Ask Fish & Game

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Ask Fish and Game is for general questions.

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Some answers change over time; please take note of the "answered-on" date.

Question Asked
A: The pine squirrel (Tamiasciurus hudsonicus) is a protected nongame species in Idaho. They are found in most conifer and mixedwoods forests with significant stem densities and canopy closure including thethroughout Palisades Range. Pine Squirrels depend heavily on conifer seeds and terminal buds of ...
8/30/12
A: Check the rules book for the unit you are in.  If you have a regular tag and the rules don't limit you to harvesting mule deer only, you can use the regular (what you are referring to as "general") tag to harvest a mule deer or a whitetailed deer. Most archery hunts are open to the harvest of ...
8/30/12
A: It is too early to say for sure at this point. Steelhead run size has been lower than expected. If returns to hells canyon increase, steelhead would be stocked beginning the first week of november. A firm answer will be available by oct 15.
8/30/12
A: No, the archery class and validation (permit) are only required for big game hunting.
8/29/12
A: The permit is only required in an archery-only hunt, not a short-range or any-weapon hunt.
8/29/12
A: No, the current record is over a year old.  You can see all the current records at:   https://fishandgame.idaho.gov/public/fish/?getPage=82
8/28/12
A: The most common owl nesting in the Tetonia Area is the great-horned owl. They don't use nest boxes; they use stick nests built by hawks and corvids. Tetonia also gets frequent winter irruptions of great gray owls that move down from adjacent National Forest lands to valley cottonwood stands. These ...
8/28/12
A: Celebration park is run by Canyon County, it is a county park.  Fish and Game has no boundary restrictions there, but the County may.  You could check with the county, and also signing at the park.
8/28/12
A: No, there aren't any leftovers. They have all been sold.
8/27/12
A: No, the license you purchase to buy your deer tag also covers upland game hunting.
8/27/12
A: Contact Idaho Parks and Recreation for information; their website is http://parksandrecreation.idaho.gov/.
8/27/12
A: Please contact the License Department for information. Their number is 208-334-2592. They can explain the program but, due to Idaho privacy laws they cannot give out landowner's names.
8/26/12
A: You asked why there is harvest of deer in the general season in Unit 44, shown on the web site, when there is no general season there for deer. Good catch! You’re right, there should be no general hunters in Unit 44. I have now fixed the web site. I investigated the data behind the estimate. Out ...
8/26/12
A: Several years ago, evidence of sex rules were specific to the hunt.  In other words, in an either-sex hunt there was no requirement for evidence of sex; while in sex-specific hunts there was the requirement.  Depending on the year, and the hunting season, the evidence-of-sex requirement did or did ...
8/25/12
A: All hunters who have been drawn will be notified by phone.  Due to privacy laws we can't publish or post the names of those drawn, unfortunately.
8/25/12
A: Mule deer in Unit 39 typically follow the major drainages starting at the head of the South Fork, Middle Fork and North Fork Boise Rivers.  Deer found in Graham/Atlanta during summer will follow the drainages down to Boise River WMA by December/January.  Some deer following the South Fork drainage ...
8/24/12
A: Yes, you can carry both weapons while you are hunting.
8/23/12
A: You can read about the requirements here https://fishandgame.idaho.gov/content/question/i-am-15-years-old-i-am-thinking-about-carrer-fish-and-game-what-are-requirements-become Because the degrees one may have vary widely, so do the colleges.  Most Idaho institutions offer one or more of the ...
8/23/12
A: Most sporting goods stores and archery shops should have grain scales, used for either weighing bullets/powder or arrows.  When measuring arrow weight, make sure to include insert, shaft, broadhead, nock, and fletching.  Minimum arrow weight for hunting big game in Idaho is 300 grains, but many ...
8/23/12
A:   The Idaho Fish and Game Commission has seriously considered point systems in the past, most recently in 2005 and 2010.  In 2005, the Commission adopted a point system contingent on the Idaho Legislature passing a law that allowed the Fish and Game Department to charge a small surcharge on each ...
