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.

Displaying 1 - 50 of 87 questions
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A: Our recipricol agreement with other states allows you to trap for a species in Idaho so long as your state allows nonresidents to trap for the same species in your state.  If Michigan allows NR trappers to trap bobcat then you can trap bobcats in Idaho.  The limit would be what your state allows ...
8/25/15
A: We do recommend that trappers take a trapping course to learn important skills such as avoiding non-target catch, best management practices, ethics and responsibilities. Our trapping course includes both classroom time taught by a trapper and outdoor trap setting skills. A trapping course is not ...
8/10/15
A: In Idaho, you can participate in trapping by purchasing a trapping license and following all rules and regulations.
7/27/15
A: The estimated quota for the South Fork Salmon is changing every day as more fish arrive over Bonneville and Lower Granite dams. The current estimate is that the quota will be in the range of 1,000-1,500 salmon. Much of the run is still migrating up through the lower river system, so estimating the ...
6/16/15
A: Crayfish are found in rocky areas where they have cover from predators (fish, birds, etc.).  The best baits are chicken liver, fish entrails or other waste meat.  Soak your trap along the rocky shore for several hours (over-night). What I've found to work well is a small can of cat food.  Just ...
6/14/15
A: The short answer is yes.  Hatcheries are starting to trap chinook salmon and we are finalizing our website content and procedures for updating the trapping numbers. As of May 7, Rapid River had trapped 7 adipse fin clipped adult chinook salmon and Nez Perce Tribal Hatchery (on the Clearwater) had ...
5/8/15
A: Raccoons have become common in towns and cities around Treasure Valley.  Part of the draw for raccoons to use these urban areas is that, other than cars and the occasional aggressive dog, there is very little threat to raccoons.  Further, the raccoons find ample food in yards where people feed ...
4/26/15
A: A more appropriate solution would be to catch the cats in question in a suitable live trap, and transport them to your local humane society.  I would also advise talking to your neighbors about your proposed actions before trapping.  Live traps are available at many feed and farm stores, and are ...
3/9/15
A: Great Question and sometimes difficult to understand when the answer might vary depending on what state you are hunting in.  In Idaho the answer is provided by statute found in Idaho Code 36-401 which states “No person shall hunt trap or fish for or take any wild animal, bird, or fish of this ...
2/20/15
A: Thank you for your question.   Trapper education is new in Idaho and the Department of Fish and Game is recruiting volunteer instructors to begin offering classes.  Trapper education is not currently a requirement to trap in Idaho, but a few classes are being offered as a public service to promote ...
2/18/15
A: Yes it is. Any non target birds must be released immediatley, and unharmed.
12/26/14
A: There is no limit on bobcats for Idaho residents.  Nonresidents may only trap as many bobcats as the most restrictive quota between states allows.  If the state of their residence has a quota, then they must only catch as many Idaho bobcats as their state allows.
12/12/14
A: Chances are very slim that we will stock more steelhead in the Boise River in the fall 2014/spring 2015.  We/Idaho Power can't operate the trap in the winter once we have freezing conditions and we don't want to remove all the hatchery steelhead below Hells Canyon Dam where anglers fish throughout ...
12/10/14
A: You can harvest crayfish with just a valid fishing license.  In Idaho, they are considered game fish, so they can be caught whenever a season is open for fishing on that water (even a catch-and-release season).  If you want to use a trap, you can set 5 per licensed angler.  Check the rules for ...
12/9/14
A: Yes you can use furs, feathers, and motion for a decoy. The only thing is you could not trap adjacent to the decoy. Also for the purposes of trapping you could not use feathers or fur.
12/4/14
A: The answer to that question depends on the problems they are causing. If they are damaging your property in a monetary way, you have the right to defend your property. If they are simply an annoyance, we can rent you a trap to remove them. Skunks are classified in Idaho as predators. As such, they ...
