Ask Fish & Game

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Ask Fish and Game is for general questions.

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  • Urgent questions should be directed to your nearest office.

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

Question Asked
A: Idaho Fish and Game requires no additional permits to hunt with bird dogs.
9/17/12
A: Any violation of a forest fire emergency closure should be reported to the appropriate land manager.  Unit 27 is in the Salmon-Challis National Forest, part of which  is under the  Halstead Fire Closure Order Number: 04-13-12-535 which prohibits: Pursuant to 36 CFR 261.50 (b), the following acts ...
9/17/12
A: Early in the year some tags are made available for outfitters to purchase for their clients.  They are held out for the outfitters until specific dates.  At that time, any tags not going to outfitters go back into the general nonresident quota, which changes the numbers.
9/17/12
A: Please call the Southwest Region office for information.  Their number is 465-8465.  
9/17/12
A: There are several different trespass laws and some different requirements for different situations. Posting is required for some situations, but is not required for cultivated land or fenced land. Posting is not required if the landowner or agent asks the person to leave (see Idaho Code Section 18 ...
9/17/12
A: You are correct.  All the general season elk hunting in the Panhandle is antlered elk only.
9/14/12
A: The Idaho Fish and Game Commission has reviewed and considered changes to existing equipment restrictions, including the prohibition against using a lighted retical while archery hunting.  Maintaining the current lighted retical rule is in part due to division among bowhunters of whether to change ...
9/14/12
A: There are several different trespass laws and some different requirements for different situations. Posting is required for some situations, but is not required for cultivated land or fenced land. Posting is not required if the landowner or agent asks the person to leave (see Idaho Code Section 18 ...
9/12/12
A: Thanks for letting us know!  Up until today we have only been showing active closures for the Mustang Complex, Halstead and Trinity Ridge fires.  To the best of our knowledge there is no statewide or nationwide fire closure layer, so we have been manually updating these layers as new closures ...
9/11/12
A: Yes, you can have both weapons with you while hunting.
9/10/12
A: Fires burning in Idaho's backcountry have raised concerns about public safety and hunter access, and some roads and trails have been closed. Idaho Fish and Game does not recommend closing hunts or altering season dates in response to fire restrictions. Most fires are not large enough to affect an ...
9/6/12
A: We used to have fall turkey season in Unit 39 from late 1990’s until 2006.  Our spring harvest began declining in about 2003, as did our fall harvest in many of the units.  We eliminated fall hunting season in fall 2006 to reduce the take of female turkeys, in hopes of increasing the populations ...
9/4/12
A: Yes.  Many dove hunters have enjoyed the opportunity provided by eurasian-collared doves.  They are a litte bigger than mourning doves and should provide a little more meat than the standard mourning dove.  Eurasian-collared doves are classified as 'unprotected' and can be hunted and taken all ...
9/4/12
A:   Page 2 of the Disabled Hunting Permit brochure provides information that answers the question as it relates to all hunters: http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/public/licenses/disVehicleHuntBrochure.pdf   Page 81 of the big game brochure also has a shorter summary of this information.
9/4/12
A: You will need a hunting license and a Federal Migratory Game Bird Harvest Information Program Validation.  For more information see the mourning dove section of the Upland Game rules at  http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/public/docs/rules/uplandDoveCraneInfo.pdf
9/1/12
A: It is not required for hunting small game. (If you hunt big game in an archery-only season you are required to get an archery validation and take the archery education class).
9/1/12
A: No, the archery class and validation (permit) are only required for big game hunting.
8/29/12
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, the license you purchase to buy your deer tag also covers upland game hunting.
8/27/12
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: 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: 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: 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: 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: Yes, they can.
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: 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: 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: 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: 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: 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: 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: 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: 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.
7/20/12
A: We have topographic maps for sale at the headquarters office in Boise; they include big game unit boundaries.  These maps can also be ordered by mail.  Map ordering information can be found in the 2012 big game rules book, pages 98 and 99.
