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GFP News - january 16, 2015


 

GFP Commission Adopts the Use of Hounds when Hunting Mountain Lions outside the Black Hills

PIERRE, S.D. - The South Dakota Game Fish and Parks (GFP) Commission adopted a proposal originating from a petition received from the South Dakota Houndsman Association to allow the use of hounds for hunting mountain lions outside of the Black Hills Fire Protection District. This new rule allows resident hunters to use hounds to pursue mountain lions year-round on private land only with permission of the landowner or lessee, however, hunters may continue on School and Public Lands or Bureau of Land Management lands if the pursuit originates on private property.

Licensed hunters are only allowed to harvest one mountain lion during a season and they are not allowed to harvest a lion with a spotted coat. Licensed hunters must accompany the dog handler when the dogs are released and must continuously participate in the hunt thereafter until the hunt is completed.

This new rule will not be effective until 20 days after filed with the Secretary of State's Office.

All mountain lions harvested must be presented to a GFP representative within 24 hours of harvest for inspection. To learn more about the mountain lion hunting season rules and regulations, please visit: http://gfp.sd.gov/hunting/big-game/mountain-lion-season-harvest-status.aspx.

GFP Commission Adopts 2015 Hunting Season Dates

PIERRE, S.D. - The South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks (GFP) Commission adopted the dates for all 2015 hunting seasons at their January meeting. 

As there were no changes from 2014, the season dates will follow the same structure as last year and adjusted accordingly to the 2015 calendar. One exception to these dates would be if there are any changes to the federal guidelines for waterfowl species which will be determined later this summer.

The list of 2015 hunting season dates can be found online at: http://gfp.sd.gov/hunting/future-dates.aspx.

GFP Commission Adopts Licenses for
Special Buck Season

PIERRE, S.D. - The South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks (GFP) Commission adopted the number of 2015 special buck licenses.

The number of resident licenses available for the West River deer season is 500. There are also 500 nonresident licenses available for West River. The number of resident-only licenses for the East River deer season is 556.

For more information on this hunting season, please visit: http://gfp.sd.gov/hunting/big-game/deer/special-buck.aspx.

GFP Proposes to Remove State Waterfowl Refuge Status from Cottonwood Lake in Sully County

PIERRE, S.D. - The South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks (GFP) Commission is proposing to remove the Cottonwood Lake State Waterfowl Refuge in Sully County.

Currently, waterfowl use on Cottonwood Lake Waterfowl Refuge is limited. Neighboring landowners who have been contacted in regards to this proposal have been either neutral or supportive in removing this refuge designation. In addition, input solicited from sportsmen and women indicate support of removing this refuge designation. 

The GFP Commission will finalize this proposal March 5-6 at the RedRossa Convention Room in Pierre. To view this rule proposal in its entirety, please visit https://gfp.sd.gov/agency/commission/default.aspx. Written comments on proposals can be sent to 523 E. Capitol Ave., Pierre, S.D. 57501, or emailed to wildinfo@state.sd.us. To be included in the public record, comments must be received by 12 p.m. CST on March 5 and have your full name and city of residence.

GFP Commission Proposes
Aquatic Invasive Species Rules

PIERRE, S.D. - The South Dakota Game Fish and Parks (GFP) Commission proposed several rules to prevent the introduction and slow the spread of existing populations of aquatic invasive species in the state.

One rule proposal would allow conservation officers to require the removal of vegetation and all aquatic invasive species from a boat and trailer, and to require all drain plugs and related devices be opened or removed from boats when being transported. Exceptions would be for entering and exiting the water, emergency response vehicles, and livewells while on lands owned, leased, controlled or managed by the Department or other government entities adjacent to the water. 

Another part of the proposal would give the Department Secretary the authority to declare a body of water an aquatic invasive species containment water, describe the conditions that would necessitate this action and outline restrictions in place for that water to reduce or slow the spread of aquatic invasive species. Anglers would be allowed up to 5 gallons of vegetation-free water, in a container outside of the boat, to transport bait or fish away from the water in non-designated aquatic invasive species containment waters.

