Daily Archives: August 26, 2015

Fishing participation rate holding steady says survey

 

From The Fishing Wire

 

Forty-six million Americans, or 15.8 percent of the U.S. population ages six and older, participated in fishing last year according to the 2015 Special Report on Fishing released by the Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation (RBFF) at the International Convention of Allied Sportfishing Trades show (ICAST) in Orlando, Fla. Produced in partnership with the Outdoor Foundation, the report details the state of fishing participation throughout the country in 2014, offering detailed information on participation by gender, age, ethnicity, income, education and geographic region. “We are pleased with the findings of this report, including the 2.4 million newcomers who tried fishing for the first time in 2014,” said RBFF President and CEO, Frank Peterson. “Fishing remains a popular outdoor activity and with increasing numbers of newcomers, we look to growing overall participation in the future, securing critical support for state conservation efforts.” Now in its seventh year, the report provides a comprehensive look at overall trends in participation. The report also looks into barriers, motivating factors and preferences of key groups while also identifying opportunities for engaging new audiences. As both foundations look to tap into the growing youth and Hispanic populations, special attention is paid to these segments of the U.S. population in the report. “Recreational fishing is an essential piece of America’s outdoor tradition, often leading children to a love of the outdoors and a healthy, active lifestyle,” said Chris Fanning, executive director of the Outdoor Foundation. “We hope this report will help the fishing industry – and the entire outdoor industry – engage young fishing participants and ultimately create the next generation of passionate outdoor enthusiasts.” REPORT KEY FINDINGS:

  • Outdoor Activity – Among adult outdoor participants, fishing is the second most popular outdoor activity
  • Newcomers – More than 2.4 million people, had their very first fishing experience in 2014
  • Women anglers – Over 47% of first-time fishing participants are female
  • Social – Nearly 82% of fishing trips involve more than one person
  • Youth – Fishing participation as a child has a powerful effect on future participation – more than 85% of adult anglers fished as a child, before the age of 12
  • Future Participants – Almost 4.3 million youth (11%) would like to try fishing, a growth opportunity for the industry
  • Number of outings for Hispanic participants – Hispanic Americans fishing participants average 25.8 days on the water per year; over six days more than the average for all fishing participants (19.4 days)
  • Spontaneous – 81% of fishing trips are spontaneous or planned within a week of the trip
  • Motivation – Spending time with family and friends continue to be the largest reason to participate in fishing, specifically, 72.2% for ages 6-12 and 66.8% for ages 13-17

 

To download the report, as well as an infographic detailing the top findings, visit the Take Me Fishing Resource Center.

Glen Elder Wildlife Area to host youth dove hunt

 

The Osborne County Chapter of Pheasants Forever (PF) and the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism (KDWPT) invite young hunters to participate in an opening-weekend dove hunt. The hunt will take place early morning on Saturday, September 5, on the Glen Elder Wildlife Area. Participants can expect to enjoy plenty of shooting action as the birds flock to grain fields for morning feeding.

 

The hunt will be open to youth ages 10 to 16 with limited dove hunting experience. Kids who have not hunted before will be given preference to participate. Only youngsters will be hunting, and each hunter will have at least one adult mentor at their side to assist them. All hunters must be strong enough to handle their guns in a safe manner.

 

A managed crop field on the lake property will be reserved exclusively for this event. Hunters will meet before sunrise on the morning of the hunt at the Glen Elder Wildlife Area shop in Cawker City to organize and be paired up with adult mentors before heading to the field. After the hunt is finished, all participants will enjoy a free lunch where stories of the morning’s hunt can be re-lived and shared.

 

Hunters must pre-register by calling the Glen Elder Area Office at (785) 545-3345, between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday – Friday. Registration deadline is Tuesday, September 1. Spots are limited, so hunters are encouraged to register early.

 

Some shotguns will be available for kids without one, and non-toxic 12 and 20 gauge shotgun shells will be provided. Hunters age 16 must have a hunting license and Harvest Information Program permit prior to hunting.

 

For more information, or to assist with this event, contact Glen Elder area manager Chris Lecuyer at (785) 545-3345 or Pheasant Forever member John Cockerham at (785) 346-6527.

 

New report: Clean Power Plan key to protect drinking water, wildlife habitat

 

America’s waterways are already being stressed by climate change and President Obama’s Clean Power Plan is urgently needed to protect them, according to a new report by the National Wildlife Federation. Wildlife in Hot Water: America’s Waterways and Climate Change takes a comprehensive look at the science connecting global warming with changes to our lakes, rivers, streams and oceans like warmer water and more extreme weather, detailing impacts on the fish, wildlife and communities that depend on them.

