FIELD REPORTS Winter Stresses Game; Wildlife Areas Closed

The Spokesman-Review (Spokane, WA), February 5, 2017 | Go to article overview

FIELD REPORTS Winter Stresses Game; Wildlife Areas Closed


WINTER STRESSES GAME; WILDLIFE AREAS CLOSED

WILDLIFE - Two southeastern Washington wildlife areas totaling 11,000 acres are closed to public access through April to prevent human disturbance to deer and elk struggling through the worst winter conditions in years.

Fish and Wildlife officials on Friday closed the 4-O Ranch and Grouse Flats wildlife areas in Asotin County to all use.

Motorized travel on county maintained roads through the areas is allowed, and the land between the Grande Ronde River and Grande Ronde River Road remains open for fishing access.

Wildlife Area Manager Bob Dice and Paul Wik, wildlife biologist, report the worst winter conditions in the Grande Ronde River drainage in 20 years, with bitter cold and snow measured in feet.

"Deer and elk observed in this area have physical signs of undernourishment, including exposed hip bones and eating shrub bark," Wik said.

"We've already seen a few dead animals with no signs of predation. We need to restrict any disturbance to these animals to boost their chances of survival."

Portions of several other Eastern Washington wildlife areas have temporary closures to protect wintering wildlife from disturbance, and in some cases to keep animals like elk from damaging adjacent private lands.

LAKE ROOSEVELT SEEKS PUBLIC FEEDBACK

PARKS - Lake Roosevelt National Recreation Area staff will discuss proposed outdoor recreation opportunities during a meeting on Monday at 6 p.m. at the Center for Clinical Research and Simulation building, 412 E. Spokane Falls Blvd.

Proposals include a disc golf course, traditional and 3-D archery ranges, a mountain bike course, trail system expansion and a Kettle River Water Trail for non-motorized watercraft.

TRAIL PLAN APPROVED FOR MICA PEAK

PARKS - A Mica Peak Trail Plan has been approved for the 911-acre conservation area and Spokane County Parks and Recreation planners say work could begin this summer. …

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FIELD REPORTS Winter Stresses Game; Wildlife Areas Closed
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