Dakota Trails - North Dakota Outdoor Sports

Game and Fish Pays $644,000 in Property Taxes

The North Dakota Game and Fish Department recently paid more than $644,000 in taxes to counties in which the department owns or leases land. The 2016 in-lieu-of-tax payments are the same as property taxes paid by private landowners.

090313-WMA-sign-placing

The Game and Fish Department manages more than 200,000 acres for wildlife habitat and public hunting in 51 counties. The department does not own or manage any land in Traill or Renville counties.

Traveling Boaters Should Check Border State and Provincial ANS Regulations

North Dakota boaters who are traveling to other states or Canadian provinces should check the aquatic nuisance species regulations of their destination to make sure they are in compliance.

While many of North Dakota’s ANS prevention regulations are similar to surrounding states and provinces, state Game and Fish Department ANS coordinator Jessica Howell says there are some subtle differences that could lead to travel interruption or citations depending on the circumstances.

“Removal of all water and vegetation, as well as pulled plugs while traveling, are generally the rule in neighboring states and provinces,” Howell said, “but there are some places where ‘dry’ is also a requirement, meaning no residual water anywhere in the boat.”

Mandatory boat inspections may be required based on destination or route taken. For example, Howell said anyone pulling a boat into Canada will likely have it inspected at a border crossing. Some states, including Montana, have inspection checkpoints along highways, and some lakes have inspectors at boat ramps. Any boats that are not in compliance will likely get delayed in their travels or be prevented from launching, Howell added.

In addition, Howell said boats on Canyon Ferry or Tiber reservoirs in Montana will need to be decontaminated when leaving. “There is a greater chance of being stopped for inspection in Montana because of zebra mussel findings,” she said.

Boaters should be aware of regulations for not only their destination, but for any states they are traveling through. More information on bordering state and provincial ANS regulations is available at the following web addresses.

North Dakota ANS regulations are as follows:

  • All aquatic vegetation must be removed from boats, personal watercraft, trailers and fishing equipment such as fishing poles, bait buckets, lures and waders before leaving a body of water. That means “vegetation free” when transporting watercraft and/or equipment away from a boat ramp, landing area or shoreline. Time out of the water needed to remove aquatic vegetation at the immediate water access area is allowed.
  • All water must be drained from boats and other watercraft, including bilges, livewells, baitwells and motors before leaving a water body.
  • All drain plugs that may hold back water must be removed, and water draining devices must be open, on all watercraft and recreational, commercial and construction equipment bilges and confined spaces, during any out-of-water transport of same.
  • Transportation of fish in or on ice is allowed.
  • Live aquatic bait or aquatic vegetation may not be transported into North Dakota.
  • All legal live aquatic organisms used by anglers, including legal baitfish (fathead minnows), amphibians (salamanders and frogs), invertebrates (crayfish and leeches) and insects must be purchased and/or trapped in North Dakota.
  • Anglers may not transport live bait in water away from the Red River (Class I ANS infested waters). All water must be drained from bait buckets as anglers leave the shore, or remove their boat from the water. Anglers must properly dispose of unused bait away from the river, as dumping bait in the water or on shore is illegal.
  • In all other waters not infested with Class I ANS species, anglers can transport live bait in water in containers of five gallons or less in volume.

have you read? June Outdoors Magazine FREE!

 

 

The 2017 June   North Dakota Outdoors magazine is available FREE online right now here.

 

North Dakota Outdoors Editor Ron Wilson writes  Fishing For Options  In a walleye-mad state, where this is the fish of choice for 80-plus percent of the anglers, maybe news of the best bluegill fishing in decades doesn’t raise many eyebrows.

 

Then again, perhaps it should.

 

 

Ron also wrote  Milkweeds and Monarchs

 

Greg Link, North Dakota Game and Fish Department conservation and communications chief, said the monarch butterfly population has fallen from an estimated high of almost 1 billion in 1996 to a low of 35 million in 2013. Wintering ground population estimates in Mexico in 2015-16 showed that the population rebounded some, but the concern remains.