11/28/14
A: Yes, fishing has been good in the Lewiston, Riggins, and Snake River areas.  I was in Salmon, Id. the first week in November and they were picking up a few, fly fishing.  We've had enough steelhead enter the Hells Canyon trap that we relocted 300 to the Boise River for anglers.  Typically, we don' ...
11/8/14
A: You can use bait for trapping coyotes, however you cannot use any part of a domestic or wild origin game bird, big game, upland game, game fish, or protected nongame wildlife for bait in trapping furbearing animals, unprotected wildlife, or predatory wildlife. In addition bait for trapping is ...
11/3/14
A: Yes, you are allowed to use primitive traps for trapping.  On page 45 of the Upland Game, Furbearer, and Turkey rules the definition of trapping includes the use of trap, snare, deadfall, or other device commonly used to capture wildlife.  You can find the trapping rules at: http://fishandgame. ...
10/21/14
A: You didn't mention where your property is but the beaver season begins Oct. 22 or Nov. 1 and runs through March in most of Idaho.  You can get a trapping license and trap beavers on your property or contact a local trapper to do that if beaver trapping is allowed in your area.  You may contact the ...
10/18/14
A: At this time in mid-October we are expecting that some steelhead will be released into the Boise River but can't say how many. The trap at Hells Canyon Dam will go into operation about October 27; trapping earlier than that when water temperatures are warm is not good for the fish. Watch the news ...
10/15/14
A: This is a good question.  Cottontail rabbits are classified as Upland Game animals and it is illegal to trap all upland game animals.  Cottontail rabbits tend to habitually travel about using a maze of trails usually beneath brush and other obstructions.  There habits make them very vulnerable to ...
10/14/14
A: Yes, you may hunt migratory birds with your archery equipment in Idaho.  Federal regulations state the following: It is against the law to take migratory game birds: with a trap, net, snare, net, rifle, pistol, swivel gun, shotgun larger than a 10 gauge, punt gun, battery gun, machine gun, ...
9/12/14
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: 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: Racoons are classified as preditors in Idaho and can be taken in any amounts and at any time by holders of the appropriate valid Idaho hunting, trapping or combination hunting license, provided such taking is not in violation of state, county, or city laws, ordinances or regulations.  Take care ...
8/7/14
A: Thank you for taking the time to ask your question.  Issues involving nuisance wildlife are referred to as depredations.  A landowner with depredations may hire a third party or “agent” to control the wildlife as long as it is in accordance with all federal, state, and local regulations.   For ...
7/27/14
A: We're talking "apples and oranges" when you mix the total number of Chinook coming over Bonneville Dam and Lower Granite with the angler sport harvest on the South Fork Salmon River. First, lets talk about the numbers of fish coming over the dams.  These numbers represent a mixture of fish ...
7/7/14
A: Trapping of upland game animals is not a legal method of take.  You can hunt cottontails during the hunting season, but trapping them at any time is unlawful unless they are in your garden or destroying personal property.  You are allowed to control depredations, but you should contact your ...
6/14/14
A: In Idaho,  the wolf trapping course is required to trap wolves. The basic trapper education course is not required.  Participants can register for both courses on our website on the hunter education page. If you cannot find a course in your area, contact your local Fish and Game office and ask to ...
6/10/14
A: The reason we haven't been posting trap return numbers for Rapid River has to do with modernization of our website and conversion of website tools in our old format to a new format.  Sounds simple, right?  We presently have the numbers posted on our website and fisheries staff are manually ...
6/5/14
A: Setting traps within 30 feet of exposed bait is not allowed.  Eggs would be considered bait.  The reason is to prevent protected avian species from getting captured incidentally.  You would need to conceal the eggs.
5/19/14
A: No.  A handgun is not considered a shotgun even though you would be shooting shot in the cartridge.  The law reads unlawful method of take: with a trap, snare, net, crossbow, or firearms EXCEPT a shotgun using shells not exceeding three and one-half (3-1/2) inches maximum length, slingshot, hand- ...
