Ask Fish & Game

Ask Fish and Game is for general questions.
  • Not all questions are answered.
  • Urgent questions should be directed to your nearest office.
  • Some answers change over time; please take note of the "answered-on" date.

Previously answered questions are posted here.

Displaying 1 - 81 of 81 questions
Question Askedsort ascending
A: Yes, it is legal to take mountain lion or legally trapped gray wolves with a rimfire weapon.  For all other big game, the use of a rimfire would be unlawful.
4/6/16
A: An adult nonresident elk tag may be used to harvest an elk, bear, mountain lion or gray wolf if  a season is open for that species where and when the elk tag is valid. It cannot be used to harvest a deer. Hunters can purchase an adult nonresident general season elk tag as a second tag as long as ...
1/8/16
A: A resident may use an elk or deer tag on a wolf, bear or mountain lion only if it is a RES-NONRES TAG.  This would be a general season nonresident tag purchased as a second tag on or after August 1st.   Both elk or dear and other species must both be in season.
10/12/15
A: I want to thank you for taking the time to write about the tag and permit fees paid by those holding senior licenses.  The Department of Fish and Game does not receive any financial support from the state’s general fund. Therefore, the funding for Idaho’s fish and wildlife programs comes solely ...
9/16/15
A: Both a hunting license and hound hunter permit are required to pursue raccoons.  Page 99 in the Big Game Rules covers Black Bear and Mountain Lions.  Page 47 in the Upland Game and Furbearer rules states, the following persons must have a valid hound hunter permit in possession when dogs are being ...
9/16/15
A: Can you use a non-resident elk tag to tag a deer if both seasons are open?  The answer is No.  Non-resident deer and elk tags may be used to take a black bear, mountain lion or grey wolf when both seasons are open, but elk tags may not be used on deer.  Page 110 in the Big game regulations ...
8/19/15
A: Yes you can, as long as it complies with the other restrictions in code and rule, (copied below). There is no restriction in idaho on the number of rounds a firearm can carrry, or restrictions against use of semi-automatics. 410.UNLAWFUL METHODS OF TAKE. No person shall take big game animals as ...
8/6/15
A: If your son has completed all the necessary requirements and is certified in hunter education, but he has never purchased a hunting license in any state before, Idaho's Hunting Passport is a great option.  If he has purchased a license before in any state, he is ineligible to purchase a Hunting ...
2/27/15
A: The Motorized Hunting Rule is in effect in certain areas and restricts motorized travel as an aid to hunting big game to "established roadways" which are defined as any road that is established, built, maintained, approved or designated by any governmental entity or private landowner for the ...
12/12/14
A: Idaho Fish and Game strives to provide hunting seasons that meet a wide variety of hunter’s desires, whether it be for food, trophy animals, or recreational opportunity with friends and family.  Each year, staff review population information and solicit public input (e.g. public meetings, web site ...
12/3/14
A: The reduced bear and mountain lion tags are only valid in specific units. See the current years big game proclamation booklets for a list of the units where reduced bear and mountain lion tags are valid. The full price bear and mountain lion tag can be used in any big game management unit that has ...
12/1/14
A: This is a very good question! If a wounded animal is located while hunting and it is still alive nothing would prohibit you from taking the animal and tagging it as your own, as long as you have a valid license, tag and or permit for the same animal and area where you are hunting. The hunter who ...
11/25/14
A: Hello, I am the Chief of Enforcement for Idaho Department of Fish and Game.  Please contact us so we can send you a packet of information regarding your question.  208-334-3736 For your reference please review Chapter 6, Title 36, Idaho Code.  http://www.legislature.idaho.gov/idstat/Title36/T36. ...
11/22/14
A: For those species that can be hunted such as bobcat, fox, coyote, wolf, and lion, a trapping license is not required.  We do not have a furbearer license, only a trapping license that is required for trapping furbearers.  Please be sure to check the rules on fox as some counties in the state, i.e ...
11/9/14
A:   Once you have killed  any species of willdife that requires a tag to hunt (all big game species and turkey) the hunter must immediatley validate  their tag and attach it either to the carcass for most big game species or to the animal's hide for bear, lion and wolf.   The term immediatley  is ...
