The August 2013
is now here!
Click here to download
and view the newsletter
Sports Family Camp
Raffle Winners announced!!
Drawing held 6-29-2014 5:00 PM at Scheels All Sports
– Bismarck ND
Winners of this year’s gift cards are as follows
Richard Brewster - Washburn, ND
Cory Hallen - Dickinson, ND
Sheri Ellingson - Grace City, ND
Curt Walen - Carrington, ND
Larry Kukla - Jamestown, ND
Gene Just - Jamestown, ND
Larry Kaul - LaMoure, ND
Scott Pedersen - Northwood, ND
Kerry Whipp - Courtenay, ND
Dale Kilwein - Dickinson, ND
THANK YOU! too everyone who help NDHEA this
year buy purchasing tickets or helping to sell them.
The money will be used to sponsor shooting events,
mentored hunting events, promotion for safe hunting
and to supply additional teaching aids across the
Have a great summer and safe hunting season!
July 21st Newsletter
Record Number of Lakes Stocked with Walleye
North Dakota Game and Fish Department fisheries
personnel recently wrapped up stocking walleye in a
record 133 lakes across the state.
Jerry Weigel, fisheries production and development
supervisor, said thanks to the excellent walleye
fingerling production from the Garrison Dam and
Valley City national fish hatcheries, these waters
received nearly 10 million fingerlings.
“With a record number of fishing waters across the
state, the demand to stock these new waters with
hatchery fish has greatly increased,” Weigel said.
“We’ve increased our efforts to make sure we meet
the record production demands.”
Game and Fish works with both federal hatcheries,
providing operational funding and temporary staff,
as well as collecting all the eggs and transporting
fish to all the fishing waters across the state.
Most recently, the department partnered with the
Fish and Wildlife Service to make improvements to
the 50-year-old Valley City hatchery, which resulted
in a hatchery record 2.5 million walleye fingerlings
produced this year.
Stocking conditions were optimal this year, Weigel
said, with cooler weather and increasing water
levels at many lakes. The stocked 30-day-old
fingerings averaged about 1.25 inches in length.
“They should find lots of food and good survival
conditions which bodes well for future fishing
opportunity,” Weigel added. “Later this fall
fisheries personal will sample walleye lakes to
access the success of this year’s walleye stocking,
as well as what Mother Nature provides.”
One common observation fish haulers noted while
traveling across the state, Weigel said, was the
amount of fishing taken place, both from shore and
from a boat. “There has never been a better time to
fish for walleye,” he added. “Statewide, there are a
lot of great opportunities, and a very good chance
Fires Banned on Oahe WMA
The North Dakota Game and Fish Department is
prohibiting open burning this spring on property
managed south of Bismarck and Mandan, as a means to
reduce potential for wildfires on a heavily wooded
recreation area along the Missouri River.
Bill Haase, wildlife resource management supervisor,
said all open burning, including campfires, is
banned until further notice on the Oahe Wildlife
Management Area along both sides of the Missouri
River. Haase said these woodlands are prone to
wildfires prior to spring green-up.
"The combination of mild temperatures and a high
fuel load in the river bottoms is of concern," Haase
said. "In addition, it is an area of high use by
anglers, campers and other outdoor recreationists."
Oahe WMA covers more than 16,000 acres along Lake
Oahe south of Bismarck-Mandan, in portions of
Burleigh, Emmons, and Morton counties. Burning
restriction signs are posted at all entrances to the
Oahe WMA Map 1 -
Oahe WMA Map 2 -
Fire Danger Index
GAME HUNTING APPLICATION DEADLINES
Elk: March 15th
Deer: March 15th
Antelope: June 2
Bear: April 14th
Moose: May 1st
Bighorn Sheep: May 1st
Mountain Goats: May 1st
Bison: May 1st
Deer, Elk, Antelope,
Bighorn Sheep, Oryx, Ibex, Javelina: March 19
Lion Zone 1 Early Season Quota - 2 of 14
Mountain lion hunting during the late season in zone
1 is closed immediately. The zone’s late-season
quota of seven was filled after five cats were taken
Zone 1 includes land south of ND Highway 1804 from
the Montana border to the point where ND Highway
1804 lies directly across Lake Sakakawea from ND
Highway 8, crossing Lake Sakakawea then south along
ND Highway 8 to ND Highway 200, then west on ND
Highway 200 to U.S. Highway 85, then south on U.S.
Highway 85 to the South Dakota border.
The mountain lion season in zone 2, which is the
rest of the state outside zone 1, has no quota and
is open through March 31, 2014.
