December 31, 2009
CONCORD, N.H. — Be sure to visit the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department booth at several upcoming expos and events catering to outdoor enthusiasts. You’ll have a chance to buy your 2010 New Hampshire hunting and fishing licenses and the 2010 New Hampshire Fish & Wildlife calendar, as well as getting answers to your hunting, fishing and wildlife questions. The new line of Fish and Game logo merchandise, from camo hats to new-design T-shirts and sweatshirts, will be available.
Look for Fish and Game at these exciting winter events:
ROCKINGHAM HUNTING & FISHING EXPO: Saturday and Sunday, January 9-10, 2010, at Rockingham Park in Salem, N.H. This expo features many local and national outdoor products and services. See the New Hampshire record buck. Hunting and fishing seminars by local experts and special scavenger hunt for the kids. For more information, visit http://www.rockinghamexpo.com.
GREAT MEREDITH ROTARY ICE FISHING DERBY: Saturday, January 30; and Sunday, January 31, 2010. The derby brings anglers to New Hampshire from all over the country in hopes of snagging the heaviest Meredith Rotary-tagged rainbow trout and claiming the grand prize. The Meredith Rotary Club, in consultation with the N.H. Fish and Game Department as part of an ongoing fisheries management plan, stocks tagged fish in several New Hampshire lakes for this event. This year’s stocked lakes include Little Squam, Mascoma, Ossipee, Waukewan, Wentworth, Winnipesaukee and Winnisquam. During the derby, N.H. Fish and Game fisheries biologists Don Miller and John Viar will collect valuable fish data at the derby weigh-in. For tickets and information, go to
DERBY HIGHLIGHTS FEATUREING N.H. FISH AND GAME INCLUDE:
* For the fourth consecutive year, the Meredith Rotary Club will kick off the derby by hosting a free ice fishing panel discussion on Friday, January 29, 2010, from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Meredith Community Center on Route 3 in Meredith. Don Miller of the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department; and Licensed guides Adrian Lavoie and Travis Williams will discuss ice fishing tips, techniques and equipment. Light refreshments will be served.
* On Saturday, January 30, 2010, Fish and Game’s “Let’s Go Fishing” program staff and volunteers present a free hands-on clinic for kids and their parents on the basics of ice fishing at derby headquarters, Meredith Bay. Learn how to catch the big one! Sessions run hourly starting at 10 a.m. through 3 p.m. Ice-fishing equipment will be featured, including using tip-ups, sounding the hole and power augers. Then the kids will have a chance to fish!
NEW HAMPSHIRE FARM & FOREST EXPOSITION: Friday, February 5; and Saturday, February 6, 2010, at the Radisson Hotel/Center of New Hampshire in Manchester, NH. Since 1984, “New Hampshire’s Greatest Winter Fair” has offered commercial exhibits, educational sessions, student and exhibitor demonstrations, animals, an auction and activities for attendees of all ages! Special this year is the N.H. Fish and Game Department Wildlife exhibit. Meet Fish and Game staff and learn how to make connections with wildlife in your back yard. For information and directions visit: http://www.nhfarmandforestexpo.org.
TOYOTA EASTERN FISHING & OUTDOOR EXPOSITION: Thursday-Sunday, February 11-14, 2010, at the DCU Center in Worcester, Massachusetts, featuring everything the angler, hunter or outdoorsman could imagine. N.H. Fish and Game’s booth will feature expert information about where, what and how to hunt and fish in New Hampshire, 2010 hunting and fishing licenses, and newly designed merchandise featuring moose, snakes and bears. For hours, directions and admission fees, visit http://www.sportshows.com/worc_main.html.
December 24, 2009
December 23, 2009
CONCORD, N.H. — Based on preliminary deer registration tallies, N.H. hunters harvested 10,390 deer during the 2009 season. This preliminary statewide total kill was down about 5% from the actual 2008 deer kill of 10,916, but is comparable to season results prior to 2006.
Based on these 2009 preliminary registration figures by county (which indicate where deer were registered, not necessarily killed), results were mixed, according to Kent Gustafson, Deer Project Leader for the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department. Read more
December 18, 2009
This is a warning to outdoor users about a potentially deadly biological event that could result from one’s curiosity to poke at and kick through scat from wolves, coyotes and foxes. Of course not everyone knowingly does this but many hunters, trappers and simply the curious, want to know what these animals have been eating.