 

“Hunters, anglers and outdoor enthusiasts are experiencing firsthand how climate impacts are threatening wildlife from coast to coast — fueling warming water in trout and salmon runs, toxic algae in Lake Erie and Florida, record droughts in Texas, California and Florida, and extreme storms along the East Coast,” said Collin O’Mara, president and chief executive officer of the National Wildlife Federation. “The Clean Power Plan’s flexible, achievable, science-based rules represent real progress for protecting fish, wildlife and America’s outdoor heritage from the worst impacts of climate change.”

 

Wildlife in Hot Water provides concrete examples of the bodies of waters that are suffering due to climate change, worsening wildlife habitat and threatening the drinking water for millions of Americans:

  • Toxic Algae Outbreaks: Lake Erie is once again suffering toxic algae outbreaks this summer fueled by increasing runoff from extreme weather events and warming water, one year after an outbreak shut down drinking water to nearly half a million people. To the west, scientists are directly connecting the dots between a massive, wildlife-killing Pacific algae outbreak and record-breaking warm water.
  • Warming Water and Drought: The Pacific Northwest’s salmon have been pushed to the brink by low water flows and warm temperatures, with the Yellowstone River’s trout also stressed. “As much as drought across the West is stressing people, it’s even more devastating for fish and wildlife, which can’t plan ahead or get water from far-away places,” says Doug Inkley, NWF senior scientist and lead author of the report. “They need our help.”
  • Habitat Loss: Among the most productive habitats on Earth, coastal wetlands and estuaries are now threatened with the rise of sea levels, more intense and frequent coastal storms and altered runoff. In the central U.S., land loss and drought are threatening the “prairie pothole” region (Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota and Iowa). More than 300 migratory bird species nest or migrate through this area, facing the challenge of finding suitable areas to nest and feed.

 

“I have been forced to close Montana’s finest cold water fisheries to protect trout from excessive water temperatures and catastrophically low water flows. Climate change affects our family’s business and threatens one of the most sustainable, unique parts of Montana’s economy,” said Dan Vermillion, a fly-fishing guide and chair of Montana’s Fish and Wildlife Commission. Vermillion took President Obama fly-fishing in 2009.

Equally importantly, it threatens one of the most important gifts we can give our children — cold, bountiful waters traversing valleys of healthy forests and grasslands. We must address the changing climate before it is too late. Future generations deserve nothing less.”

 

The first five months of 2015 were the hottest on record, on pace to surpass 2014’s record year. A recent study published in the journal Nature finds an increasingly visible link between global warming and extreme weather, with warmer temperatures adding fuel to superstorms like Sandy.

 

Wildlife in Hot Water details the steps needed to confront climate change and protect our waterways:

  1. Support the Clean Power Plan. President Obama’s Clean Power Plan sets first-ever national limits on carbon pollution from power plants. “The Clean Power Plan’s flexible, achievable and science-based approach represent real progress for protecting wildlife and America’s outdoor heritage from the worst impacts of climate change,” said O’Mara.
  2. Say no to new dirty energy projects. Oil, gas and coal development destroy, degrade, pollute and fragment habitat. Science is telling us that we must slow and stop the expansion of new dirty energy reserves—such as the massive coal fields in North America and the tar sands in Canada—which threaten important habitat and would lock in more carbon pollution for decades to come.
  3. Expand clean, wildlife-friendly energy and improve energy efficiency. Wind (on land and offshore), solar, sustainable bioenergy and geothermal energy can help protect wildlife, habitat and our water from climate change.
  4. Maintain fully restored Clean Water Act protections. In addition to curbing carbon pollution, the Environmental Protection Agency recently finalized a new rule restoring Clean Water Act protections to at least 60 percent of America’s streams and 20 million acres of wetlands nationwide.

 

The National Wildlife Federation has issued a series of detailed reports on how climate change is hurting America’s wildlife and outdoor heritage:

 

 

Read the full report at NWF.org/WildlifeInHotWater and visit the National Wildlife Federation media center at NWF.org/News.

Kansas Wild Turkey Federation to host JAKES Camp

 

The National Wild Turkey Federation (NWTF) will hold its 2015 Kansas State JAKES Camp September 12-13. The event is open to youth 17 and younger and will be conducted at White Memorial Camp, 6 miles north of Council Grove, off Highway K-177.  On Saturday, youth can enjoy up to six activities, including fishing, arts and crafts, JAKES Take Aim BB gun shooting, disc golf, trap shooting, still target shooting, archery, canoeing, flint knapping, and turkey calling with three time World Champion Steve Stoltz. On Saturday evening, JAKES members can participate in the annual NWTF Kansas State JAKES (youth aged 12 and under) and Xtreme JAKES (youth aged 13 to 17) Turkey Calling Contest. Prizes will be awarded to the top three callers in each division. After the contest, Stoltz will entertain the group with his turkey hunting stories and adventures.