8/23/12
A: Wildlife services can help you with that (208-378-5243).  
8/23/12
A: Raccoons are classified as "Unprotected and Predatory Wildlife" under IDAPA (Idaho Code). The specific rule states: Unprotected and Predatory Wildlife. Those species of wildlife classified as Unprotected Wildlife and Predatory Wildlife may be taken in any amount, at any time, and in any manner not ...
8/22/12
A: The list is online at http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/public/licenses/controlledHunts/?getPage=137.  They go on sale at all vendors on August 25 at 10:00 a.m. mountain time.
8/22/12
A: yes. Liquid scent may be used for deer and elk.
8/22/12
A: Contact the Salmon Region office at 208-756-2271 for information.
8/22/12
A: No; you would have to purchase a regular  nonresident leftover tag to use as a second tag.  The cost would be $301.75.
8/21/12
A: Henry's Lake is managed with a two trout limit.  No size restrictions apply but once an angler keeps two fish he may not continue to fish. Brook trout are counted in the two fish limit. 
8/20/12
A: Yes and no.  Idaho code created a Commercial Steelhead Buyers license that allows an individual to buy and sell legally caught, hatchery produced, steelhead.  The same provision was not made for Chinook salmon.  Hence, yes - you can have a license to buy and sell steelhead but no there is not a ...
8/20/12
A:     6 Kokanee is the limit for all waters in the southeast region.
8/20/12
A: During the general waterfowl season, shotguns must not be capable of holding more than 3 shells. However, during a light goose season that occurs in Feb adn March, a plug is not required. Also a plug is not required for upland game birds.
8/20/12
A:   Yes, the bear involved in this case was identified as a grizzly bear based on DNA extracted from hair collected at the site and saliva collected from hunter's skin. 
8/20/12
A: On page 76 of the 2012 Idaho Big Game Seasons & Rules brochure there is a detail list of archery equipment that is unlawful for use to pursue or kill big game animals.  I have copied and pasted the section below here.  However, specifically to the broadhead in question, the NAP Blood Runner is ...
8/20/12
A: It is not on my monthly fish request that is made by the reional fisheries manager, Joe Kozfkay 465-8465.  I think it may be because on water quality and sometimes it goes dry.  I would give him a call for a definite answer.
8/19/12
A: Three important things to know about the second drawing for big game tags: The deadline for IDFG to process and post the results of the second deer, elk and pronghorn controlled hunt drawing is August 25.  The results will be posted online at http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/public/licenses/ ...
8/18/12
A: A few years ago, the Department developed a proposal that would have allowed the use of lighted nocks while bowhunting for big game.  Public input received was split between supporting and not supporting the proposal.  Additionally, the majority of public testimony received by the Idaho Fish and ...
8/18/12
A: When West Nile Virus made its appearance in Idaho a few years back, magpies were one of the species that were heavily impacted by the disease. Their populations were noticeably reduced, but now they are starting to come back. Although we're not seeing them as frequently as we used to, they are ...
8/17/12
A: The deadline for IDFG to process and post the results of the second deer, elk and pronghorn controlled hunt drawing is August 25.
8/17/12
A: The deadline for IDFG to process and post the results of the second deer, elk and pronghorn controlled hunt drawing is August 25.
8/17/12
A: The deadline for IDFG to process and post the results of the second deer, elk and pronghorn controlled hunt drawing is August 25.
8/17/12
A: The deadline for IDFG to process and post the results of the second deer, elk and pronghorn controlled hunt drawing is August 25.  There is no deadline to pick up the second draw tags.
8/16/12
A: Yes, they can.
8/16/12
A: To the best of my knowledge there is no Perkins Lake in Region 3.  This is what we do have for Perkins Lake in our Fishingplanner.  (click the lake name for more info and maps) Perkins Lake Salmon Region (7) Upper Salmon Basin Perkons Lake Magic Valley Region (4) South Fork Boise Basin Perkins ...
8/16/12
A: Idaho Fish and Game requires you to have your valid fishing license on your person while fishing and to produce the fishing license upon request.  Idaho Fish and Game does not require you to carry photo identification while in the field fishing.
