags. To qualify, nonresident disabled veterans must meet the definitions and provide the three documentation items listed below to an Idaho Department of Fish and Game office in person or by mail to: License Supervisor, P.O. Box 25, Boise, Idaho 83707.
A letter from the Veterans Affairs office verifying a service-connected disability rating of 40 percent or greater. Such documentation can bear any date prior to license application.
A current letter from a qualified organization documenting that the license applicant is participating in a hunt in association with the organization. For the purposes of this program participation includes but is not limited to: arranging access for the hunt through a landowner or outfitter, connecting the participant with an outfitter, organizing a group of individuals to participate in the hunt, providing funds, equipment or other direct support for the hunt.
Documentation of the participating organization's mission to offer opportunities, experiences, and assistance to disabled veterans (typically provided by including a copy of the organization's mission statement) and their nonprofit status under 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code or the qualified organization is a government agency with a mission to offer opportunities, experiences, and assistance to disabled veterans.
This documentation must be provided annually.
Nonresident disabled veterans who meet these conditions may be eligible for reduced fees: hunting license $5; deer tag $10.75; elk tag $16.50; bear tag $6.75; and turkey tag $10.75.
 
 

answered 10/23/2012

Q: Fall general Turkey season

I was wondering a resent news release posted on this site says that turkey season opens in units 22 and 32a however the upland game bird season PDF says there is no fall season in unit 32a and only a controlled hunt in unit 22 was this a mistake or have there been changes made for this season.

A: 

Controlled Hunt 9017 is open 9/15/2012 - 10/9/2012 in Units 22, 32 and 32A.  For more information see http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/ifwis/huntplanner/hunt.aspx?ID=32590

answered 9/5/2012

Q: Turkey Hunting Unit 39

When if ever is there going to be a Fall Turkey Hunt?

A: 

We used to have fall turkey season in Unit 39 from late 1990’s until 2006.  Our spring harvest began declining in about 2003, as did our fall harvest in many of the units.  We eliminated fall hunting season in fall 2006 to reduce the take of female turkeys, in hopes of increasing the populations.  To this date, the turkey numbers have not rebounded enough to warrant a fall season.  Additionally, this year we eliminated the general fall hunt in the rest of the region and have gone to a controlled fall hunt in only a few of the units.  We are hoping that the turkey populations will rebound enough to begin offering more fall hunting opportunity at a later date.

answered 9/4/2012

Q: When are the results posted for controlled hunts?

Draw Results for Controlled Hunts for Deer, Elk, Pronghorn, Fall Bear and Fall Turkey:
Successful applicants will be mailed a postcard in the mail by July 10. 
The results will be posted online by July 10 at http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/public/licenses/controlledHunts/?getPage=81.
Mark your calendar for:
 
• May 1 - June 5 – First deer, elk, pronghorn, fall bear application period.
 
• July 10 – Winners of first deer, elk, pronghorn drawing notified by this date.
 
• August 1 – Last date to purchase tags from first deer, elk, pronghorn, fall bear drawing.
 
• August 5-15 – Second application period for deer, elk, pronghorn, fall bear.
 
• August 25 – Winners of second drawing for deer, elk, pronghorn, and fall bear will be notified by this date.
 
• August 25 – Leftover tags from second deer, elk, pronghorn, bear drawing go on sale at 10 a.m.
 
• August 28 – Residents or nonresidents may buy a leftover nonresident general season deer or elk tag at full nonresident price starting this day, as a second tag. Unsuccessful applicants may participate in general hunts where appropriate tags are available.
 
 
 

A: 

Draw Results for Controlled Hunts for Deer, Elk, Pronghorn, Fall Bear and Fall Turkey:
Successful applicants will be mailed a postcard in the mail by July 10. 
The results will be posted online by July 10 at http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/public/licenses/controlledHunts/?getPage=81.
Mark your calendar for:
 
• May 1 - June 5 – First deer, elk, pronghorn, fall bear application period.
 
• July 10 – Winners of first deer, elk, pronghorn drawing notified by this date.
 
• August 1 – Last date to purchase tags from first deer, elk, pronghorn, fall bear drawing.
 
• August 5-15 – Second application period for deer, elk, pronghorn, fall bear.
 