December 18, 2009
CONCORD, N.H. – Many small lakes and ponds have frozen over, but ice conditions may not be safe, New Hampshire Fish and Game Department officials warned today.
“The ice may look inviting, but the best assumption to make is that no ice in the state is safe at this time,” said Major Tim Acerno of Fish and Game Law Enforcement. “The holiday season is upon us and we’re all anxious to start enjoying winter sports, but the Department urges everyone to be patient and wait for better conditions. Any adventures on the ice could be dangerous.”
As the temperatures continue to fall in coming weeks, and the ice begins to thicken, assess ice safety before you go out by using an ice chisel or axe to chop a hole in the ice to determine its thickness and condition. Continue to do this as you get further out on to the ice, because the thickness of the ice will not be uniform all over the waterbody.
Though all ice is potentially dangerous, the Cold Region Research Laboratory in Hanover, N.H., offers a “rule of thumb” on ice thickness: There should be a minimum of six inches of hard ice before individual foot travel, and eight to ten inches of hard ice for snow machine or ATV (All Terrain Vehicle) travel. Keep in mind that it is possible for ice to be thick, but not strong, because of varying weather conditions. Weak ice is formed when warming trends break down ice, then the slushy surface re-freezes. Be especially careful of areas with current, such as inlets, outlets and spring holes, where the ice can be dangerously thin.
Tips for staying safe on the ice include:
* Stay off the ice along the shoreline if it is cracked or squishy. Don’t go on the ice during thaws.
* Watch out for thin, clear or honeycombed ice. Dark snow and ice may also indicate weak spots.
* Small bodies of water tend to freeze thicker. Rivers and lakes are more prone to wind, currents and wave action that weaken ice.
* Don’t gather in large groups on the ice.
* Don’t drive large vehicles onto the ice.
* If you do break through the ice, don’t panic. Move or swim back to where you fell in, where you know the ice was solid. Lay both arms on the unbroken ice and kick hard. This will help lift your body onto the ice. A set of ice picks can aid you in a self-rescue (wear them around your neck or put them in an easily accessible pocket). Once out of the water, roll away from the hole until you reach solid ice.
Ice safety is just as important for snowmobilers. “Better conditions are coming, but even then, be sure to check local conditions before heading out on snowmobile trails or on the ice. Don’t assume a trail is safe just because it’s there!” says Acerno. “Ask about trail conditions at local snowmobile clubs or sporting goods shops before you go.”
To download a brochure from Fish and Game called “Safety on Ice – Tips for Anglers,” visit http://www.wildnh.com.
December 17, 2009
CONCORD, N.H. – Check out the newest free podcast from New Hampshire Fish and Game to get in the mood for some serious ice fishing this winter. Fisheries biologist Ben Nugent and Sandy Falicon, Fish and Game’s Rules and Legislative Coordinator, talk about their passion for ice fishing with host Judy Stokes. Nugent shares some inside information about big trout that have been stocked recently in select waterbodies.
Saltwater anglers won’t want to miss the second feature of the podcast, in which Marine Division Chief Doug Grout explains the new National Saltwater Registry that takes effect January 1, 2010, and why it is critical that you register at http://www.CountMyFish.noaa.gov after January 1.
Anyone with a computer can listen in on the Radio Diner Podcast. Just go to http://blog.wildnh.com or find it on the New Hampshire Fish and Game website at http://www.wildnh.com/Media.
Fish and Game Radio Diner podcasts feature seasonal topics, ranging from hunting and fishing forecasts, outdoor tips and strategies, wildlife watching destinations, and the latest news and research from the field to help outdoor users better plan their time outdoors. Past podcasts are also available on the blog.
Podcasts are web-based radio programs that can be played on your computer, or downloaded for listening on an iPod or other mobile device.
The New Hampshire Fish and Game Department is the guardian of the state’s fish, wildlife and marine resources and their habitats.
December 17, 2009
CONCORD, N.H. — As of today, you can buy your New Hampshire fishing and hunting licenses for 2010. Get yours and be set for a WILD year of outdoor adventure, from ice fishing this winter to bagging your deer next fall. Licenses are good for the calendar year, from January 1 through December 31, 2010. Purchase online at http://www.WildNH.com, at Fish and Game headquarters in Concord or from more than 250 license agents statewide.
