The North Dakota Game and Fish Department announced today that the state's 2013 paddlefish snagging season will close to any additional harvest at 10 p.m. Central Daylight Time, Friday, May 17, to protect the population level of the fish. An additional seven-day snag-and-release season will begin Saturday, May 18 and run through Friday, May 24.
“Once again, high effort and participation by paddlefish snaggers and relatively low water levels concentrating the paddlefish are responsible for the early closure,” said Greg Power, Game and Fish Department fisheries chief.
The North Dakota Game and Fish Department’s Save Our Lakes program is renovating 800 feet of shoreline along Danzig Dam in Morton County.
The SOL project includes lowering the water level to remove 15,000 cubic yards of sediment, which will deepen the shoreline and create better access for shore anglers. Additionally, a water control structure is being installed to enhance opportunities to address ongoing water quality issues.
Completion of the project is expected by June. However, it is anticipated the water level within the reservoir will remain low until next spring.
North Dakota Game and Fish Department fisheries personnel recently stocked six lakes with 2-to-5 pound trout from Wyoming.
Jerry Weigel, fisheries production and development section leader, said each year Wyoming Game and Fish provides trout as part of a trade for walleye fingerlings. This year, Wyoming provided surplus brood stock.
A total of 800 rainbows with a combined weight of 2,100 pounds were stocked in Camels Hump Lake (Golden Valley County), Dickinson Dike (Stark County), North Woodhaven Pond (Cass County) and Mooreton Pond (Richland County).
The North Dakota Game and Fish Department will continue to implement camping restrictions established last year on some wildlife management areas in western North Dakota and along Lake Sakakawea.
Effective immediately, overnight camping is prohibited on the following WMAs: Antelope Creek, Lewis and Clark, Big Oxbow, Ochs Point, Neu’s Point, Overlook, Sullivan and Tobacco Garden in McKenzie County; Van Hook in Mountrail County; and Hofflund and Trenton in Williams County.
Results from North Dakota’s spring sage grouse survey indicate the number of strutting males observed remains well below management objectives. Therefore, the sage grouse hunting season will remain closed in 2013.
Aaron Robinson, North Dakota Game and Fish Department upland game bird biologist, said biologists counted a record low 50 males on 11 active strutting grounds earlier in May. Last year, 72 males were counted on 12 active leks in the southwest.
The North Dakota Game and Fish Department’s Becoming an Outdoors-Woman program is accepting registrations for the annual summer workshop Aug. 9-11 at Lake Metigoshe State Park, Bottineau.
Enrollment is limited to participants age 18 or older. Workshop fees of $135 cover instruction, program materials, use of equipment, all meals and lodging.
Participants can choose from more than 30 programs, including archery, canoeing, introduction to firearms, fly-fishing, kayaking, global positioning system, plant identification, and tracking and trapping.
North Dakota’s 2013 deer season is set, with 59,500 licenses available to hunters this fall, 5,800 fewer than last year and the lowest since 1983.
Randy Kreil, wildlife chief for the State Game and Fish Department, said after a significant reduction in gun licenses in 2012, harvest and survey data revealed deer populations are still below management objectives in most units.
Children ages 12-15 who want to operate a boat or personal watercraft this summer must take the state’s boating basics course.
State law requires youngsters ages 12-15 to pass the course before they operate a boat or personal watercraft with at least a 10 horsepower motor. In addition, major insurance companies give adult boat owners who pass the course a premium discount on boat insurance.
Producers interested in submitting bids to enroll land in Conservation Reserve Program acres have from May 20 through June 14. Applications received during the CRP signup period will be ranked against others according to the Environmental Benefit Index.
House Energy and Natural Resources Committee - Meets Thursdays and Fridays in Pioneer Room
Chair Todd Porter, Vice Chair Chuck Damschen, Dick Anderson, Roger Brabandt, Glen Froseth, Curt Hofstad, Bob Hunskor, George J. Keiser, Scot Kelsh, Corey Mock, Mike Nathe, Jim Schmidt, Peter F. Silbernagel
Senate Natural Resources Committee - Meets Thursdays and Fridays in Fort Lincoln Room
Anglers and bait vendors should be aware of a regulation that prohibits taking of minnows or other aquatic bait from portions of Pipestem Creek and the James River.
Because record high flows in the James River in 2011 facilitated the movement of silver carp upstream into North Dakota, it is illegal to take live bait from all of Pipestem Creek below Pipestem Dam, and from the James River between the Jamestown Dam and the South Dakota border, including any tributaries up to the first vehicular bridge or crossing.
A multi-year walleye tagging study that will eventually include thousands of fish was initiated on the Missouri River earlier this spring.
The study area is big, running from Garrison Dam in central North Dakota downstream to Lake Oahe Dam in South Dakota. It’s being conducted by biologists and researchers from the South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks, North Dakota Game and Fish Department, and South Dakota State University.