Outdoor briefs for Sept. 4, 2016
Meeting to discuss increasing deer populations scheduled for Sept. 19
In an attempt to increase deer populations in two areas of the state, Colorado Parks and Wildlife is proposing a predator management study in each area and is seeking input on the proposals at an upcoming meeting in Denver.
Due to a variety of factors, including habitat fragmentation, disease, development, increased outdoor recreation and predation, mule deer populations remain below desired levels in parts of Colorado.
To reverse the downward trend, CPW continues to implement the agency’s West Slope Mule Deer Strategy, approved by the CPW Commission in 2015 after an extensive public outreach effort in 2014 about declining mule deer populations in Colorado and across the Western United States. The proposals seek to determine how lowering predator density affects mule deer survival and recruitment.
A moderated listening session will be held at the Hunter Education Building, 6060 Broadway, Denver, from 6:30-8:30 p.m. on Sept. 19. Public comments will be accepted to gather as much input as possible during the two-hour meeting.
The meeting will end promptly at 8:30 p.m. and if all comments have not been heard, the public can submit their thoughts to the Commission’s email address.
Colorado Parks and Wildlife’s population objective for mule deer is approximately 560,000 statewide; however, the latest estimate puts the statewide population at just under 450,000.
More information regarding the plans can be found at the following Web sites:
Field Dressing 101 class for big-game hunters scheduled for later this month
Colorado Parks and Wildlife is offering “Field Dressing 101” for big-game hunters. The class will be at the Horsethief Canyon State Wildlife Area at 6:30 p.m. on Sept. 20.
The class is detailed and will include the use of real animals to provide thorough examples of how to properly field dress big game.
Instructors will demonstrate gutting and gutless methods of field processing, quartering, and suggestions for transporting the meat out of the field. Additional topics will include techniques for skinning with taxidermy in mind.
The seminar is offered through the agency’s Hunter Outreach Program. Through workshops, clinics, seminars, and educational hunts, the program appeals to diverse interests, backgrounds and levels of ability, helping novices learn about Colorado’s hunting heritage and traditions.
Registration is required and is limited to the first 40 students who sign up.
Information can be found at http://www.register-ed.com/events/view/87706, or by calling 970-255-6100 to reserve a spot.
Three-day migration watch starts Friday
A three-day migration celebration will begin from 7-8 p.m. on Friday at Ridgway State Park Visitor Center with a program by Coen Dexter and Brenda Wright titled: “So You Think You Know Your Birds.”
This presentation takes audiences on a guided tour of the rich variety of species seen along the Uncompahgre River during the fall and explains how to identify all kinds of birds in Western Colorado.
On Sept. 10-11, participants are invited to gather at 8 a.m. in the park’s visitor center parking area for the annual Ouray County Bird Count. Dexter and Wright will be leading birders of all abilities on a route from Colona to Ironton with stops at key migration sites. Last year 110, species were recorded.
In addition to the bird count, the public is invited to Dallas Creek Banding Station at Ridgway State Park on Saturday. For the past 10 years, birds have been mist netted, recorded, banded and released from this site in cooperation with Colorado Parks and Wildlife, Bird Conservancy of the Rockies, and Black Canyon Audubon Society. Data collected over a two-week period is then used to better understand migration routes and to access the health of bird populations and habitat areas.
Swim beaches at Rifle Gap, Harvey Gap state parks close for season Tuesday
Colorado Parks and Wildlife will close the swim beaches for the season at Rifle Gap State Park and Harvey Gap State Park on Tuesday.
All other activities, including camping, hiking, biking, boating, fishing and wildlife viewing will continue as conditions allow.
At Harvey Gap State Park, there is a boating requirement of 20-horsepower or smaller motor.
More information regarding the conditions of the water or park can be found by calling 970-625-1607, or by visiting the park’s web page.
Controlled burns to run through October
The Grand Mesa, Uncompahgre and Gunnison national forests are planning prescribed burns in nine areas. Most of the prescribed burns will occur in mid to late September and through October, depending upon weather and appropriate ground and vegetation conditions.
The following prescribed burns are planned:
Uncompahgre National Forest: Western Implementation Unit No. 5 Burn: Located about seven miles southeast of Norwood, near the Goodenough Road (NFSR 516). This project will burn about 1,150 acres.
Glencoe Pine Burn-Unit No. 2: Located on the 25 Mesa Road (NFSR 503), approximately 13 miles northeast of Nucla. Approximately 500 acres are planned to burn. This burn lies within hunting unit 61.
25 Mesa: Located south of the 25 Mesa Guard Station off of the 25 Mesa Road (NFSR 503), and 16 miles southwest of Delta. Units are located on either side of the road and a third unit along private land. Approximately 400 acres are planned to burn.
Cottonwood: Located on Dillard Mesa and Iron Spring Mesa, approximately 18 miles southwest of Delta. Two units are planned to burn, totaling about 2,150 acres.
Brushy Ridge: Located off the North Fork Pack Trail near the North Fork of the Escalante, approximately 35 miles southeast of Grand Junction. Approximately 412 acres are planned to burn.
Rocky Pitch-Unit No. 2: Located approximately 23 miles south of Grand Junction. The area is located near Gill Creek and approximately three miles south of Highway 141. Approximately 500 acres will burn.
Gunnison National Forest, Myers Burn: Lies about 30 miles south of Gunnison in the Cochetopa Park area. About 300 acres are planned to be burned.
West Elk Burn: Located about 14 miles west of Gunnison and five miles north of Blue Mesa Reservoir. About 600 acres will be burned.