The North Dakota Game and Fish Department’s Private Land Open To Sportsmen Guide for 2012 is now available online at the Department’s website, gf.nd.gov. In addition, PLOTS Guides will be available at most license vendors throughout the state in late August.
Anglers who catch a tagged salmon are reminded to turn in the heads and report information to the North Dakota Game and Fish Department.
Anglers can identify a tagged salmon by looking at the adipose fin – a small fleshy lobe found on the back toward the tail. If the fin is missing it was likely removed by Game and Fish biologists and the salmon probably has a micro-tag embedded in its head. There is no external tag.
North Dakota goose hunters should take note of an exception made to state identification requirements for transporting geese when processed by commercial processors who comply with state and federal requirements.
Robert Timian, State Game and Fish Department chief of enforcement, said hunters taking geese to commercial processors must follow the same procedure as before. The only change is commercial processors can now remove the identification component of the goose prior to reaching the hunter’s legal residence.
Some wildlife management areas in southwestern North Dakota now have the same camping restrictions adopted earlier this spring on similar public lands along Lake Sakakawea.
North Dakota's 2012 fall duck flight is expected to have twice as many birds as last year.
Mike Johnson, game management section leader for the State Game and Fish Department, said the fall flight estimate is a combination of the breeding duck survey and the brood survey.
Results from the breeding duck survey in May indicated the duck index was up 16 percent from 2011 and exceeded the long-term average by 112 percent.
May water conditions were down 57 percent from 2011 and 6 percent from the long-term average.
Migratory game bird hunters are reminded to register with the Harvest Information Program prior to hunting in North Dakota this fall.
HIP certification is required for all migratory bird hunters, regardless of age, before hunting ducks, geese, swans, mergansers, coots, cranes, snipe, doves or woodcock.
North Dakota’s early Canada goose season is set and the season will open Aug. 15. The limits are 15 daily and 30 in possession.
Limits and shooting hours for the early season are different from the regular season. Shooting hours during the early season are one-half hour before sunrise to sunset daily.
North Dakota’s 2012 small game and furbearer regulations have been set and most season structures and bag limits are similar to last year. The only significant changes involve an increase in limits for the early Canada goose, mountain lion and fisher seasons.
The online application for North Dakota’s 2012 tundra swan license lottery is available on the state Game and Fish Department’s website, gf.nd.gov. The deadline for applying is Aug. 15.
Paper applications will be available the first week in August from Game and Fish offices, county auditors and license vendors. Hunters can also apply by calling (800) 406-6409. A service fee is added for license applications made by phone.
Much higher-than-normal July temperatures are stressing fish populations across the state.
Scott Gangl, fisheries management section leader for the North Dakota Game and Fish Department, said this summer biologists have documented fish kills in approximately a dozen water bodies throughout the state.
More hunting opportunities meant more pheasants taken during the 2011 season, as last fall’s pheasant harvest was 683,000, up from 552,000 in 2010.
Aaron Robinson, upland bird biologist for the North Dakota Game and Fish Department, said the overall landscape probably didn’t have more birds, but Mother Nature allowed for an increase in harvest due to mild weather conditions and minimal snow cover in November, December and early January.