7/16/12
A: It is legal to view wildlife with a spotlight. However, be aware that shining a spotlight “upon any field, forest or other place by a person while having in his possession or under his control any uncased firearm or other contrivance capable of killing any animal or bird, shall be prima facie ...
7/14/12
A: Lighted nocks are not legal in Idaho.
7/12/12
A: Update notice: Idaho statute changes effective July 1, 2015 changes the weapon definitions for some felons. Please review this updated answer for clarification on this change.The following answer remains intact for historical purposes. Consider consulting your lawyer for further clarification on ...
7/11/12
A: If the hunter was born January 1, 1975 or later they must take hunter education or show proof they have held a valid hunting license in another state.  Everyone  who wants to hunt in an archery-only season in Idaho must take an archery education class or provide proof that they have taken one in ...
7/11/12
A:   The caliber requirements for muzzleloaders specified on p76 still apply to the short-range weapons seasons, but otherwise, muzzleloader use during the short-range weapons seasons is not limited to the same restrictions specified for the muzzleloader only seasons.    That is, you could legally ...
7/2/12
A:   The caliber requirements for muzzleloaders specified on p76 still apply to the short-range weapons seasons, but otherwise, muzzleloader use during the short-range weapons seasons is not limited to the same restrictions specified for the muzzleloader only seasons.    That is, you could legally ...
7/1/12
A: Idaho residents receiving SSDI qualify for a reduced price hunting and fishing license.  The cost is $5.00.  Tags and permits are not reduced in price, however.  The “hunt from a vehicle” permit is not included in the disabled license; to get this separate permit you must get a doctor’s signature ...
7/1/12
A: Twelve (12) years of age. A person under twelve (12) must be accompanied by a licensed adult to possess a firearm in the field for hunting. Idaho Code Section 36-1508(b). 
7/1/12
A:     Idaho National Laboratory (INL) Elk and Pronghorn Permit information:   A pass is required from the Idaho Fish and Game office, 4279 Commerce Circle, Idaho Falls, to hunt elk in the Lemhi, Beaverhead or Snake River Elk Zones or pronghorn in Units 51, 58, or 63 within one-half mile inside the ...
6/29/12
A: The super hunt tags and super hunt combo tags are issued at no charge to the hunters who are drawn for them.  Those drawn do have to purchase an Idaho hunting license if they don't already have one.  A resident hunter would have to purchase a resident license; the nonresident would have to  ...
6/27/12
A: Idaho Fish and Game doesn't provide search and rescue insurance as part of hunting and fishing licenses.
6/21/12
A: The combination lifetime license cost for a 40-year-old is $1,113.00.  Please read the information below for more details.   Resident Lifetime License Certificates   Regardless of your age, purchase of a lifetime license could be the best investment you ever make. Lifetime combination, hunting and ...
6/20/12
A: Since you were born before January 1, 1975, you don't have to take a hunter education course to hunt in Idaho. Archery hunting requirements are not tied to your birthdate or age.  Every hunter who wishes to hunt in an archery-only season in Idaho  must purchase an archery validation and to do so ...
6/14/12
A: The tree squirrel you describe appears to be a red squirrel (Tamiasciurus hudsonicus).  This squirrel is classified as a Protected Nongame Species. It is not legal to shoot/hunt this squirrel in Valley County or for that matter, anywhere in Idaho.  
6/14/12
A: To manage game in some of the elk zones we have established, we only allow a limited number of tags to be sold. The capped zones are: Dworshak zone B tags Lolo A & B tags Elk City zone B tags Selway zone A & B tags Middlefork zone A & B tags Salmon zone B tags Sawtooth zone A & B ...
6/13/12
A: An Idaho resident can purchase your nonresident hunting license, controlled hunt applications and tags for you.  All vendors can take care of that for you.
6/13/12
A: Eurasian Collared doves are an unprotected species and can be hunted all year and taken in any quantities.  You must have an Idaho hunting license.