8/16/12
A: Yes, you can purchase a nonresident tag for use as a second tag.  
8/16/12
A: The deadline for IDFG to process and post the results of the second deer, elk and pronghorn controlled hunt drawing is August 25.
8/16/12
A: Current Outfitting and Guide rules do not require a guide license to rent the use of horses. Nor would you need a guide license to help without compensation. Horses coming into Idaho from out of state must have a current health certificate from their DVM. Please check the with Idaho Outfitter and ...
8/16/12
A:   Idaho discontinued its helicopter chukar counts in 2011.  This was one of the aerial surveys eliminated after a review conducted to assess risk and cost in relation to value of biological information collected, following a fatal helicopter accident in August 2010.  Like many other years, hunting ...
8/16/12
A: The deadline for IDFG to process and post the results of the second deer, elk and pronghorn controlled hunt drawing is August 25.
8/15/12
A: There is no salvage order on the Blackfoot River... the fishing limits remain for the Blackfoot River as stated in the 2011-2012 fishing rules brochure.   
8/15/12
A: Nonresident Tag Limitations (page 82 of the 2012 Big Game Rules Book) In controlled hunts with 10 or fewer tags, not more than one nonresident tag may be issued. In controlled hunts with more than 10 tags, except unlimited controlled hunts, not more than 10 percent of the tags may be issued to ...
8/14/12
A: you do not need a taxidermy license to work on wildlife you harvested. Idaho Code 36-601 reads: Any person who at any time within the state of Idaho desires to mount, preserve or prepare for preservation any of the dead bodies of any wildlife or any part thereof not personally taken by him in ...
8/14/12
A: Preserving Evidence of Sex   Deer, elk and pronghorn: If the head or antlers are removed, evidence of sex in the form of testicles, penis, scrotum, udder or vulva must remain naturally attached to the carcass or parts thereof on all harvested big game animals until they reach the final place of ...
8/13/12
A: You will have to reapply for the second draw.
8/13/12
A: Mourning doves are migratory game birds.  As a result, federal regulations apply.  The corresponding regulation states: No persons shall take migratory game birds from or by means of any motorboat or other craft having a motor attached, or any sailboat, unless the motor has been completely shut ...
8/13/12
A: We have delayed answering your question because we will not complete our accounting of hatchery and natural returns to the Snake Basin until early October when data for all hatchery and natural returns are complete. Many of our hatchery traps are still operational. We can identify the disposition ...
8/13/12
A: Preserving Evidence of Sex   Deer, elk and pronghorn: If the head or antlers are removed, evidence of sex in the form of testicles, penis, scrotum, udder or vulva must remain naturally attached to the carcass or parts thereof on all harvested big game animals until they reach the final place of ...
8/12/12
A: Yes. There is no stipulation that you salvage the entire carcass. You can salvage any part that you choose and leave the rest.
8/11/12
A: Yes, you can.  The link to online sales is https://id.outdoorcentral.us/.  
8/10/12
A: Hunters 12 and older can hunt big game.  
8/10/12
A: Information about the programs we have that would fit your needs are posted on our website at http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/public/licenses/?getPage=289.    
8/9/12
A: The requirement to have an archery validation when participating in archery-only big game hunts has been around for over 20 years.  The original proposal to require an archery validation was based on 2 factors: 1) requested by organized bowhunters as a way to document the number of bowhunters in ...
8/9/12
A: There is no Idaho statute that prohibits the described activity. This is not within IDFG’s jurisdiction. If there is a concern about the horses' health or trespass by the livestock, then you should contact the county sheriff’s office.
8/8/12
A: At this time, regional personnel are still summarizing data from brood routes conducted in the Clearwater, Magic Valley and Southwest regions.  When that data has been summarized, it will be posted online.  Look for it within the next month. Like many other years, hunting can vary widely ...
8/8/12
A: Yes. 
