All Posts By

Shaun Mathewson

Scientists want wolves removed from endangered list

By | Wolves | One Comment

Thursday, November 19, 2015  http://thewesterner.blogspot.com/2015/11/scientists-want-wolves-removed-from.html A group of leading wolf scientists are urging the western Great Lakes population of gray wolves be removed from protections of the Endangered Species Act. The 26 scientists, including Dave Mech of the University of Minnesota and Adrian Wydeven of the Timber Wolf Alliance, argue the species has successfully recovered in Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin and should be delisted. “It is in the best interests of gray wolf conservation and for the integrity of the Endangered Species Act for wolves to be delisted in the western Great Lakes states where biological recovery has occurred and where adequate regulatory mechanisms are in place to manage the species,” wrote the scientists in a letter delivered Wednesday to…

Read More

DNR Offering CWD Testing for Hunters This Fall

By | Hunting | No Comments

http://www.wisconsinagconnection.com/story-state.php?Id=1353&yr=2015 Wisconsin Ag Connection – 11/18/2015 State wildlife officials will continue testing harvested white-tailed deer for chronic wasting disease this year. This testing is part of the DNR’s ongoing efforts to monitor the status and spread of the disease in Wisconsin. “We provide testing as a service to deer hunters, but it is also important in our efforts to monitor the distribution and prevalence of the disease,” said Tami Ryan, DNR wildlife health section chief. “We will continue testing and tracking this disease within our long-term monitoring areas in southern Wisconsin where CWD is regularly found. Long-term monitoring provides useful data that increases our understanding of CWD dynamics and impacts.” The agency will be testing deer from select areas of…

Read More

Arizona Pronghorn Antelope, Elk Hunt recommendations to be available for review

By | Hunting | No Comments

First of six “open houses” scheduled for Monday PHOENIX – The Arizona Game and Fish Department has scheduled a series of six “open houses” for its constituents to review and ask questions about the proposed pronghorn antelope, elk, and population management hunt recommendations. The department annually makes hunt recommendations to the Arizona Game and Fish Commission regarding the management of game species, which establish the seasons, dates, bag limits, open areas and permit-tag allocations based on the framework of the hunt guidelines set by the commission every two years. The proposed hunt recommendations will be posted Friday, Nov. 20, at www.azgfd.gov/huntguidelines. The open houses will be conducted at the following Game and Fish regional offices: Monday, Nov. 23: 3-5 p.m., Kingman,…

Read More

Game and Fish considers migration route protections

By | Issues | No Comments

By CHRISTINE PETERSON Casper Star-Tribune Published:November 9, 2015 7:44AM Wyoming could become the first state in the country to formally recognize some of the most cutting-edge big game research.   CASPER, Wyo. (AP) — Nearly all of Wyoming’s big game animals migrate, and in much the same way. They wander from lush, green mountains in the summer to dry, wind-swept prairies in the winter. And recent mule deer research has shown their movements are surprisingly precise. Pathways trickle together like county roads that merge into highways before becoming interstates. Those paths, with food-rich spots along the way, allow Wyoming’s elk, deer and pronghorn to take advantage of the best seasonal vegetation available in an arid, high-elevation state. It’s what keeps…

Read More

Hunters report self defense in two MT Grizzly Bear deaths

By | Issues | No Comments

Montana wildlife officials said yesterday that two grizzly bears were killed last week in separate incidents reported by hunters in southwestern Montana. A lone female grizzly bear reportedly surprised a man hunting elk at Big Creek north of Gardiner on Oct. 28. The hunter reported to Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks that he came upon the bear feeding on a carcass in the brush and that the bear charged him. The hunter said he first used bear spray to deter the attack then shot the bear in self defense. The second incident was reported on Oct. 31 by a group of elk hunters who said they came upon and surprised a female grizzly bear with two young bears at Johnson…

Read More

Idaho: Hunters can take survey about controlled hunts and auction tags

By | Hunting | No Comments

Fish and Game is getting opinions from hunters about possibly changing controlled hunt drawing odds and increasing the number of big game tags offered through auction. For many years, some hunters have expressed interest in changing Idaho’s controlled hunt drawing system to favor those who were unsuccessful in previous drawings. Others have suggested auctioning big game tags as a way to increase revenue for conservation and hunter access programs. Both issues have generated interest in the Idaho Legislature. In early October, the department mailed 4,400 paper questionnaires to a random sample of hunters. About 1,050 have been returned, and are being entered into a database. On Oct. 17, an email request was sent to a random sample of 27,000 hunters…

Read More

Weather affects Utah Deer Hunt

By | Hunting | No Comments

The weather played a major role in the success hunters found during the first weekend of Utah’s general rifle buck deer hunt. Utah’s most popular hunt opened Oct. 17. In some areas, heavy rain kept hunters in camp. Those who did venture out found muddy roads and deer that were bedded down and hard to find. In areas that received less rain—or no rain—hunters found much better success. One example is south-central and southwestern Utah. In some areas, rain poured down. But, in many areas in Utah’s Dixie, rainfall was spotty. Hunters in these areas found bucks—and not just small bucks either. Teresa Griffin, wildlife manager for the Division of Wildlife Resources in south-central and southwestern Utah, worked over the…

Read More

MT Fish & Wildlife Commission approves elk Shoulder-season guidelines

By | Hunting | No Comments

Montana’s Fish & Wildlife Commission has approved new guidelines to allow elk hunting with firearms before and after the general rifle season to increase harvest and improve management in specific places. The new “shoulder season” guidelines are in response to Governor Steve Bullock, lawmakers, hunters, landowners and others concerned that many of Montana’s 138 elk management areas exceed population objectives. In all, 80 areas are over objective, 39 are within objective, and19 are below objective. The commission also approved for public comment a number of elk hunting shoulder season pilot projects, which would begin in late November. “Many of our elk populations are over objective to some degree,” said Jeff Hagener, director of Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks in Helena….

Read More

Idaho confirms outbreak of bluetongue disease in Whitetails

By | Hunting | No Comments

Based on continuing reports of dead deer, Fish and Game officials estimate up to 1,000 whitetails have died from an outbreak of bluetongue, a virus transmitted by gnats that is similar to Epizootic Hemorrhagic Disease (EHD). It is difficult to get the exact number of diseased or dead animals, but the outbreak is not expected to significantly reduce whitetail populations, or affect hunting season that opens October 10. Bluetongue is transmitted the same way as EHD and is a similar disease. Neither poses a threat to humans. Gnats transport the virus from animal to animal. Outbreaks become more severe during hot, dry summers when animals congregate around water sources with muddy shorelines that are prime breeding ground for gnats. The…

Read More

Idaho fire restrictions and closures lifting, but hunters should stay informed

By | Hunting | No Comments

Idaho Fire Restrictions and Closures Lifting, But Hunters Should Stay Informed Cooler weather and precipitation, including snowstorms in the Central Idaho mountains, have slowed fire activity and allowed land agencies to lift some restrictions, and the Forest Service expects to lift more by the weekend. But all lands have not reopened and hunters should check before heading to their hunting spots. Hunters should also note that there are two basic actions taking place by land management agencies. First, fire restrictions are being lifted, which apply to campfires, barbecues, gas engines and other flame-producing devices. Cooler weather has allowed land management agencies to lift most fire restrictions, but hunters should double check if they are camping and want a campfire. The…

Read More