Your hunting or fishing license — or, best of all, your “combo” license — is your year-round ticket to New Hampshire’s great outdoors. For state residents, an annual fishing license is $35; the basic hunting license is $24.50; and a combination (hunting and fishing) license is $48.50. For nonresidents, annual fishing licenses are $53; hunting licenses, $105.50; and the combo license is $143.50. Residents can buy a one-day fishing license for $10. Nonresidents can opt for one-, three- or seven-day fishing licenses.
There are just two fee changes for 2010, affecting the pheasant license and an Internet transaction fee. For 2010, pheasant hunting licenses are $26 for both residents and nonresidents (previously $16). This fee increase was recommended with the input of hunters and was necessary to ensure that the same number of pheasants can be stocked.
Those buying 2010 licenses online will be charged a $3 Internet transaction fee, similar to fees incurred with online purchases of tickets or campsites. This fee offsets the cost of maintaining the online licensing site. The Internet transaction fee will not apply to over-the-counter purchases at local license agents or Fish and Game headquarters.
“Online license purchasers may wish to consider buying all their 2010 licenses in one transaction, rather than at different times during the year, to avoid multiple transaction fees,” said Fish and Game Licensing Supervisor Sue Perry.
2009 licenses are no longer available through the online purchasing site, however, they may still be bought at license agents or Fish and Game headquarters.
When you get your license, pick up a copy of the new 2010 New Hampshire Freshwater Fishing Digest, hot off the press and also available online at http://www.wildnh.com/Fishing/fishing.htm. You’ll find fishing rules, color photos for identifying fish and much more. The Digest has a whole new look this year – bigger, brighter and more readable. Additional advertising support makes the new format more cost-effective for Fish and Game.
For hunters and anglers concerned about maintaining access to pursue their sports, the $10 Wildlife Legacy donation (a check-off on the multiform license) provides an opportunity to support Fish and Game’s Landowner Relations Program, which works in partnership with hunters, anglers and landowners to maintain hunting and fishing access to private lands. Learn more at http://www.wildnh.com/Inside_FandG/Wildlife_Legacy_Initiative.htm.
Fishing and hunting license fees directly support wildlife and fisheries management, law enforcement and conservation education in New Hampshire. The only Fish and Game Department program that receives any General Fund support is the Nongame and Endangered Wildlife Program, which gets a small matching grant from the state. Therefore, license sales are critical to support the programs and management people have come to expect. For a link to online license sales and a list of local license agents, visit New Hampshire Fish and Game’s website at http://www.wildnh.com.
December 16, 2009
CONCORD, N.H. – A bald eagle injured by gunshot in Millsfield, N.H., in late October was successfully rehabilitated and released into the wild near the Androscoggin River on December 15. The immature bird had sustained a fractured wing and other injuries.
The eagle was released near the inlet canal to Brookfield Renewable Power’s Pontook Hydroelectric facility in Dummer, N.H., which is adjacent to Millsfield and part of the same watershed. Several bald eagles congregate at the Pontook Reservoir during the winter months, so the young bird will have nearby role models to help it find food at this time of year.
“When we learned that releasing the eagle from this location was going to give it the best chance in the wild, we agreed without a moment’s thought,” said Paul Guay, Maintenance Supervisor for Brookfield, which owns and operates ten hydroelectric facilities along the Androscoggin River and maintains a regional office in Berlin, N.H. “Brookfield collaborated with New Hampshire Audubon and local wildlife agencies in the past to successfully relocate an active osprey nest containing two eggs from our substation in Dummer, and we are glad to be a part of another important event that helps local wildlife.”
“The rehabilitator says the bird is ready to go, and eagles winter in New Hampshire,” said Chris Martin of N.H. Audubon, explaining that minimizing the bird’s length of time in captivity will help its chances for survival in the wild.
The eagle was restored to health by Licensed Wildlife Rehabilitator Maria Colby at the Wings of Dawn facility in Henniker, N.H. The day before its release, Colby assisted Audubon biologists in placing federal and color identification bands on the eagle.