Early season (firearms and archery equipment) -
Opens: Aug. 30
Closes: Nov. 24 (or when zone quota is reached)
*Zone Quota: 14
Daily Limit: Season limit of 1 per hunter
Firearms and archery equipment - 2013
Opens: Aug. 30
Closes: March. 31, 2014
Daily Limit: Season limit of 1 per hunter
Zone 1: Late season (firearms, archery equipment, or pursuit
with dogs) - 2013
Opens: Nov. 25
Closes: March 31, 2014 (or when zone quota is
Zone Quota: 7
Daily Limit: Season limit of 1 per hunter
*Animals taken to date (updated 12/15/2013) - 7 of 7
Catalog Available for Hunters, Landowners
The North Dakota Department of Agriculture and the
North Dakota Game and Fish Department have reopened
the Coyote Catalog to connect coyote hunters and
trappers with landowners who want fewer coyotes in
The Coyote Catalog is an online database similar to
the one the Game and Fish Department uses to connect
deer hunters with farmers and ranchers.
“We’ve had a lot of success matching deer hunters
with landowners,” said NDGF Director Terry Steinwand.
“We hope the Coyote Catalog works out just as well.”
NDDA officials estimate livestock producers in North
Dakota lost more than $1 million last year to
coyotes. At the same time, coyotes are a popular
furbearer species for hunters and trappers.
“I encourage landowners, especially farmers and
ranchers who have problems with coyote depredation,
to sign up for the Coyote Catalog,” said Agriculture
Commissioner Doug Goehring. “Hunting and trapping
are valuable tools in managing these predators.”
Goehring and Steinwand said the U.S. Department of
Agriculture Wildlife Services should be the first
contact for landowners experiencing coyote
depredation of livestock.
Landowners can sign up on the NDDA website at
Required information includes county and contact
Hunters and trappers can
sign up at
the NDGF website at
Periodically throughout the winter, hunters or
trappers will receive information on participating
landowners, and they can then contact landowners to
Although the Coyote Catalog does not guarantee a
good match for every participating landowner or
hunter, Goehring and Steinwand said it has great
potential to focus hunting or trapping pressure in
areas where farmers and ranchers are experiencing
coyote depredation problems.
Anyone who registered for the Coyote Catalog in the
past must register again to activate their names on
The Coyote Catalog will remain active through March
31, and then start up again next winter.
Deer Lottery Held, Remaining License Sales Suspended
North Dakota’s second deer lottery has been held and
individual results are available on the State Game
and Fish Department website, gf.nd.gov.
While slightly more than 1,000 antlerless deer
licenses were still available after the second
lottery, all of them are in units 3F1, 3F2 and 4F in
the southwestern part of the state, where Game and
Fish is receiving ongoing reports of white-tailed
deer mortality caused by epizootic hemorrhagic
As such, Game and Fish administration has decided to
not issue those remaining licenses. “The decision is
based on previous years’ experience where moderate
to significant white-tailed deer losses were
documented in situations similar to this year,” said
wildlife chief Randy Kreil.
In addition, Kreil said the likelihood of an
extended fall, and possible continuation of EHD
losses was also a factor in the decision. “While we
first received reports of isolated deer deaths in
August, loss of deer to this disease appears to have
extended into September, and depending on the
weather, may continue into October,” Kreil added,
noting that the area of reported white-tailed deer
deaths to EHD covers Bowman to Bismarck.
In 2011, deer deaths from EHD occurred well into
October, and prompted Game and Fish to offer refunds
to license holders in several southwestern units.
Kreil said it’s too early to tell whether this
year’s EHD episode is significant enough to warrant
a similar action, and the agency will wait until
after opening weekend of pheasant season to
determine whether refunds would be an option. “In
the past,” Kreil added, “it has been helpful to
gauge the scope and intensity of an EHD situation
when there are thousands of hunters in the field in
EHD areas, who might observe dead deer along
EHD, a naturally occurring virus that is spread by a
biting midge, is almost always fatal to infected
white-tailed deer, while mule deer do not usually
die from the disease. Hunters do not have to worry
about handling or consuming meat from infected deer
because the virus that causes EHD is not known to
cause disease in humans. In addition, the first hard
freeze typically kills the midge that carries and
transfers the EHD virus which will slow or halt the
spread of the disease.
Lottery Held, Antlerless Licenses Remain
(B = Any
Advised to Check Water Conditions
The North Dakota Game and Fish Department advises
hunters to be cautious with their dogs around water
this time of year, due to potential health hazards
associated with blue-green algae.
Dr. Dan Grove, wildlife veterinarian for the Game
and Fish Department, said late summer and early fall
offer prime conditions for blue-green algae growth
in many state waters. Ingestion by a hunting dog
while perhaps retrieving a bird during the early
goose season, or just practicing retrieving, can
lead to severe illness and potential death.
“Conditions are right this year for stagnant water
to become contaminated, especially with all of the
rainfall that has occurred,” Grove said.
Potentially toxic algae blooms occur under
conditions of hot, dry weather. Shallow, stagnant
water with moderate to high nutrient content
provides an optimum environment for algal growth.
Water or wind movements often concentrate the algae,
and eventually the bloom appears as a blue-green
“scum” floating on the water’s surface. The threat
disappears once the weather turns colder.
