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Thread: Soliciting input on submitting a bowhunting proposal for unit 14A and B

  1. #1

    Default Soliciting input on submitting a bowhunting proposal for unit 14A and B

    I have never done a proposal for fish and game before but I am seriously considering writing one. I love to bow hunt, but some of the reasons I dislike bowhunting for moose locally are the following

    #1) Extremely short season (1 week is pathetic)
    #2) Season is way too early (Hunting in early August hardly feels like hunting to me with the foliage, mosquitoes, heat etc.)

    What I think would be a fair trade off that might be viewed favorably by multiple user groups is the following changes.

    #1) Lengthen the bow season by a month (August 17-31 and September 26-October 10)
    #2) Shorten the rifle season by a week (September 1-25)
    #3) Require a small fee for an archery tag ($5)

    Justification and explanation for the changes

    Change #1) Lengthening the bow season would not have a dramatic impact on the moose population, because there are not as many bow hunters as rifle hunters and the success rate is less than rifle hunters. Lengthening the season would benefit the hunting community by providing a more enjoyable, relaxed season and giving more time in the field to hunters that enjoy a longer season and less traffic.

    Change #2) Shortening the rifle season by a week would reduce the rifle harvest only slightly, thereby offsetting any additional harvest that is attributable to the longer bow season. By taking a week off at the beginning of the season, the rifle hunters would still get to hunt during the prime hunting season and the rut. In other words, they wouldn't be losing out very much at all. Most rifle hunters I know don't hunt that much in August anyhow.

    Change #3) Most serious bowhunters I know would gladly pay a minimal fee to have an extended season. The additional fee could be used for wildlife management (specifically for moose). This would be a win-win for just about everybody. Even fish and game would benefit from the increased revenue. This would be similar to paying for a king salmon stamp for fishermen.

    So what do you guys think? I am seriously considering writing up a proposal for this. I am seeking input on if any changes could or should be made, and how to make this proposal more favorable for rifle hunters. Ideally, I would like this to benefit everybody. The only user group I can see that might have an opposition to this proposal would be the rifle hunters because they lose a week of season. But honestly, I don't think many bulls are harvested in that first week of season.

  2. #2

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    Bowhunting falls right behind my family and good health. I think about it daily, build my own equipment and plan all my hunts thinking about what bow I will build or use. Paying an extra fee is not a game breaker and extended bowhunting opportunities is always a win. But, I think youÂ’ll hit a dead end trying to reduce any rifle seasons. Some bowhunters are also rifle hunters and vise versa. WeÂ’re all hunters and we all need to stick together. We all lose if we are divided. A good example was the action of the NRA several years ago promoting the shortening of archery seasons for the expansion of gun seasons. They were short sided and didnÂ’t consider the number of members who were also bowhunters. They lost a lot of respect and created an unnecessary division among their members like me. I think your best and most productive route would be to highlight the benefits that a longer archery season would provide while minimally reducing harvest numbers in marginal areas or increasing harvest numbers in problem areas where rifle hunting is not practical like near or within city limits. My 2 cents.

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by KCB View Post
    Bowhunting falls right behind my family and good health. I think about it daily, build my own equipment and plan all my hunts thinking about what bow I will build or use. Paying an extra fee is not a game breaker and extended bowhunting opportunities is always a win. But, I think youÂ’ll hit a dead end trying to reduce any rifle seasons. Some bowhunters are also rifle hunters and vise versa. WeÂ’re all hunters and we all need to stick together. We all lose if we are divided. A good example was the action of the NRA several years ago promoting the shortening of archery seasons for the expansion of gun seasons. They were short sided and didnÂ’t consider the number of members who were also bowhunters. They lost a lot of respect and created an unnecessary division among their members like me. I think your best and most productive route would be to highlight the benefits that a longer archery season would provide while minimally reducing harvest numbers in marginal areas or increasing harvest numbers in problem areas where rifle hunting is not practical like near or within city limits. My 2 cents.
    KCB, thanks a lot for your input. That's a great point. I'll have to rethink that. Perhaps instead, Fish and Game can set a quota. Similar to the quota on the Nelchina caribou. And once the quota is reached, the bow season could be shut down by an EO. And I agree, we need to stay united and not divided. I too am a rifle hunter as well as a bow hunter. But 1 week out of 52 is just too darn short for a bow season.

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    I don't hunt in 14 so I don't have any skin in the game for that area. I also don't bow hunt, but I've thought about getting into it at some point, just haven't found the time. Since I am not a bowhunter I don't generally follow any of the bow regulations, is there anything that keeps a hunter from using a bow during the general season or are bows only allowed during bow season? In other words doesn't bow hunting just extend the season for those who use bows?

