CDFW News – CDFW Offering 60 Apprentice Pheasant Hunts Across the State.

The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) is hosting 60 special pheasant hunts this fall and winter to serve new hunters, youth hunters, women hunters, mobility-impaired hunters, families and others with limited experience or opportunity to hunt.

The hunts take place from November through February in almost every part of the state from Siskiyou and Plumas counties in the north to San Diego and Imperial counties in the south. CDFW’s Central Region is hosting 30 of the 60 hunts in Fresno, Kern, Madera, Merced and San Luis Obispo counties.

Six hunts are planned in Los Angeles County, two in Riverside County, two in Napa County, two in Solano County, and two in Yolo County, among other locations. Applications and information are available online at CDFW’s Apprentice Hunts webpage.

Hunters may apply only once for each hunt – either as an applicant or as a guest. Submitting multiple applications will disqualify applicants from the drawing. There is no fee to apply or participate in these hunts. Trained hunting dogs and their handlers are provided on some – but not all – hunts. Participants are allowed to bring their own hunting dogs on some hunts or hunt without a dog.

These special apprentice pheasant hunts are offered in partnership with many volunteer organizations and funded by the sale of the upland game bird stamp/validation required of upland game bird hunters 18 and older.

Additional upland bird hunting opportunities are available at CDFW’s Upland Game Wild Bird Hunts webpage and through CDFW’s SHARE program, which provides public hunting access to private or landlocked properties. Other upland game bird hunting opportunities are available on CDFW wildlife areas without reservations.

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More Winchester Bay Bottomfish.

Winchester Bay’s offshore bottom fishing continues to be excellent.

Lingcod limits are the rule – not the exception. Photos courtesy of Dustin Noffsinger.

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40# Chinook Salmon Taken by OCA Members.

As promised picture of the forty pound Fall Chinook caught by Russel Smitherman from Central Point, Oregon on Saturday, October 6th while fishing on my boat at the Chetco Bubble. The fish was caught trolling twenty feet down over ninety feet of water on a whole Sardine behind a Red/Chrome Flasher. Photo courtesy of OCA President Steve Godin.

Chetco “Bubble Fishery” lunker.

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Mardon Resort / Potholes Reservoir Recreation Report.

Fall weather continues, and the fishing is remains good on the Potholes Reservoir. The current water level on the Potholes Reservoir is 1029.49 feet – rising .92 feet this past week. The water temperature on the main Reservoir is in the mid 50’s. The rising water will provide more access for duck hunters back in the sand dunes.
The walleye fishing remains consistent this week with limits being reported. Fish the mid-lake humps in front of the sand dunes, around the mouth of Crab Creek and the rocks off Gooses Island. Troll a Slow Death hook with a worm by itself or a Smile Blade/Slow Death rig behind a 2-ounce bottom walker around the deeper mid-lake humps in the 15-30-foot depth range. If you are marking fish but not catching them trolling, try jigging a Blade Baits.
Largemouth and Smallmouth are doing well along the face of the dunes, and along the face of the dam. Some anglers are finding bigger fish in the 15-25-foot range. Top baits for Largemouth include – swim baits, crank baits, Skirted Heart Throb XL’s fished on a 1/2 oz. football head and fishing a drop shot rig. Smallmouth are being caught on the rock piles off Goose Island and along the face of the dam as well as around the face of the dunes. Use crank baits, 3½” tubes, swimbaits, and DS Minnows.
The trout fishing on the Potholes Reservoir is picking up with the cooler water temperatures. Trout fishers have been catching trout trolling #5 and # 7 Flicker Shads and Shad Raps and trolling Wedding Ring/crawler rigs.
The crappie fishing continues to be good throughout the Reservoir. Big crappies are being caught trolling #5 Flicker Shads and #5 Rapala Shad Raps along the face of the dunes, and jigging VMC Probe jigs, Wingding jigs, Trout Magnets and Gulp Minnows on the deeper humps. The MarDon Resort dock continues to hold fish. Fish Trout Magnets and Gulp Alive Minnows off the dock on a 1/64th oz. jig head. Fishing from the MarDon Dock is reserved for registered guests only.
Call the MarDon Store for the latest fishing info and to make reservations at 509-346-2651.

Mike Meseberg of MarDon Resort with a nice Potholes Reservoir walleye caught in 23 feet of water on a Fisher Brothers walleye rig.

