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Editorial

Game and Fish


New to Wyoming? Why not take up hunting?


10/01/2011 - If you are a new resident to Wyoming you've probably heard many long-time residents talking about the upcoming hunting seasons and maybe you've decided you would like to try hunting too. But a lot of first-time hunters may not be familiar with the species you can hunt or trap in Wyoming. There are a lot of them, offering opportunities for many different types of hunting.

Big Game Hunters can pursue antelope, mule deer, white-tailed deer, elk, Shiras moose, Rocky

Mountain bighorn sheep and Rocky Mountain goat. While not classified as big game, wild bison can also be hunted.

Furbearers: Badger, beaver, bobcat, marten, mink, muskrat and weasel are classified as furbearers. A furbearer trapping license is required to take these species. They may be taken by trapping or with firearm or archery equipment. Trapping licenses will be issued to a nonresident only if their home state allows Wyoming residents to trap the same species. Nonresident trapping licenses are only available through the Cheyenne office.

Game Birds/Small Game: Bird hunters will find four species of grouse: greater sage grouse, sharp-tailed grouse, ruffed grouse and blue grouse. The state also has chukar and Hungarian (gray) partridge and ring-necked pheasants, as well as Merriam's, Rio Grande and hybrid wild turkeys. Small game includes cottontail rabbits, snowshoe hares and red and fox squirrels.

Predatory Animals: In Wyoming, several species are legally classified as predatory animals. These are coyote, red fox, raccoon, porcupine, skunk, jackrabbit and stray domestic cat. These species may be hunted or trapped without a license and there is no closed season.

Trophy Game: Hunters can pursue two trophy game species in Wyoming: black bear and

mountain lion. Currently there are no open seasons for wolves or grizzly bears in Wyoming, as they are federally protected.

Migratory Game Bird Seasons: Waterfowl (ducks and geese) are found throughout the state in

appropriate habitat. Two flyways, the Central and Pacific, bisect Wyoming, each with separate seasons and bag limits. Snipe and rail are occasionally hunted in Wyoming. There are also seasons for sandhill cranes and mourning doves.

Nongame Wildlife: The level of protection afforded nongame wildlife varies by species in

Wyoming. There is a crow season in Wyoming and no license or stamp is required. More information can be obtained from the Nongame Wildlife Regulation (Chapter 52) found on the WGFD website at http://gf.state.wy.us/admin/Regs/index.asp

Protected Species: In Wyoming, black-footed ferret, fisher, lynx, otter, pika, and wolverine are legally classified as protected animals. All nongame birds - except predacious birds as defined by Wyoming statute and exotic species such as English sparrows, starlings, domestic pigeons and Eurasian collared doves - are also protected. Protected species may not be taken except as provided under state and federal law.

Hunters new to Wyoming must determine their individual state residency status prior to applying for or purchasing a resident license. To qualify for any resident game and fish license, permit, preference point, or tag, a person shall physically reside in Wyoming for one full year and may not claim residency in any other state for any purpose.

For more information about hunting in Wyoming, visit the Game and Fish Department website at: httpHYPERLINK "http://gf.state.wy.us/" ://HYPERLINK "http://gf.state.wy.us/" gfHYPERLINK "http://gf.state.wy.us/" .HYPERLINK "http://gf.state.wy.us/" stateHYPERLINK "http://gf.state.wy.us/" .HYPERLINK "http://gf.state.wy.us/" wyHYPERLINK "http://gf.state.wy.us/" .HYPERLINK "http://gf.state.wy.us/" us.

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