• August 25 – Winners of second drawing for deer, elk, pronghorn, and fall bear will be notified by this date.
 
• August 25 – Leftover tags from second deer, elk, pronghorn, bear drawing go on sale at 10 a.m.
 
• August 28 – Residents or nonresidents may buy a leftover nonresident general season deer or elk tag at full nonresident price starting this day, as a second tag. Unsuccessful applicants may participate in general hunts where appropriate tags are available.
 
 
 

answered 6/10/2012

Q: When do you all actually draw for the big game (elk, deer, so on) controlled hunt?

I'm just wondering what date I can start looking on line to see if I was lucky enough to get a controlled hunt this year.

A: 

Draw Results for Controlled Hunts for Deer, Elk, Pronghorn, Fall Bear and Fall Turkey:
Successful applicants will be mailed a postcard in the mail by July 10. 
The results will be posted online by July 10 at http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/public/licenses/controlledHunts/?getPage=81.
Mark your calendar for:
 
• May 1 - June 5 – First deer, elk, pronghorn, fall bear application period.
 
• July 10 – Winners of first deer, elk, pronghorn drawing notified by this date.
 
• August 1 – Last date to purchase tags from first deer, elk, pronghorn, fall bear drawing.
 
• August 5-15 – Second application period for deer, elk, pronghorn, fall bear.
 
• August 25 – Winners of second drawing for deer, elk, pronghorn, and fall bear will be notified by this date.
 
• August 25 – Leftover tags from second deer, elk, pronghorn, bear drawing go on sale at 10 a.m.
 
• August 28 – Residents or nonresidents may buy a leftover nonresident general season deer or elk tag at full nonresident price starting this day, as a second tag. Unsuccessful applicants may participate in general hunts where appropriate tags are available.
 
 
 

answered 6/7/2012

Q: When is the drawing for big game controlled hunts held?

Been combing through the Idaho Fish and Game website to look for an answer as to when the drawing is held for the big game controlled hunts and can't seem to find an answer. Hoping you can answer it for me.

A: 

Draw Results for Controlled Hunts for Deer, Elk, Pronghorn, Fall Bear and Fall Turkey:
Successful applicants will be mailed a postcard in the mail by July 10. 
The results will be posted online by July 10 at http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/public/licenses/controlledHunts/?getPage=81.
Mark your calendar for:
 
• May 1 - June 5 – First deer, elk, pronghorn, fall bear application period.
 
• July 10 – Winners of first deer, elk, pronghorn drawing notified by this date.
 
• August 1 – Last date to purchase tags from first deer, elk, pronghorn, fall bear drawing.
 
• August 5-15 – Second application period for deer, elk, pronghorn, fall bear.
 
• August 25 – Winners of second drawing for deer, elk, pronghorn, and fall bear will be notified by this date.
 
• August 25 – Leftover tags from second deer, elk, pronghorn, bear drawing go on sale at 10 a.m.
 
• August 28 – Residents or nonresidents may buy a leftover nonresident general season deer or elk tag at full nonresident price starting this day, as a second tag. Unsuccessful applicants may participate in general hunts where appropriate tags are available.
 
 
 

answered 6/7/2012

Q: Are there any plans to transplant more turkeys to Unit 39?

I've hunted the unit for the last three years and it appears that there are fewer turkeys each year. I know part of this is "being in the right place at the right time" but I'm starting to wonder if winter survival (or over-hunting) is becoming an issue. I know that the flocks around Blacks Creek Rd are pretty much gone. Another concern - out of 5 hunters and about 12 hunt-days, we saw a good number of hens, some toms (one harvested), but none of us saw any jakes. That leaves me questioning what next year will be like.

A: 

We currently have no plans to release turkeys in Unit 39.  The SW Region is developing a turkey managemet plan to guide decisions such as where and when and why to translocate turkeys.  The previous turkey releases have not faired well as the winters of 2008 and 2010 were hard on turkeys.  And the wet, cold springs we have experienced the previous 4 years, have not recruited many poults into the population.  Fall harvest was closed in 2006 because we were concerned about overharvest of hens.  Turkeys can rebound quickly if mother nature will cooperate and provide some favorable weather conditions this spring and winter. 

answered 6/1/2012

Q: Is it legal to use electronic calls for game other than predators?