 

On Sunday, Pastor Gary Cargill will start the day with a sunrise service. Other activities include a presentation by Milford Nature Center staff and a predator calling demonstration with Knight & Hale pro staffer Mick Bowman.

 

The cost of the event is $20 for JAKES members, $30 for non-JAKES members (which includes a JAKES membership), and $20 for adults. Attendees may tent camp onsite (bring your own tent) Saturday night or may commute both days. For an additional fee, participants can stay in a resident cabin, which includes bunk beds and shared bath. Boys and girls will have separate cabins. There are also a few RV hookups. The camp fee includes lunch and supper on Saturday and breakfast on Sunday. Meals will be prepared by the White Memorial Camp kitchen staff. All youth will receive a commemorative tee shirt and win a prize in a drawing at the end of the event on Sunday.

 

The NWTF is a conservation organization dedicated to conserving wild turkeys, their habitat and our hunting heritage. JAKES, or Juniors Acquiring Knowledge, Ethics and Sportsmanship, is a program designed to get youth involved in conservation and hunting.

 

The NWTF Kansas State JAKES Camp was awarded the “Best State JAKES Event” in 2012, the “Best Special JAKES Event” in 2013 at the NWTF National Convention in Nashville, Tennessee.

 

For more information or to receive a registration form, contact Gib Rhodes at 620-437-2012.

 

Fishing and hunting fees discussed

 

During the Workshop portion of the Kansas Wildlife, Parks and Tourism Commission’s August public meeting in Great Bend, commissioners heard a proposal from department staff to raise fees for hunting and fishing licenses. The proposal outlined fee history, revenue needs and compared proposed fees with those of surrounding states.

 

The Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism (KDWPT) has not increased hunting and fishing license fees since 2002, and fees for deer and . Spending has remained constant, but the uncommitted portion of the Wildlife Fee Fund has begun to shrink. A healthy Wildlife Fee Fund with an uncommitted balance is important for cash flow at certain times of the year and ensures that excise taxes on hunting and fishing equipment allotted to the state through the Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration program can be captured.

 

KDWPT staff outlined the programs that need continued funding to provide quality hunting and fishing opportunities and ensure wildlife and important habitats are conserved. Priority programs include: Walk–In Hunting Access – leases more than 1 million acres of private land for public hunting access, more than tripling the amount of land open to hunting; FISH – leases private ponds and streams for angling access; Community Fisheries Assistance Program – enhances fishing opportunities on community-owned lakes and pays to remove any angler fees; the Pass It On and Aquatic Education programs – provide hunting, fishing and outdoor experiences to thousands of youth annually; and private land programs – assist landowners to improve wildlife habitat with economically feasible methods. There are also day-to-day operations that require funding, including law enforcement, four state fish hatcheries that produce 100 million sport fish annually, managing wildlife and habitat on more than 350,000 acres of federal and state land, and managing sport fisheries on 24 federal reservoirs, 44 state fishing lakes and more than 200 community lakes.

 

The fee proposal also includes recommendations for value-added options with substantial savings. For example, resident hunters and anglers currently pay $18 for a fishing or hunting license and $36 for an annual combination license. The proposed fee for a general resident hunting or fishing license is $25, but the proposal also includes an annual fish/hunt combination license for $45 and an early-buy combination for $40 if purchased before March 1. The proposed early-buy combo license would be just $4 more than what current combo license buyers are paying.

 

Other value-added licenses being recommended include 5-year hunting and fishing licenses. The recommended price for a five-year fishing or hunting license is $100, a savings of $25. The price for a five-year combination hunting/fishing license would be $180, which is a $70 savings and equal to what hunters are paying currently for combination licenses over a five-year period.

 

Other recommended fee increases include: nonresident hunting license from $70 to $95; nonresident deer permit from $315 to $415; nonresident spring turkey permit from $30 to $60; general resident deer permits from $30 to $40; and resident turkey permits from $20 to $25. A complete listing of all proposed fee changes can be downloaded from www.ksoutdoors.com, by clicking on “Commission,” “Pending Draft Regulations,” and then “October 22, 2015 60-day Notice.” The fees changes are included in K.A.R. 115-2-1.