GFP News: Backyard Bird Count | Roy Lake Concession Opportunity

February 11, 2019

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: February 11, 2019

CONTACT: Emily Kiel at

  • The Great Backyard Bird Count Returns Feb. 15-18
  • Game, Fish and Parks Accepting Proposals for Roy Lake Resort Concession Operator

The Great Backyard Bird Count Returns Feb. 15-18

PIERRE, S.D. - Millions of novice and accomplished bird watchers can make their love of nature count for science during the 22nd Annual Great Backyard Bird Count.

On Feb. 15-18, anyone can count birds wherever they are and enter their results online. These reports create a real-time picture of where birds are across the continent and contribute valuable information for science and conservation.

“During the count, bird watchers tally up birds for as little as 15 minutes, or for as long as they like, keeping track of the highest number of each bird species they see together at one time,” said Eileen Dowd Stukel, wildlife diversity coordinator for South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks (GFP). “People are encouraged to report birds from public lands, local parks and their own backyards.”

Participants enter their numbers online at where they can explore sightings maps, lists and charts as the count progresses.

During the 2018 count, South Dakota counters reported 82 species on 255 checklists. The highest species counts in the state were for Canada goose, mallard, horned lark, and red-winged blackbird. Hughes County had the highest number of species at 44, with Brookings, Yankton, Lawrence, and Clay counties not far behind.

There is no fee to participate in the Great Backyard Bird Count. The event is led by the National Audubon Society, the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology, and Bird Studies Canada.

Learn more

Game, Fish and Parks Accepting Proposals for Roy Lake Resort Concession Operator

PIERRE, S.D. – According to the South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks (GFP), entrepreneurs interested in operating Roy Lake Resort located within Roy Lake State Park in northeastern South Dakota can now begin submitting their proposals.

"Roy Lake Resort has established itself as one of the most popular destinations in the glacial lakes region for families and outdoor enthusiasts” said Katie Ceroll, State Park Director. “Roy Lake provides excellent year-round outdoor recreation opportunities from camping, fishing, and boating in the summer to ice fishing, waterfowl hunting, and snowmobiling in the winter.”

The prospectus for the operation of Roy Lake Resort is now available online and through the Department of Game, Fish and Parks. The prospectus details the terms and conditions under which interested operators may submit a proposal for consideration. It also includes a detailed business opportunity, the requirements necessary to submit a proposal, and a draft concession agreement for a term of ten years. Required services include cabin and lodge room rental, retail goods, courtesy docks, and boat fuel.

Proposals are due April 15, 2019.

A copy of the prospectus is available by contacting the South Dakota Department of Game, Fish and Parks, Division of Parks and Recreation at 523 East Capitol, Pierre, SD 57501 or at 605.773.3391. Printable versions of the prospectus are also available for free download from the Game, Fish and Parks website.

Roy Lake State Park is located 10 miles southeast of Lake City or 25 miles north of Webster of Highway 10. 

View prospectus







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