New Hampshire Fish and Game Department conservation officers and special agents of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service are conducting a joint investigation into the shooting incident. To date, officials have not found the person responsible for the shooting, but the investigation remains open.
“Our wildlife agencies are still at work looking for evidence to find the perpetrator,” said Sgt. Wayne Saunders of N.H. Fish and Game Law Enforcement. “We remain hopeful that they can find the person responsible for this crime.”
Anyone with information should call the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department Operation Game Thief 24-hour hotline at: 1-800-344-4262, or report online anytime at http://www.HuntNH.com/OGT. Callers may remain anonymous.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is offering a reward of up to $2,500 to the person or people who provide information leading to a conviction under the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act. In addition to the Eagle Act, state laws and the federal Migratory Bird Treaty Act protect bald eagles. Until 2007, bald eagles were also protected under the Endangered Species Act.
The shooting incident occurred in October 2009 off the Millsfield Loop Road in Wildlife Management Area B, in Millsfield, N.H. Local sportsmen discovered the injured bald eagle and notified the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department. N.H. Fish and Game wildlife biologists Andrew Timmins and Will Staats captured the wounded eagle and delivered it to the wildlife rehabilitator for treatment in October, and assisted with the eagle’s release this week.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service works with others to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. We are both a leader and a trusted partner in fish and wildlife conservation, known for our scientific excellence, stewardship of lands and natural resources, dedicated professionals, and commitment to public service. For more information about our work and the people who make it happen, visit http://www.fws.gov.
New Hampshire Audubon, a non-profit membership organization, is dedicated to the conservation of wildlife and habitat throughout the state. Audubon’s conservation scientists collaborate with New Hampshire Fish and Game’s Nongame and Endangered Wildlife Program to monitor and manage the state’s population of bald eagles. For more information about New Hampshire Audubon, visit http://www.nhaudubon.org.
The New Hampshire Fish and Game Department is the guardian of the state’s fish, wildlife and marine resources and their habitats. Visit http://www.wildnh.com.
December 10, 2009
CONCORD, N.H. — The holiday season is an important time to extend thanks to landowners who share their land with you.
“As another year of hunting and fishing adventures comes to a close, be sure to let landowners know you appreciate their allowing access to hunt and fish on their property,” says Charles Miner Jr., Landowner Relations Program Administrator for the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department. “In many cases, their generosity makes these experiences possible.”
Keep these guidelines in mind when thanking those who allow access their property for outdoor recreation:
* Be thoughtful and personal in expressing your appreciation, always treating the landowner as you would like to be treated. If you are mentoring a young hunter or angler, include the youngster in the process of thanking the landowner.
* Visit the landowner at the end of the season to express your appreciation in person; if possible, provide them with some of your harvest.
* Offer to assist with tasks around their property that they may need help with.
* Send a personal note or holiday card to the landowner, thanking them for the opportunity to access their land.
* Help them protect their property through documenting and reporting suspicious activities.
* Offer to walk their property to identify, clean up and properly dispose of any illegal dumping that has occurred.
* As a token of your appreciation, you may wish to give a small gift — a gift certificate to a local restaurant, or something from Fish and Game’s line of official merchandise, such as a 2010 N.H. Fish & Wildlife calendar, available online at http://www.shopwildnh.com.
“Hunting and fishing are New Hampshire traditions that will only continue if we all follow the basic principles of being a good neighbor,” Miner said. “Take a few moments to reflect on our hunting and fishing traditions, the importance of access to private lands in maintaining these traditions, and what you can do in the coming year to ensure that these traditions will available for future generations.”
Fish and Game’s Landowner Relations Program, funded through private contributions, works in partnership with landowners, hunters and anglers to identify problems landowners experience in providing access and work proactively to address them. Find out more about the program at http://wildnh.com/landshare.
You can contribute to the Landowner Relations Program by making a Wildlife Legacy donation when purchasing your license, or visit http://wildnh.com/landshare for a print-and-mail donation form. Your support will help to provide access for present and future generations of hunters and anglers.
For more information or to volunteer with the N.H. Fish and Game’s Landowner Relations Program, please contact Charles Miner Jr. at 603-271-3511 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The New Hampshire Fish and Game Department is the guardian of the state’s fish, wildlife and marine resources and their habitats. Visit http://www.WildNH.com.