The Arizona Game and Fish Commission has approved the fall big-game hunts for deer, turkey, javelina, bighorn sheep, buffalo, bear and mountain lion.
The hunt application deadline is 7 p.m. June 12. Postmarks do not count.
Hunters can start applying for the permitted fall big-game hunts this week, once the 2007-2008 Hunting and Trapping Regulation booklet is posted on the department’s Web site at www.azgfd.gov.
License dealers in the state should have the printed regulation booklets by the third week of this month. The online hunt application process is available, but hunters can still choose to submit a paper application, if they desire.
LAKE MARY SLATED FOR DAY-USE FEES
Starting Friday, the Mormon Lake Ranger District in the Coconino National Forest will begin charging fees to use the facilities at Upper and Lower Lake Mary and the Narrows. The fees will be used to pay for maintenance of amenities offered at these popular recreation sites, according to district ranger Gene Waldrip.
The Day-Use Concessionaire Fee will be $5 per day per vehicle from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Friday, and from dawn to dusk on weekends. The fee will be required during the highest-use season, generally mid-April through mid-October. For more information, visit www.coconinoforest.us.
The Arizona Game and Fish Department is seeking public comment on draft plans that will guide how the agency manages wildlife, outdoor recreational opportunities and its own detailed operations for the next two years.
The draft operational plans identify the approaches the department will take to implement key management programs, including game, nongame, sportfish, off-highway vehicle, watercraft and business administration, as well as support functions such as public information and education, law enforcement, shooting sports, habitat, research, and watchable wildlife. The department develops new operational plans every two years.
The draft documents are posted for review on the department’s Web site at www.azgfd.gov along with Wildlife 2012, the strategic plan that went into effect in January.
The local public meeting will be held from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Monday at the Arizona Game and Fish Department regional office, 7200 E. University Drive, in Mesa and will include a presentation on the planning process and an overview of operational plan highlights, and public comments will be accepted.
Written comments can also be submitted anytime through May 31 by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org, or by mail to Wildlife Plan, c/o Funds & Planning, Arizona Game and Fish Department, 2221 W. Greenway Road, Phoenix, 85023-4399.
Fishing hot spot
Big Lake: As usual, it is tough to beat Big Lake, unless the wind is blowing. Quite simply, Big has the most diversity of trout — rainbows, brooks, cuts and Apaches. At 450 surface acres, it is the largest of the pure trout lakes in the state, and one of the highest in elevation, too. The store is now open and boat rentals are available. The swallows have probably returned, or will shortly. People who visit this area of spruce and mixed conifers for the first time are astounded it is in arid Arizona. This is no put-and-take trout lake; the trout you catch here will be wild-like.
CONTACT WRITER: P.O. Box 859, Mesa, AZ 85211 or email@example.com