Outstanding crappie fishing continues on the Potholes Reservoir!

Mike Reichner of Sequim shows a sample of some nice perch and big bluegill he caught on the Potholes Reservoir several days ago.

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California Fish and Game Commission Fresno Meeting.

At its October 2018 meeting in Fresno yesterday, the California Fish and Game Commission (Commission) took action on a number of issues affecting California’s natural resources. The following are just a few items of interest from the meeting.
The Commission voted unanimously to adopt the vision statement for co-management among the Commission, California tribes and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW). The vision statement was a recommendation forwarded to the Commission from the Tribal Committee, which met Tuesday.

In partnership with the California Waterfowl Association, the Commission also recognized six newly inducted members of the California Waterfowler’s Hall of Fame: Dr. Mickey E. Heitmeyer, Jeff Kerry, Peter Ottesen, Thomas Quinn, Mark Gregory Steidlmayer and Peter Stent. Former executive director of the Commission, John Carlson, Jr. who is currently the president of the California Waterfowl Association, made the presentation.

The Commission approved a 90-day extension of the emergency regulations for recreational take of purple sea urchin that increased the bag limit from 35 individuals to 20 gallons in Sonoma and Mendocino counties.

The Commission also authorized publication of a notice of intent to amend regulations for recreational take of purple sea urchin under a regular rulemaking, to increase bag limits to 40 gallons in Sonoma and Mendocino counties, and also to potentially apply these regulations in Humboldt and Del Norte counties. The Commission will take action on this proposal at its February meeting in Sacramento.

The Commission took action to adopt regulations to limit incidental take of crabs other than the genus cancer. The action will subject box and king crabs to a 25 lb. possession and landing limit, and sheep crab to a 95,000 lb. annual total allowable catch.
In support of a collaboration among CDFW, the California Ocean Protection Council, and academic partners, the Commission adopted a marine protected area monitoring action plan that, for the first time, provides a statewide approach to monitoring California’s marine protected area network. The action plan incorporates novel scientific approaches and offers important prioritization of long-term monitoring and evaluation metrics.
Commission President Eric Sklar, Commission Vice President Anthony Williams and Commissioners Jacque Hostler-Carmesin and Peter Silva were present. Commissioner Russell Burns was absent.
The full Commission video and audio minutes, supporting information and a schedule of upcoming meetings are available at www.fgc.ca.gov. An archived video will also be available in coming days.

The California Fish and Game Commission was the first wildlife conservation agency in the United States, predating even the U.S. Commission of Fish and Fisheries. There is often confusion about the distinction between the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) and the Commission. In the most basic terms, CDFW implements and enforces the regulations set by the Commission, as well as provides biological data and expertise to inform the Commission’s decision-making process.

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CDFW News – Commercial Spiny Lobster Fishery Closed in State Waters Around Anacapa Island Due to Public Health Hazard.

California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) Director Charlton H. Bonham has enacted a commercial spiny lobster fishery closure effective immediately.

State health agencies determined that spiny lobster near Anacapa Island in Ventura County had unhealthy levels of domoic acid and recommended closure of the commercial fishery in the area. The recreational fishery for spiny lobster remains open statewide with a warning from the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) to recreational anglers to avoid consuming the viscera (tomalley) and roe of spiny lobster.

The commercial closure includes state waters around Santa Cruz and Anacapa islands east of 119°30.000’W. longitude, and west of 119°10.000’W. longitude. State waters extend three nautical miles beyond outermost islands, reefs and rocks. Commercial take and/or possession of spiny lobster is prohibited in closed waters.

This closure shall remain in effect until the Director of the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA), in consultation with the State Public Health Officer at CDPH, determines that domoic acid no longer poses a significant risk to public health and recommends lifting the fishery closure. CDFW will continue to coordinate with CDPH and OEHHA to test domoic acid levels in spiny lobster to determine when the commercial spiny lobster fishery in this area can safely be opened.

Pursuant to Fish and Game Code, section 5523, the Director of CDFW will notify the Fish and Game Commission of the closure and request that the Commission schedule a public discussion of the closure at its next scheduled meeting.

Domoic acid is a potent neurotoxin produced by a naturally occurring marine alga, whose levels can be increased under certain ocean conditions. State and federal laws prohibit the commercial distribution of seafood products that contain domoic acid levels above the federal action level, which is 20 parts per million in the viscera of spiny lobster.

