Wyoming Hunting News

Sentences Handed Down in Antelope Torture Case
Samuel Hartman, was convicted July 1, 2002 in Carbon County Circuit Court of wanton destruction of an antelope, cruelty to animals and taking game birds without a license. He was assessed $1,410 in fines and restitution and had his hunting and fishing privileges suspended for nine years. Judge Wade Waldrip sentenced him to 10 days in jail and two years supervised probation, during which time he cannot possess a firearm or commit any law violation.
Drought Stressing Wildlife
Much of Wyoming is facing a third year of severe drought conditions and the fifth year of below average moisture. Green River Wildlife Biologist Tom Christiansen expects the "typical" hunter success in most antelope areas across southwest Wyoming. However, the proportion of "trophy" bucks will probably be lower than average due to continued drought conditions. "Horn growth is related to body condition and body condition relies on nutritional forage, which is reduced during periods of drought," says Christiansen. "Lower fawn production in many areas has caused license numbers to remain generally conservative."
Hunting and Fishing Heritage Expo
As in past years, two of the nearly 20,000 outdoor lovers attending Hunting and Fishing Heritage Expo will be crowned winners of the Wyoming Youth Hunter Challenge. But there are a couple new Expo activities, where everyone is a winner: The Shooter's Pentathlon and personal wing-shooting instruction. Youngsters 10 to 18 years old can earn the pentathlon certificate, by pulling the trigger or string on a pellet gun, .22 rifle, shotgun, muzzleloader and bow and arrow. "The pentathlon was designed to introduce youngsters to the shooting sports in a non-competitive atmosphere," said Helen McCracken, Game and Fish hunter education coordinator.
Poaching Conviction
A stop poaching tip last November led to the recent conviction of a Shoshoni farm family for poaching a 5-by-4 mule deer buck near Missouri Valley. Nathaniel Medow, 18, was charged with knowingly taking a buck mule deer during a closed season, also known as the "winter range statute." His parents, Robert and Sheila Medow were charged with accessory to knowingly taking a buck mule deer during a closed season.
Resident Elk, Deer, and Antelope Applications
It's time for resident hunters to plan their fall. Applications for limited quota elk, deer and antelope licenses must be received at the Wyoming Game and Fish Department's Cheyenne office by 5 p.m. May 31. Tom Rowe, the G&F's license draw manager, encourages hunters to apply early in the application period. "That way if there's something missing or that needs clarified on your application, we have plenty time to contact you," he said.
G&F Big Game Survey
Hunters are alerted that they could be getting a phone call from April 15 to May 15 asking their opinion on how hard-to-draw elk, deer and antelope licenses should be issued in Wyoming. The Game and Fish Department has commissioned the survey to contact around 1,200 hunters who applied in the drawing for these species. The survey is asking hunters their feelings about preference point, premium price, waiting periods or Internet application systems for hunt areas that are difficult to draw.
Big Game Trophy Survey
Around 2,400 Wyoming hunters will be surveyed in March to find out how much money they spent on their moose, bighorn sheep, mountain lion, black bear, bison and mountain goat hunts, reports Chris Burkett, strategic management coordinator for the Game and Fish Department. "We just want hunters to know if they get a phone call saying 'This is the Game and Fish and would you answer a few questions about how much you spent on your hunt,' that it is legitimate," Burkett said of the survey which is also contacting trappers. The information provides an estimate of how much money the species, and hunting in general, contributes to the Wyoming economy.
Legislation May Establish Wildlife Legacy Trust
A growing number of challenges facing Wyoming's wildlife has convinced Rep. Fred Parady, R-Rock Springs, to introduce a bill in the upcoming session of the Wyoming Legislature to help meet the financial demands of wildlife management. Parady's bill, HB-102, would establish the Wildlife Legacy Trust, a trust fund whose interest would be used to help fund defined wildlife demands in the Cowboy State. Wolf and grizzly management is expected to tax current funding sources in the next few years.
Applications Begin, Apply Early
Because of the complications of the anthrax mail terrorism and hoaxes, the Game and Fish Department (GFD) is urging hunters to apply early this year. Nonresident elk hunters and all limited quota spring turkey and bison hunters must have their applications to the GFD's Cheyenne office by 5 PM Jan. 31. The deadline for both resident and nonresident moose, bighorn sheep and mountain goat applications is Feb. 28 and nonresident deer and antelope is March 15.
Big Game in Tough Shape
A second year of drought in the state is pushing big game forage to, in some places, 10% of average. The lack of forage has caused fat reserves on most animals to be well below normal prompting one wildlife manager to note "...most big game will be vulnerable to starvation this year especially if the winter is severe...". The article notes which regions of the state are hardest hit and pockets that are relatively well off.