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FYI-

Game and Fish to Present 2003 Waterfowl Season Proposal
The North Dakota Game and Fish Department will host five public open house sessions over the next two weeks to present the 2003 waterfowl season proposal that will be sent to the Governor&'s office for consideration.
Department personnel will provide information about the new licensing structure adopted this past winter by the state legislature, as well as discuss proposed nonresident zones, tentative dates and other season details.
Finalized season details will not be available until August after the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service provides the federal framework and the governor signs the proclamation. Therefore, game and fish is presenting this proposal now so resident hunters, hospitality businesses, and families with friends and family members coming from out-of-state will have a chance to make arrangements for the fall season.
Each open house will last two hours, and is in a come-and-go style format.
Proposed season information includes three nonresident waterfowl zones, each designed to distribute hunting pressure. There is no limit placed on the number of licenses available for each zone. Nonresidents who designate zones 1 or 2 may hunt that zone for only one 7-day period during the season. Nonresident hunters who have chosen to hunt in zone 1 or 2 and wish to utilize the full 14 consecutive days allowed must use the other 7 days in zone 3. Nonresidents cannot hunt both zones 1 and 2 during the season. Hunters in zone 3 can hunt that zone the entire 14 days.
This past winter the state legislature eliminated the statewide 7-day waterfowl license. Nonresidents who only hunt waterfowl in North Dakota for one week, and want to maximize hunting opportunities in the state, can choose to run their two 7-day periods at the same time. To do this, hunters must choose either zones 1 or 2, and select zone 3 for the same 7-day period. By designating both of these options for the same week, the 14 day regulation applies.

Zone 1 - U.S. Highway 281 from South Dakota to Jamestown; U.S. Highway 52 from Jamestown to Carrington; N.D. Highway 200 from Carrington to Hurdsfield; and N.D. Highway 3 from Hurdsfield to South Dakota.

Zone 2 - N.D. Highway 36 from Wilton to Tuttle; N.D. Highway 3 from Tuttle to Hurdsfield; N.D. Highway 200 from Hurdsfield to U.S. Highway 52 east of Bowdon; north on U.S. Highway 52 to N.D. Highway 97 south of Velva; west on N.D. Highway 97 to N.D. Highway 41; south on N.D. Highway 41 (south of Velva) to N.D. Highway 200 at Turtle Lake; west on N.D. Highway 200 to N.D. Highway 200A; south on N.D. Highway 200A to Washburn; and south on U.S. Highway 83 to Wilton.

Zone 3 - remainder of state.
If the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service provides North Dakota with the option for an early waterfowl opener, game and fish plans on utilizing that for residents only. If that is the case, resident hunters would be able to open the season Sept. 27, while nonresidents could begin to hunt waterfowl Oct. 4. If North Dakota is not allowed an early opener, the opening date for residents and nonresidents would be Oct. 4.
The nonresident waterfowl licensing structure was changed during this past legislative session. Nonresident waterfowl hunters no longer need a small game license to hunt waterfowl. What was previously a $10 add-on license to small game is now an $85 independent license. The nonresident waterfowl license package includes a $2 certificate, a $13 general game and habitat stamp, and an $85 waterfowl license. Total package is $100. The waterfowl license is good for 14 consecutive days or two 7-day periods, and a nonresident cannot purchase more than one waterfowl license per year. A waterfowl license is needed to hunt geese, ducks, swans, brant, rails and coots.
The state legislature also changed the small game licensing structure. The small game license costs $85, and is good for either one 10-day period or two 5-day segments. The total package to hunt both small game and waterfowl is $185. Unlike the waterfowl license, nonresidents may purchase more than one small game license per year. A small game license is required to hunt pheasants, grouse, partridge, doves, woodcock, cranes, crows and tree squirrels.
Open houses are scheduled from 6-8 p.m. at the following locations:
Minot - Tuesday, June 24, Holiday Inn Convention Center
Grand Forks - Wednesday, June 25, Holiday Inn, Hwy 2 and I-29
Fargo - Thursday, June 26, Kelly Inn, O'Leary Room, Main Ave. and I-29
Jamestown - Monday, June 30, Jamestown Game and Fish District Office
Bismarck - Tuesday, July 1, Bismarck Game and Fish Headquarters Office
 

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At the time of my post there have been 38 views of this post AND NO RESPONSES!!!!!

I can't believe it.

