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Waterfowl Season

Discussion in 'Idaho Flyway Forum' started by goosepond, Jul 20, 2015.

  1. fowlogic

    fowlogic Senior Refuge Member

    Messages:
    546
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    Sep 6, 2002
    Location:
    Boise, ID
    I got here in '92. We were in the middle of a short season nation-wide. Minnesota's then normal 50 day season was down to 30 days. I believe we had 60 days here(in Idaho). It opened for 8 or 9 days then closed for about a month, re-opening in mid-November. I think goose stayed open. The reduction was for ducks. Minnesota now has a 60 day duck season. That's 10 more days than I ever saw in my years of hunting there.
     
  2. perch head

    perch head Senior Refuge Member

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    707
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    Jan 31, 2002
    Location:
    N Idaho
    Lead guy with Fish and Game is a dedicated waterfowl hunter, I have hunted with and worked for Jeff, he is all about the sportsmen and women of Idaho.
     
  3. DownThePipe

    DownThePipe Elite Refuge Member

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    Dec 30, 2002
    Location:
    Idaho
    The 2 day split is a perfect solution - well at least for the majority of waterfowlers that work Mon-Fri. I have been and will continue (until I die or move out of state I guess) to respond to these surveys requesting a 2 day split so that we can end the season on a Sunday. It would be really easy to do it before the scaup season starts and might wake a few hunters up to the fact that they better be looking out for scaup a bit more the first couple weeks.

    I do feel for the guys out east and north who don't need an extra week in January... I think IDFG is lame to use the excuse of "it's too complicated" to have multiple zone seasons or to not have a 2 day split like Washington and Montana.
     
  4. oneshot maybe

    oneshot maybe Elite Refuge Member

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    Location:
    following the ducks
    Especially when the split is in the first week before the hunting really gets going.:tu
     
  5. IFSteve

    IFSteve Elite Refuge Member

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    Aug 16, 2002
    Location:
    Mississippi/Idaho
    Here is the simplest way to look at it for SE Idaho.

    1. There always will be ducks here on the first Saturday in October. 100% of the time.
    2. There will always be ducks here on the second or third Saturday in October. 100% of the time.
    3. The marshes will be frozen sometime around November 10. Once that happens many waterfowl hunters will be done for the season. All those that don't have river capable boats or access to private ground.
    4. The majority of the river will be frozen sometime around December 1-15. Boat launches are frozen and there will be lots of ice flows making it dangerous to be on the river anyway. Now this shuts off even those with river capable boats. Now the only waterfowl hunting left is on private ground. Period.

    And here is the clincher.

    5. By around January 1, depending on snow levels there may or may not be any waterfowl even left in the area. Three years ago we had almost a foot of snow between XMAS and New Years and that was it. Season over. Two years ago we still had a few birds around right up to the end. BUT its a crap shoot as to having birds late and after January 15 its more likely to not have any at all.

    So in a nutshell delaying the season over here absolutely 100% of the time cuts out some hunting opportunity in exchange for some potential late season hunting that is less than 50% likely to occur. Not a good bet in my book.

    Sorry for the long winded note. Just grousing and getting more ****ed by the minute that our F&G lead has not called me back. Not really pinging on Jeff, for all I know he is on vacation this week. But last time I checked it is our license fees that pay for these guys to do their job and we are owed an explanation for this proposed changed especially when I was told directly that the survey was to lay out a 5 year season and that they didn't want to change things until after 2016 and they would do another survey to see how things went and to adjust accordingly.:mad:
     
  6. IFSteve

    IFSteve Elite Refuge Member

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    Location:
    Mississippi/Idaho
    Just spent better part of a half hour on the phone with Jeff Knetter. Very good conversation which I will try and summarize here.
    1. They aren't really changing the season per se. They are going by the original survey that was in support of the later season. This year there are 5 Saturdays in October AND the last weekend in January coincides with the last day in January (the latest close allowed by the Fed framework). So they have suggested for zone 2 the Oct 17 opein ner.

    2. The State can not change zones but once every 5 years and it requires Fed approval. So normally the zones would have to stay the way they are through the 2016 season. However, due to the way the 2016 season is set the State can actually change zones this year IF they choose to and let the Feds know (I think by December 1st?).

    3. States are only allowed to have 3 zones AND have split seasons. If they have 4 or more zones they are not allowed to have split seasons. Jeff is very interested in having a two day split (hopefully starting next year) where they would close on a Thursday and Friday, open back up on Saturday, and then the final close would end on a Sunday instead of Friday like it does now.

    So I suggested to him that we may be able to have a win win starting in 2016. My suggestion was as follows:
    1. Restructure the boundaries of Zones 1 and 2 such that Zone 1 would include all of SE Idaho and Zone 2 would stay as is less the piece moved into Zone 1.
    2. Move the opener in Zone 1 back to the first Saturday in October and let the Opener in Zone 2 be as late as possible to end up the last weekend in January.
    3. Institute the two day split so that the seasons would all end on a weekend.

    I think Jeff understands that the weather and bird situations are vastly different between SE Idaho and the Panhandle and that having them lumped together may not be the best approach.
     
  7. DoveMan

    DoveMan Senior Refuge Member

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    Sep 2, 2005
    Location:
    Idaho
    That's really cool that you got to talk to him Steve.
    Wonder if we could get some of our mountain/high elevation counties lumped in with the SE zone - Clearwater, Idaho, Valley counties etc. ???

    Great discussion to have and I hope they involve the public with all of their future zone/date discussions for 2016 and beyond.
     
  8. 10Tenner

    10Tenner Senior Refuge Member

    Messages:
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    Dec 19, 2004
    Location:
    Id
    I agree with your proposal.
    What is does do is spread the hunters out, and not localize the area to hunt as it now is in zone 1.

    What about 2015?
    Is it final on the early goose hunt?
    The early goose hunt cuts into other hunts, upland game for me.
    It will most likely be a zoo anyway with the limited area to hunt, and when it reopens it will be the same with the amount of hunters, and the early freeze in this area will not help with hunting opportunities.
    I may pass on this area all together, that will make some happy with one less hunter.
    Idaho is fast becoming like the state south of them.!!
    It will become the land locked with leases on the early goose hunts.
     
  9. birdhntr

    birdhntr Senior Refuge Member

    Messages:
    461
    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2004
    Location:
    Eagle, Idaho
    There were quite a few of us who sent in comments on the youth season and I can't believe they didn't change it so it doesn't conflict with the youth pheasant hunt. This state must have something against kids because they sure don't provide many opportunities and now they double them up. It's just pure laziness.


    https://fishandgame.idaho.gov/public/media/viewNewsRelease.cfm?newsID=7789
     
  10. Jacob Hyer

    Jacob Hyer Elite Refuge Member

    Messages:
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    Jul 28, 2005
    Location:
    Caldwell, Idaho
    I liked how the date was pushed back a little... but would love to see E. Idaho start before SW Idaho... I really miss making the trip over to that side of the state for a early opener... really to run the Snake river over there with my IB Jet boat to see how she hadles the skinny twisties over there...
     

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