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Sage-grouse hunting tags to go on sale August 1

This is the first year sage-grouse hunting tags will be sold in Idaho
Published: Jul. 30, 2021 at 8:42 AM MDT
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TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) — There have been hunting restrictions in place for sage-grouse in the past, but this year, the Idaho Fish and Game is taking another step.

Fish and Game will be offering sage-grouse tags, going on sale August 1., with the season ranging from September 18 through October 31.

“I’m not as aggressive, I guess, a sage-grouse hunter as I would be a mule deer elk hunter, but it seems like it makes it more difficult for the more casual hunter like myself to go hunt sage-grouse,” said Blaine County resident Luke Macdonald.

There has been a strict bag limit on sage-grouse, but there was no limit on how many hunters could populate a certain area.

“It gives us the ability to kind of fine-tune the seasons a little bit and also monitor how many hunters we have in each area,” said Fish and Game Public Information Supervisor Roger Phillips.

This year, sage-grouse numbers increased by 13% throughout Idaho compared to last year, but declined in the northern Magic Valley, according to Fish and Game.

Since 2016, populations are down 48%.

“These things tend to be cyclical, so when we get a few seasons when things kind of are more in our favor, then we can see those populations start bouncing back up,” said Phillips.

While hunters are limited up to two tags depending on the zone, change can happen.

“Give it a few years and let’s see how this works out,” Phillips said.

1,950 tags will be available for 12 different hunting zones.

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