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GFP News - May 15, 2014

gfp commission proposes SD deer hunting seasons

PIERRE, S.D. - With decreased deer populations across the state, the South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks Commission has proposed to reduce the number of licenses and tags for many of the state’s deer hunting seasons.

The proposed East River deer season would result in a reduction of 7,240 licenses and a reduction of 20,560 tags compared to 2013. A substantial decrease in antlerless tags is intended to increase deer populations in several management areas. This management response is being implemented where deer populations have declined over the past few years due primarily to outbreaks of epizootic hemorrhagic disease (EHD), habitat loss and weather.

The proposed West River deer season would result in 3,775 fewer licenses with a corresponding reduction in tags by 25,120 (56 percent). Similar to the East River deer season, the most significant reduction in tags for the West River season will be antlerless tags; which are proposed to decrease by 86 percent or 23,145 compared to what was available in 2013.

The Commission proposal for the Black Hills deer hunting season would have no antlerless licenses for 2014. The Black Hills proposal calls for 200 resident and 16 non-resident any deer licenses and 3,000 resident and 240 non-resident any whitetail deer licenses.

The Department of Game, Fish and Parks recommended no changes to the Custer State Park deer hunting season and will again have 10 any whitetail licenses and 20 antlerless whitetail muzzleloader licenses.

The proposal for the 2014 archery deer hunting season would only allow the harvest of whitetail deer on antlerless deer licenses. Each hunter could only have one antlerless license. In addition, several management units in both the eastern and western parts of the state would be closed to antlerless archery deer licenses. 

Under the Commission proposal, the area used during the archery season east of the Adams Homestead and Nature Preserve would be modified and reduced in size. The number of access permits for the Adams Homestead and Nature Preserve will be reduced from 10 to 5.

As proposed for the archery season, only whitetail deer could be harvested with antlerless licenses during the muzzleloader season. A hunter would be limited to one antlerless license.

Youth deer hunters could have one antlerless license; which would be valid statewide under the Commission’s proposal.

The Commission’s proposal would reduce refuge deer licenses for residents by 15 and for non-residents by three for the Waubay National Wildlife Refuge. For LaCreek National Wildlife Refuge, licenses will be valid for any deer and no antlerless licenses would be issued.

View the full deer hunting season proposals here: http://www.gfp.sd.gov/agency/commission/archive/2014/May/info-materials.pdf.

View a video explaining updates to deer management and current research projects:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3jgoJ8J1qIw.

The Commission will finalize these proposals at their June 5-6 meeting in Yankton at Lewis and Clark Resort. Written comments can be sent to wildinfo@state.sd.usTo be part of the official public record, comments must be received by 12 p.m. on June 5. Please include your full name along with the city and state of residence. If you would like to comment in person, the public hearing will be held Thursday, June 5, at 2 p.m. CDT at Lewis and Clark Resort in Yankton.

Archery, Muzzleloader, Youth & Mentored Deer Hunters Need Access Permits for Certain Areas

PIERRE, S.D. - A proposal by the South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks Commission would require archery, muzzleloader, youth and mentored deer hunters to obtain a free access permit to hunt on the Hill Ranch Game Production Area in Fall River County (Unit 27L), Custer National Forest lands in Harding County (Unit 35L) and the Little Moreau Game Production Area in Dewey County (Unit 24B).

Permits are free of charge and unlimited.  The issuance of these permits will allow agency staff to improve the collection of hunter use and harvest information from hunters who use these areas.

View the proposal here: http://www.gfp.sd.gov/agency/commission/archive/2014/May/info-materials.pdf.

The Commission will finalize this proposal at their June 5-6 meeting in Yankton at Lewis and Clark Resort. Written comments can be sent to wildinfo@state.sd.us To be part of the official public record, comments must be received by 12 p.m. on June 5. Please include your full name along with the city and state of residence. If you would like to comment in person, the public hearing will be held Thursday, June 5, at 2 p.m. CDT at Lewis and Clark Resort in Yankton.

Several Hunting and Trapping Seasons Set

PIERRE, S.D. - The South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks Commission discussed the 2014 archery antelope hunting season which will occur with no changes from last year. The season will run from Aug. 16 – Oct. 31, except when the firearm antelope season is open.  Unlimited licenses are available for residents and non-residents.

The Commission also proposed that the August Management Take for Canada geese be modified to begin the third Saturday in August and run through the end of the month. The season ran for the entire month of August in 2013.

The Commission did propose two changes within trapping regulations. The first proposed change would prohibit the use of live mammals and live birds for trapping. The second proposed change would require all trapping equipment including trap stakes to be removed from public road rights-of-ways and public lands by May 1 of each year.

With no changes proposed to beaver, muskrat, skunk, opossum, jackrabbit, fox, raccoon, mink, weasel and badger seasons, all will follow the same season structure as last year.

View the proposal here: http://www.gfp.sd.gov/agency/commission/archive/2014/May/info-materials.pdf.

The Commission will finalize this proposal at their June 5-6 meeting in Yankton at Lewis and Clark Resort. Written comments can be sent to wildinfo@state.sd.usTo be part of the official public record, comments must be received by 12 p.m. on June 5. Please include your full name along with the city and state of residence. If you would like to comment in person, the public hearing will be held Thursday, June 5, at 2 p.m. CDT at Lewis and Clark Resort in Yankton.

GFP Commission Proposes Several Changes to Archery Equipment Regulations

PIERRE, S.D. - The South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks Commission proposed several changes to archery equipment regulations during the May meeting in Custer State Park.

The proposal would result in the following:

View the proposal here: http://www.gfp.sd.gov/agency/commission/archive/2014/May/info-materials.pdf.

The Commission will finalize this proposal at their June 5-6 meeting in Yankton at Lewis and Clark Resort. Written comments can be sent to wildinfo@state.sd.us To be part of the official public record, comments must be received by 12 p.m. on June 5. Please include your full name along with the city and state of residence. If you would like to comment in person, the public hearing will be held Thursday, June 5, at 2 p.m. CDT at Lewis and Clark Resort in Yankton.

SD Parks Host Family Programs Memorial Day Weekend

PIERRE, S.D. - On Memorial Day weekend, visitors to South Dakota state parks can take part in special family activities. The programs are excellent opportunities to experience the outdoors with children.

Friday – Monday, May 23-26
Memorial Day Patriotic Campsite Decorating Display, Lake Poinsett Recreation Area near Arlington. Info: 605-627-5441

Friday, May 23
Fiesta Friday!, Chief White Crane Recreation Area near Yankton, 7 p.m. CT. Info: 605-668-2985

Saturday, May 24
Extreme Campers Challenge, Big Sioux Recreation Area near Brandon, 10 a.m. CT. Info: 605-582-7243 Wishard Memorial Disc Golf Tournament, Oahe Downstream Recreation Area near Fort Pierre, 10 a.m. CT. Info: 605-223-7722 Kids’ Fishing Derby, Lake Poinsett Recreation Area near Arlington, 10 a.m. CT. Info: 605-983-5085 Family Fun Amazing Race, Newton Hills State Park near Canton, 2 p.m. CT. Info: 605-987-2263

On Sunday, May 25
Walk the Fort, Randall Creek Recreation Area near Pickstown, 1:30 p.m. CT. Info: 605-487-7046

There is no cost to participate in any of the programs, except the Wishard Memorial Disc Golf Tournament. A park entrance license is required at all parks. For more information on activities in South Dakota state parks, visit www.gfp.sd.gov , contact the individual park office or call 605-773-3391.

-GFP-

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