I know that in a few areas, electronic calls are being used for mountain lions and they are commonly used for coyotes and bobcats. Are there other game e-callers are legal for, such as Canadian geese, ducks, etc? Is there a list available at Fish & Game's website indicating game that can be taken with E-callers?

A: 

The answer is copied and pasted below and can be found on page 73 of the Idaho Big Game Seasons & Rules 2012 brochure:
Electronic Calls
No electronic calls may be used to attract big game for the
purpose of harvest, except such calls may be used to attract
mountain lions, black bears and gray wolves in seasons where
approved by Commission proclamation. Similarly, electronic calls may not be used to attract waterfowl, upland game birds, or turkey.
 
 

answered 5/30/2012

Q: I applied for a moose tag and was not drawn. Am I eligible to apply for a controlled hunt for elk this year? There is a note in the regulations

■Applicants for controlled hunts for moose, mountain goat or bighorn sheep may only apply for one species
Does this mean I can't aply for elk too? I am hoping this mean I have to pick either Moose, Mountain Goat or Big Horns and that I am not restricted from applying for an elk controlled hunt. I have put in for moose the last 3 years and haven't attemptd to put in for elk those years. A friend told me I was not reading the regs correctly and to ask you for clarification.
Thanks!
Ron Linderman
McCammon, ID

A: 

A person who has applied for a bighorn sheep, mountain goat, or moose controlled hunt may not apply for any other controlled hunt in the same year, except unlimited
controlled hunts, a controlled black bear hunt, controlled turkey hunt, extra deer, extra elk, or extra pronghorn controlled hunts, or a designated depredation hunt. In
addition, applicants for bighorn sheep, mountain goat or moose controlled hunts are eligible to participate in the second deer, elk and pronghorn application period
and in first-come, first-served deer, elk and pronghorn controlled hunt tag sales.
-

answered 5/23/2012

Q: Why are there no official records for turkeys, maintained by IDFG?

Are there no turkey records that IDFG maintains?

A: 

The Department does not maintain a record book for wild turkeys.  Records are maintained by the National Wild Turkey Federation.  Check out their records page at: http://www.nwtf.org/all_about_turkeys/turkey_records.php.

answered 5/23/2012

A: 

Turkey, black bear and mountain lion tags can be used in any unit that is open for general season hunting.  You are not limited to one unit or zone.

answered 5/18/2012

Q: 2012 youth season dates

Who thought it was a good idea to open the 2012 youth turkey season on a Sunday and then the 2013 season on a Monday? I thought the idea was to give the youth there own time to hunt? How about being consistent and opening the season on the first Saturday in April?

A: 

During the 2010 season-setting process there was a proposal brought forward to expand the youth turkey hunting season from two weekend days to one full week.  The Deparment proposed and the Commission approved of a seven day youth turkey season that immediately precedes the start of the general turkey season which starts on April 15.  As a result, the opening day for the youth season changes as a reflection of the now standard opening date of April 8.  Given that there are seven days for the season, there will always be at least two weekend days available for the youth turkey season.  Thank you for your comments on this issue.

answered 4/7/2012

A: 

Yes, for hunting upland game birds expandable broadheads are consider a lawful means of take.  For your convenience on page 48 of the Upland Game, Furbearer & Turkey Seasons and Rules brochure there is a section outlining unlawful methods of take for upland game birds.  I have copied and pasted this section here:
 
Unlawful Methods of Take
No person shall take upland game birds:
• From one-half hour after sunset to one-half hour before
sunrise. Upland game shall not be taken before 10 a.m.
on Fort Boise, C.J. Strike, Montour and Payette River
WMAs, during the pheasant season. Turkeys shall not be
taken from sunset to one-half hour before sunrise.
• With a trap, snare, net, crossbow, slingshot, hand-held or
thrown missiles, firearms except a shotgun using shells
not exceeding 3 ½ inches maximum length, except forest
grouse. Forest grouse shall not be taken with a trap, snare,
net or crossbow.
• From boats or other craft having a motor attached unless
the motor is completely shut off and forward progress has
ceased, or the boat is drifting naturally, or it is propelled
only by paddle, oars, or pole, or it is beached, moored or
resting at anchor. (2010-2011 Season)
• From any watercraft. (Effective 2011-2012 Season)
• By the use or aid of any electronic call.
• By the aid of baiting. Bait is defined as any substance
placed to attract game.

answered 3/22/2012

A: 

No.  You can only get one turkey in the controlled hunt you drew.  You can purchase an extra turkey tag to take a second turkey somewhere else.
 