“Hunting dogs shouldn’t drink or swim in discolored
water or where algal blooms are apparent,” Grove
said. “If dogs retrieve in these conditions, they
should be rinsed off immediately and shouldn’t be
allowed to lick their coat.”
For additional information about the effects of
blue-green algae blooms on hunting dogs, contact the
Animal Health Division, North Dakota Department of
Agriculture, at (701) 328-2655; or a local
Waterfowl Regulations Set
North Dakota’s 2013 waterfowl season has been set,
with noteworthy changes including an increase in the
daily limit of Canada and snow geese, and the
possession limit for most migratory birds.
Opening day for North Dakota residents is Sept. 21
for ducks, geese, coots and mergansers. Nonresidents
may begin hunting waterfowl in North Dakota Sept.
28. The season for swans opens Sept. 28 for both
residents and nonresidents.
Hunters may take six ducks per day with the
following restrictions: five mallards of which two
may be hens, three wood ducks, three scaup, two
redheads, two pintails and two canvasbacks. The
daily limit of five mergansers may include no more
than two hooded mergansers. For ducks and
mergansers, the possession limit is three times the
The hunting season for Canada geese in the Missouri
River zone will close Dec. 27, while the remainder
of the state will close Dec. 21. The season for
whitefronts closes Dec. 1, while the season on light
geese is open through Dec. 29. Shooting hours for
all geese are one-half hour before sunrise to 1 p.m.
each day through Nov. 2. Beginning Nov. 3, shooting
hours are extended until 2 p.m. each day.
Extended shooting hours for all geese are permitted
from one-half hour before sunrise to sunset on
Saturdays and Wednesdays through Nov. 27, and on
Saturdays, Sundays and Wednesdays from Nov. 30
through the end of each season.
The bag limit for Canada geese during the regular
season is eight daily and 24 in possession, except
in the Missouri River zone where the limit is five
daily and 15 in possession.
The daily limit on whitefronts is two with six in
possession, and light goose is 50 daily, with no
The special youth waterfowl hunting season is Sept.
14-15. Legally licensed residents and nonresidents
15 years of age or younger can hunt ducks, coots,
mergansers and geese statewide. Youth hunters must
have a general game and habitat license and a
fishing, hunting and furbearer certificate. A
licensed adult at least 18 years of age must
accompany the youth hunter into the field.
Nonresidents have the option of buying either a
statewide waterfowl license or one with zone
restrictions. Nonresidents who designate zones 1 or
2 may hunt that zone for only one seven-day period
during the season. Nonresident hunters who chose to
hunt in zone 1 or 2 and wish to use the full 14
consecutive days allowed, must use the other seven
days in zone 3. Hunters in zone 3 can hunt that zone
the entire 14 days.
In accordance with state law, nonresidents are not
allowed to hunt on North Dakota Game and Fish
Department wildlife management areas or conservation
PLOTS (Private Land Open To Sportsmen) areas from
All migratory bird hunters, including waterfowl,
must register with the Harvest Information Program
prior to hunting. Hunters
purchasing a license from
the Game and Fish Department can easily get a HIP
number. Otherwise, hunters must call (888) 634-4798,
or log on to the Game and Fish website at gf.nd.gov,
provide the registration information, and record the
HIP number on their fishing, hunting and furbearer
certificate. Those who HIP registered to hunt this
spring’s light goose season or early fall Canada
goose season do not have to register again, as it is
required only once per year.
The waterfowl rest areas previously established in
Barnes and Nelson counties have been eliminated.
Hunters should refer to the 2013 North Dakota
Waterfowl Hunting Guide for further details on
the waterfowl season. Paper copies will be at
license vendors in early September.
Concerned about Possible Corps Land Transfer
Officials at the State Game and Fish Department are
concerned that a potential transfer of U.S. Army
Corps of Engineers land around Lake Sakakawea would
include thousands of acres of public land managed
for fish, wildlife and recreation, and would
jeopardize free access to numerous boat ramps within
the middle third of the reservoir.
Game and Fish Director Terry Steinwand says the
Corps is apparently reconsidering a 2004 request to
transfer all Corps land above 1,854 feet mean sea
level within the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation,
to the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs, to be held in
trust for the Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara Nation.
The Game and Fish Department leases from the Corps
and manages for wildlife approximately 7,000 acres
within the proposed area, including Van Hook and
Deepwater Creek wildlife management areas. In
addition, more than 29,000 acres of Corps land that
is currently open to public hunting and fishing
could also be transferred.
“Our major concern about this development,”
Steinwand said, “is the loss of public land for
hunters and anglers, which is currently managed by
the Game and Fish Department and the Corps of
Over several decades since Game and Fish began
leasing Corps land around Lake Sakakawea for
wildlife management purposes, Steinwand said the
agency has invested more than a million dollars in
sportsmen’s money in portions of those areas that
would be included in a land transfer. While Game and
Fish would retain leases and public access on land
below 1,854 msl, Steinwand added that access to
those remaining areas could become more difficult.