 

 

Forgotten Fish of Western North Dakota’s Small Streams

 

Western North Dakota streams flow through either badlands or rolling prairies. Badland streams drain the Little Missouri River basin within the river’s historic floodplain. The hillslopes have eroded over time and have little vegetation protecting them from further erosion. Many badlands streams have wide, shallow channels and many become dry, except for pools during low flow periods of late summer.

 

 

 

The 2017 June   North Dakota Outdoors magazine is available FREE online right now here.

North Dakota Outdoors Editor Ron Wilson writes  Fishing For Options  In a walleye-mad state, where this is the fish of choice for 80-plus percent of the anglers, maybe news of the best bluegill fishing in decades doesn’t raise many eyebrows.

Then again, perhaps it should.

Ron also wrote  Milkweeds and Monarchs

Greg Link, North Dakota Game and Fish Department conservation and communications chief, said the monarch butterfly population has fallen from an estimated high of almost 1 billion in 1996 to a low of 35 million in 2013. Wintering ground population estimates in Mexico in 2015-16 showed that the population rebounded some, but the concern remains.

Forgotten Fish of Western North Dakota’s Small Streams

Western North Dakota streams flow through either badlands or rolling prairies. Badland streams drain the Little Missouri River basin within the river’s historic floodplain. The hillslopes have eroded over time and have little vegetation protecting them from further erosion. Many badlands streams have wide, shallow channels and many become dry, except for pools during low flow periods of late summer.

 

une

Summer Safety on the Water

Failure to wear a personal floatation device is the main reason people lose their lives in water recreation accidents.

North Dakota law requires all children ages 10 and younger to wear a personal flotation device while in boats of less than 27 feet in length. The law also requires all personal watercraft users to wear a life jacket, as well as anyone towed on skis, tubes, boards or other similar devices.

A new law passed this spring by the North Dakota State Legislature allows an operator of a personal watercraft to tow an individual on water skis, a kneeboard or an inflatable craft without an observer, if the watercraft is equipped with a mirror on each side. In addition, the bill allows an individual who is at least 16 years old to windsurf or boardsail without wearing a PFD, and prohibits water skiing and surfboarding from one hour after sunset to one hour before sunrise.

Water users should make sure to wear life jackets that are the appropriate size, and in good condition. It is also important that children wear a PFD while swimming.

Water skiers and tubers should wear a life jacket with four nylon straps rather than one with a zipper, because straps are stronger than zippers upon impact with water. Anglers or persons paddling a canoe should opt for a PFD that is comfortable enough to wear for an entire outing.

Swimmers should know the water’s depth as serious injuries can occur from diving into water. Large objects hidden below the water’s surface can lead to significant injury.

North Dakota boaters also are reminded that marine VHF radios are an important part of boat safety that should not be improperly used by operators. These radios are intended for boat operators who are in distress and facing an emergency situation.

Regulations to help ensure safe boating this summer are found in the 2016-18 North Dakota Fishing Guide. A more comprehensive listing is available in the North Dakota Boat and Water Safety Guide or the Boat North Dakota education book. Safety on the water-wearing life jacket

Have You Seen? North Dakota Outdoors Webcast

 

Free Fishing Weekend

North Dakotans who want to give fishing a try are reminded they can fish for free June 3-4.That is the state’s Free Fishing Weekend, when all residents age 16 and over can fish any North Dakota water without a license. Residents age 15 and under do not need a fishing license at any time of year.

Related Links:

Watch the full video right here

The Game and Fish Department YouTube channel is here

It’s Important to Protect North Dakota Waters

Outdoor water recreationists are gearing up for another season on the open water. With that in mind, boaters and anglers are once again reminded to help prevent the introduction and spread of aquatic nuisance species in North Dakota.

zebra-mussel

State Game and Fish Department ANS coordinator Jessica Howell said as other states continue to find new ANS, such as Montana, it’s more important than ever to protect North Dakota waters from these harmful plants and animals.