 

answered 3/20/2012

Q: Can I use an extra turkey tag on a controlled turkey hunt that I drew on to shoot two turkeys?

I drew in unit 71 for spring turkey may 1 to may 25, and I'm wondering if I can buy an extra turkey tag to shoot another turkey on the controlled hunt that I drew on. Also, when is the deadline for me to purchase my controlled turkey tag?

A: 

A hunter may use the general tag to hunt in any spring general season and also use this tag with a controlled hunt permit to hunt in a controlled hunt. A second spring bird may be taken
with the extra turkey tag. If the general tag or extra tag is not filled during the spring hunt, then that unused tag can be used in a fall general hunt or fall controlled hunt.
The spring and fall controlled hunt permits are valid only for specific areas and seasons as designated by hunt number (pages 24 and 25). A turkey hunter must have a spring
controlled hunt permit and a valid tag to hunt in a spring controlled hunt. A turkey hunter may only harvest one bird per controlled hunt permit.

answered 3/19/2012

Q: Is it possible to get a refund and return tags?

I recently purchased out so state tags for turkey and elk in the state of Idaho. Unfortunately, I just found out I need to have surgery and I will not be able to hunt this year in Idaho or any other state. I am wondering if there is any way to return my tags and license for a refund even if there is a paperwork fee that would be fine.

A: 

Nonresident hunting license and tags may be refunded less issuance fees and a $50 processing fee, in the event of:
Illness or injury that disables a license holder for the entire applicable hunting season.
Military deployment of license holder due to armed conflict.
Death of the license holder or his or her parent, spouse or child.
Tags and license must be returned with proof (death certificate, obituary, written justification by a licensed medical doctor, or copy of military orders). Hunting license fees will not be refunded after the license is used to apply for a controlled hunt or to buy a turkey, mountain lion or bear tag. The request must be postmarked by December 31 of the year in which the license was valid, except for “event of death” refund, which must be submitted within 1 year of the death.
Mail the license, tag and  written justification to:
IDFG,Attention License Department, P.O. Box 25, Boise, ID 83707
Thank you for your question.

answered 2/26/2012

A: 

Generally the answer is no, however there are exceptions. These exceptions are explained in the 2011 Big Game Regulations:
A person who has applied for a bighorn sheep, mountain goat or moose controlled hunt may not apply for any other controlled hunt in the same year, except unlimited controlled hunts, a controlled black bear hunt, controlled turkey hunt, extra deer, extra elk or extra pronghorn controlled hunts or a depredation hunt.  In addition, applications for bighorn sheep, mountain goat or moose controlled hunts are eligible to participate in the second deer, elk and pronghorn application period and in first-come, first-served deer, elk and pronghorn controlled hunt sales.

answered 2/16/2012

A: 

Yes.

answered 2/16/2012

A: 

Hunter orange is required only when hunting the nine Idaho Fish and Game wildlife management areas where pheasants are stocked. The areas are Fort Boise, C.J. Strike, Payette River, Montour, Sterling, Market Lake, Mud Lake, Cartier Slough and Niagara Springs. The minimum requirement is 36 square inches of hunter orange above the waist - an orange ball cap fulfills this requirement. Waterfowl and turkey hunters are not required to wear hunter orange. It is recommended, however, that all upland and big game hunters wear hunter orange whenever they are hunting. Though the statewide hunting accident rate is low, more than 70 percent of recorded incidents are visually-related.

answered 10/6/2011

A: 

Yes. The mourning dove season opens September 1, and in addition to a 2010 hunting license, hunters must have a federal "Migratory Game Bird Harvest Information Program Validation," migratory bird permit for short - not a duck stamp. It costs $1.75 for resident hunters and $4.75 for nonresidents. For more details see the 2010-2011 & 2011-2013 Upland Game, Furbearer and Turkey rules brochure.

answered 8/8/2010