“This is a critical issue for hunters and anglers in
the state,” Steinwand said. “It’s important that the
Corps considers further public input before making a
decision on any potential land transfer.”
Pronghorn Season to Open
North Dakota will have a limited pronghorn hunting
season this fall for the first time since 2009.
Randy Kreil, wildlife chief for the State Game and
Fish Department, said the season is open only in
unit 4-A, the far southwestern corner of the state.
A total of 250 any-pronghorn licenses are available,
and the season is split into an early “bow-only”
portion, and a later gun/bow season.
The bow-only portion of the season is from Aug. 29
(noon) – Sept. 28. Anyone who draws a license can
hunt pronghorn with a bow, only in Unit 4-A, during
From Oct. 3 (noon) – Oct.19, hunters who still have
a valid license can use legal firearms or bow
“We are opening the hunting season in unit 4-A to
take advantage of a surplus number of bucks in that
area, and to provide hunting opportunity while still
encouraging population growth,” Kreil said. “While
we aren’t issuing any statewide pronghorn archery
licenses this year as we did in the past, hunters
who do draw a license can use a rifle, bow or both,
depending on their preferences.”
Game and Fish biologists surveyed more than 11,000
square miles, 100 percent of the 21 survey units in
the state, in early July. Statistics indicate a
statewide population estimate of 5,700 pronghorn,
with 1,650 in the area open to hunting.
“The number of pronghorn observed in Unit 4-A falls
within our regional population objective of having a
limited season, while all other units do not,” Kreil
In addition, unit 4-A has a high buck-to-doe ratio,
Kreil said, which is typical of a population that
has not been hunted. The fawn-to-doe ratio is also
the highest since 2007.
“While some people may have expected more units to
be open, we need to proceed conservatively with this
valuable wildlife resource and let pronghorns
rebound to a level that can sustain harvest. The
good news is that we are poised to see additional
units open next year, providing Mother Nature
cooperates with a moderate winter,” Kreil said.
Only North Dakota residents are eligible to apply
for a 2014 pronghorn license. Kreil said people who
have accumulated preference points and choose not to
apply this year will not lose their points.
In addition, state law allows youth who turn age 12
on or before December 31, 2014 to apply for a
Online applications for regular and gratis licenses
will be available the week of July 21 at the Game
and Fish Department website,
Paper applications will also be available from Game
and Fish offices, county auditors and license
vendors, or by calling 800-406-6409.
The pronghorn license fee is $30, and the deadline
for submitting applications is Aug. 6.
Current Status of North Dakota Pronghorn
encourage population growth.
central, and northern)
Dakota Spring Pheasant Count Tops Last Year
North Dakota’s spring pheasant population index is
up slightly from last year, according to the State
Game and Fish Department’s 2014 spring crowing count
Stan Kohn, upland game management supervisor, said
the number of roosters heard crowing this spring was
up about 6 percent statewide from 2013, with
increases ranging from about 2 to 9 percent
depending on the region.
While the spring number is a positive indicator,
Kohn said it does not predict what North Dakota’s
fall population will look like. Brood surveys, which
begin in mid-July and are completed by September,
provide a much better estimate of summer pheasant
production and what hunters might expect for a fall
Last year, the fall population was down from 2012
because of rather poor production, but Kohn said low
winter pheasant mortality, particularly in the
southern one-third of the state, helped boost this
year’s spring count.
Another positive is that abundant moisture has
provided for good habitat conditions heading into
the prime nesting period. However, Kohn noted that
since 2008, North Dakota has lost more than 2
million acres of Conservation Reserve Program
grasslands, much of it in the pheasant range. That
means total nesting habitat in the state is
significantly reduced from where it was when the
spring crowing count index peaked in 2008.
The 2014 index is down about one-third from that
peak. “Loss of CRP acres continue to reduce the
amount of nesting and brood-rearing habitat on the
landscape,” Kohn emphasized. “This and other
grassland conversion is going to negatively affect
our pheasant population in the future.”
Pheasant crowing counts are conducted each spring
throughout North Dakota. Observers drive specified
20-mile routes, stopping at predetermined intervals,
and counting the number of pheasant roosters heard
crowing over a two-minute period during the stop.
The number of pheasant crows heard is compared to
previous years’ data, providing a trend summary.
to Offer Archery Hunt
An experimental antlerless deer archery season will
open this fall on the North Dakota Department of
Corrections and Rehabilitation land south of
Interested hunters must apply for an access permit
from NDDOCR at
(under the Archery Hunt header) before receiving a
license. The deadline for applying is July 1 at 4
p.m. Only 25 access permits will be issued.
