EP 71: Mule Deer Recovery with Ryan Benson of Big Game Forever. In this episode of The Epic Outdoors Podcast we sit down with Ryan Benson, President of Big Game Forever. We discuss the Mule Deer Recovery Act in Utah as well as many other important issues in conservation. We talk about the battles in Congress to gain control over our wildlife issues. Game management and conservation is something that we all need to play a part in.

Disclaimer: this text was produced through an automated transcription service likely contains errors. Please listen to the original audio for exact content.

00:00:01:11 –> 00:00:05:05
We’ve had grizzly bears in the town of Cody. We’ve had grizzly bears in the town of dubois.

00:00:05:24 –> 00:00:08:05
We just need to manage ’em. We’d like to hunt elk too, right?

00:00:08:05 –> 00:00:12:15
There’s science that indicate that there’s up to 1200 bears in the ecosystem.

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Anything to do with Western big games.

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To the Epic Outdoors Podcast, powered by Under Armour.

00:00:21:24 –> 00:01:35:08
Hey everybody, Jason Carter and Adam Bronson here with the Epic Outdoors Podcast coming at you from here in southern Utah, Cedar City. So anyway, got a really exciting podcast, one that Adam and I have really looked forward to, to doing a lot of excitement around Wyoming Grizzlies. And so anyway, that’s what this podcast will be about today. Before we get started, we do wanna thank Under Armour and their support for all of us here at Epic Outdoors, as well as hunters in general. They’re cranking in the hunting industry and got a lot of new products coming out. Some of you might’ve seen some of the new YouTube clips that we did as far as the 2018 products that’ll be out later on this summer. So anyway, a lot of fun. Check that out. And we, again, we appreciate them as well as all of our supporters. So Epic Outdoors is a company where we concentrate on hunting information for the Western us, Canada, Alaska, Mexico. So we do produce a monthly magazine from Dim December through June, and then bimonthly the remainder of the year when we’re all out in the field. So anyway, it’s nine issues a year. It’s a hundred dollars and that is for the magazine as well as being able to call in and get hunting advice, consulting, whatever, whether it be tags, hunts, whatever you need as far as Western big game hunting.

00:01:35:23 –> 00:02:29:17
Yeah, and it’s a different magazine. It’s a research based thorough, you know, draw application strategy based magazine. So a lot goes into it. You’ll have a lot of detailed information on drawing odds, harvest statistics, the best units, the mediocre units, the easiest to draw units. However, whatever that fits your personal application strategy, we go through that. Then, like Jason talked about, we’re here at the phone all application season, which is basically January through May, and strategizing with members and, and how to use your points, giving our input. If you have questions, if you need an outfitter, we help represent Hunts for the best outfitters in the various units throughout the Western US too. If you draw a tag in yourself, guided, we have an Epic member experience database that we can send to you of other members that have hunted that same unit in the past. So anything that we can do to help you get on and have better and more successful Western big game hunts.

00:02:29:27 –> 00:03:27:13
We also have a full service license application service. This is for guys that just don’t have the time to apply themselves. So while the basis of our business is draws throughout the west and obtaining tags, whether it be landowner tags or guaranteed tags through outfitters, we also have a license application service. And this is, you know, where we apply guys throughout all the Western states for big game species and acquire points, tags and what have you. So anyway, that is an additional service above and beyond the a hundred dollars and it’s per state basis with a $500 cap. You cannot spend more than $500 with us in our license application service. And that’s doing every species throughout all Western states. And so anyway, for more information, you can go to epic outdoors.com. You can get on there, feel free to give us a call. There’s some sample magazines on there, as well as some different tabs where you can see what the different services are that we offer here at Epic Outdoors. We’ve got on the phone with us, Adam, we’ve got Brian Svic, I think that’s how you pronounce, is that right, Brian?

00:03:27:29 –> 00:03:28:25
That’s right, yeah.

00:03:29:16 –> 00:03:30:00
Who is

00:03:30:02 –> 00:03:31:00
Norwegian? Yeah,

00:03:31:06 –> 00:03:45:08
Right on. Right on. Who is the chief game warden? Not only a game warden, but the chief game warden of Wyoming, as well as the Chief of the Wildlife Division on with us. So anyway, Brian, maybe just kind of introduce yourself to us here.

00:03:45:15 –> 00:04:15:16
Hey, you bet. Thanks Jason. I appreciate it. Glad to have the opportunity to talk to your audience about something that certainly consumes a lot of my time, but has a lot of my interest as well. And that’s, that’s grizzly bears. We’re very fortunate in Wyoming to have a, a very robust and healthy population of grizzly bears and they’re certainly an an icon of remote wild back country. And, and so yeah, I’m looking forward to the time we’re gonna have here today.

00:04:15:24 –> 00:04:56:01
Speaking of Wyoming, they do have a super tag drawing where you can apply online super tag tickets are $10 each per species, or you could do the trifecta for $30. So anyway, it’s in addition to the regular application procedure, the deadline to apply for these super tags, it’s July 2nd, 2018. So anyway, we do wanna encourage everybody. We have personal friends and clients here at Epic Outdoors that have drawn these, including the trifecta, so it does work. You can go online, wgf.w.gov/epic outdoors to apply online. So anyway, make sure you go online, get applied by July 2nd. Just another opportunity to get an awesome tag in Wyoming.

