South Dakota’s Game, Fish and Parks Department wants to close the state’s hunting season on sage grouse after fewer male birds were seen dancing on their mating grounds this year.
South Dakota Game Fish and Parks
Lawmakers on the study committee voted 13-2 for a draft bill that restores access to nearly 30 lakes for public recreation hampered after a recent state Supreme Court decision on publicly-owned bodies of water over privately-owned land. The longstanding issue has vexed landowners and outdoor enthusiasts alike.
Some resident hunters fear the commercialization of waterfowl hunting in the state, while some business interests want more nonresident hunters and their money in South Dakota.
The proposal for three-day temporary hunts would expand to include a good chunk of the state. Would also make these licenses valid on private land only.
Lawmakers are set to study how the use of publicly-owned bodies of water over privately-owned land should be regulated.
Getting a good idea of just how well shovelnose sturgeon are faring in Lake Sharpe is one of study’s goals.
The study will aid in the active management of the prehistoric species in Lake Sharpe.
State has been working to create the 400-plus page plan for almost two years.
Other bighorns have died in recent weeks, and one official said the positive tests are a “big concern” — but there are reasons for hope, too.
Holiday season also hunting season in South Dakota, with mountain lion and youth goose hunts scheduled near Christmas and New Year’s, respectively.