A maximum of 75 antlerless deer licenses will be
available from the North Dakota Game and Fish
Department’s Bismarck office. Each access permit
holder can purchase up to three antlerless
white-tailed deer licenses.
Other details, including areas open to hunting, is
determined by the NDDOCR. For more information,
refer to the NDDOCR website.
WMA Ban on Open Fires Lifted
The North Dakota Game and Fish Department has
removed the open fire ban on the Oahe Wildlife
Management Area effective immediately. However, the
area still falls under any burn restrictions
implemented by Morton and Burleigh counties.
Open fires, including campfires, were prohibited
this spring on Game and Fish managed property south
of Bismarck and Mandan along both sides of the
Oahe WMA covers more than 16,000 acres along Lake
Oahe south of Bismarck-Mandan, in portions of
Burleigh, Emmons and Morton counties.
Bottoms Shooting Range Closed Friday
The Schmidt Bottoms shooting range south of Mandan
will be closed Friday, June 13. The range will
Schmidt Bottoms is located 13.4 miles south of
Mandan on ND Highway 1806.
Boat Registration Online
The State Game and Fish Department is urging boat
owners who have yet to renew their registration for
2014, to use the agency’s online renewal system to
speed up processing time.
Due to a high volume of registrations coming in as
boat owners prepare for the new boating season, Game
and Fish Department licensing manager Randy Meissner
says the processing time currently is 10 to 14 days.
“For someone who wants to have their boat licensed
for 2014 and ready to go by Memorial Day weekend,
they might be cutting it a little close if they mail
in their renewal,” Meissner said. “By renewing
online at the Game and Fish website, it only takes a
few days for us to get the new registration card and
decals out in the mail.”
The Game and Fish website address is gf.nd.gov.
Click on the “Boating” tab, and look for the
watercraft registration section.
Once the renewal is accepted and the credit card
approved, customers are instructed to print out the
“Purchase Summary” screen which constitutes a 10-day
temporary permit, allowing the boat to be used
immediately while the renewal is being processed,
2014 is the first year of a three-year boat
licensing period. More than 60,000 boat owners were
mailed renewal notices in December. Anyone who has a
boat and did not receive a renewal notice, should
contact the department at 701-328-6300; or email
Meissner added that the Game and Fish online system
is for renewals only. If the registration is a
transfer of ownership or new watercraft purchase,
the only option is to mail it in, because Game and
Fish needs the sales receipts and other
documentation of the purchase
and Fish Waives Tuesday-Wednesday Camping
Restrictions for Memorial Day Week
The State Game and Fish Department is lifting the
Tuesday-Wednesday camping restriction on many
wildlife management areas in the western and central
part of the state for the week of Memorial Day, May
This same waiver will allow camping on those WMAs on
Tuesdays and Wednesdays during all state-recognized
holiday weeks throughout the year, including 4th of
July week (June 30-July 4), and Labor Day (Sept.
All other public use regulations for state wildlife
management areas still apply.
This waiver applies to the following WMAs in western
North Dakota and along Lake Sakakawea: North Lemmon
Lake in Adams County; Bull Creek in Billings County;
Alkali Creek and Spring Creek in Bowman County;
Smishek Lake and Short Creek Dam in Burke County;
Harris M. Baukol in Divide County; Killdeer
Mountains in Dunn County; Camels Hump Lake in Golden
Valley County; Audubon, Custer Mine, Deepwater
Creek, deTrobriand, Douglas Creek and Wolf Creek in
McLean County; Beaver Creek and Hille in Mercer
County; Storm Creek in Morton County; Cedar Lake and
Speck Davis Pond in Slope County; and McGregor Dam
in Williams County.
However, regardless of the holiday, camping is still
prohibited every day of the week at 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
Season Set, Online Apps Available May 5
North Dakota’s 2014 deer season is set, with 48,000
licenses available to hunters this fall, 11,500
fewer than last year, and the lowest number since
Randy Kreil, wildlife chief for the State Game and
Fish Department, said even after five years of
reducing gun licenses, deer populations are still
below management objectives in most units.
Currently, only units 3F1, 3F2 and 4F meet or exceed
“Harvest and survey data indicate deer numbers are
still declining, especially in the eastern part of
the state,” Kreil said.
The statewide hunter success rate in 2013 was 55
percent, which is lower than in 2012 (63 percent),
and well below the department’s goal of 70 percent.
Adequate snow cover needed for winter aerial surveys
occurred only in the northeast. Results showed deer
numbers were down 21 percent in unit 2C and 29
percent in unit 2D.
Statewide, Kreil said high quality deer habitat
continues to be lost and will limit the potential
for population recovery.
Out west, the number of antlered mule deer licenses
in the badlands was increased modestly. However, as
was the case the past two years, no antlerless mule
deer licenses are available in units 3B1, 3B2, 4A,
4B, 4C, 4D, 4E and 4F. This restriction applies to
regular gun, resident and nonresident any-deer bow,
gratis and youth licenses.
