Board pushing for outfitted wolf trapping in Idaho

Idaho officials are asking the U.S. Forest Service to allow outfitted wolf trapping in the Gem State.

A temporary rule approved by the Outfitters and Guides Licensing Board allows clients to accompany guides on wolf trapping but forbids them from participating.  The rule was approved last month as a move towards allowing outfitters to offer fully guided wolf trapping trips to their clients. However, board members hope to replace that temporary measure with one that allows clients to fully take part.

The board, along with the Idaho Department of Fish and Game, asked the Forest Service last spring to allow outfitters to offer wolf trapping trips, but the agency essentially declined by saying it didn’t have time to consider the request. Agency officials said processing the request would require significant analysis, public involvement and possibly the development of several alternatives.

The new rule allows clients to observe wolf trapping as something incidental to other guided activities such as hunting. It does not allow outfitters to advertise the opportunity for clients to observe trapping or for such trips to be booked.

Wolf trapping season opened Thursday in the Lolo, Selway, Middle Fork hunting zones, and parts of the Dworshak-Elk City, Panhandle and McCall-Weiser zones.

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