The next meeting of the State of Arizona Livestock Loss Board will be held Wednesday, July 24, 2019, at 1:30 p.m., at the Arizona Game and Fish Department Headquarters, Quail Room, 5000 W. Carefree Highway, Phoenix. The public is welcome to attend. Enter through the front entrance of the headquarters building. The agenda is posted at www.azgfd.com/agency/livestockboard.
The next meeting of the State of Arizona Livestock Loss Board will be held Thursday, Nov. 15, 2018, at 1:30 p.m., at the Arizona Game and Fish Department Headquarters, Quail Room, 5000 W. Carefree Highway, Phoenix. The public is welcome to attend. Please enter through the front entrance of the headquarters building. The agenda is posted at www.azgfd.com/agency/livestockboard.
The next meeting of the State of Arizona Livestock Loss Board will be held Tuesday, Dec. 19, 2017, at 1:30 p.m., at the Arizona Game and Fish Department Headquarters, Quail Room, 5000 W. Carefree Highway, Phoenix. The public is welcome to attend. Please enter through the front entrance of the headquarters building. The agenda is posted at www.azgfd.com/agency/livestockboard.
The next meeting of the Arizona Game and Fish Commission is scheduled for 8 a.m. Friday, March 3, at the International Wildlife Museum, 4800 W. Gates Pass Road, in Tucson.
The meeting agenda is posted at www.azgfd.com/agency/commission/meetingagenda.
The meeting can be attended in person or viewed at /inside_azgfd/CommissionCam.shtml. The meeting also can be viewed via video teleconference from any of the department’s regional offices statewide, except for the regional office in Tucson.
The ability to speak to the commission is not available for those viewing the webcast.
FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. — Did you know that Arizona is visited by over 200 bald eagles during the winter? To learn more about these amazing birds and to see live eagles, the public is invited to attend the Annual Bald Eagle Celebration on Saturday, Feb. 25, at the Willow Bend Environmental Educational Center at 703 E. Sawmill Road in Flagstaff.
Several programs will be offered during this year’s event, which is hosted by the Arizona Game and Fish Department and Willow Bend Environmental Education Center. The cost for the event is $5 per participant for each program or free for Willow Bend Members.
All programs, except field trip, will be held at Willow Bend. The day will also include an opportunity to see live bald eagles up close and a chance to talk with dedicated individuals from Liberty Wildlife Rehabilitation Foundation.
- 8-10 a.m. – “Early Birds” Field Trip: Join current and retired AZ Game and Fish wildlife biologists for an early morning field trip searching for bald eagles and local waterfowl around Lake Mary. Meet at 8 a.m. at AZ Game and Fish Office at 3500 Lake Mary Road. Personal transportation is required and carpooling is encouraged. The field trip will be cancelled if there is inclement weather.
- 10-11 a.m. – “Eaglets” Family Presentation: A family-focused interactive program especially designed for families with young children (ages 4-12 years old). Learn about and view live eagles.
- 11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. – “Fully Fledged” Community Presentation 1: Learn about the incredible bald eagle from an Arizona Game and Fish biologist and view live eagles up close. Presentation is open to all ages. (Please note this is the same presentation as the 1 p.m. session. Please only sign up for one presentation.)
- 1-2 p.m. – “Fully Fledged” Community Presentation 2: Learn about the incredible bald eagle from an Arizona Game and Fish biologist and view live eagles up close. Presentation is open to all ages.
“Educating people about wildlife, conservation and management is a goal for Willow Bend and Arizona Game and Fish,” Willow Bend Director Moran Henn said. “We are very excited to be partnering with Game and Fish and Liberty Wildlife again for this year’s event.”
Those going on the early bird field trip should remember to dress appropriately for weather conditions, and bring binoculars and bird field guidebooks. To register for one of the programs offered or for more information, visit www.willowbendcenter.org.
“Old West” returns to Ben Avery Shooting Facility
PHOENIX — For those who harken back to the days of jingling spurs, the smell of authentic chuck-wagon cooking, and cowboys vying to see who’s the quickest on the trigger, then circle Feb. 20-26 on your calendar.
That’s when Winter Range rides into town, transforming the Ben Avery Shooting Facility into a festive scene from the Old West where more than 1,000 competitors from around the world will take part in the 26th annual Single Action Shooting Society’s national championship of Cowboy Action Shooting.
Cowboy Action Shooting is one of the nation’s fastest-growing shooting sports and requires competitors to take their best shots with single-action revolvers, lever-action rifles and period shotguns. Competitors also must adopt a shooting alias suitable to a character or profession of the late 19th century, a Western movie star or an appropriate character from fiction — names like “Mudflat Mike,” “Goldie Jade” and “May B. Shecann” — and then dress in costume accordingly.
Winter Range will feature period militaria, exhibitions of Western skills and crafts, a fast-draw competition, and vendors purveying period clothing, hats and wigs, antiques, reproductions and more. There also will be roaming balladeers, trick horses and even a visit from Wyatt Earp, the great grand-nephew of his namesake, at noon Feb. 25.
A two-day mounted shooting event is expected to draw 100-plus competitors mounted on horses participating in their own arena Feb. 25-26.
A variety of food services will be available, including chuck-wagon cooking, barbecue and ice cream. Admission to Winter Range is free (parking is $5). BASF is located on Carefree Highway, west of Interstate 17. For more information, visit www.winterrange.com.