Hunters are able to draw one license for the deer
gun season and one for the muzzleloader season, and
purchase an archery license. There is no concurrent
season, and a hunter cannot receive more than one
license for the deer gun season.
The number of licenses available for 2014 includes
1,350 for antlered mule deer, an increase of 200
from last year; 932 for muzzleloader, down 270 from
last year; and 134 restricted youth antlered mule
deer, an increase of 19 from last year.
North Dakota’s 2014 deer gun season opens Nov. 7 at
noon and continues through Nov. 23.
for the regular deer gun, youth, muzzleloader, and
resident gratis and nonresident landowner seasons
will be available May 5 through the Game and Fish
Department’s website at
Also, paper applications will be at vendors
throughout the state by mid-May. The deadline for
applying is June 4.
A new state law requires residents age 18 or older
to prove residency on the application by submitting
a valid North Dakota driver’s license number or a
North Dakota nondriver photo identification number.
Applications will not be processed without this
Gratis applications received on or before the
regular deer gun lottery application deadline (June
4) will be issued any-legal-deer license. As per
state law, applications received after the deadline
will be issued based on licenses remaining after the
lottery – generally only antlerless licenses remain.
Total deer licenses are determined by harvest rates,
aerial surveys, depredation reports, hunter
observations, input at advisory board meetings, and
comments from the public, landowners and department
Hunters Cautioned of Ground Conditions
Anglers and hunters are reminded to be wary of
ground conditions when traveling to and from a
favorite fishery or hunting location.
Greg Power, fisheries chief for the North Dakota
Game and Fish Department, said with fishing good
statewide, many anglers are taking advantage of
late-season ice and early-season shore fishing.
“However, travel can be difficult this time of year
with the soft conditions,” Power said. “We urge
anglers to use common sense when conditions are
likely to cause problems with township roads and
Wildlife chief Randy Kreil said spring snow goose
and turkey hunters are encouraged to maintain
positive landowner/hunter relations. “We ask hunters
to be cognizant of these conditions,” Kreil said.
“Driving on soft, muddy roads and trails is strongly
Hunters are advised to seek permission before
attempting any off-road travel on private land.
All meetings are to be held at the North Dakota Game
and Fish Department building in Bismarck at 1:00 PM
- First quarter-April 26th
- Second Quarter-July 12th
- Third Quarter-October 18th
- Fourth Quarter-Jan 10th or 26th
NDHEA info regarding Mentored Hunts and Family
NDHEA is pleased to be offering assistance with
funding for Mentored Hunts and Family Shooting
Family Fun Shoot/Mentored Hunt policies
click here to download
a copy of the policies
Request for Participation (RFP) to conduct an
click here to download
the RFP form
and Fish Volunteers Recognized
Volunteer instructors for the North Dakota Game and
Fish Department were recognized Jan. 4 at the annual
banquet in Bismarck.
Skip Balzer, Bismarck, received the volunteer of the
year award. Balzer was mentioned for volunteering
thousands of hours at rifle ranges and wildlife
management areas, Family Fishing Days, Becoming an
Outdoors-Woman, state fair and fish camps.
Bismarck resident Clair Huwe was named instructor of
the year. Huwe was recognized for his work with the
Hooked on Fishing program, including Family Fishing
Days, fish camps and the state fair.
Richard Peterson, Bismarck, received the special
projects award. Peterson was instrumental in
securing a new trailer for the Hooked on Fishing
program, including writing the grant, purchasing the
trailer, outfitting the inside and designing the
Honored for 35 years of service were Karl Broeren,
Northwood; Melvin Bruhn, Elgin; John Buresh, Towner;
Richard Cheatley, Riverdale; Ken Fischer, Park
River; Marlowe Grindler, Rogers; Chris Hansen,
Napoleon; Colin Hoffert, Harvey; Ron Hunsberger,
Larimore; Ronald Koenig, Elgin; Noel Podoll, Velva;
Mike Voglewede, Northwood; Kurt Wagner, Wimbledon.
Thirty-year service awards were presented to Dale
Brewster, Stanley; Donald Brewster, Bowbells; Clyde
Grosz, Beulah; James Hastings, Courtenay; Don Meyer,
Devils Lake; Mark Montgomery, Center; David Rensch,
Garrison; Rick Suckut, Bowdon.
