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GFP News - march 26, 2015



Nonresident Waterfowl License Work Group Holds Final Meeting

PIERRE, S.D. - The South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks' (GFP) Nonresident Waterfowl License Work Group held its third and final meeting on March 2, 2015, to finalize their recommendations on the future of license allocations for nonresident waterfowl hunters in South Dakota.

The recommendations and hunter density maps along with a March meeting summary can be found online at

"Contrasting viewpoints on the issue of nonresident waterfowl license numbers has made for a challenging task for this work group," said Tony Leif, director of the GFP Division of Wildlife. "I appreciate the commitment the work group members put into seeking areas of compromise on this difficult issue."

GFP staff will present background and work group recommendations to the GFP Commission as an information item at their April meeting. The commission is scheduled to take formal action on license allocations at their May meeting and if any changes are proposed by the Commission, a public hearing on the proposed changes will be held at their June meeting in Pierre.


Warm Weather Accompanies the End of Snowmobile Season

PIERRE, S.D. - Snowmobiling season ends on March 31, capping off a season where snow conditions fluctuated every couple of weeks.

"It was an up and down season this year," said Shannon Percy, Black Hills Trails manager. "It started out well until the end of January, and then we had a two-week warmup. We received additional snow after Presidents' Day weekend, but that was about the last of the snow."

Most of South Dakota's 1,585 miles of snowmobile trails have been empty for weeks due to the unseasonably warm weather and lack of new snow. The season was slow both in the Black Hills and East River, as well as the other "snow states," such as North Dakota, Wyoming and Minnesota.

Snowfall earlier in the season did allow two major Black Hills events to go on as scheduled.

"I would say the highlight of the season was that we got to do the Governor's Ride," Percy said. "Plus, SnoCross came back to Deadwood this year. There was snow for the races and a lot of people went out on the trails that weekend. It brought in a lot of people."

The snowmobile trails in South Dakota are open from Dec. 15-March 31 each year.


Custer State Park Hosts Earth Day Bluebird Box Workshop

CUSTER STATE PARK, S.D. - On Saturday, April 18, Custer State Park will host a Bluebird Box Workshop in celebration of Earth Day. Two sessions will be held starting at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. at the Peter Norbeck Visitor Center.

Attendees will construct a bluebird house from scrap wood to promote recycling as well as an appreciation of birds. They will also learn about why bluebirds nest in these boxes and other facts about these creatures. All participants will take their completed birdhouse home.

Each session has a limit of 20 participants and reservations are required. Participants will also need to bring their own hammer.

Reservations can be made by calling 605-255-4464.


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