6/13/12
A: You must purchase the type of deer tag you want.  If you want to hunt for white-tailed and mule deer,  purchase a regular deer tag, which is valid for either one (as long as the unit you are hunting is open for both).  If you only want to hunt for white-tailed deer in one of the later seasons, ...
6/12/12
A: Back in the 1990’s the application period for deer, elk, and pronghorn hunts began June 1 and ended June 30. That date has been moved up to May 1 through June 5. The Department’s big game biologists need the months of January, February, and March to determine the health and size of our deer and ...
6/12/12
A: Broadhead blades can be removable, they just cannot be expandable, in otherwords the blades can not have a pivoting point that allows the blades to pivot upon entering the animal. Also the following rules apply to broadheads when archery hunting:  With arrows or bolts having broadheads measuring ...
6/12/12
A: The surface management agency layer (simplified landownership/management) is provided as an overlay in the huntplanner mapcenter.  This layer is cached for improved rendering, unfortunately our current server configuration is not ideal, and the firewall setup is not optimal for delivery of a data ...
6/11/12
A: Up to four (4) Rattlesnakes may be harvested and possessed by holders of a hunting license. 
6/7/12
A: You clearly care deeply about having healthy wildlife populations in Idaho, about the costs of managing wildlife, how license dollars and spent, and about wildlife management in Idaho.  The Idaho Fish and Game department isn't broke today, but as Commission Chairman Randy Budge stated June 5, "... ...
6/6/12
A: As of June 8, 2012, there are 240 nonresident Selway A tags available.  Resident tags will go on sale in July.  
6/6/12
A: Idaho Fish and Game is planning a kickoff announcement on June 5 with registration opening soon thereafter.  We encourage all Idahoans who care about wildlife to participate in the Summit either by coming to Boise, going to a one of the regional events or online.  We can send you outreach ...
5/30/12
A: Yes, he can.  Be sure to purchase a Junior Hunting license for him.  He can apply now (by June 5) for a hunt with that license.  If he is drawn, his tag will be held for him until his birthday on Nov. 15.
5/29/12
A: No, it isn't.  Mechanical/expandable broadheads and lumenok arrows are still not legal for use in hunting in Idaho.
5/29/12
A: The correct answer is no. The only second tag you can purchase is the second reduced tag which restricts a hunter to the special second tag units only. Please see pages 58 for bear and 63 for mountain lion.   Yes, you can.  If you are going to hunt outside the area that is included in the "reduced ...
5/28/12
A: You must purchase a nonresident hunting license ($154.75) and pay the controlled hunt application fee ($14.75).  If you apply online (fishandgame.idaho.gov) or by phone (1-800-554-8685) there is an additional fee added for processing of approximately 3%.  
5/28/12
A: You would need to purchase your actual hunting license your self in order to apply, however you are more than welcome to have someone bring in your information to apply for a draw for you as well as to pick up your tags. They would still have to pick up any draw tags by August 1st  to keep from ...
5/28/12
A: Treaty rights to hunt and fish are held by tribes, not by individual members, and these treaty rights have geographic limitations as to where they apply.   If a member wants to hunt/fish within the scope of her tribes’ treaty rights, the tribe regulates the member’s hunting & fishing.   If a ...
5/26/12
A: No.  Wolves are classified as a big game animal in Idaho. The methods of take and weapons restrictions for wolves are the same as for other big game animals. For more more information, please visit IDFG's website or refer to the 2012 Big Game Seasons and Rules brochure, which also contains ...
5/25/12
A: No refunds will be made on resident licenses, tags or permits (including receipts issued for prepaid tags). If you are successful, the deer receipt may be redeemed as soon as resident tags go on sale in July.  The deadline for purchase of controlled hunt tags is August 1.   
5/23/12
A: Moose seasons for the fall 2011 and fall 2012 hunting seasons were set by the Idaho Fish and Game Commission in January 2011. There is no moose hunting season in Unit 63. Moose seasons proposals for  2013 and 2014 will be considered this fall/winter and will be set by the Fish and Game Commission ...