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CDFW News – San Diego Eighth-Grader Ethan Mayes Becomes First to Receive ‘Master Ocean Angler’ Award.

Thirteen-year-old Ethan Mayes of San Diego has become the first person to earn the title of Master Ocean Angler from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife’s (CDFW) California Fishing Passport program by catching at least 50 different species of saltwater game fish.

Mayes, an eighth-grade honor roll student, reeled in a black-and-yellow rockfish from the Coast Guard Pier in Monterey on Aug. 13 to record his 50th ocean game fish species.

Mayes’ exuberance at landing the smallish rockfish and scurrying to find a camera to document his catch left tourists and fellow pier anglers a little perplexed about all the excitement over catching a small fish.

“I was so happy to finally do it,” Mayes said of seeing his 50th saltwater species on the end of his line. Mayes caught his 51st species — a cabezon — about an hour later from the same spot. The next day, aboard a Monterey fishing boat, he landed species No. 52 — a yellowtail rockfish — and followed that up less than a week later with species No. 53 — a 50-plus-inch, 15-pound dolphinfish caught outside of San Diego’s Mission Bay aboard a charter boat.

“Ethan has the adventurous spirit and determination needed to travel the state’s waters in search of new fish to catch – which are the hallmarks of a California Fishing Passport Master Angler,” said CDFW’s Mary Patyten, awards administrator for the program. “It really is an amazing feat, especially for such a young angler. He is an extraordinary young man.”

CDFW’s California Fishing Passport program was launched in January 2007 to encourage Californians of all ages and backgrounds to experience fishing for a variety of fresh and saltwater fish and shellfish. The California Fishing Passport booklet is the centerpiece of the program, allowing anglers to record the date, place and species of sport fish and shellfish caught within California waters. Each catch must be verified by a photo or a witness signature. Each catch can then be stamped by an official stamping agent such as a CDFW License Sales Office.
Fourteen different recognition awards can be earned – from the My First Fish Award to the Supreme Master Angler Award available to those who have earned a Master award in at least two other award categories – such as Warmwater Fishing (Inland), Coldwater Fishing (Inland), Ocean Fishing and Shellfish (Inland and Ocean). Mayes previously achieved the Ocean Angler Award — for catching 10 different qualifying species – and the Accomplished Ocean Angler Award — for catching 25 different qualifying species.

With a minimum of 50 different ocean species, however, the bar may be highest to reach Master Ocean Angler status. A Master Coldwater Angler, for example, needs to catch and record just 10 different qualifying fish. A Master Warmwater Angler needs to catch at least 25 different warmwater fish species.

No California angler has yet earned the Supreme Master Angler Award, though Mayes said his next goal is the Shellfish category. Catching at least 15 different qualifying inland and ocean shellfish would earn him the additional title of Shellfish Master and qualify him for Supreme Master Angler status.

Mayes was not born into a fishing family. He began fishing – mostly unsuccessfully – as an eight year old when a family friend gave him a fishing rod and reel for Christmas. His passion for fishing grew and he began logging his catches in the California Fishing Passport program in 2014. His parents have learned to fish to accompany him on his outings and support his passion.

Almost half of the saltwater species Mayes has caught — 26 of the 53 — have been taken off public piers, one of the most accessible types of fishing available in California as no fishing license is required. Mayes honed his saltwater techniques over the years at his home pier – the Shelter Island Pier in San Diego.

As he has gotten older, Mayes has broadened his interests and skillset to include more offshore species. His biggest catch so far is a 125-pound bluefin tuna he caught on an offshore trip with his father. Although saltwater fishing is his primary passion, he also enjoys sailing, tennis, surfing and snorkeling.
Becoming California’s first Master Ocean Angler didn’t become a goal for Mayes until he caught his 25th species.

“That was really a big turning point,” he said. “I was like, wow, this is really happening and I could get to 50 at some point.”

For more information on the California Fishing Passport program, please visit www.wildlife.ca.gov/Fishing/Passport.

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Arizona Game and Fish Department – Mexican Wolf Update.

