Thursday, April 26, 2007

Fed Subsistence Board Meets 30 Apr - 2 May

From a USFWS News Release:

The Federal Subsistence Board will meet April 30-May 2 at the Sheraton Anchorage Hotel, 401 E. 6th Ave., Anchorage to consider changes to Federal subsistence hunting and trapping regulations. Also on the agenda at this meeting will be the State of Alaska's request for reconsideration of the Board's November 2006 decision recognizing the customary and traditional use of fish in the Kenai River area by residents of Ninilchik.

The Board will also meet May 8-10 at the Coast International Inn, 3450 Aviation Drive, Anchorage, to consider changes to Federal subsistence fishing regulations on the Kenai Peninsula. In addition the Board will take action regarding the proper balance of subsistence, sport, and commercial representatives on the subsistence regional advisory councils.

Additional information on the Federal Subsistence Management Program can be found on the web here.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Spring Drawing / Tier II Permit Hunt Information Available

The spring application period for Alaska drawing and Tier II permit hunt starts May 1 and ends on May 31, 2007. Permit hunt supplements for these hunts are available online now. The permit supplements describe the hunts and will be available shortly at Alaska Department of Fish and Game offices and many license sellers around the state.

It is also possible to order hunting (and fishing, trapping and other licenses and stamps) online from ADFG.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Shots End April Bear Mauling

A spring bear hunter was saved by his partner with three shots after a second bear emerged from a winter den surprising the hunters who had just taken another bear from the same den.

The second, larger bear began mauling Anchorage hunter Lynn Keogh moments after Keogh's snap shot failed to stop the charging sow. Shots from Keogh's partner into the bear's brain ended the mauling, the Anchorage Daily News reported.

Read the entire story in the Anchorage Daily News >>>

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Hunter Heritage Foundation a Benefit for Alaska Hutners

According to Alaska Fish and Wildlife News, the Alaska Hunter Heritage Foundation "has raised about $1.5 million and has spent virtually all of it on programs specifically designed to promote conservation of Alaska’s wildlife by recruiting and educating new hunters and maintaining the enthusiasm of existing hunters."

Why is a state wildlife agency partnering with a the foundation?

"For many decades, hunters have been the backbone of wildlife management. People who understand and enjoy wildlife are the most effective advocates for wildlife habitat protection and responsible wildlife management, and nobody knows wildlife like hunters do. Hunters also recognize the importance of trained professionals gathering and analyzing the scientific data that are the basis for modern management, and they put their money where their mouths are, in the form of license fees, sporting goods excise taxes, and outright donations to a variety of organizations dedicated to the abiding health of wildlife. Hunters led the first wildlife conservation efforts in this country, and they continue their strong support today. And in the process of nurturing hunted species, they do an immeasurable benefit to non-game wildlife as well.

By holding successful fundraising events and using that money strategically, the Foundation has become the premier Alaska sponsor of outdoor sporting educational programs, such as those noted above. They’ve even begun an Oral History Project to document and preserve Alaska’s rich hunting and trapping heritage by interviewing long-time Alaskans who spent their lives making a living from the Great Land. But the Foundation’s prime function is to create and assist hunters."

Read the entire article >>>

GMU 20A Moose Still Too Many; Cow Hunt to Continue

The Game Management Unit 20A (Tanana Flats south of Fairbanks) moose population is still too high reports Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reporter Tim Mowry, and hunters are likely to have another opportunity to take cows this fall in an attempt to reduce the population.

"The 2006-07 antlerless moose hunt in Unit 20A closed on Feb. 28 and the preliminary reported harvest is 551 cow and calf moose, according to state wildlife biologist Don Young, who oversees the hunt for the Alaska Department of Fish and Game in Fairbanks.

While it fell short of the 700 quota established by the Department of Fish and Game in Fairbanks, the harvest should help stunt the growth of the moose population in Unit 20A."

Read the entire story in the Fairbanks Daily News Miner >>>

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Objectives met, wolf control suspended in one area

From an ADFG news release:

The wolf control program in the Nelchina Basin has been suspended as the latest population estimate is within the range established by the Alaska Board of Game.

As of Monday, biologists in the Glennallen office of Wildlife Conservation estimated 162 wolves in Game Management Unit 13. The long-term spring population objective set by the Board of Game is 135-165.

Typically, trappers and hunters take a dozen or so wolves in April, so the population might dip a bit more but still remain within the objective.

This is the second year in a row the spring population estimate has been within the objective. Last spring’s figure was 157. Prior to that, the last time the objective was reached was in 1989.

“By sustaining the wolf control program since its inception in 2004, we have been successful in reducing and maintaining wolf densities at a level that has allowed moose calves to survive and become the foundation of a growing moose population,” said Matt Robus, director of the Division of Wildlife Conservation.

As recently as 2000-01, the wolf population in Unit 13 was estimated at as many as 520. A dramatic increase in wolves in the 1990s contributed to a decline of more than 50 percent in moose numbers.

This was the fourth winter that wolf control has been conducted with the use of aircraft. Since the program began, moose trends in count areas surveyed every year indicate a promising turnaround.

Since 2000, the number of moose in the count areas is up 14 percent. More careful examination of the survey figures is even more encouraging. The number of calves in the count areas is up 110 percent and the number of yearling bulls is up 176 percent. Calves and yearlings are most vulnerable to predation by wolves and bears.

Overall bull numbers have increased 45 percent. Hunting in Unit 13 is limited to bull moose, and the harvest of 685 in 2006 is up 46 percent from the low harvest in 2000.

Cow moose numbers are down 3 percent in the count areas, but biologists say that is not surprising. Cow moose make up most of the population, so they are expected to have the longest recovery time. Cows born in the 1990s are dying of old age and haven’t been replaced fully because so few calves survived during the decline.

The 2006-07 control program took 33 wolves. Hunters and trappers so far have reported taking another 62. That number will climb as they bring in their pelts for sealing. The trapping season runs through April and trappers have 30 days after that to get furs sealed.

Control efforts focus on more inaccessible areas in Unit 13 where trapping pressure is less and some of the best moose habitat exists.

Given the high productivity of wolves, it is anticipated the wolf population will bounce back up to more than 250 by next fall. Therefore the department will resume control efforts next December aimed at maintaining the spring population at the Board of Game objective.