    All that being said, I don't think taking time away from one group, especially a well established group would go over well. I know it wouldn't go over well in any of the areas I hunt. Going quota like you mentioned might be a good idea but could also shorten the season.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Patsfan54 View Post
    Since I am not a bowhunter I don't generally follow any of the bow regulations, is there anything that keeps a hunter from using a bow during the general season or are bows only allowed during bow season?
    No....a person can bow hunt the whole season if they want. I do believe he just means one week EXTRA time for bow hunters before rifle season opens, is not enough time.

    And I agree...don't shorten rifle season Jack because you want more time alone with your bow. You'll definitely hit a wall with that one....
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  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Patsfan54 View Post
    I don't hunt in 14 so I don't have any skin in the game for that area. I also don't bow hunt, but I've thought about getting into it at some point, just haven't found the time. Since I am not a bowhunter I don't generally follow any of the bow regulations, is there anything that keeps a hunter from using a bow during the general season or are bows only allowed during bow season? In other words doesn't bow hunting just extend the season for those who use bows?

    All that being said, I don't think taking time away from one group, especially a well established group would go over well. I know it wouldn't go over well in any of the areas I hunt. Going quota like you mentioned might be a good idea but could also shorten the season.
    Quote Originally Posted by 4merguide View Post
    No....a person can bow hunt the whole season if they want. I do believe he just means one week EXTRA time for bow hunters before rifle season opens, is not enough time.

    And I agree...don't shorten rifle season Jack because you want more time alone with your bow. You'll definitely hit a wall with that one....
    Roger that. Thanks for the input from both of you.

  7. #7
    Member AKDoug's Avatar
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    The reason the bowhunting season is where it is in Unit 14 is because rifle hunters did not want to give up anything. I was at some of the meetings when they started discussing the current season and the anti-bowhunting crowd showed up in force. You will face the same thing if you try to change anything that we already have. Honestly, I hunt the rifle season with a bow and have no real issues.
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    whats the Bull to Cow ratio? is it above what ADF&G wants? or is it below? they just shortened the season up here in 20B because of the ratio. funny thing is I remember a few proposals asking for a unit 20 Bow season (Sept 20-30) that said a lot of the same things you did. if you can show there is a surplus of animals you may be able to get it passed.

    Good luck!

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    Consider joining the Alaskan Bowhunter Association and propose this to the Board, they may back the proposal for you or even help you fine tune it so that it may be considered at the next BOG.

    That would be my advice.

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    I submitted a proposal to start the bow season later, and it was accepted. Hunting for moose on August 10th was stupid for several reasons. The weather is too warm and when you kill one, you better butcher it right now. It gets daylight at 5am. Bugs. Antlers are still growing, so a bull that isn't legal for bow, might be by the time rifle starts. Permit hunts for other species also start Aug 10th,etc. Starting Aug 20th in Unit 15 is still too early IMO.
    BTW, I have taken 18 moose with my bow. Some were in the rifle season. My first bow killed moose was taken during the first archery only season on the Peninsula. I missed one at the crack of dawn opening day during that season. May have been the first arrow launched in the bow only hunt. There were only 8 archery moose taken that first year. 1985 or thereabouts.
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  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Muche View Post
    Consider joining the Alaskan Bowhunter Association and propose this to the Board, they may back the proposal for you or even help you fine tune it so that it may be considered at the next BOG.

    That would be my advice.
    That is actually a great idea Nick. Thanks.

    Quote Originally Posted by SmokeRoss View Post
    I submitted a proposal to start the bow season later, and it was accepted. Hunting for moose on August 10th was stupid for several reasons. The weather is too warm and when you kill one, you better butcher it right now. It gets daylight at 5am. Bugs. Antlers are still growing, so a bull that isn't legal for bow, might be by the time rifle starts. Permit hunts for other species also start Aug 10th,etc. Starting Aug 20th in Unit 15 is still too early IMO.
    BTW, I have taken 18 moose with my bow. Some were in the rifle season. My first bow killed moose was taken during the first archery only season on the Peninsula. I missed one at the crack of dawn opening day during that season. May have been the first arrow launched in the bow only hunt. There were only 8 archery moose taken that first year. 1985 or thereabouts.
    Good points and comments. Thanks.

  12. #12
    Member Alaska Gray's Avatar
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    ABA has tried for many years to have it moved to later in the season and has failed.
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    An archery hunt in 14C would be great too.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob B View Post
    An archery hunt in 14C would be great too.
    I've always thought that one on the unpopulated side of Eagle River would be great. Maybe open it from Echo Bend down to the confluence with South Fork. There are no people over there, plenty of public land, and it could be hunted via raft. It's not a huge area, so drawing permit would probably be best. There's already a registration black bear archery hunt over there, and there's certainly no shortage of moose.