Muzzy's report says that there are NO LIMITS on non-resident licenses. Whoaaa. No limits at all?? I am surprised by that.

The zones are also strange compared to years past.

Here is how it will work for this NR.

I am going to hunt pheasants in ND. I will split my season for an early and late hunt around Thanksgiving.

I don't know about hunting waterfowl this year. It looks like we will be taking a trip to Canada. But, if I do want to hunt waterfowl in ND, I can make a last minute decision to do so. I don't have to get on the computer and select my dates in August.

If I do hunt waterfowl, the zone structure won't really bother me. It allows a lot of north to south flexibility to hunt down the flyway depending on where the birds are.

My license costs will increase from $100 to $185 to hunt both pheasants and waterfowl.

Hmmm. It looks to me like the wave of NRs will not really be stopped by the structure that is proposed. We'll have to see.
 

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Perry Thorvig said:
At the time of my post there have been 38 views of this post AND NO RESPONSES!!!!!

I can't believe it.

Muzzy's report says that there are NO LIMITS on non-resident licenses. Whoaaa. No limits at all?? I am surprised by that.
The Game & Fish came up with the Hunter Pressure Concept. They claim it would allow them to properly manage the state's resources. So can someone from the Game & Fish PLEASE tell me why all of the sudden this doesn't matter? Did Hoeven threaten the Game & Fish to not put any cap on his desk so it'll be that much easier to blame it back on the Game & Fish and not himself?

Come on guys, can someone please inform the public as to what all of this means?
 

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The blue, white and other color sheets we get each year when we buy our licenses are called the GOVERNOR'S proclamations for a reason. The Department merely advises him about these issues and manages per his decisions. Some governors allow the Director great lattitude in these issues and rubber stamp the Director's advice. Others set policy themselves. Anyone who has been following these issues should know by now this is HIS plan.

If you don't like it, let HIM know: [email protected]. The department personnel that are charged with presenting his plan during the meetings next week should also hear your thoughts - those thoughts will get back to Mr. Hoeven. Please plan to attend one of these meetings and express your thoughts. If you don't, the word will be that since the response was minimal, it must be just fine with everyone. It's an open house type format, so it'll only take 15 minutes of your time.
 

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Thanks for the quick response Dan. I have an additional question if you or somebody else could possibly answer. If the Game & Fish felt caps were vital to managing the resource, why didn't they include a cap in the proposal to the Gov? So the Game & Fish aren't allowed to advise the Governor on such an issue?
 

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If the direction from a owner to an architect is that the building will only be one floor, the architect doesn't bother advising the owner about what a second floor might look like. Sometimes the "advice" by a governmental agengy to the executive branch is reverse engineered by mandate from the executive branch: "these are the parameters, now give me a plan that fits within them."

If you'll recall, last year the dept publically advised the Governor for a cap at 22,500 (roughly the number HPC would have produced), and the Governor has been answering questions about that ever since. Don't think that will be allowed to happen again. The dept. is going to take the heat for this one, but the direction and decisions about the plans are being made from above.
 

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Just so happens that Zone 3 which has a majority of the guides and lodges
can utilize the entire 14 day season. Hoeven just doesn't seem to get it.Maybe our next governor will. Looks like Zone 3 will have 90% of the pressure.Must have put alot of work into this plan.
 

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No need to be sorry muzzy, you were just the messenger.I just wanted to make sure I understood the proposal, but it's now loud and clear.Thanks Dan for clearing that up. Governor Hoeven has his interests, that off course we don't agree with.He probably won't agree with mine either; finding a new governor to vote for.Didn't mean to get off topic,I wsa just hoping I would see signs of a brighter future for freelance hunters in ND.
 

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There is no limit placed on the number of licenses available for each zone.
Unbelievable :eyeroll: I would guess the guides and outfitters are dancing a big time jig with that news. Truly a sad and sorry day for the freelance hunter, resident and non-resident alike.
 

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I am very upset about the new zones :evil: . We have family around the Kulm and Edgley area and all of the land we have to hunt on is in Zone 1. I guess I will only be able to come out once this year :( . It makes no sense that they are leaving some parts of zone 3 open to the 14 days. I noticed last year that the 30,000th liscense wasn't purchased until a week or two into the season. I would much rather see a cap than these rediculas zones. Those of us NR that really want to come out get our liscenses in July and August so a cap wouldn't bother any of us.

