WA: Commission to take public comments in Spokane on big-game hunting seasons

OLYMPIA – The Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission will
accept public comments on big-game hunting seasons and other issues
during its March 4-5 meeting in Spokane.

The commission, which sets policy for the Washington Department
of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW), will convene at 8:30 a.m. both days in
Room 206 A/B on the second floor of the Spokane Convention Center,
334 W. Spokane Falls Blvd.

A complete meeting agenda is available on the commission’s
website at http://wdfw.wa.gov/commission/meetings.html.

On March 4, the commission will consider approval of land
transactions and amendments to Puget Sound recreational clam and
oyster seasons. The commission will also be briefed and take public
comment on:

Bald eagle protection rule amendments.

Landowner hunting permits to increase access for deer and elk
hunters to private lands in Asotin County.

Public-conduct rules on private lands open for hunting under
cooperative agreements. On March 5, the commission will be briefed
and take public input on 2011-12 big-game hunting seasons and game
management unit boundaries. The proposed changes include:

Increasing spring black bear hunting by permit in western and
northeast Washington to help reduce timber damage bear nuisance

Adjusting moose and bighorn sheep hunting permits and maintaining
mountain goat hunting permit levels.

Simplifying Game Management Unit boundary descriptions for deer and
elk hunting.

Adjusting elk and deer special-permit levels. Several proposals
would modify hunting rules in northeast Washington for white-tailed
deer to address population declines from recent harsh winters. WDFW
has proposed reducing antlerless deer hunting in the region, while
maintaining some hunting opportunities for youth, senior and
disabled hunters.

In addition, the commission will consider whether to adopt a
proposal to impose antler-point restrictions in some units or
maintain the status quo.

Details on proposals are available on the commission website at
Game Regulations for 2011.

The commission is scheduled to consider adoption of 2011-12
hunting seasons at its April 8-9 meeting in Olympia.


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