ND Game and Fish News

•2016 Upland Game Seasons Summarized
The harvest of pheasants, sharp-tailed grouse and Hungarian partridge last year in North Dakota was down from 2015, according to statistics compiled by the State Game and Fish Department.
Last year, more than 76,600 pheasant hunters (down 10 percent) harvested 501,100 roosters (down 15 percent), compared to 85,500 hunters and 590,700 roosters in 2015.
Counties with the highest percentage of pheasants taken by resident hunters in 2016 were Hettinger, 8.7; Morton, 5.8; Burleigh, 5.5; Stark, 5.4; and Williams, 5.3.
Top counties for nonresident hunters were Hettinger, 21.1 percent; Bowman, 10; Adams, 7.1; Divide, 5; and Emmons, 4.4.
In 2016, nearly 18,900 grouse hunters (down 18 percent) harvested 65,500 sharp-tailed grouse (down 21 percent). In 2015, 23,100 hunters took 83,000 sharptails.
Counties with the highest percentage of sharptails taken by resident hunters in 2016 were Mountrail, 8.9; McKenzie, 8.1; Grant, 7.4; Slope, 5.5; and McLean, 5.2.
Top counties for nonresident hunters were McKenzie, 9.3 percent; Mountrail, 9.1; Adams, 7.2; Hettinger, 6.9; and Grant, 6.5.
Last year, 16,900 hunters (down 9 percent) harvested 54,200 Hungarian partridge (down 9 percent). In 2015, 18,600 hunters harvested 59,600 Huns.
Counties with the highest percentage of Huns taken by resident hunters in 2016 were McKenzie, 9.6; Williams, 9.6; Ward, 9.5; Grant, 8.7; and Mountrail, 7.6.
Top counties for nonresident hunters were Stark, 8.1 percent; Divide, 7.4; McKenzie, 7.1; Grant, 6.5; and Hettinger, 6.5.
•Sportsman Against Hunger Accepting Goose Meat
The North Dakota Community Action Sportsmen Against Hunger program is again accepting donations of goose meat taken during the early Canada goose season. In addition, the program will accept Canada and light (snow, blue and Ross’s) goose donations during the regular waterfowl season.
Similar to last year, hunters can bring in their goose meat to participating processors after removing the breast meat from the birds at home. Or, hunters may also deliver geese directly from the field to a processor, but identification such as the wing or head must remain attached to the bird until in possession of the processor.
For a list of participating processors in North Dakota, visit the North Dakota Community Action website.
Breast meat brought from home without a wing or head attached to the meat must be accompanied by written information that includes the hunter’s name, address, signature, hunting license number, date taken and species and number taken. Information forms are also available at the North Dakota Game and Fish Department website.
Hunters will also fill out a brief form so that processors can keep a record on donated goose meat, the same as is required for processing any other type of wild game meat.
Since no goose carcasses or feathers are allowed inside processing facilities, hunters must be able to ensure proper disposal and clean-up of carcasses.
•Administrative Rules Hearing Set for Sept. 14
The North Dakota Game and Fish Department will hold a public hearing to address proposed rule changes to North Dakota Administrative Code Title 30. The hearing is scheduled for 1:15 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 14 at the agency’s main office in Bismarck.
The purpose and explanation of the proposed rule changes are as follows:
Chapter 30-03-01.1 – Bait Vendors. Amendments are intended to redefine legal live bait thus eliminating the need for bait vendors who handle only terrestrial live bait to no longer be required to be licensed. Given the ongoing concerns of aquatic nuisance species, the penalty for transporting water without the required approval is increased to $200. The penalty for not maintaining proper records is also increased to $200. Anyone who has had a department issued license revoked or suspended in the last three years may not be licensed as a bait vendor – this is similar to current requirements for bait vendor assistants as well as outfitters and guides. The last change reduces the reporting requirements for those who are licensed and dealing in legal live aquatic bait.
The proposed rule language may be reviewed at the North Dakota Game and Fish Department, 100 N. Bismarck Expressway, Bismarck, ND 58501-5095, or on the Department’s website at gf.nd.gov. A copy of the proposed rules may be requested in writing, or by calling 701-328-6305, or emailing ndgf@nd.gov. Written or oral comments on the proposed rules must be received by Sept. 24, 2017 for consideration.
Anyone who attends the public hearing and needs special facilities or assistance relating to a disability should contact the Game and Fish Department at least seven days before the public hearing.

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