8/8/12
A: No, you are not.  Muzzleloader-Only Season Any person hunting in a muzzleloader-only season, including controlled hunts, must have in their possession a license with a muzzleloader permit validation. During a muzzleloader-only season, it is illegal to pursue or kill a big game animal with any ...
8/7/12
A: The tiger muskie plants were part of a fish research project to see if the sterile predators could reduce or eliminate stunted brook trout populations in mnt lakes. The fish wer stocked in 2005 and followed through this summer. They can definately turn a brook trout population around to either ...
8/6/12
A: If you were born on January 1, 1975 or later you must take a hunter education class to be able to hunt in Idaho.  The archery class does not exempt you from that.
8/6/12
A: Pre-season we predicted that about 118,000 adult soring/summer Chinook salmon would return to the Snake River basin above Lower Granite Dam in 2012. About 80,000 or about 68% of the pre-season forecast actually returned. While Columbia River fisheries may have caught proportionately slightly more ...
8/6/12
A: General rules apply to the water below the Hayden Lake outlet, so snagging, spearing, and netting are not allowed and limits do apply.  It's relatively uncommon to have so much outflow (like we had this year) that large numbers of fish actually leave the lake through the outlet, so we have not ...
8/6/12
A: Up to 4 individuals from each species of herp (including rattlesnakes) may be taken and possessed (dead or alive) with a hunting license. They can be kept as pets or killed for hat band or other personal uses. Specific to rattlesnakes: Up to 6 rattlesnake skins may be sold/bartered (new). The take ...
8/5/12
A: Forage Lake was stocked with golden trout last year as well as 2004 and 2006, so it should have fish in it.  It is possible that they were simply in deeper water and you just weren't able to see them, but usually if fish are in a mountain lake, they're fairly obvious.  It's very possible that some ...
8/5/12
A: It is online at http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/public/licenses/controlledHunts/?getPage=108.  
8/5/12
A: A person whose name was drawn in an antlered-only controlled deer hunt may  not apply for any other controlled antlered-only deer hunt for one year except for the second deer, elk and pronghorn application period and leftover controlled hunt drawings or sales. • For example, a hunter who drew a ...
8/5/12
A: Although, bull trout are listed under the federal Endangered Species Act as "threatened" anglers can still actively fish for them in Idaho.  Catch-and-release fishing for bull trout can be great sport given the size bull trout can achieve and their aggressive nature.  With that said, before an ...
8/4/12
A: Some animals are classified as “predators” or as “unprotected” and can be hunted and taken all year. Animals classified as predators in Idaho include coyotes, raccoons, jackrabbits, skunks, weasels, and starling. The most frequently hunted unprotected animals include marmots, fox squirrels, ...
8/4/12
A:   A blowgun would be a legal method of take for upland game animals (rabbits according to established seasons), forest grouse (according to established seasons), unprotected and predatory wildlife, and bullfrogs and unprotected nongame fish (during established game fish seasons only).  A hunting ...
8/4/12
A: There are several reasons for rainbow trout being the most stocked resident fish in Idaho.  *1)  surveys show the majority of anglers that fish in Idaho prefer catching rainbow trout; 2) rainbow trout eggs are readily available for commercial/conservation, large-scale production; 3) our fish ...
8/3/12
A: The list is online at http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/public/licenses/controlledHunts/?getPage=108.
8/3/12
A: There are risks and potential safety hazards when stopping on many roadways and highways.  Motorists choosing to stop and retrieve or move wildlife on any road assume all responsibility for their actions should an accident result due to them stopping to retrieve or move wildlife of any kind. ...
8/2/12
A: It's easier if I first list the game fish.  They are all the trout species, all the salmon species, grayling, whitefish, cisco, crappie, perch, bass, all catfish/bullheads, sunfish, sturgeon, northern pike, tiger muskie, walleye, sauger, burbot, bullfrogs, and crayfish.  That essentially leaves ...
8/2/12
A: Please contact the Regional Fisheries Manager at the Southwest Regional Office via phone 208-465-8465 ext. 301
8/2/12
A: The list is online at http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/public/licenses/controlledHunts/?getPage=108.    