The following is a summary of Mexican Wolf Reintroduction Project (Project)
activities in the Mexican Wolf Experimental Population Area (MWEPA) in Arizona, including the Fort Apache Indian Reservation (FAIR), San Carlos Apache Reservation (SCAR), and New Mexico. Additional Project information can be obtained by calling (928) 339-4329 or toll free at (888) 459-9653, or by visiting the Arizona Game and Fish Department website at
www.azgfd.gov/wolf or by visiting the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service website at www.fws.gov/southwest/es/mexicanwolf. For information on the FAIR call (928) 338-4385 ext. 226 or visit www.wmatoutdoors.org

Past updates may be viewed on these websites. Interested parties may sign up to receive this update electronically by visiting www.azgfd.com and clicking on the E-news Signup tab on the top left corner of the webpage.

This update is a public document and information in it can be used for any purpose. The Project is a multi-agency cooperative effort among the Arizona Game and Fish Department (AZGFD), USDA Forest Service (USFS), USDA-Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, Wildlife Services (USDA-APHIS WS), U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) and the White Mountain Apache Tribe (WMAT).

To view semi-monthly wolf location information please visit http://arcg.is/0iGSGH.

Please report any wolf sightings or suspected livestock depredations to: the Alpine wolf office at (928) 339-4329, Pinetop wolf office at (928) 532-2391 or toll free at (888) 459-9653. For sightings or suspected depredations on the FAIR, please call the FAIR wolf office in Whiteriver at (928) 388-4385 ext. 226. To report incidents of take or harassment of wolves, please call the AZGFD 24-hour dispatch (Operation Game Thief) at (800) 352-0700.

Overall Mexican Wolf Recovery Program Monthly Update

On September 5, the USFWS hosted an Executive Committee meeting in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Representatives from the Lead Agencies and Cooperating Entities attended, as well as representatives from the New Mexico Department of Game and Fish (NMDGF). The Executive Committee meets at least twice a year to discuss actions and resources necessary for the recovery and management of Mexican wolves.

On September 27 and 28, representatives from the AZGFD, NMDGF, and USFWS met with government officials from Mexico’s National Commission of Natural Protected Areas (CONANP by its Spanish acronym) and with Mexican biologists to discuss Mexican wolf recovery in the United States and Mexico.

Numbering System: Mexican wolves are given an identification number recorded in an official studbook that tracks their history. Capital letters (M = Male, F = Female) preceding the number indicate adult animals 24 months or older. Lower case letters (m = male, f = female) are used to indicate wolves younger than 24 months. A lower case letter “p” preceding the number is used to indicate a wolf pup born in the most recent spring. The capital letter “A” preceding the letter and number indicate breeding wolves.

Definitions: A “wolf pack” is defined as two or more wolves that maintain an
established territory. In the event that one of the two alpha (dominant) wolves dies, the remaining alpha wolf, regardless of pack size, retains the pack status. The packs referenced in this update contain at least one wolf with a radio telemetry collar attached to it. Studbook numbers listed in the monthly update denote wolves with functioning radio collars. The Interagency Field Team (IFT) recognizes that wolves without radio telemetry collars may also form packs. If the IFT confirms that wolves are associating with each other and are resident within the same home range, they will be referenced as a pack.

CURRENT POPULATION STATUS

The year-end minimum population count for 2017 was 114 wolves in the wild in Arizona and New Mexico. Annual surveys are conducted in the winter as this is when the population experiences the least amount of natural fluctuation (i.e. in the spring the population increases dramatically with the birth of new pups and declines throughout the summer and fall as mortality is particularly high on young pups). Thus, the IFT summarizes the total number of wolves in the winter at a fairly static or consistent time of year. Counting the population at the end of each year allows for comparable year-to-year trends at a time of year that accounts for most mortality and survival of young pups. At the end of September, there were 75 wolves with functioning radio collars that the IFT was actively monitoring.

IN ARIZONA:

Bear Wallow Pack (collared M1338 and f1683)
In September, the IFT documented the Bear Wallow Pack in their territory on the east central portion of the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest (ASNF) and occasionally on the SCAR and the FAIR. Yearling f1683, M1676, and AM1338 were documented traveling separately. Subadult male 1676 made dispersal movements across the central and western portion of the ASNF and on the Coconino National Forest, and was located dead in September. The incident is under investigation.

Bluestem Pack (collared f1686)
In September, the IFT documented the Bluestem Pack in the pack’s traditional territory in the east central portion of the ASNF. Yearling f1686 made dispersal movements from the pack’s territory this month within the eastern portion of the ASNF.

Eagle Creek Pack (collared M1477)
In September, M1477 continued to be documented traveling with an uncollared wolf. The pair has been holding a territory in the east central portion of the ASNF.

