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Mountain lion management plan available for review

South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks (GFP) currently has the draft revision of the mountain lion management plan available for review and public comment. The public comment period will run through Aug. 26.

GFP will also be holding an open house regarding mountain lion management on Thursday from 7-8:30 p.m. at the Outdoor Campus West in Rapid City. Staff will provide a short presentation, followed by breakout sessions for attendees to learn more about the plan and share their opinions.

Sign up for prairie dog control programs ends today

The South Dakota departments of Game, Fish and Parks (GFP) and Agriculture (SDDA) want to remind South Dakota producers to register for assistance regarding prairie dog encroachment. The deadline for enrollment is today.

The state’s prairie dog control program is cooperatively operated by the GFP and SDDA.GFP manages encroachment issues for prairie dogs that move from public lands to adjacent private lands. SDDA manages complaints between private landowners.

“GFP will control prairie dogs that have encroached onto private land from nearby public land,” said GFP wildlife damage program administrator, Keith Fisk. “Landowners who have encroachment problems on their property from adjacent public land must be within one mile of the public land and have at least 10 acres of actual prairie dog colonies to be eligible for assistance.”

Landowners must register online or by calling 605.773.5913 and request assistance with unwanted prairie dogs before Aug. 15, 2019. Once eligibility is verified, GFP staff or a department representative will begin control measures on the private land.

Landowners who are experiencing encroachment from adjoining private land should contact the SDDA. If the colony is encroaching from private land, a signed written complaint must be completed in one of two ways.

1. The affected landowner must sign a letter of complaint and mail it to the local county’s Weed and Pest Board.

2. The landowner must submit a formal written complaint to the SDDA, as well as mail a copy to the neighboring landowner. Landowners can find the form on the SDDA’s website, sdda.sd.gov, or by calling the SDDA at 605.773.3796. Notices of private land encroachment may be sent to the SDDA throughout the year.

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The South Dakota Prairie Dog Management Plan is also available online gfp.sd.gov/management-plans.

Wolf Extravaganza to be held Saturday

The Black Hills Regional Multiple Use Coalition (BHRMUC) will host a Wolf Extravaganza on Saturday from 3 to 5:30 p.m., at the High Plains Western Heritage Center in Spearfish.

 This event is free of charge and will be a panel discussion with experts on the subject and who have experience in management and/or living with wolves. Panelists will each provide a presentation and then take questions as a group.

“With the ever-looming threat of wolves distinguishing permanent residence in the Black Hills and surrounding areas, we want to do what we can to help educate folks about what that could look like,” said Hugh Thompson BHRMUC chairman.

Panel experts include:

Jim Beers, a retired US Fish & Wildlife Service Wildlife Biologist, special agent, refuge manager, wetlands biologist and congressional fellow; Keith Fisk, from the South Dakota Game Fish and Parks Wildlife Damage Program Administrator stationed in Pierre and Scott Becker, a northern Rocky Mountain wolf coordinator for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and is stationed in Lander, Wyoming. 

The Black Hills Regional Multiple Use Coalition (BHRMUC) is comprised of representatives from over 30 organizations who depend on natural resources from public lands for their livelihood, recreational opportunities, and well-being. The mission of BHRMUC is to promote wise, fair and sustainable use of our nation’s public lands.

Hill City Archery tourney set

The sixth annual Hill City Archery Tournament will be held Aug. 24 at the Deerfield Wilderness Area.

Registration and breakfast is at 8 a.m. There is a $25 registration fee. Call (218) 590-3591 for more information.

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