  15. #15

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    Okay. Thanks for the input everyone. I'm rethinking some of my original suggestions. Mainly I think maybe it was a mistake suggesting reducing the length of the rifle season by a week. So instead, I am thinking about the following seasons and dates.

    Bow season in Units 14A and B: August 10-24
    Rifle season in Units 14A and B: August 25-September 25
    Bow season in Units 14A and B: September 26-October 10

    What do you guys think about those dates?

    Also, maybe a harvest quota should be established for the bow season. What are you thoughts?

    Also, what do you think about the bow tag fee? Should I scrap that idea? If not, how much should the fee be?

    And last but not least, can anyone tell me the procedure for writing a proposal? I've never done it before. Is there a specific way to do it? Is there specific paperwork you have to fill out? Do I need to go into fish and game and get an application?

    Thanks for all your help everyone.

  16. #16
    Member Alaska Gray's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bushwhack Jack View Post
    Okay. Thanks for the input everyone. I'm rethinking some of my original suggestions. Mainly I think maybe it was a mistake suggesting reducing the length of the rifle season by a week. So instead, I am thinking about the following seasons and dates.

    Bow season in Units 14A and B: August 10-24
    Rifle season in Units 14A and B: August 25-September 25
    Bow season in Units 14A and B: September 26-October 10

    What do you guys think about those dates?

    Also, maybe a harvest quota should be established for the bow season. What are you thoughts?

    Also, what do you think about the bow tag fee? Should I scrap that idea? If not, how much should the fee be?

    And last but not least, can anyone tell me the procedure for writing a proposal? I've never done it before. Is there a specific way to do it? Is there specific paperwork you have to fill out? Do I need to go into fish and game and get an application?

    Thanks for all your help everyone.
    I wish you good luck on getting a later season for bow hunters. But from my dealing with the board and all the proposals the ABA has submitted on this issue. It has always fallen on death ears.



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    I got the opening date for archery pushed back in unit 15. August 10th is way too early. The weather is too hot to hang an animal.The antlers are still growing. It now open on the 20th, and even that may be too early. September weather is soo much better. Also permit hunts for many other species starts on the 10th creating a conflict for those who might have drawn sheep or goat permits.
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  18. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alaska Gray View Post
    I wish you good luck on getting a later season for bow hunters. But from my dealing with the board and all the proposals the ABA has submitted on this issue. It has always fallen on death ears.



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    Thanks Alaska Gray. You are probably right, but what the heck, it's worth a shot right? One thing's for sure. Nothing's gonna change if nobody tries.

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    You better be ready to go to the unit14A/B AC meetings to get them too support it. They will see the proposals, have you been to AC meeting? Then you better be ready to go the BOG meeting and testify. I will tell you this I do not support your proposal, maybe you should write a proposal and get some of those cowtags allocated to a archery hunt. Why a bowtag fee? Where is this money going? So I say no to that.. Anyhow there will be major opposition to your potential proposal. go read this yrs proposals look for the ones that were submitted by AC or fish and game, to give you a good idea how to write a good proposal. You will see some and scratch your head. One proposal was written for unit 15 because the kids grandparents havent shot a moose in 6yrs. Do not write a proposal like that. Also if you want to make this fair, If you choose to archery hunt you cannot hunt during the rifle season. Reason why the rifles hunters will say the archery hunters can hunt for almost two months. So you better be ready for a trade off.. also don't say those rifle hunters can start archery hunting. ..

  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by 323 View Post
    You better be ready to go to the unit14A/B AC meetings to get them too support it. They will see the proposals, have you been to AC meeting? Then you better be ready to go the BOG meeting and testify. I will tell you this I do not support your proposal, maybe you should write a proposal and get some of those cowtags allocated to a archery hunt. Why a bowtag fee? Where is this money going? So I say no to that.. Anyhow there will be major opposition to your potential proposal. go read this yrs proposals look for the ones that were submitted by AC or fish and game, to give you a good idea how to write a good proposal. You will see some and scratch your head. One proposal was written for unit 15 because the kids grandparents havent shot a moose in 6yrs. Do not write a proposal like that. Also if you want to make this fair, If you choose to archery hunt you cannot hunt during the rifle season. Reason why the rifles hunters will say the archery hunters can hunt for almost two months. So you better be ready for a trade off.. also don't say those rifle hunters can start archery hunting. ..
    Thanks for the input. I will most definitely take these into consideration.

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