North Dakota deer hunters took approximately 34,500 deer during the 2012 deer gun hunting season.
The State Game and Fish Department made available 65,150 deer gun licenses in 2012, and more than 95 percent were issued. Overall hunter success was 63 percent, and each hunter spent an average of 4.4 days in the field.
North Dakotaâ€™s 2013 moose, elk and bighorn sheep proclamation is finalized and applications are available at the State Game and Fish Departmentâ€™s website. The deadline for applying is March 27.
A total of 111 moose licenses are available in 2013, 32 fewer than last year.
Randy Kreil, Game and Fish Department wildlife chief, said a downward population trend in the northeastern portion of the state is of great concern. â€śUnit M1C will remain closed,â€ť Kreil said, â€śand in addition, unit M4, which encompasses the Turtle Mountains, is also closed this year.â€ť
hing and Hunting Expenditure Report Finalized
Fishing and hunting in North Dakota contributed an estimated $1.4 billion in annual input to the stateâ€™s economy, according to a report by the Department of Agribusiness and Applied Economics at North Dakota State University.
The report, commissioned by the North Dakota Game and Fish Department, tracked hunter and angler expenditures for the 2011-12 hunting and fishing seasons, and is similar to other studies conducted periodically since the late 1970s.
The North Dakota Game and Fish Department reminds winter anglers to clean up the ice after fishing. This not only applies to trash, but fish as well.
It is not only unsightly, but it is illegal to leave fish behind on the ice. According to the fishing proclamation, when a fish is caught anglers must either immediately release the fish back into the water unharmed, or reduce them to their daily possession.
Hunter Education Volunteers Recognized
Volunteer instructors for North Dakotaâ€™s hunter education program were recognized Feb. 9 for their contributions of teaching students the importance of hunter safety and ethics.
Instructor of the year and years of service awards were presented at the annual hunter education workshop and awards banquet held in Bismarck.
Joe Lautenschlager of Berthold and Rod Hubbard from Fargo were named instructors of the year.
Honored for 40 years of service was Lorne Sterner of Casselton.
Volunteer instructors for North Dakotaâ€™s conservation education program were recognized Feb. 9 at the annual banquet held in Bismarck.
Honored for 20 years of service was Robert Haglund, Garrison.
Ten-year service awards were presented to Jill Christensen, Valley City; John Gorman, Larimore; Jeff Kapaun, Valley City; Kathy King, Bismarck; Kevin Manock, Wahpeton; Janice Nelsen, Beulah.
North Dakota Game and Fish Department fisheries personnel continue to update or add new fishing waters to the list of available contour maps on the departmentâ€™s website.
Jerry Weigel, fisheries production and development section leader, said each year data is collected on a few new waters or existing waters that have experienced significant change. Contour fishing maps are developed from this data to show the layout of the lake, public access and local facilities.
â€śSeveral of these lakes are currently experiencing good winter fishing,â€ť Weigel said â€śSo these maps should be very timely.â€ť
Light goose hunters planning to hunt during North Dakotaâ€™s spring season can purchase a license online at the state Game and Fish Departmentâ€™s website. The season opens Feb. 16 and continues through May 5.
Residents can hunt during the spring season by having last fallâ€™s 2012-13 bird licenses. Otherwise, hunters will need to purchase either a 2013-14 combination license; or a small game, and general game and habitat license.
The state Game and Fish Department is offering 5,930 wild turkey licenses for the spring hunting season, an increase of 135 from last year. The increase is a result of better production and chick recruitment.
Seven of the 22 hunting units have more spring licenses than in 2012, while 12 remain the same. Unit 21 (most of Hettinger and Adams counties) is again closed in 2013 due to lack of turkeys in the unit.
North Dakota Earth Day Patch Contest
The state Game and Fish Departmentâ€™s annual Earth Day awareness campaign is accepting entries for design of a 2013 Earth Day patch. North Dakota students ages 6-18 are eligible to participate. The deadline to submit entries is March 15.
The Game and Fish Department will announce a winner in three age categories â€“ 6-9, 10-13, and 14-18. Each winner will receive a pair of Nikon 8x40 binoculars. The final patch design will be chosen from the three winners.