Archive for Elk

Idaho, Montana seek OK for hunting of wolves

The Associated Press

State officials sought Tuesday to revive gray wolf hunts in the Northern Rockies, even as they entered talks with environmentalists whose lawsuit restored the endangered status of the animals. On Tuesday, Montana asked the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to commit by Sept. 10 to the state’s plan for “conservation hunts” beginning this fall.

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Gray Wolf Survey

Gray Wolf Survey

A federal judge ruled that gray wolves in Montana and Idaho must be given the same protections under the Federal Endangered Species Act as their cousins in Wyoming. Do you agree or disagree with the courts decision?

Knives: How to choose which is right for you!

All hunters know that a quality hunting knife is worth its weight in gold. It is a vital piece of equipment that must not be over-looked. A quality hunting knife is normally heavier [though not always] in weight than a traditional kitchen knife and usually come equipped with a sheath or pouch to carry it. Most hunters will carry a combination of knives afield as blade shape plays a vital role when field dressing an animal.

To determine which knife is correct for you, we must begin with the type of hunting you will engage in. A knife suitable for cleaning a rabbit may not as easily dress out an Elk. I personally carry along a kit [one of many offered] by Outdoor Edge.  It contains all the blades necessary for game preparation.

Once we determine what species we will hunt, we consider the blade design needed to field-dress the animal. For example, a moose will not only require a “caping” blade to make surgical incisions, but will also require a “deep-bellied skinning knife equipped with gut hook” and also a “bone saw” or “cleaver” for quartering the carcass. Remember, when decision making, that the knife needed afield may not be the knife needed at home when preparing the “quarters” for final packaging and storing. While it is possible, a “caping” knife is hardly suitable for “boning/filleting” or a “skinning” knife considered acceptable for “carving” roasts, when a butcher’s knife is the wiser choice. Plan to purchase knives for both afield and for home preparation.

In addition to the design of the blade, the butcher should consider the entire knife’s design as well. The knife should be well balanced for easy wielding and the handle should be made to fit the hunter’s hand. The tang should run the full length of the knife, including through the handle. Other style knives are double edged stabbing design. Gut hook knives for “zipper-like” hide separation. As well as assorted Bowie, skinning, and drop point knives. A good hunter identifies the type of knife that best fits their needs and uses them correctly.

The hunting knife comes in many shapes and sizes and can be useful in variety of jobs. When buying a hunting knife, the hunter must choose the one that best fits the needs of a hunting excursion. They are important pieces of gear that should accompany every outdoorsman into the wild.

Federal Court ruling being appealed in Idaho

The Idaho Fish and Game Commission passed a resolution Monday finding fault with the Federal Courts decision to restore protection of Wolves in the states of Idaho & Montana. Idaho F&G says it will “pursue all legal options to restore state authority” over management of the states Wolf population.

The Commission wants Governor Otter to “secure a pact with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service that establishes Idaho as the lead manager of wolves”. The Commission intends to “seek a [Wolf] hunting season through the Endangered Species Act process” despite the recent ruling and hopes to have it in place before this fall. A combined total of 258 Wolves were harvested last season between the two states. Because the future hunting season is now in question, Idaho has begun returning money to hunters who purchased and did not use their Wolf tags.

Mondays Commission meeting returned a “unanimous” vote in favor of appealing the Federal Courts decision. The case will be brought before the “Ninth Circuit – U. S. Court of Appeals”. The basis of the appeal is that Judge Molloy’s re-listing of Wolves is “contrary to state management of wildlife, the intent and purpose of the Endangered Species Act and the clear biological recovery of wolves”.

The Wolves were re-introduced into the Rocky Mountain region in 1995 with a “recovery goal” of at least 300 Wolves. The Fish and Wildlife Service estimates there were 1,706 wolves in the region by the end of 2009, including 843 in Idaho.

Wolves are being blamed for eating too many big game species such as Elk & Bison in Idaho, and management efforts could significantly reduce this predation.

In North Central Idaho, the Commission plans to seek permission to reduce the pack by nearly 100 animals in an effort to provide struggling Elk herds a chance at expansion.

Wolf advocates claim the Commissions resolution was predictable but unhelpful to resolving how best to manage and protect the predators. Advocates claim “there seems to be an almost 100 percent focus on winning the conflict as opposed to resolving it.”

Do you know your tracks?

How well do you know the tracks left behind by the species you covet? Check out the article by “Kevin Wilson – Author and freelance outdoors writer and professional big game & waterfowl guide/outfitter from Alberta, Canada”.

Read it!