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GFP Commission Holds May Meeting





PIERRE, S.D.–The South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks (GFP) Commission held their May meeting at the Custer State Park Event Barn on May 5-6.

 FINALIZATIONS

Waterfowl Seasons

The Commission finalized several waterfowl seasons. Some of the highlighted proposed changes to these seasons are:

  • To include mergansers in the daily duck limit bag. Previously, mergansers had separate bag limits.
  • Remove restriction for nonresident hunters in the counties of Beadle, Brookings, Hanson, Kingsbury, Lake, Lincoln, McCook, Miner, Moody, Sanborn, Turner, Union, and Minnehaha counties for the early fall Canada goose hunting season.

License Allocation

The Commission removed the requirement for unlimited access permits for archery, muzzleloader, mentor, youth, and apprentice deer license holders to hunt certain deer hunting units and public lands.

They will also limit the number of archery access permits for Unit WRD-27L to no more than 20 "any deer" access permits for residents and no more than 5 "any deer" access permits for nonresidents.

State Migratory Bird Certification

The Commission voted to separate the state migratory bird certification permit from the nonresident spring snow goose, nonresident early fall Canada goose licenses, nonresident 3-day licenses, nonresident youth waterfowl licenses and decreased applicable license fees by $5 each.

Indian Springs/Antelope Lake

The Commission voted to change the date and area requirements where no shooting or fishing from a boat is allowed on Indian Springs and added Antelope Lake in Clark County from Oct. 10 - Dec. 31 to Oct. 20 - Dec. 31.

For more information on these finalizations, visit gfp.sd.gov/commission/information/.

WILDLIFE PROPOSALS 

The commission also has several new proposals. To view them in their entirety, visit gfp.sd.gov/commission/information/. 

Turkey Hunting Recruitment Licenses

The Commission continued their discussion on the proposal to establish 10 Turkey Hunting Recruitment licenses to be used statewide with the exception of Custer State Park. The benefit of a statewide license includes increasing the areas that can be hunted as not all counties or units have a spring turkey hunting season.

These licenses would be eligible for non-governmental organizations (NGO) that promote wildlife conservation and the recruitment, retention, and reactivation of hunters. Up to two licenses could be allocated to an individual NGO.

A mentored youth turkey recruitment license sponsored by an NGO would be available to those youth 15 years of age and younger that do not already possess any type of spring turkey hunting license. The sponsoring NGO would cover the cost of the $5 mentor tag, while assisting the youth through the licensing process.

Fall Turkey Hunting Season

The commission proposed the 2022 and 2023 fall turkey hunting seasons. Proposed season dates would be November 1 – January 31. 200 resident and 16 nonresident single tag “any turkey” licenses would be available for the Black Hills and 1,700 single tag and 50 double tag “any turkey” resident licenses and 72 single and 4 double tag “any turkey” nonresident licenses would be available for the prairie units.

Archery and Muzzleloader Deer

The commission proposed adjust administrative rule and would allow for 1 “antlerless whitetail deer” muzzleloader or archery deer license in only those units that offer firearm antlerless deer licenses. This proposal would also exclude Custer State Park from the archery and muzzleloader deer hunting seasons.

CWD Regulations

The Commission proposed a clean up of administrative rule, clarifying that wildlife processors have to dispose of all cervids (deer and elk) in approved permitted landfills or with a waste management provider.

Sage Grouse Hunting Season

The Commission voted to keep the sage grouse hunting season closed for 2022. Lek counts of male sage grouse in Harding and Butte Counties were at 173. For a season to be proposed, a count of 300 or more male sage grouse must be counted for consecutive years.

Mourning Dove Season

The Commission proposed to allow for mourning dove hunting at Shadehill State Recreation Area in Perkins County. This would provide additional hunting opportunities without compromising the objectives and services provided of the recreation area.

Firearm and Archery Antelope Hunting Seasons

The Commission proposed the 2022 and 23 antelope hunting seasons with dates of

October 1-16, 2022 and September 30 – October 15, 2023. Tag numbers will be proposed at the June meeting. 

The Commission also proposed the 2022 and 23 archery antelope hunting seasons with no changes. This season is set with season dates of August 20 – October 31, 2022 (closed during firearm season) and August 19 – October 31, 2023 (closed during firearm season)

Custer State Park Bison Hunts

The Commission proposed no changes to the Trophy and Non-Trophy Custer State Park Bison Hunting Seasons. This season is set with 8 trophy bison licenses and 15 non-trophy licenses available.

Public Comments Currently Being Accepted 

If you would like to comment on any of these proposals, visit gfp.sd.gov/forms/positions. Comments can also be mailed to 523 E. Capitol Ave Pierre, SD

To hear the discussion on these proposals, audio from the meeting is available through South Dakota Public Broadcasting and will soon be available on the GFP website as part of the meeting archive

To see these proposals in their entirety, visit gfp.sd.gov/commission/information.

To be included in the public record and to be considered by the commission, comments must include a full name and city of residence and be submitted by 11:59 p.m. on May 30.

The next GFP Commission meeting will be held June 2-3 in Aberdeen.