Hunters Vital in Tracking Sage Grouse Data in South Dakota
RAPID CITY, S.D.—South Dakota’s short sage grouse hunting season is accompanied by a vigorous effort to collect data about the birds. That collection effort relies largely on the willingness of hunters to have their birds checked by Game, Fish and Parks.
“Hunters play a key role in helping us collect information about the state’s sage grouse population,” said John Kanta, regional wildlife manager. “The age, gender and harvest location information all go toward helping make the management decisions that will ensure future hunts.”
South Dakota’s limited sage grouse hunting season is open on Sept. 24 and 25. The areas open to hunting include public land in Butte County west of U.S. Highway 85 and on all public lands in Harding County. Private lands, except those leased for public hunting, are not open during this season. Public lands include those managed by the Bureau of Land Management, the U.S. Forest Service, state School and Public Lands and private land leased for public hunting as GFP Walk-In Areas. Shooting hours are sunrise to sunset with a season limit of one sage grouse.
Successful hunters are asked to bring their birds the same day they are taken to one of three check stations located at:
- GFP Regional Office, 3305 W. South St., Rapid City, SD, (605) 394-2391
- Camp Crook General Store and Repair, 102 E. Highway 20, Camp Crook, SD
- Bureau of Land Management, 310 Roundup St., Belle Fourche, SD, (605) 892-7000
“Hunters can also call State Radio and we’ll make arrangements to have the bird checked,” Kanta said. The telephone number of State Radio is (605) 394-8121.