10/25/14
A: It is unlawful to pursue or kill big game animals with any rimfire rifle or rimefire handgun.  Center fired rifles are lawful: examples are .22-250 and .223.  There are exceptions for mountain lion and legally trapped wolves; see big game rules.
10/19/14
A: The elk tag can only be used to harvest an elk, bear, lion or wolf as long as there is a season for elk and the species harvested such as bear. An elk tag cannot be used to harvest a deer. In addition, once the tag has been used to harvest an animal it cannot be used again. You can purchase a ...
9/11/14
A: Trapping rules and seasons can be found on our website at: http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/public/hunt/?getPage=141 .  Seasons for different species start at different times.  You cannot trap mountain lions legally.  However, you can trap wolves but you must first attend a mandatory wolf trapping ...
8/26/14
A:        IDFG offers a wide variety of hunting seasons in the fall, including several that run the entire throughout the month of September. For example the archery season for both deer and elk opens Aug 30 and runs through the end of Septmeber. For the most part, archers will be wildly dispersedand ...
8/23/14
A: It must remain attached to the largeste portion of edible meat.   TAG VALIDATION AND ATTACHMENT AND PROXY STATEMENT.Immediately after any deer, elk, pronghorn, moose, bighorn sheep, mountain goat, mountain lion, black bear, or gray wolf is killed, the appropriate big game animal tag must be ...
8/13/14
A: The disposition of the animal would depend on several factors including the age and health of the mountain lion.  It may be possible to trap and relocate or tree, dart, and relocate it.  If the animal was in poor condition and unlikely to survive, the most humane thing would be to put the animal ...
8/12/14
A: Yes, the second general season nonresident deer or elk tag can be used to harvest the species the tag is for one of the species you list as long as there is a season for both the species of the tag and the species you harvest such as bear.
7/27/14
A: Your daughter does not need to purchase a baiting permit and can hunt off another’s bait.  However, she will need to purchase a hound hunter permit.  The following is on page 101 of the 2014 Big Game Seasons and Rules booklet: Hound Hunter Permit When dogs are being used to hunt black bears or ...
6/20/14
A: The basis of active wildlife management is to monitor various populations for reproductive and mortality rates in order to determine how many animals can be taken (harvested) while still maintaining a healthy overall population.  Control actions are sometimes needed when wildlife populations grow ...
5/31/14
A: Yes. You will need to read the big game season proclamations for season dates. Some elk zones have limited numbers of tags available and hunters can purchase tags until the quotas are sold out. Hunters can purchase deer, elk, bear, mtn lion, wolf, and turkey tags over the counter.
5/30/14
A: Yes, No person shall take big game animals as outlined in this section. a.  With any firearm that, in combination with a scope, sling, and/or any other attachments, weighs more than sixteen (16) pounds. b. With any shotgun using any shot smaller than double-aught (#00) buck. c. With any rimfire ...
5/9/14
A: Basically, you only have to replace the items you need to (and want to). Before July the deer and elk tags have not been designated yet; when you decide the specific zone or type of tag you want you can go to any vendor to get a deer or elk tag.  All vendors can issue these along with salmon and ...
4/7/14
A: A deer cannot be taken with an elk tag in Idaho. Only an elk (or bear, wolf or mountain lion if the seasons overlap) can be taken with an elk tag.
3/31/14
A: Please refer to our rules for additional information regarding weapon restrictions. For Big Game. No person shall take big game animals with any rimfire rifle, rimfire handgun or any muzzleloading handgun, EXCEPT for mountain lion and trapped gray wolf. For unprotected species. No person hunting ...
2/25/14
A: Each year antlers from deer, elk, moose, and the horns of pronghorn fall off, or are shed; new antlers and horns begin to grow back and are fully grown again each fall. Animal parts such as antlers,  horns, hides, bones, and teeth of deer, elk, moose, pronghorn, wolf and mountain goat from animals ...
2/16/14
A: 410.UNLAWFUL METHODS OF TAKE.No person shall take big game animals as outlined in this section. 01. Firearms. (7-1-93)a. With any firearm that, in combination with a scope, sling, and/or any other attachments, weighsmore than sixteen (16) pounds. (7-1-93)b. With any shotgun using any shot smaller ...
