|White-fronted goose and White geese: Due to concerns about impacts on rare Tule white-fronted geese, late season goose hunters in Klamath County will only be allowed to take one white-fronted goose under new regulations. However, the daily bag limit will increase from two to four total geese, of which three may be white geese and one white-fronted. Photos courtesy of U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and ODFW.
|White geese: Goose hunters will see more hunting opportunity as the white geese daily bag limit will increase from four to six birds in most of the state under new hunting regulations proposed by ODFW.
|2008 Turkey 003: Appropriately-named young hunter Hunter Paustian of La Grande took this turkey in Catherine Creek Canyon during the spring turkey season earlier this year. Turkey populations have increased in northeast region and ODFW is expanding opportunities with new fall hunts this year.
Update Aug. 7, 2008 — Note: The Oregon Black-tailed Deer Management plan agenda item has been postponed until November 2008.
SALEM, Ore.—The Fish and Wildlife Commission will meet Friday, Aug. 8 in Salem to set regulations for the 2008-09 game bird hunting seasons, preview the 2009-2012 sport fishing regulations and adopt Oregon’s first Black-tailed Deer Management Plan.
The meeting at ODFW Headquarters, 3406 Cherry Ave. NE, begins at 8 a.m. and proceeds chronologically through the following agenda:
Game bird regulations
The Commission will be asked to adopt 2008-09 Game Bird Regulations proposed by ODFW staff for birds hunted in Oregon including migratory birds (duck, goose, mourning dove, band-tailed pigeon, coot, snipe) upland birds (pheasant, forest grouse, chukar, pheasant, California quail, mountain quail, sage grouse, turkey) and crows.
Staff are proposing few changes from last year’s upland bird hunting, except that fall turkey hunting opportunities in northeast Oregon may expand with two new hunts: Grande Ronde and Wallowa. “Turkey populations have increased in recent years in the Blue Mountains and other areas of northeast Oregon,” explained Dave Budeau, ODFW upland bird coordinator. “It’s a great place to hunt turkeys because many can be found on public land.”
Under another proposal, beginning in the 2009-10 season, pheasant season will open a week early, the same time that eastern Oregon chukar and quail hunting opens. “A concurrent opener will make it easier for hunters to pursue all three popular game birds during the same trip,” said Budeau.
While the proposed duck season is liberal overall, the canvasback season will be closed this year, a conservation measure in response to drought conditions on important duck breeding grounds. Scaup-hunting will also be more restrictive than last year with an 86 day season, 2-scaup bag limit proposed.
Goose hunters will see more hunting opportunity as the white geese daily bag limit will increase from four to six birds in most of the state. Hunters in the special NW Oregon Permit Zone will also be able to hunt white geese during the third period.
Due to concerns about impacts on rare Tule white-fronted geese, late season goose hunters in Klamath County will only be allowed to take one white-fronted goose under the proposal. However, the daily bag limit will increase from two to four total geese, of which three may be white geese and one white-fronted. This late-season hunt began two years ago to assist agricultural landowners experiencing severe damage from the geese.
ODFW manages migratory birds like ducks and geese in partnership with Washington, California and other states along the Pacific Flyway and with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), the federal agency with preeminent authority over all migratory birds.
Public testimony on the proposed game bird hunting changes is welcome during the meeting or in advance of the meeting. Send comments about duck and goose hunting changes to Brad Bales, ODFW migratory bird program coordinator, at Bradley.D.Bales@state.or.us. Upland bird season comments should be emailed to David.A.Budeau@state.or.us.
Finally, staff will also ask Commissioners to make permanent a rule allowing the destruction of resident Canada goose nests and eggs where the birds are causing property damage or threatening public health or safety. The rules would bring Oregon in compliance with USFWS regulations adopted last year.
Sport fishing regulations, Black-tailed Deer Plan
The Commission will receive a preview of the proposed 2009-2012 sport fishing regulations. The proposed regulations have been undergoing a public review process since December 2007, and the Commission will hear additional comments from the public and ODFW staff prior to adopting the final rules at its Sept. 12, 2008 meeting in Forest Grove.
The Commission will be asked to adopt Oregon’s first-ever Black-Tailed Deer Management Plan. These deer are found west of the crest of the Cascades and are generally smaller and darker than the mule deer found on Oregon’s eastside. Black-tailed deer are one of the most popular big game animals to hunt in Oregon—last year more than 72,000 people pursued them during the general rifle season.
Black-tailed deer are secretive and tend to live in dense forests, making them difficult to survey. ODFW currently uses hunter harvest, wildlife damage reports, plus many years of survey data to manage the black-tail population in Oregon. The plan will build upon this work while outlining ways to improve data and increase understanding of black-tail habitat needs among landowners and public land managers. As with other species, hunter cooperation and reporting will play a key role in black-tailed deer management.
Finally, the Commission will be briefed about the two-year progress report on the Oregon Conservation and Nearshore Strategy, the Salmon and Trout Enhancement Program’s annual report, and the Pacific Fishery Management Council’s Individual Trawl Quota preferred alternatives.
The Commission is the policy-making body for fish and wildlife issues in the state. The seven-member panel meets monthly. Agenda item exhibits may be requested by calling the ODFW Director’s Office at 800-720-6339 or 503-947-6044.
Public testimony will be held Friday morning immediately following the expenditure report. Persons seeking to testify on issues not on the formal agenda may do so by making arrangements with the ODFW Director’s Office, at least 24 hours in advance of the meeting, by calling 800-720-6339 or 503-947-6044.
Reasonable accommodations will be provided as needed for individuals requesting assistive hearing devices, sign language interpreters or large-print materials. Individuals needing these types of accommodations may call the ODFW Director’s Office at 800-720-6339 or 503-947-6044 at least 24 hours in advance of the meeting.