Deadline to protect bonus points is 11:59 p.m. (Arizona time) March 16
PHOENIX — For those who didn’t take advantage of the Arizona Game and Fish Department’s innovative new program in “PointGuard” when applying for a 2017 elk or pronghorn hunt permit-tag, there’s good news:
The deadline to purchase the newest benefit for AZGFD customer portal customers, as part of their online application, is 11:59 p.m. (Arizona time) March 16.
PointGuard ensures that if a successful applicant is unable to participate in a hunt for any reason, the accumulated bonus points that were expended to draw that hunt permit-tag will be reinstated. A bonus point is an accumulated credit that authorizes the department to issue an applicant additional computer-generated random numbers during a draw. An applicant accumulates a bonus point each year in which he or she submits a valid application and does not draw a hunt permit-tag.
PointGuard is available to applicants who applied online for a hunt permit-tag. All applicants must sign up for a free AZGFD customer portal account to purchase PointGuard (visit www.azgfd.gov, click on the “Sign in to Account” button in the upper right-hand corner of the home page, then select the “Create an Account” option). PointGuard is $5 per species, per applicant.
For more information about PointGuard, visit /hunting/pointguard, or call (602) 942-3000.
Last trout stocking of the spring season this week
This week will mark the last of nine trout stockings into our core Community Fishing Program waters. Stockings of trout into Green Valley Lakes in Payson will continue every two weeks until the second week of May. It’s highly unlikely that trout can last too far into the warm summer months, so take advantage of the fabulous spring weather and catch yourself a trout before the bite fades into summer.
Catfish to return Thursday, March 23
The spring species switch-over is set to take place this month. Those of you who have been waiting for Mr. Whiskers won’t have to wait much longer. Grab your fishing poles and give it a shot.
Our plan is to have the trucks rolling through our core waters March 23. Try using some baits like anchovies, shrimp, herring, sardines, worms, chicken livers, or other prepared baits. We can’t guarantee the fish will bite coming straight off the truck, but the weather alone is worth wetting a line. Although it’s not “for sure” yet, we’re planning an early “bonus” stocking of catfish into our Expansion waters during the last week of March. Stay tuned for more details. Enjoy!
Department Outdoor Expo Returns March 25-26
The Department is hosting it’s annual Outdoor Expo presented by Shikar Safari Club International, Saturday-Sunday March 25-26. Admission and parking are FREE!
There is plenty of things to see and do for all ages, including two fishing tanks, live wildlife exhibits, and archery and other shooting sports in a safe, supervised, controlled environment on the range.
Get a feel for specialty shooting disciplines like clay target, cowboy action, practical pistol, black powder, and air gun. Check out the many firearms manufacturers. Don’t miss the always popular cowboy mounted shooting competition.
See OHV, ATV, RV and boating exhibits. Give kayaking a try at the “Lake Paddlemore” kayaking pond. Hike a field course and learn cool camping tips. Learn about boating and how to stay safe on the water. Talk to experts about Arizona’s wildlife, fishing, hunting and more.
Visit with more than 150 exhibitors, including outdoor recreation and conservation groups, government agencies, and commercial vendors of outdoor products and services. Concessionaires will have food and beverages available for purchase, and many accept only cash — ATMs will be on site. There is a nominal charge for ammunition at some of the target shooting venues.
Hours are Saturday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
PHOENIX – Nearly 100 desert tortoises will soon awaken from their winter slumber and the Arizona Game and Fish Tortoise Adoption program will be once again be looking for good adoptive
homes. There is no charge to adopt a tortoise.
The desert tortoises up for adoption are a wide range of ages and sizes. AZGFD is accepting applications for those willing to provide a special home. Adoption application packets and general information can be found at www.azgfd.gov/tortoise.
Adopters need to have a securely enclosed yard or separate enclosure in their yard, free from potential hazards such as a dog, fire pit or unfenced pool. The enclosed area must include an appropriate shelter for the tortoise to escape Arizona’s extreme summer and winter temperatures.
All of the desert tortoises eligible for adoption will be given health checkups before going to their new homes. Tortoises are only available for adoption to residents living within the species’ native range, which includes the Phoenix, Bullhead City, Kingman, Prescott, Lake Havasu, Tucson and Yuma areas.
Desert tortoises offer a unique alternative to more traditional family pets and can teach many of the same life lessons to children, including responsibility, compassion and commitment. Contrary to many assumptions, desert tortoises can be interactive and provide companionship without as many demands as a cat or dog.
The Arizona Game and Fish Department recently investigated a fish die-off of thousands of threadfin shad at Apache Lake in the Tonto National Forest. AZGFD collected water samples on Tuesday, Feb. 28 and determined the die-off was caused by a golden alga bloom largely restricted to the riverine portion of Apache below Roosevelt Lake.
Golden alga is not harmful to humans, and therefore Apache Lake remains safe for water activities, including fishing.
“Golden alga thrives on elevated salinity associated with drought conditions,” said Marc Dahlberg, Water Quality Manager at AZGFD. “Therefore, recent heavy rains will hopefully knock down salinity levels and help control golden alga blooms.”
At this point, AZGFD believes the fish kill has been restricted to threadfin shad and a few gizzard shad, both of which are highly sensitive to the toxin produced by golden alga.
The last such fish die-off in this region occurred in 2007, also in upper Apache Lake. However, there were significant fish kills caused by golden alga in Saguaro, Canyon and Apache during the early-to-mid 2000s that affected all fish species.
Fisheries biologists for the Department will continue monitoring water quality and fish health on all Salt River-chain lakes.