State will host wildlife input session Thursday
February 18, 2014
EAGLE — Colorado Parks and Wildlife hosts public meetings every five years to gather comments about the state's big-game hunting season structure. This time around, local hunters won't have to travel far to participate.
Colorado Parks and Wildlife will host one of its regional big-game hunting structure meetings in Eagle on Thursday from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Eagle County Fairgrounds old exhibit hall.
Bill Andree, district wildlife manager for Colorado Parks and Wildlife, said Thursday's meeting is the public's opportunity to comment about issues including preference point policy, youth limits, "totally limited" elk hunting units, the number of seasons for each species, the overlap of different season, breaks between seasons, and beginning and ending season dates.
MEETINGS THROUGHOUT STATE
Andree noted that Colorado Parks and Wildlife will host 16 meetings at locations throughout the state.
"Usually, there are fairly low attended," he said, "but Eagle usually has good attendance."
He noted that locally strong attendance is important for two reasons. First, better numbers means that Eagle is more likely to be chosen for other Colorado Parks and Wildlife statewide meetings. Second, comments generated at a well-attended meeting generate more consideration. Andree pointed to the Governor's Auction and Governor's Raffle deer hunt program as an example.
These special programs offer very limited hunting tags and after comment gleaned through a public meeting in Eagle, the rules were altered.
"There was comment from the local group that those hunts continued into December, which is not the right time to be tracking deer," said Andree. As a result, the cut off date for the two specialty hunts is Nov. 30.
Input will be collected for the hunting season structure for all of Colorado's big game seasons including elk, deer, moose, mountain lion, bear and pronghorn.
"It is important we get a good attendance. We want to get public input and this is the way to give it," said Andree.