Let me know if I was not reading the zones and rules correct. Thanks
 

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Thanks Muzzy!
Here we go again. This time I hope the gov sends one of his staff along like he did during PHEASANTGATE. To get the full flavor of the "hearing". Didn't we just have one of those called a spring advisory meeting? What is it about no that is so hard to understand in Bismarck? During his numerous press releases during PHEASANTGATE, Hoeven said he got the message loud and clear that the residents wanted change, and that was why he put in a 30,000 cap last year. He is going to fall off the waffel iron if he keeps this up. And this "waterfowl plan" at the time when Farm Bureau is going sue him on access? Is this plan a cookie for Farm Bureau? Because it is intolerable for eastern and south-central ND. There has to be something better than this.
 

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I agree Dick...but I don't think the waterfowl hunters will turn out like the pheasant hunters did.
 

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No caps ? Dropping the 30K number is simply wrong.

The Sportsman's Alliance have their OWN backyard somewhat better protected -but everyone else .... :eyeroll: So did SA really serve to protect all of ND or simply their own interests?

With the seven day cap time cap across the central ND prairie ==> the number of hunters moving into the Rugby to DL region will be enormous. That area and the old SE Zone 2 (Lidgerwood, Cayuga, etc...) will be over run by Minnesota hunters - looking for a place to fill their second time slot.

Simply moving the problem from one region of ND to another.

May be you guys need to start singing the standard protest song:
Hey, Hey Ho, Ho, FILL IN NAME HERE, Has to Go
 

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'So did SA really serve to protect all of ND or simply their own interests?'

Probably both prariehunter. Do you look out for yours?

Its no secret in ND, Hoeven needs to be placed in history books. Can someone please refresh me when election time is again?
 

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Prairie Hunter - when I hunt around the Edgley/Kulm area I rarely see another hunter while driving around. I have been to Devil's lake area and you can't find an open pothole. I can't believe they think there is over crowding in Zone 1. And I agree that a cap is needed and I am a NR. I think around 20,000 to 25,000. What do you think?
 

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Of course I look out for my own interests, but I also do not run a "non-profit" sportsman's group that is supposed to represent all of ND.

I supported the concept of the HPC although I may not have agreed on the trigger point cap numbers (ie 30,000 in a liberal season - not 22K).

The Sportsman's alliance is based out of Jamestown. I assume it was started in response to the tremendous increase in hunting pressure (both R&NR) in the Stutsman, Kidder, etc counties that surround Jamestown.

Before snow goose hunting fell off the map in ND, relatively few people ever bothered to hunt this area for anything. I hunted this area often 15 - 25 years ago and it was rare to see another hunter except opening day(s).

20 years ago ducks simply were not the prime target of most ND hunters and few NRs targeted ducks in this area.

Sad fact is with out any caps and a limit of seven days for the area west of Jamestown should equal much increased pressure in areas close to MN and WI. That would figure DL and SE ND. These areas certainly could have used some representation/control too.

I would also agrue that while I have had differences with many on this web site; Nodak Outdoor's moderators and staff, Dan B., etc... IMHO they have certainly represented all ND sportsman better than the SA.

The interests of SA and Kyle B / Randy F were certainly met with this initiative.
 

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I sent my e-mail to the governor, who else has?????
 

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The Sportsmans Alliance did NOT promote the NDGF proposed zone structure. In fact, they dislike it as much as most other sportsmen. For the record, the SA and the NDWF just signed a joint letter to the Governor recommending a change in the proposal to 5 zones, with caps in each of the zones. They are, in fact, looking more toward the "big picture" than some of you would believe.
 

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Guys, before you dunk the Alliance in tar and duck feathers, think about it.
This plan was on paper before the spring advisory meetings. It didn't come from the sportsmen, it came from the G/Os. I was at the Kulm advisory meeting-sat at the table right next to the Alliance boys-they didn't like this plan and they said so loud and clear. And I do mean loud and clear. In the last year I sat through a pile of meetings with the Alliance, Federation, United Sportsmen, local clubs and local interests, and never once did they sell us out. Not once.
Both the North Dakota Wildlife Federation and the Sportsman's Alliance have stated their position concerning this "plan" to Hoeven and Hildebrand, the legislature, and the media. They did so again this week, and will do so again next week.

Get on the etree, get your friends on the tree, and send the gov a message. The Alliance and the Federation can't do it alone.
 
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