Elk Horn Pack (collared AF1294, f1668, m1671, and fp1697)
In September, the Elk Horn Pack was located within their traditional territory in the northeastern portion of the ASNF. A female pup, fp1697, was captured, collared, and released in September.

Hoodoo Pack (collared AM1290, AF1333, m1677, m1681, and mp1789)
In September, the Hoodoo Pack was located within their traditional territory in the northeastern portion of the ASNF. A male pup, mp1789, was captured, collared and released in September.

Panther Creek Pack (collared AM1382)
Panther Creek AM1382 was not located during the month of September.

Pine Spring Pack (collared AM1394, AF1562, and fp1794)
In September, the Pine Spring Pack was located within their territory in the north central portion of the ASNF. The IFT maintained a diversionary food cache for this pack to reduce potential for wolf-livestock conflict. A female pup, fp1794, was captured, collared and released in September.

Prime Canyon Pack (collared AM1471, AF1488, mp1790, and fp1791)
In September, the IFT documented the Prime Canyon Pack within their territory in the east central portion of the ASNF. The IFT maintained a diversionary food cache for this pack in a proactive attempt to reduce the potential for human-wildlife interactions near residences. Two pups, mp1790 and fp1791, were captured, collared, and released in September.

Saffel Pack (collared AM1441, AF1567, m1661, m1680, and fp1792)
In September, the Saffel Pack was located in their territory in the northeastern portion of the ASNF. Two pups, fp1792 and mp1793, were captured, collared, and released in September. Later in the month, mp1793 was found dead. This incident is under investigation. The IFT initiated a diversionary food cache for the Saffel pack in an effort to reduce potential for wolf-livestock conflict.

Sierra Blanca Pack (collared M1571 and F1550)
In September, the Sierra Blanca Pack was located in their territory in the northeastern portion of the ASNF.

Single collared F1489
In September, the IFT documented F1489 traveling in the north and east central portion of the ASNF.

Single collared M1574
In September, the IFT documented M1574 traveling in the east central portion of the ASNF, the SCAR, and the eastern portion of the FAIR.

ON THE FAIR:

Baldy Pack (collared AM1347 and F1560)
In September, the Baldy Pack was documented traveling in the eastern portion of the FAIR and the north central portion of the ASNF.

Maverick Pack (collared AF1291)
In September, the Maverick Pack was located within their traditional territory both on the FAIR and east central portion of the ASNF.

Tsay-O-Ah Pack (collared AF1283 and f1674)
In September, the Tsay-O-Ah Pack was located within their traditional territory in the eastern portion the FAIR.

Tu dil hil Pack (collared M1559 and F1679)
In September, the Tu dil hil Pack was documented traveling in the eastern portion of the FAIR.

IN NEW MEXICO:

Copper Creek Pack
During September, the Copper Creek Pack was located via a remote camera traveling in the western portion of the Gila National Forest (GNF). Currently, there are no functioning collars in this pack. Single M1673 was documented traveling with F1444 in September.

Dark Canyon Pack (collared AM1354 and AF1456)
During September, the Dark Canyon Pack was documented traveling together within their traditional territory, in the west central portion of the GNF. The Dark Canyon Pack continued to exhibit behavior and movements consistent with rearing pups during September.

Datil Mountain Pack (collared M1453 and F1685)
During September, the Datil Mountain Pack continued to travel in the western portion of the Cibola National Forest (CNF).

Frieborn Pack (collared AM1447, AF1443, and fp1702)
During September, the Frieborn Pack was documented within their territory in the east central portion of the ASNF in New Mexico and Arizona. The IFT maintained a food cache near the den to support cross-fostered pups and to reduce the potential for wolf-livestock conflict. A female pup, fp1702, was captured, collared, and released in September.

Hawks Nest Pack (collared AM1038 and F1473)
During September, F1437 returned to the Hawks Nest territory in the north central portion of the GNF. AM1038 was not located in September. The IFT is trying to document if this pair is still traveling together.

Iron Creek Pack (collared AM1240, AF1278, M1555, M1556, f1670, fp1721, and m1821)
During September, the Iron Creek Pack continued to utilize their territory in the northern portion of the Gila Wilderness and the southern portion of the GNF. The Iron Creek Pack continued to exhibit behavior and movements consistent with rearing pups during September. Wolves fp1721, m1821, and M1556 were captured, collared, and released in September.