“It’s vital everyone does their part by following regulations,” Howell said. “In addition, anglers and boaters traveling to other states or provinces should check their ANS regulations, as them may be different from North Dakota’s.”

Current North Dakota regulations require:

  • All aquatic vegetation must be removed from boats, personal watercraft, trailers and fishing equipment such as fishing poles, bait buckets, lures and waders before leaving a body of water. That means “vegetation free” when transporting watercraft and/or equipment away from a boat ramp, landing area or shoreline. Time out of the water needed to remove aquatic vegetation at the immediate water access area is allowed.

  • All water must be drained from boats and other watercraft, including bilges, livewells, baitwells and motors before leaving a water body.

  • All drain plugs that may hold back water must be removed, and water draining devices must be open, on all watercraft and recreational, commercial and construction equipment bilges and confined spaces, during any out-of-water transport of same.

  • Transportation of fish in or on ice is allowed.

  • Live aquatic bait or aquatic vegetation may not be transported into North Dakota.

  • All legal live aquatic organisms used by anglers, including legal baitfish (fathead minnows), amphibians (salamanders and frogs), invertebrates (crayfish and leeches) and insects must be purchased and/or trapped in North Dakota.

  • Anglers may not transport live bait in water away from the Red River (Class I ANS infested waters). All water must be drained from bait buckets as anglers leave the shore, or remove their boat from the water. Anglers must properly dispose of unused bait away from the river, as dumping bait in the water or on shore is illegal.

In all other waters not infested with Class I ANS species, anglers can transport live bait in water in containers of five gallons or less in volume.

Fishing for Free June 3-4

North Dakotans who want to give fishing a try are reminded they can fish for free June 3-4.

 

That is the state’s Free Fishing Weekend, when all residents age 16 and over can fish any North Dakota water without a license. Residents age 15 and under do not need a fishing license at any time of year.

0907grace

 

“It’s a great chance for people who may be new to fishing, to give it a try,” said Greg Power, fisheries chief for the North Dakota Game and Fish Department. “There are lots of diverse, quality fishing opportunities scattered across the state.”

Fishing regulations and information on fishing waters is available on the Game and Fish website at gf.nd.gov, and in the current regulations guide available at license vendor locations.

Have You Read? May ND Outdoors Magazine!

​The 2017 May North Dakota Outdoors magazine is available FREE online right now here.

Outdoors editor Ron Wilson and Game and Fish communications supervisor Craig Bihrle have a great  read Sage Grouse Recovery Effort Underway with some great photographs.

In April, North Dakota Game and Fish personnel moved 60 sage grouse – 40 females and 20 males – from southern Wyoming to Bowman County. To keep tabs on the birds, all were marked with either GPS or VHF radio devices.The big upland birds have a fundamental link to the aromatic plant, big sage. Sagebrush is critical to sage grouse, as they rely on the plant for food for much of the year, cover from weather and predators, and nesting and brood habitat.

The reality, however, is about half of the big sage habitat in North Dakota has vanished from the landscape in the last half-century, but has remained stable for the last decade or more.

North Dakota Outdoors editor Ron Wilson wrote North Dakota’s Shorebird Connection

Of the 50 or so shorebird species that migrate through North America in spring, roughly 36 have ties to North Dakota. The link to this neck of the Northern Plains for the majority is brief, yet vital, as birds touch down to rest and refuel, before pointing their bills north and continuing on.

First Fish Certificate

The North Dakota Game and Fish Department is reminding parents to capture their little angler’s first catch on a specially designed First Fish certificate.

firstfish

First Fish has no qualifying weights or measurements. The only requirement is the successful landing of a North Dakota fish. Certificates are available to all who request them, and have ample room for all the important information, such as name, age, lake and a short fish story, plus a blank space for a photograph big enough to contain the smile of the happiest little angler.

Free certificates are available by contacting the Game and Fish Department at 701-328-6300, or send an email to ndgf@nd.gov.