Recognized for 25 years of service were James Boley,
Minot; Dick Brewster, Washburn; Douglas Crosby,
Williston; Ralph Danuser, Marion; Keith Domke,
Jamestown; Myron Hanson, Souris; Rick Jorgenson,
Devils Lake; Mike McEnroe, Bismarck; Todd Parkman,
Hope; Kenneth Schwandt, Cavalier; Rod Stark,
Kennedy; Gary Stefanovsky, Bismarck; Gary Symanowski,
Honored for 20 years of service were Ottmar Barth,
Mandan; Mary Barth, Mandan; Kevin Bishop, Kathryn;
Patsy Crooke, Mandan; Roger Dienert, Hankinson;
Darwin Gebhardt, Oakes; Terry Gray, Cooperstown;
Garry Hillier, Thompson; Eddy Larsen, Larimore;
Francis Miller, Mandan; Gregory Odden, Rugby; Rick
Olson, Underwood; Rodney Parrill, Bottineau; Gene
Paupst, Larimore; Duane Reinisch, Valley City; Allen
Schirado, Bismarck; John Schlieman, Grand Forks;
Melvin Sivertson, Bowman; Mark Vickerman, Minot.
Fifteen-year service awards were presented to Adnan
Aldayel, New Rockford; William Bahm, Almont; Jack
Carlson, Mandan; Randy Christensen, Hettinger; Stan
Cox, Jamestown; Mark Engen, Anamoose; Mark Entzi,
Watford City; Gary Grosz, Kulm; Gary Hagness,
Fordville; Matthew Herman, Ashley; Leon Hiltner,
Wales; Morris Hummel, Coleharbor; Lynn Kieper,
Bismarck; Steven Kilwein, Hettinger; Bruce Krabseth,
Alamo; Jeffrey Lemer, Anamoose; Richard Liesner,
Ray; Barry McCleary, Napoleon; Curt Miller, Tioga;
Marvin Neumiller, Washburn; Loran Palmer, Wahpeton;
Randy Palmer, Bismarck; Richard Petersen, Bismarck;
Mark Pfeifer, Lidgerwood; Joel Puffe, Bismarck;
Scott Rehak, Williston; Craig Roe, Kindred; Claude
Sheldon, Park River; Trever Speidel, West Fargo;
Shawn Tennyson, Fargo; Doug Thingstad, Jamestown;
Clayton Thompson, West Fargo; Cindie Van Tassel,
Breckenridge, Minn.; Brian Vose, Devils Lake.
Ten-year active instructors recognized were Craig
Bjur, Fargo; Karl Blake, Park River; Benjilee Boll,
Wahpeton; Robert Concannon Jr., Las Vegas, Nev.;
Troy Enga, Berthold; Nathan Fitzgerald, Cooperstown;
Gregory Gerou, Wahpeton; Judy Haglund, Garrison; Tim
Hendrickson, Bisbee; Terry Kassian, Wilton; Steven
Kukowski, Minot; Arlen Kurtti, Hazen; Kimberly
Murphy, Williston; Dustin Neva, Hatton; Charles Oien,
Elgin; John Paulson, Bismarck; Kent Reierson,
Williston; Myron Schaff, Hebron; Scott Thorson,
Towner; Daniel Vollmer, Rolla.
Recognized for five years of service were Andrew
Banta, Williston; Glen Bahm, Selfridge; Mark Berg,
Bismarck; Jamie Bradley, Beulah; Leona Coutts,
Bismarck; Jennifer Ekberg, Manvel; Kevin Fire, Grand
Forks; Jerry Goldsberry, Grassy Butte; Jason Heinz,
Rolette; Lindsay Hiedorn, Hope; Clair Huwe,
Bismarck; Kellen Leier, Bismarck; Catherine Logosz,
Dickinson; Andrew Majeres, Garrison; Frank Odell,
Belfield; Kim Oien, Elgin; Kent Paulson, Mayville;
Benjamin Sand, Menoken; Tom Sauvage, Linton; Jeffrey
Solseth, Cando; Jeremy St. Aubin, Ashley; Corey
Cranes Observed, Moving Through
As snow geese begin to make their way into the
state, hunters are advised to properly identify
their target as whooping cranes could potentially be
in the same areas.
Whooping cranes were observed this week north of
Minot near Kenmare, and recent reports indicate most
of the population is still north of the Canadian
border and will soon migrate through North Dakota.
With Kenmare’s annual Goose Fest in progress,
hunters in the vicinity of the Upper Souris and Des
Lacs national wildlife refuges should be aware of
the potential for whooping cranes and snow geese in
the same area.
Whoopers, an endangered species, stand about five
feet tall and have a wingspan of about seven feet
from tip to tip. Like snow geese, they are bright
white with black wing tips, which are visible only
when the wings are outspread. In flight they extend
their long necks straight forward, while their long,
slender legs extend out behind the tail. Whooping
cranes typically migrate singly, or in groups of 2-3
birds, but are occasionally in slightly larger
Anyone sighting whoopers should not disturb them,
but record the date, time, location, and the birds'
activity. Observers should also look closely for and
report colored bands which may occur on one or both
legs. Whooping cranes have been marked with colored
leg bands to help determine their identity.
Whooping crane sightings should be reported to the
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service office at Lostwood,
(701) 848-2722, or Long Lake, (701) 387-4397, the
North Dakota Game and Fish Department's main office
in Bismarck at (701) 328-6300, or to local game
wardens across the state.