5/20/12
A: Turkey, black bear and mountain lion tags can be used in any unit that is open for general season hunting.  You are not limited to one unit or zone.
5/18/12
A: Expandable broadheads were first made illegal for big game hunting in Idaho during the early 1990s.  At that time there was broad public opposition to their use and concern about the "failure rate" of some of the early models.  In 2006, the Idaho Fish and Game Commission evaluated all archery and ...
5/17/12
A: To Whom It May Concern: As the rule is written it is unlawful to archery hunt: With any electronic or tritium-powered device attached to, or incorporated into, an arrow, bolt, crossbow, or bow (except nonmagnifying scopes containing battery powered or tritium lighted reticles may be used by ...
5/17/12
A: There is no open hunting season for mountain quail in Idaho.  Historically, there were mountain quail in Owyhee County and the Boise Foothills.  Currently, there may be a few isolated populations of mountain quail in the Owyhee Mountains, but there have not been any credible sightings documented ...
5/16/12
A: General season antlerless elk hunting was suspended in the Panhandle Elk Zone for the 2012 season due to poor calf recruitment and overall reductions in elk populations in several game management units.  The ellimination of the general season antlerless hunting was applied to the entire Panhandle ...
5/15/12
A: The mule deer population is doing well, with excellent overwinter survival and lighter than usual hunting pressure last fall. However they did suffer a setback due to the extreme winter of 2010-2011. During that winter we had significant mortality of our radio collared does and likely very low ...
5/14/12
A: One of the stated goals for the Summit is to have a clear sense of what hunters, anglers, trappers and other wildlife conservationists want from their wildlife management agency.  Director Virgil Moore is expected to explain the dilemma that Fish and Game is facing; legal mandates and public ...
5/10/12
A: You must have a hunting license when you apply.  You can wait to get the archery permit when you find out that you have drawn.  Please check online frequently for field days in the Idaho Falls area.  The link to the class list is https://fishandgame.idaho.gov/hed/public/default.aspx.  
5/10/12
A: Yes, you do.  The bow hunter class covers material specific to hunting with a bow; that information wasn't covered in the hunter education class.
5/8/12
A: Mule deer herds are rebounding from the 2010/2011 winter that winter was very tough on deer and we lost a significant proportion of the radio collared does. Hunting should be good this fall with high over winter survival and deer in great body condition. Antler growth should be excellent this ...
5/3/12
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).  ...
4/28/12
A: If your friend thinks that the baiting is being done to attact animals so they can be hunted, they can contact CAP at 1-800-632-5999.
4/25/12
A: The latest information that we have is that they will be posted in time for the beginning of the Big Game controlled hunt application period (May 1-June 5).
4/23/12
A: If you don't provide an archery education number or can't fill out an archery affidavit stating that you have hunted in an archery hunt previously, the Sportsman's pack will print without an archery validation on it.  After you have taken the course you can go to any vendor and they will put your ...
4/18/12
A: Yes, she can. She can take your hunting license to any of our Fish and Game offices to pick up the bear bait permit and site tags.
4/17/12
A:   Piute ground squirrels are found in the area you describe.  Piutes in the southwestern part of the state are legal to hunt.  As long as you stay south of the Payette River and north of the Snake River you will not run into any protected ground squirrels.  
4/12/12
A: In recent years wolf numbers were increasing at about 15% per year in absence of hunting. Primary source of mortality was depredation control. In absence of that, perhaps 20% or so. Population Growth rate would slow as food availability became limited (numbers would not continue to grow ...
4/11/12
A: McArthur Wildlife Management Area is open to deer hunting during the November white-tailed rifle deer season.  Due to safety considerations, Farragut State Park and Farragut Wildlife Management Area are closed to hunting with a rifle.  Farragut State Park and Farragut Wildlife Management Area are ...
4/9/12
A: Please confirm my understanding. A nonresident application and elk tag needs to be purchased and then the controlled hunt is applied for? If successful for the general tag, then the controlled youth hunt is applied for? Is there a deadline on the controlled hunt application? Thanks   You do not ...
4/9/12