4/7/14
A: You can use a shotgun with shells not exceeding 3 1/2 inches maximum length for turkeys: No person shall take upland game birds: • With a trap, snare, net, crossbow, slingshot, hand-held or thrown missiles, firearms except a shotgun using shells not exceeding 3 ½ inches maximum length, except ...
3/23/14
A: The weir will be installed the week of March 17 with trapping set to being on March 24.
3/3/14
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: The short answer is no. From the Idaho Administrative Procedures Act: 300.UPLAND GAME BIRD METHODS OF TAKE. 01. Taking of Upland Game Birds. No person shall take upland game birds:   With a trap, snare, net, crossbow, or firearms EXCEPT a shotgun using shells not exceeding three and one-half (3-1/ ...
2/4/14
A: If you are only trapping, you only need a trapping license.  If you are only hunting, you only need a hunting license.  To do both, you need both.
12/27/13
A: Although there is no provision in Title 36 of Idaho Code for the taking of wildlife other than allowed by Statute or  Commission Rule, I'm most confident that no one would be prosecuted for doing what is reasonable and neccessary to survive in such an emergency situation.
12/9/13
A: To allow anglers access to steelhead below Hells Canyon Dam on the Snake River, The trap at the dam is not operated prior to November 1.  Once trapping starts, there are obligations for those fish at Idaho Power's Oxbow fish hatchery and in Oregon that must be met prior to transporting fish to the ...
11/17/13
A:   Wolves were never released in Whiskey Creek by IDFG.  Often, people will see a culvert trap in the back of a conservation officer pickup and assume it is something other than a black bear being relocated. Years ago in the late 1990's, before IDFG  was involved in wolf management, the Nez Perce ...
11/4/13
A: We certainly hope so but won't know if we have surplus until early November.  Because of the location of the trap at Hells Canyon Dam (where we trap fish for Oxbow Hatchery),  water temperatures prevent us from using the trap until early November.  Once temperatures cool down, we start trapping ...
10/28/13
A: An Idaho nonresident trapping license costs $301.75 and is required to trap furbearers in Idaho.  Trapping rules are posted on our website at: https://fishandgame.idaho.gov/public/hunt/rules/?getPage=67
10/24/13
A: Yes, so long as you have a valid state trapping license and all the state trapping rules, and county, or city laws and ordinances are being followed.  Coyotes are listed as a predator and can be hunted/trapped year-long.  However, coyote pelts are only valuable from November - February and usually ...
10/10/13
A: You can use any lethal means for forest grouse except they shall not be taken with a trap, snare, net or crossbow in Idaho.  However, the Deer Flat Wildlife Refuge is federally run and they have their own rules in addition to IDFG state laws.  You must contact Deer Flat Refuge managers to get the ...
9/19/13
A: We offered the opportunity to harvest salmon in Clearwater drainage because we have several sources to back-fill any shortages of hatchery fish from hatcheries like Dworshak, Kooskia, Rapid River, and Oxbow.  We don't have the same number of hatcheries to back-fill shortages of fish in the upper ...
8/19/13
A: Yes, you can use parts of gamefish as bait in crayfish traps.  To be safe, I'd recommend using the inedible parts of the fish so there is no question about potential waste of a gamefish. Better yet, use canned tuna or catfood as bait.  Take a small can and punch several holes through the top and ...
7/6/13
A: Fish and Game encourages all hunters to “Ask First” before hunting on private property to respect the property rights of others.  Our actions as hunters influence landowners' support for wildlife and public access.  Idaho Code Section 36-1603 defines  "cultivated" as "soil that is being or has ...
6/29/13
A: Idaho does not have any kind of permit or license requirement for live-trapping unprotected varmints such as the raccoon.
6/24/13
A: Trapping or Seining Minnows and Crayfish:   Only five (5) crayfish traps can be fished with a valid fishing license. If more than five traps are used at one time, you must obtain a Commercial Fishing License and trap tags. ngame fish (minnows), yellow perch, and crayfish may be taken only in ...
6/19/13