2/15/14
A: Big game tags, including  wolf tags and mountain lion tags, expire on 12/31 of the year of purchase.  For example, all 2013 tags expired 12/31/13 and are not valid for use in 2014. Specific to mountain lion and wolf hunting--the seasons run from fall of one year through spring of the next.  The ...
1/15/14
A: There are a limited number of nonresident statewide permits that have to be applied for by Dec. 1.  However, you may still purchase nonresident hound permits that are specifically for the Middle Fork and Selway Zones.  These are designated wilderness and very difficult access.  If you are equipped ...
1/6/14
A: The answer is "NO" you may not. You must have a 2014 mt. lion tag to hunt them in 2014.  The 2014 tag is valid from January 1, 2014 through the date of harvest or December 31, 2014 whichever comes first.
12/26/13
A: The Idaho Department of Fish and Game (IDFG) requires a hunting license to be purchased by both residents and nonresidents prior to applying for a controlled hunt. Neither group receives a refund of the license fees once the license has been used to apply for a controlled hunt. IDFG does offer ...
12/11/13
A: For more information on the possession and sale of wildlife found dead, see page 75 of the 2012 Big Game Seasons and Rules booklet which states, “Parts of big game species – hides, horns, bones, antlers, elk teeth, bear, lion and wolf parts – may be recovered and possessed for personal use if the ...
11/13/13
A: Yes. The requirement for open sites is restricted to muzzle loader only hunts. In short range and any general weapon hunt, the restrictions for muzzle loader are limited to a minimum of.45 caliber for deer, pronghorn, lion, and wolves, and a minimum of .50 caliber for elk, moose, big horn sheep, ...
11/11/13
A: A nonresident elk or deer tag, excluding nonresident junior mentored deer and elk tags, are valid to take a black bear, mountain lion, or gray wolf instead of a deer or elk, if a season is open for that species, where and when the deer or elk tag is valid, and if there is an open deer or elk ...
11/7/13
A: Lawfully harvested wildlife parts, except edible meat from game animals, may be purchased, bartered or sold when accompanied by a written statement showing the wildlife was lawfully harvested or possessed. Wildlife parts legally harvested outside of Idaho may be sold in Idaho if such sale is not ...
10/27/13
A: Nonresident deer and elk tags (exluding nonresident junior mentored deer and elk tags) are valid to take a black bear, mountain lion or gray wolf instead of a deer or elk IF a season is open for that species, where and when the deer or elk tag is valid, and if there is an open deer or elk season ...
10/6/13
A: Here is the Idaho Department of Fish and Game Commission Refund Rule: IDAPA 13.01.04.600 03. Refunds. The fee for any nonresident license (as defined in Section 36-202(z), Idaho Code) shall not be refunded for any reason except as follows. a. Hunting license and general season deer and elk tag ...
9/24/13
A: For bears, the definition of bait is any substance placed to attract game animals.  You are not allowed to place parts of animals or fish that are currently classified as game animals or fish that come from the wild or commercial domestic sources.  However, under the scenario you explained:   ...
9/23/13
A: Sorry for the delay in responding. Yes, a non-resident hunting mountain lions (with a resident who has dogs) must have a valid hound hunter permit and mountain lion tag for the current year.  More information can be found on page 89 of the 2013 Big Game Seasons and Rules book:  http://fishandgame. ...
9/16/13
A: Sorry for the delay in responding.  Yes, mountain lion tags are available for both residents and nonresidents over the counter.  
9/16/13
A: Yes.  He must have a hound hunter permit: Hound Hunter Permit When dogs are being used to hunt black bears or mountain lions, the following persons must have a valid hound hunter permit and a black bear or mountain lion tag for the current year in possession: • Anyone who owns pursuit dogs. • ...
7/11/13
A: Please contact the Salmon Region office for that information.  Their phone number is 208-756-2271.
7/6/13
A:   We have not changed the law--there is no minimum caliber as long as you are NOT using a rimfire weapon.  (See muzzleloading equipment exception below). In any hunt, including any-weapon seasons, it is unlawful to pursue or kill big game animals: • By any means other than approved firearms, ...