Lava Pack (collared AM1285 and AF1405)
During September, the Lava Pack was located within their traditional territory in the southeastern portion of the GNF.

Leopold Pack (collared AM1293 and AF1346)
During September, the IFT documented the Leopold Pack within their territory in the northern portion of the Gila Wilderness.

Luna Pack (collared AM1158, AF1487, and f1684)
During September, the Luna Pack remained in their traditional territory in the north central portion of the GNF. The IFT maintained a diversionary food cache for the Luna Pack to reduce potential for livestock conflict.

Mangas Pack (collared AM1296, AF1439, f1664, and f1705)
During September, the Mangas Pack was located within their territory in the northwestern portion of the GNF. The IFT maintained a diversionary food cache for the Mangas Pack to reduce potential for conflict with livestock. The Mangas Pack continued to display behavior consistent with rearing pups within their traditional territory during September.

Prieto Pack (collared AM1398, AF1251, F1565, m1669, and m1678)
During September, the Prieto Pack was located within their traditional territory in the north central portion of the GNF. The IFT maintained a diversionary food cache for the Prieto Pack and implemented continuous hazing efforts to reduce potential for conflict with livestock. The Prieto Pack continued to display behavior consistent with rearing pups within their traditional territory during September.

San Mateo Pack (collared AF1399 and f1578)
During September, the San Mateo Pack continued to utilize their territory in the north central portion of the GNF. The IFT discontinued the diversionary food cache for the San Mateo Pack. The breeding female (AF1399) was captured, re-collared, and released in September.

Sheepherders Baseball Park (SBP) Pack (collared AF1553)
During September, AF1553 continued to use the traditional territory of the SBP pack in the north central portion of the GNF. During September, M1561 was located dead in New Mexico. This incident is under investigation.

Squirrel Springs Pack (collared F1788)
During September, the Squirrel Springs pack continued to travel in the north central portion of the GNF.

Single collared M1486
During September, M1486 traveled throughout the northern and central portions of the CNF.

Single collared M1673
During September, M1673 was located via a remote camera traveling in the western portion of the Gila National Forest (GNF) with F1444 in August. The IFT continued monitoring efforts to determine if M1673 has joined the Copper Creek Pack.

MORTALITIES

During the month of September, M1676 of the Bear Wallow Pack and mp1793 of the Saffel Pack were located dead in Arizona. Male 1561 of the SBP Pack was located dead in New Mexico during September. The incidents are all under investigation.

From January 1, 2018 to September 30, 2018 there have been a total of 11 documented wolf mortalities.

INCIDENTS

During the month of September, there were four confirmed wolf depredation incidents on livestock. There was one nuisance incident in September. From January 1, 2018 to September 30, 2018 there have been a total of 58 confirmed wolf depredation incidents in New Mexico and 26 confirmed wolf depredation incidents in Arizona.

On September 6, Wildlife Services investigated a dead cow and calf in Catron County, NM. The investigation concluded the cow and calf were a confirmed wolf kill.

On September 8, Wildlife Services investigated a dead calf in Catron County, NM. The investigation concluded the calf was a confirmed wolf kill.

On September 13, Wildlife Services investigated a dead calf in Apache County, AZ. The investigation concluded the cause of death was unknown.

On September 14, the IFT took a nuisance report involving wolves on the ASNF near Lee Valley Reservoir. The reporting party told the IFT he had four bird dogs running 200 to 300 yards away from him when he observed a pack of eight wolves moving toward his dogs. The dog handler called his dogs back to his location and the wolves followed the dogs to within 20 yards of the dog handler and his truck. The dog handler stated the wolves’ attention was focused on the dogs and indicated the wolves appeared startled when they saw him and his wife at which point the wolves retreated to a distance of 50 to 60 yards. The dog handler stated the wolves remained barking and howling for approximately 10 minutes. The dog handler stated he did not make any efforts to haze or scare the wolves away during this time. There was no physical interaction between the dogs and the wolves.

