Check Nuisance Species Off Your List

By Doug Leier, NDG&F Dept. Traveling isn’t much of an obstacle these days when it comes to a good day of walleye fishing. The past couple of years, the combination of lower fuel and transportation costs along with good walleye, pike, panfish and bass fishing expectations, means more anglers than ever are apt to wet…

Go Online for Deer Lottery

By Doug Leier, NDG&F Dept. With North Dakota’s deer gun season license application deadline fast approaching, it’s a good time for a reminder to prospective hunters that the fastest and easiest way through the process is online via the state Game and Fish Department’s website. This is especially true for people who are eligible for…

Boat Ramp Courtesy is a Must

With the Memorial Day weekend underway, the North Dakota Game and Fish Department (NDG&F) reminds boaters to be patient, courteous and ready when launching or removing boats at the many launches in the state. North Dakota boaters are reminded to exercise patience and plan accordingly when heading to a lake or river this summer. The NDG&F receives…

Early Season Muskie Advice

By Nick Simonson While the true muskie hunters are already fishing the handful of muskie lakes in North Dakota, the eyes of many die-hards will shift eastward in the coming days for the Minnesota Muskie Opener on Sat. June 3. With that date circled on their calendar, many are wondering what baits they’ll offer up…

Shorebirds a Spring Highlight in ND

By Doug Leier, NDG&F Dept. North Dakota’s prairie potholes get a lot justifiable credit for their role in helping sustain the continent’s waterfowl populations. What we don’t often hear about is the equally important role that prairie wetlands play in the life cycle of more than 30 shorebird species that either pass through in spring…

2016 Early Canada Goose Harvest Tallied

NDG&F Press Release For the sixth consecutive year, North Dakota early Canada goose season hunters bagged more than 36,000 birds, according to a recent harvest estimate released by the state Game and Fish Department. This is the combined harvest from the August Canada goose management take, and the September Canada goose hunting season. While the…

It’s Important to Protect ND Waters

NDG&F Press Release Outdoor water recreationists are gearing up for another season on the open water. With that in mind, boaters and anglers are once again reminded to help prevent the introduction and spread of aquatic nuisance species in North Dakota. State Game and Fish Department ANS coordinator Jessica Howell said as other states continue…

First Mature Sturgeon Found in Red River Basin

By Nick Simonson   Twenty years ago, a collection of biologists and fisheries scientists set out to reestablish a population of lake sturgeon in the Red River basin straddling the North Dakota-Minnesota border; just this week members of the cooperative group began seeing their vision, which started with the stocking of fish two decades ago,…

Paint It Black – Springtime Crappie Colors

By Nick Simonson   With the first green leaves starting the spring canopy above the lake shore, our boat glided over the shallow stretch of mud bottom along a backwater lobe just off of the main lake.  Through the glare-cutting view provided by a pair of polarized sunglasses, it was tough to miss the schools…

Leave Baby Animals Alone

The North Dakota Game and Fish Department emphasizes a simple message to well-intentioned humans who want to pick up and rescue what appear to be orphaned baby animals this time of year – don’t touch them. Whether it is a young fawn, duckling, cottontail rabbit or a songbird, it is better to just leave them…

54,500 Deer Firearm Licenses Available in 2017

NDG&F Press Release North Dakota’s 2017 deer season is set with 54,500 licenses available to hunters this fall, 5,500 more than last year. The number of licenses available for 2017 includes 2,750 for antlered mule deer, an increase of 200 from last year; 1,022 for muzzleloader, an increase of 94 from last year; and 245…

Bighorn History & Status

By Doug Leier, NDG&F Dept To understand the current North Dakota bighorn sheep population, it’s a good idea to try to understand the past. And really it’s a past highlighted by a “who’s who” in Midwest wildlife documentation. Writings describing these majestic bighorn sheep were first recorded by the Lewis and Clark expedition in 1805…

Paddlefish Snagging Opens May 1

NDG&F Press Release North Dakota’s paddlefish snagging season opens May 1 and is scheduled to continue through the end of May. However, depending on the overall harvest, an early in-season closure may occur with a 24-hour notice issued by the state Game and Fish Department. Although there are no regulation changes from last year, snaggers…

Mule Deer Survey Complete

NDG&F Press Release The North Dakota Game and Fish Department completed its annual spring mule deer survey in April, and results indicate western North Dakota’s mule deer population has increased 16 percent from last year. Biologists counted 3,349 mule deer in 306.3 square miles during this year’s survey. Overall mule deer density in the badlands…

Fishing the Whole Year ‘Round

By Doug Leier, NDG&F Dept. Every year about this time, after the ice leaves North Dakota lakes and game fish like northern pike and walleye go through their annual effort to spawn, the Game and Fish Department fields a fair number of questions about the state’s year-round fishing season. In my experience, the questions are…

2017 Spring Waters Report Issued

NDG&F Press Release Just in time for the height of spring fishing, the NDG&F Department has released its spring waters report.  Options abound more than ever as North Dakota now has more than 420 fishing waters that have public access and some degree of management by state Game and Fish Department biologists. The state is…

Whooping Cranes a Rare Sight in ND

By Doug Leier, NDG&F Dept. I’ve lived in North Dakota my entire life and worked for the state Game and Fish Department my entire full-time natural resources career. I’ve lived and worked near Long Lake National Wildlife Refuge near Moffit and Lostwood National Wildlife Refuge north of Stanley.   Those facts alone would make it…

ND Sportsmen Find Busy Spring

By Doug Leier, NDG&F Dept. Over the past six weeks or so, North Dakota has had a lot going on that relates to hunting, fishing, trapping and conservation that isn’t always tied in directly with fishing on frozen water or hunting the first flocks spring snow geese in frozen fields. Since it’s a legislative year,…

Report Bald Eagle Nests

NDG&F Press Release The State Game and Fish Department is asking for help in locating bald eagle nests in North Dakota. Game and Fish conservation biologist Sandra Johnson said the department is looking for locations of nests with eagles present, not individual eagle sightings. Eagles are actively incubating eggs in March and April, and it’s…

New ND Law Bumps Pheasant Opener Up

NDG&F Press Release A new law passed by the North Dakota Legislature will result in the State Game and Fish Department to propose Oct. 7 as opening day of the 2017 pheasant hunting season, one week earlier than what the department earlier announced. Senate Bill 2318, signed into law March 14, requires North Dakota’s pheasant…

New Licenses Required Apr. 1

NDG&F Dept. Press Release North Dakota anglers, spring light goose hunters and trappers are reminded that new licenses for the 2017-18 season are required starting April 1. Anglers and hunters can purchase new licenses  beginning March 15 at the North Dakota Game and Fish Department website, gf.nd.gov, and at more than 140 vendor locations throughout…

A Moose for Dad

By Doug Leier, NDG&F Dept. My dad is proof of a couple different truths held when it comes to big game hunting in North Dakota. You don’t get drawn for a license if you don’t apply, and if you do apply, make sure you are prepared for the hunt in all aspects. Pretty fundamental. In…