Outdoors briefly

State park hosts wheelchair hunt

PICK CITY – Lake Sakakawea State Park is holding the 12th annual Wheelchair Hunt Nov. 16-17, said park manager John Tunge.

The hunt, held the second weekend of North Dakota’s deer gun season, allows those confined to a wheelchair due to disability to take to the field. The campground and park will be closed for the weekend to facilitate the hunt. This includes the campgrounds and trail systems. Park staff will be available at the Visitor Center to answer any questions.

Those wanting to participate need to contact the park due to the nature of the hunt and preparations to set up blinds to meet individual needs. Space is limited. Lake Sakakawea State Park is located just north of Pick City.

Advisory board meetings set

Outdoor enthusiasts are invited to attend a North Dakota Game and Fish Department advisory board meeting in their area. These public meetings, held each spring and fall, provide citizens with an opportunity to discuss fish and wildlife issues and ask questions of their district advisors and agency personnel.

The governor appoints eight Game and Fish Department advisors, each representing a multi-county section of the state, to serve as a liaison between the department and public.

District 1

Counties: Divide, McKenzie and Williams

Date: Nov. 25, 7 p.m.

Location: Williston MDU Building

Host: Missouri United Sportsmen

Contact: Wayne Aberle, 770-6902

Advisory board member: Jason Leiseth, Arnegard, 586-3714

District 2

Counties: Bottineau, Burke, McHenry, Mountrail, Pierce, Renville and Ward

Date: Nov. 26, 7 p.m.

Location: Anamoose VFW Club

Host: Anamoose Wildlife Club

Contact: Myron Miller, 465-3631

Advisory board member: Robert Gjellstad, Voltaire, 338-2281

District 3

Counties: Benson, Cavalier, Eddy, Ramsey, Rolette and Towner

Date: Nov. 25, 7 p.m.

Location: Rolette Memorial Hall

Host: Rolette Wildlife Club

Contact: Nathan Casavant, 246-3542

Advisory board member: Tom Rost, Devils Lake, 662-8620

District 7

Counties: Burleigh, Emmons, Grant, Kidder, McLean, Mercer, Morton, Oliver, Sheridan and Sioux

Date: Nov. 26, 7 p.m.

Location: Hazen Golf Course

Host: Hazen Wildlife Club

Contact: Mike Ness, 748-3773

Advisory board member: Frank Kartch, Bismarck, 516-2156

Calling junior stamp artists

Participating in the Junior Duck Stamp Program is a unique opportunity for youth in grades kindergarten through 12 to engage in the outdoors, explore the natural world, and learn about waterfowl and habitat conservation. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is now accepting entries for the 2014 North Dakota Junior Duck Stamp Contest. Entries can be submitted now through March 15, 2014.

This dynamic educational program uses both conservation and design principles to teach wetland habitat and waterfowl biology to youth. The program provides an opportunity for students to artistically express their knowledge of the diversity, interdependence and beauty of wildlife.

Students may submit artwork that features a native North American waterfowl species from the following groups: whistling ducks, swans, geese, brant, dabbling ducks, diving ducks, sea ducks, mergansers, stiff tails or Hawaiian ducks. A full list of permitted species is available online at (fws.gov/juniorduck).

Artwork entries will be judged on the basis of original design, anatomical accuracy, artistic composition and suitability for reproduction on a 1-inch by 1 1/2-inch stamp. Along with the art, a conservation message written by one of the participants will be selected. Five judges from throughout North Dakota will judge the artwork in late March 2014 at Audubon National Wildlife Refuge

Students’ artwork will be judged in four age groups according to grade level: K-3, 4-6, 7-9 and 10-12. Three first-, three second- and three third-place entries, along with 16 honorable mentions, will be selected from each age group. A “Best of Show” from the 12 first-place winners will be selected and submitted to the Federal Duck Stamp Office, and entered into the National Junior Duck Stamp Contest held in April at the National Conservation Training Center in West Virginia.

For additional information or if you have questions regarding your student’s or school’s participation in the Junior Duck Stamp contest, please contact Jackie Jacobson, state coordinator, at 442-5474 ext. 117.

Fall mule deer survey completed

The North Dakota Game and Fish Department’s fall mule deer survey indicated production in 2013 was higher than in 2012.

Biologists counted 1,761 mule deer in the aerial survey in October as compared to 1,224 in 2012. The buck-to-doe ratio of 0.46 is up from 0.37 in 2012 and similar to the long-term average of 0.43 bucks per doe, while the fawn-to-doe ratio of 0.74 was the highest since 2009, but still below the long-term average of 0.91 fawns per doe.

Bruce Stillings, big game supervisor in Dickinson, said the combination of no antlerless harvest and milder winter conditions over much of mule deer range in 2011 and 2012 has provided conditions needed to begin mule deer population recovery in the badlands.

Salmon spawn goal reached

Fisheries crews completed their annual salmon spawning operation on Lake Sakakawea after collecting 1.9 million eggs, easily surpassing their goal of 900,000. Plans for 2014 are to stock Lake Sakakawea with 200,000 salmon.

Chinook salmon begin their spawning run in October. Since salmon cannot naturally reproduce in North Dakota, Game and Fish Department and Garrison Dam National Fish Hatchery personnel collect eggs and transport them to the hatchery. Once the eggs hatch, young salmon spend several months in the hatchery before being stocked in Lake Sakakawea.