The IFT investigated the incident and determined the Saffel Pack had GPS collar locations in the area of the incident on September 14. It is not uncommon for wolves to interact with dogs even when people are present. Wolves will often exhibit aggressive behavior toward dogs when young pups are present with the pack, as was the case with the Saffel Pack in this incident. Yelling at, throwing sticks and rocks in the direction of wolves and scaring wolves away from an area are all allowable forms of opportunistic harassment (under the Final 10(j) Rule), provided that the wolves are not purposefully sought out to harass. The IFT encourages members of the public to report all interactions when wolves display unacceptable behavior using the contact information provided at the beginning of this document. Any person may take (which includes killing as well as nonlethal actions such as harassing or harming) a Mexican wolf in self-defense or defense of the lives of others. Any form of take must be reported within 24 hours to the Mexican Wolf Recovery Program, USFWS by telephone 505-346-2525; or fax 505-346-2542.

On September 19, Wildlife Services investigated a dead calf in Apache County, AZ. The investigation concluded the calf was a confirmed wolf kill.

On September 28, WMAT investigated a dead cow on the FAIR. The investigation concluded the cow died from unknown causes.

On September 29, Wildlife Services investigated a dead calf in Apache County, AZ. The investigation concluded the calf was a confirmed wolf kill.

On September 29, Wildlife Services investigated a second dead calf in Apache County, AZ. The investigation concluded the calf was killed by coyotes.

COMMUNICATION AND COORDINATION

On September 26, USFWS participated in a panel discussion at the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ Annual Conference in Seattle, Washington. The discussion was entitled “Keys to Successful Reintroduction – Beyond the Biology.”

PROJECT PERSONNEL

No activity to report.

REWARDS OFFERED

The USFWS is offering a reward of up to $10,000; the AZGFD Operation Game Thief is offering a reward of up to $1,000; and the NMDGF is offering a reward of up to $1,000 for information leading to the conviction of the individual(s) responsible for the shooting deaths of Mexican wolves. A variety of non-governmental organizations and private individuals have pledged an additional $46,000 for a total reward amount of up to $58,000, depending on the information provided.

Individuals with information they believe may be helpful are urged to call one of the following agencies: USFWS special agents in Mesa, Arizona, at (480) 967-7900, in Alpine, Arizona, at (928) 339-4232, or in Albuquerque, New Mexico, at (505) 346-7828; the WMAT at (928) 338-1023 or (928) 338-4385; AGFD Operation Game Thief at (800) 352-0700; or NMDGF Operation Game Thief at (800) 432-4263. Killing a Mexican wolf is a violation of the Federal Endangered Species Act and can result in criminal penalties of up to $50,000, and/or not more than one year in jail, and/or a civil penalty of up to $25,000.

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WDFW News – WDFW to Stock MoreTthan 147,000 Trout in Washington Lakes.

With thousands of rainbow trout destined for Washington lakes before November, anglers should have plenty of places to enjoy great fishing this fall and through the holiday season.

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) will stock at least 55 Washington lakes with catchable-size trout this fall. Additionally, the department stocks millions of smaller trout each spring, many of which will have grown to catchable size.

“Fall is the time to reel in a nice-sized trout, and our crews are working hard to build on a Northwest tradition of fishing through the seasons,” said Steve Caromile, WDFW’s warmwater fish program manager. “Most of the stocked trout are 13 to 15 inches long, with a few larger ones in the mix.”

Some of the lakes recently stocked include Island Lake in Kitsap County; Island, Lost, Nahwatzel, and Spencer lakes in Mason County; Lake Sylvia in Grays Harbor County; and Gibbs, Teal and Leland lakes in Jefferson County.

Dozens of additional lakes will be stocked throughout the state in October and November providing fishing opportunities into the new year.

The complete list of lakes to be stocked, and the department’s recently updated stocking plan, are available for viewing at http://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/fall-into-fishing/.

The fall fish plants are in response to anglers’ requests to increase fall and winter trout fishing opportunities, said Caromile.

The effort also includes stocking lakes across the state for the Nov. 23 Black Friday opener, which offers anglers the opportunity to skip the shopping malls, get outside and enjoy fishing on the day after Thanksgiving.

For up-to-date stocking information this fall, anglers should follow the department on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook, accessible from http://wdfw.wa.gov, or see the department’s weekly catchable trout stocking report at http://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/plants/weekly/.

To participate, anglers must have a current Washington freshwater fishing license valid through March 31, 2019.

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Winchester Bay Bottomfish Photos- from the “Umpqua Angler”.

Large Lingcod are now being caught with more regularity.

Rockfish doubles are not at all uncommon.

Boat limits are the rule – not the exception.

Gary Sellers (on right) found the trip from Sutherlin well worthwhile.

Another Bottomfish double.

Another boat limit of lingcod and rockfish.

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