7/3/13
A: Possession and Sale of Wildlife Found Dead:  Big game animal parts, such as hides, horns – except horns from bighorn sheep – bones, antlers and teeth, of deer, elk, moose, pronghorn, mountain goat, black bear, mountain lion and gray wolves that have died of natural causes, including legally ...
6/19/13
A: Possession and Sale of Wildlife Parts: Lawfully harvested wildlife parts – except edible meat from game animals – may be purchased, bartered or sold when accompanied by a written statement showing said wildlife was lawfully harvested. If black bear, mountain lion or gray wolf parts – excluding ...
6/12/13
A: Possession and Sale of Wildlife Found Dead: Big game animal parts, such as hides, horns – except horns from bighorn sheep – bones, antlers and teeth, of deer, elk, moose, pronghorn, mountain goat, black bear, mountain lion and gray wolves that have died of natural causes, including legally ...
5/22/13
A:  Any person applying for any moose, bighorn sheep, or mountain goat hunt is prohibited from applying for any other big game controlled hunt in the same year. Except: They may apply for a controlled depredation hunt for deer, elk, or pronghorn, a controlled black bear hunt, or leftover deer, elk ...
3/17/13
A: IDAHO WEAPON RESTRICTIONS   Rifle and Shotgun   In any hunt, including any-weapon seasons, it is unlawful to pursue or kill big game animals:   • By any means other than approved firearms, muzzleloaders and archery methods.   • With any electronic device attached to, or incorporated on, the ...
3/13/13
A: You can purchase a mountain lion tag for that hunt at any time.  It is a general season hunt so tags are available for sale for 2013. The current season information is copied below.  There will also be a season next fall and your tag will  be valid through December 2013 (unless you harvest before ...
3/7/13
A: No.  According to Idaho Administrative Code:  Dogs may be used to hunt or pursue :   01. Upland Game Animals, Upland Game Birds, and Migratory Game Birds. To train on or hunt upland game animals, game birds, and migratory game birds. Cottontail rabbits and snowshoe hares are considered upland game ...
2/5/13
A: Yes.  Racoons are now classified in Idaho as a predatory species and can be hunted year round with the proper license.  They can also be pursued with hounds year-round. The only species that can be pursued in Idaho with hounds are black bear, mountain lion, bobcat, red fox, and predatory and ...
1/28/13
A: Idaho requires that all hunters have an Idaho hunting license to hunt.  If you are hunting turkey or big game (deer, elk, pronghorn, moose, sheep, goat, mountain lion, bear) you must have a tag for the animal in addition to the Idaho hunting license.
1/26/13
A: List of Species that Can be Salvaged Big Game Animals Black Bear (Ursus americanus) California Bighorn Sheep (Ovis canadensis californiana) Elk (Cervus canadensis) Gray Wolf (Canis lupus) Moose (Alces americanus) Mountain Goat (Oreamnos americanus) Mountain Lion (Felis concolor) Mule Deer ( ...
12/26/12
A: There isn't a magazine size restriction for hunting big game.  The restrictions we do have are listed below:   IDAHO WEAPON RESTRICTIONS   Rifle and Shotgun   In any hunt, including any-weapon seasons, it is unlawful to pursue or kill big game animals:   • By any means other than approved firearms ...
12/6/12
A: The wildlife collision salvage rule went into effect in Spring 2012. The rule allows for the legal salvage of some game animals killed by auto collisions:   By notifying the Idaho Dept. of Fish and Game (IDFG) and completing reporting requirements, people can now: Recover and keep wildlife species ...
12/5/12
A: If the area you are hunting is approaching the harvest limit, every day you should make every reasonable effort to check whether the harvest limit is reached. It is a hunters responsibility to know the harvest limit and if it has been reached.   It is possible that a hunter may be in on a hunting ...
11/9/12
A: The requirements for muzzleloader-only season weapons are: Muzzleloader Caliber Requirements In any hunt, including general any-weapon seasons and short-range hunts, it is unlawful to pursue or kill big game animals: • With any muzzleloading rifle or musket that is less than .45 caliber for deer, ...
11/8/12
A: Possession and Sale of Wildlife Found Dead: Protected species of wildlife that have died of natural causes are generally considered property of the state and may not be possessed. But parts of big game species – hides, horns, bones, antlers, elk teeth, bear, lion and wolf parts – may be recovered ...