8/2/12
A: The cost of tags is tied to the specific type of license you have.  If you have a senior combination license or a Disabled Veteran's license you can get tags at a reduced rate.  Please contact the Idaho License Department at 208-334-3700 to see what you can do to straighten this out.    
8/2/12
A: You can contact any Fish and Game office.  They have access to hunter education records and can make a new card for you.  Offices are listed in all of our rules books.
7/31/12
A: Specific zone information, including total numbers of bulls, cows, and calves in each survey can be found in our annual surveys and inventory reports on elk. The 2010 report is available on our website: https://research.idfg.idaho.gov/wildlife/Wildlife%20Technical%20Reports/Elk%20Statewide%20PR10. ...
7/31/12
A: There is not a specific IDFG law stating when you can set up a tree stand. However, land managers/owners may have such restrictions. IDFG WMA rules do not allow permanent tree stands. Idaho Code states:  To construct blinds, pits, platforms, or tree stands where the soil is disturbed, trees are ...
7/31/12
A: A nonresident season fishing license costs $98.25.  It is valid from date of sale through December 31.  Nonresident juniors (17 or younger) can get a season fishing license for $21.75.
7/31/12
A: There is a extremely small probability, but it is highly, highly unlikely. Tiger musky have been stocked in Little Payette Lake and Lake Cascade. For a tiger musky to make it to Horseshoe Bend, it would have to pass through a dam and move downstream through several class IV-V rapids. Furthermore, ...
7/30/12
A: It depends on the region you are fishing in... In the Panhandle Region, Clearwater Region and Salmon regions, the limit on bass is 6 (smallmouth and largemouth) but there is no length limit specified. In The Southwest, Magic Valley, Upper Snake and Southeast regions, the limit is 6 bass ( ...
7/30/12
A: Lighted nocks are illegal because it is illegal to use a weapon with any electronic device attached to, or incorporated on, the firearm or scope; except scopes containing battery powered or tritium lighted reticles are allowed.   The commission has considered changing the rule in the past, but ...
7/30/12
A: Please contact the Tribal authorities; their website and contact information is http://www.nezperce.org/Main.html.
7/30/12
A: No, Chinook salmon that are stocked in the Boise River originate from returns to Hells Canyon Dam. Returns to Hells Canyon Dam during 2012 were insufficient to meet both hatchery broodstock needs and allow stocking in the Boise River. However, we still plan to tranfer approximately 1000 adult ...
7/29/12
A: Lighted arrow nocks are not legal for use in Idaho.
7/29/12
A: Rainbow trout and steelhead are the same genus and species.  Essentially, a steelhead is an ocean-going rainbow trout.  There will be a slight color variation - depending on the time of year, but the only sure-fire way tell a hatchery produced rainbow trout from a steelhead is to check the adipose ...
7/26/12
A: There is a saying that goes, “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.”  For example, you might find sucker undesirable because you can’t eat them, but they have a valuable place in the food chain--sucker help clean algae from the stream bottom or they feed fish-eating birds like osprey.  Carp ...
7/25/12
A: The Clearwater National Forest said the bridge has been condemned and is to not have any use at all, including foot traffic, because of the condition.  They are taking recommendations at this time.  If you want to comment, contact the front desk (208)476-4541 and give your comments to Leann.
7/25/12
A: Raccoons are classified as a predatory wildlife species and therefore the take season for them is year round. You may use dogs to hunt/pursue raccoons. The owner and/or handler and/or person taking raccoons must have a hound hunter permit.
7/25/12
A: The requirement in Idaho is that you have taken an archery-only education class or that you have hunted in an archery-only season somewhere.  If you haven't done these, you must take an Idaho bowhunter education course.     
7/23/12
A: No.  There is no stipulation that you salvage the entire carcass.  You can salvage any part that you choose and leave the rest.
7/23/12
A: Children can fish without a license until they are 14.  Nonresident children must fish with a license holder; their catch becomes part of the license holder's limit.  Resident children can keep their own limit of fish.
7/22/12