Required to Hunt in Unharvested Crops
Wet conditions over the past two weeks have delayed
the fall harvest of row crops.
With most hunting seasons open, North Dakota hunters
are reminded that hunting in unharvested crops is
not allowed without a landowner’s permission,
including waterfowl hunters driving on land to set
To maintain proper landowner-sportsmen relations,
hunters are urged to stay off harvested fields in
Unharvested crops include sprouted winter wheat,
which is typically planted in September as a no-till
crop. A sign of a seeded winter wheat field is rows
of green-colored sprouting wheat, or rows of tilled
ground 6-12 inches apart indicating planting has
taken place. Stubble from the previous crop will
still be in the field.
Besides winter wheat, other unharvested crops that
hunters need landowner permission to access include
more recognizable standing crops like corn, soybeans
and sunflowers, in addition to alfalfa, clover and
other grasses grown for seed.
The notable exceptions are crops within North Dakota
Game and Fish Department PLOTS tracts, which are
open to walking hunting access unless they are
posted with an orange rectangular sign that states
that hunting in the standing crop portion of the
tract is not allowed, and standing crops on state
wildlife management areas.
Be Mindful of Rural Road Contions in Southwest
The Oct. 4-5 snowstorm that covered southwestern
North Dakota may present some challenging travel
conditions for hunters when the 2013 pheasant season
opens this Saturday.
State Game and Fish Department officials say that
while most of the foot or more of snow that fell in
some counties will likely be gone, the moisture left
behind may still make travel difficult on some
section line trails and other unimproved roads.
“We’ve been getting a lot of calls about how the
storm affected the southwest, because it’s a popular
area and part of our primary pheasant range,” said
Game and Fish Director Terry Steinwand. “Hunters
should just be aware that there might be some
impassable or very muddy roads to contend with, and
they may want to call their local contacts to get an
idea of how the storm may have affected their
traditional hunting area.”
In addition, Steinwand said hunters should watch out
for ranchers moving cattle or power company crews
fixing lines, and make sure to not block roadways.
Many hunters have also inquired to Game and Fish
about pheasant mortality from the storm, where the
most snow fell south of Interstate 94, and east of
U.S. Highway 85 and west of the Missouri River.
Generally, more snow fell closer to the South Dakota
Game and Fish has had a few reports from landowners,
but Steinwand said it’s still too early to assess
whether there was any significant pheasant
“The pheasant opener is a longstanding tradition in
North Dakota and many hunters make their plans
months in advance,” Steinwand said. “We want hunters
to enjoy the weekend, but we also want them to know
this was an unprecedented snowstorm in some areas,
and there is more rain in the forecast before the
weekend, so we urge extra care in areas where road
and field conditions are wet.”
and Fish Summarizes Pheasant Brood Data
North Dakota’s roadside pheasant survey conducted in
late July and August indicates total birds, number
of broods and average brood size are all down
statewide from 2012.
Stan Kohn, upland game management supervisor for the
North Dakota Game and Fish Department, said the
survey shows total pheasants are down 30 percent
from last year. In addition, brood observations were
down 29 percent, and the average brood size was down
10 percent. The final summary is based on 253 survey
runs made along 101 brood routes across North
“Poor production this spring resulted in fewer young
birds added to the population and a lower fall
population in all areas of the state,” Kohn said.
Noteworthy factors cited for the decrease in brood
numbers, according to Kohn, were continued land use
changes in the prime pheasant range, including
removal of Conservation Reserve Program acres,
grasslands converted to croplands and small grain
fields converted to row crops; and continuous wet
“Earlier this summer we thought it was possible that
nesting season was delayed enough to avoid an
influence from the cold, wet spring,” Kohn said,
“but it now appears that wasn’t the case.”
Kohn said even though statistics reveal bird numbers
are down statewide, there will still be local areas
with good pheasant populations.
Statistics from southwestern North Dakota indicate
the number of birds observed was down 25 percent
from 2012, and the number of broods was down 22
percent. Observers counted 15 broods and 126 birds
per 100 survey miles. The average brood size was
Results from the southeast show birds are down 43
percent from last year, and the number of broods
down 42 percent. Observers counted five broods and
49 birds per 100 miles. The average brood size was
Statistics from the northwest indicated pheasants
are down 39 percent from last year, with broods down
32 percent. Observers recorded six broods and 48
birds per 100 miles. Average brood size was 5.5.
The northeast district, generally containing
secondary pheasant habitat with much of it lacking
good winter cover, showed one brood and seven birds
per 100 miles. Average brood size was 4.7. Number of
birds observed was down 35 percent, and the number
of broods recorded was down 33 percent.
The 2013 regular pheasant season opens Oct. 12 and
continues through Jan. 5, 2014. The two-day youth
pheasant hunting weekend, when legally licensed
residents and nonresidents ages 15 and younger can
hunt statewide, is set for Oct. 5-6.