10/22/12
A: The latest report of a possible mountain lion sighting was made on Wednesday, October 10 at 4pm.  This occured north of the river in the Tablerock/Warm Springs area.  Officers responding to the scene and didn't find any evidence of the lion. Another, yet unconfirmed, sighting was made on Wednesday ...
10/10/12
A: The short answer is NO. Short range weapon seasons for big game are limited to: Shotgun using a slug or #00 or larger buckshot Muzzleloader that are .45 caliber for deer, pronghorn, mountain lion or wolf and at least .50 caliber for elk, moose, bighorn sheep, mountain goat or black bear With any ...
10/8/12
A: During a general any weapon season while using a muzzleloader You cannot use a muzzleloading rifle or musket which is less than forty-five (.45) caliber for deer, pronghorn, mountain lion, or gray wolf, or which is less than fifty (.50) caliber for elk, moose, bighorn sheep, mountain goat, or ...
9/21/12
A: Wolves are classified as a big game animal and there are a few firearms restrictions associated with the taking of big game animals. firearms, including slings, scopes or any other attachments cannot weigh more than 16 pounds With any shotgun can not use any shot smaller than double-aught (#00) ...
9/20/12
A: Yes.  Game animals, predatory wildlife and unprotect species (see list) may be salvaged. Notifying Fish and Game within 24 hours and obtaining a salvage permit within 72 hours is a legal requirement to lawfully possess salvaged wildlife.    You must report a wildlife salvage by going online to ...
9/6/12
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: No, you not required to report a mountain goat skull that you found while hiking.   For more information on the possession and sale of wildlife found dead, see page 75 of the 2012 Big Game Seasons and Rules booklet which states, “Parts of big game species – hides, horns, bones, antlers, elk teeth ...
7/2/12
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: 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: The wolf season information is in the 2012 Big Game Rules book on pages 66-69.  It has been added to the deer, elk, pronghorn, bear and mountain lion season information.  
5/14/12
A: Local animal control, animal rescue, or law enforcement in emergencies and USDA Wildlife Services are good sources for help, information and advice.Idaho law allows people to trap or remove any wildlife to protect private property and personal safety, but just like the plumbing, sometimes it is ...
4/6/12
A: Yes.  A signed, written sales statement showing the taker’s name, address, license and tag numbers (not needed for salvage of road kill), date and location of salvage, must be provided to the buyer of any black bear or mountain lion head, hide or other parts (except tanned hides or finished rugs ...
4/3/12
A: Notifying Fish and Game within 24 hours and obtaining a salvage permit within 72 hours is a legal requirement to lawfully possess salvaged wildlife.    Within 24 hours, you must report a wildlife salvage by going online to http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/roadkill, which will direct you to a self- ...
4/3/12
A: Yes, the 2012 Idaho Legislature added a wolf tag to the Sportsman's Package; it will become part of the Package beginning July 1, 2012.
4/3/12
A: No, they cannot harvest a bear, lion or wolf with a resident deer tag.  They must have the tag for the specific animal they want to harvest.  
2/29/12
A: Nonresident hunting license and tags may be refunded less issuance fees and a $50 processing fee, in the event of: Illness or injury that disables a license holder for the entire applicable hunting season. Military deployment of license holder due to armed conflict. Death of the license holder or ...
2/26/12
A: A resident of Idaho can purchase two wolf tags per calendar year. A resident cannot purchase non-resident wolf tags. A non-resident deer and/or elk tag that may be used for wolf, mountain lion, or bear so long as the season for both species is currently open in that area.
2/19/12
A: Both static PDF maps suitable for printing and interactive online maps of hunt area boundaries are available on the Hunt Area Map Index.  Sportsmen can also use the MapCenter to view Game Management Units, Elk Zones and current Controlled Hunts.  For offline viewing in Google Earth and GIS ...
2/15/12
A: The Game Regulations are made available online shortly after they are approved by the Fish and Game Commission.  Big Game Seasons are set by the Commission every March (View the Commision Schedule).  For 2012, the meeting is scheduled for March 21-23rd. Printed Regulations will be available a ...
2/12/12