The GFP Commission will finalize this proposal March 5-6 at the RedRossa Convention Room in Pierre. To view this rule proposal in its entirety, please visit https://gfp.sd.gov/agency/commission/default.aspx. Written comments on proposals can be sent to 523 E. Capitol Ave., Pierre, S.D. 57501, or emailed to wildinfo@state.sd.us. To be included in the public record, comments must be received by 12 p.m. CST on March 5, and have your full name and city of residence.

Funding Available for Trails

PIERRE, S.D. - South Dakota State Parks Director Doug Hofer announced today that applications are being accepted for grants from the Recreation Trails Program (RTP). The grants will be available for trail projects sponsored by municipalities, counties, state parks, federal land management agencies or tribal governments.

“When it comes to promoting healthy communities, recreational trails are key,” Hofer said. “As safe corridors for exercise and recreation, trails give families the opportunity to spend quality time together and enjoy the natural beauty of our state.”

The Recreational Trails Program provides partial reimbursement for approved trail projects. Eligible projects include construction of new public trails, rehabilitation of existing public trails, development of trail-related facilities and educational programs that relate to recreational trails.

The application deadline is Friday, April 10, 2015.

RTP funds come to the state through the Federal Highway Administration and are apportioned to states by Congress to fund both motorized and non-motorized public recreation trail projects. The amount of funds available is based upon the number of recreational vehicles licensed in each state.

Application packets are available online at the Game, Fish and Parks website. For more information, contact Grants Coordinator Randy Kittle at 605.773.5490 or by e-mail at randy.kittle@state.sd.us.

Oakwood Lakes State Park to Host Winter Events

PIERRE, S.D. - Oakwood Lake State Park will host a weekend of winter fun with the Kool Kids’ Klassic Fishing Derby and the Groundhog Day Cross-Country Ski Tour on Jan. 31 and Feb. 1, respectively.

“These events are a great way for the entire family to get active, get outside and have fun at the park,” said Harley Noem, Park Manager at Oakwood Lakes State Park. “The park offers many opportunities for outdoor winter recreation that families can enjoy.”

On Jan. 31, children under age 14 are invited to take part in the Kool Kids’ Klassic Ice Fishing Derby. Registration for the derby is $2 and will take place at the park shop at 11 a.m. The first 100 entries will receive a free fishing pole made by park staff. Bait is furnished and event staff will drill holes in the ice as needed. Fishing will take place in designated areas from 12 to 2 p.m. with weigh-in to follow. Winners will be announced at the award ceremony following fishing. Snacks will be available throughout the day, and numerous door prize drawings will be held.

On Feb. 1, the Groundhog Day Ski Event will feature a 5-kilometer non-competitive poker run, a 1-mile non-competitive snowshoe poker run, a 10-kilometer competitive race and a kick sled race. A registration fee of $8 for adults and $3 for youth (ages 13-17) applies to the ski race/poker run. Prizes will be awarded to the winners in each age group, as well as in other categories.

The day also features the annual Sons of Norway Barnelopet Children's Ski Run. This event is free for kids 13 and under.

Registration for the ski events begins at the park shop at 12:30 p.m. The race will start at 1:30 p.m. Cookies, hot chocolate and various Norwegian treats will be served throughout the day. Ski rentals for the event are available from Sioux River Bicycles and Fitness. Snowshoes are available to borrow from the park; call to reserve. In the event of no snow, walks will be held in place of the races.

The fishing derby is sponsored the City of Brookings, Brookings Engraving, Brookings Radio, Gas ‘N’ More, Brookings Hy-Vee Food Store, Porter’s Bait, 1481 Grille and the Bruce Market.

The cross-country ski tour is sponsored by the Sons of Norway, Sioux River Bicycles and Fitness, Brookings Radio, 1481 Grille and Brookings Engraving.

Park entrance licenses are required to enter the park and will be available for purchase. For additional information on the weekend’s events, call Oakwood Lakes State Park at 605-627-5441.

-GFP-

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