00:04:56:17 –> 00:05:25:11
Tell us about, obviously you’re wearing two big hats, it sounds like to me. I, I worked for Utah Division of my life for about five years, and, and I know in Utah at least, those two roles that you’re in right now are two separate people. So maybe that’s a big head of all wildlife division as well as all the game wardens in the state. That’s a, that you don’t get there by putting in six months with the state. You’ve been there for a while, I assume. So tell us a little bit about your involvement with the agency and how you got to where you’re at.

00:05:25:25 –> 00:06:53:28
You bet. So I, I can tell you that while all my decisions when I was a young Ladd were not always good, and my judgment wasn’t the best, I did make a couple of really good decisions. One was to marry my wife and the other one was to, to sign on with the Wyoming Game and Fish department. And I’ve done that, been with the department now for 23 years and, and I’ve been in the position that I’m in now for about seven. And the, in Wyoming, it’s a, it’s unique because our game wardens are actually, they are multi-purpose jack of all trades kind of game wardens. So they actually spend only about a third of their time focused specifically on law enforcement. And they also have a responsibility for about a third of their time to spend on, on wildlife management type activities. And then, you know, the other things, public education as well as dealing with wildlife conflicts is another pretty big part of their job. But, but because of that, and because Wyoming has a over a hundred year history of that, that type of a position, historically, the, the job that I hold as the chief game warden has responsibility for, for all wildlife management in the state. So it’s a great opportunity. It is at times, you know, a lot of responsibility, but it is a, I think it fits really well for the Wyoming model. And yeah, I I, I wouldn’t change a thing. I think it, it works really well.

00:06:53:29 –> 00:07:18:10
Well, that’s pretty awesome. You got, you got the same guys enforcing the law as well as guys that are, you know, intimately involved in the management side where, you know, a lot of states have, you know, guys that enforce the law and then you have separate biologists that don’t necessarily wear a gun and a badge all day long. So very, very interesting take, which is also good. ’cause you know, guys are kind of vested, you know, they manage it and then they protect it. So kind of awesome.

00:07:18:25 –> 00:07:53:16
Absolutely. And you know, we do, we do have a hell of a, of a, a cadre of biologists as well, and they’re all, you know, within my purview as well, but, you know, separate roles, but in a lot of ways, similar roles. And so literally you have, and our biologists spend time in the field interacting with hunters as well as our game wardens do. And, and so you have the same folks that are interacting with hunters and enforcing the laws as the folks that are setting seasons and collecting biological information. And for Wyoming’s public, it works really well.

00:07:53:23 –> 00:08:38:04
Utah used to be like that years and years ago, and they’ve kind of gone to the segregated roles, but that’s, that’s unique and, and I appreciate that background. Sounds like you’ve got a a, a bunch of history there, and we’re glad that you made time to talk with us about Grizzlies today. So maybe just kind of as a back history a little bit, can you give us some little bit of history as to grizzly bears in Wyoming, how we got to where we are today, where they were historically, you know, obviously the Endangered Species Act had them milness threatened in the 1970s, and then what’s happened throughout that period of time and bring us up to speed with, you know, last year’s proposed de-listing and kind of where we’re then gonna get into the rest of our talk today about potentially hunting them again.

00:08:38:28 –> 00:10:03:12
You bet, you bet. So, so yeah, I’ll go back and I’ll start back in the, in the seventies and, and I’ll even go a little bit further back than that. So traditionally grizzly bears were native to most of the state of Wyoming as well as many of the other Western states. And as you know, as westward expansion happened with, you know, and the population grew and, and there was more development in the west, a lot of grizzly bear populations became only abundant in those places where there was a lot of wilderness and a lot of remote areas away from people. And so in Wyoming, really the north, by the, by the early 19 hundreds, the only place where there were healthy populations of grizzly bears was in the northwest part of our state where we have the more, you know, remote and wild pipe country. By 1973, grizzly bears had been reduced down to what, what most believe was about 136 bears. And then there was a lot of reasons for that. I mean, at the time, it actually, believe it or not, Yellowstone actually used to have large garbage dumps within the park where bears were allowed to come and, and freely forage on, on, on large garbage dumps. And when that’s Yellowstone,

00:10:03:12 –> 00:10:05:14
That’s baiting. That’s baiting, yeah,

00:10:05:20 –> 00:10:59:17
Exactly. It was real popular, but it also put a lot of bears in, in, in peril because trouble. Yeah. They came in conflict with humans once they became habituated to humans and Sure. And human food sources, they became, you know, there was a lot of conflicts. There was a lot of grizzly bear attacks then. And when they closed, Yellowstone decided that those were not a good idea, and rightfully so from my perspective. And they shut those, those dumps down. It, it had an effect on bears. And, and so, and, and you know, then there was, there was widespread take of grizzly bears for conflict problems, and there was also a, a very limited hunting season at that time. So, so anyway, I think grizzly bears were, were certainly, it might’ve been the first, it wasn’t the first, it was close to the first species that were actually put on the endangered species list.

00:10:59:17 –> 00:11:45:08
When the act went into, went into place in 1975 and quickly the, the states of Montana, Idaho, and Wyoming started working on recovery plans and, and really kind of put into place what I think the Endangered Species Act was initially intended for. And that was to take a species that was potentially threatened and move it towards not being threatened anymore and being managed by the state. And so through decades, literally of work and multiple recovery plans, finally in, in the early two thousands, by all measures, grizzly bears were fully recovered in the Yellowstone ecosystem. Do

00:11:45:08 –> 00:11:58:11
You, for our listeners and whatnot, when you define that, or, or, and maybe it’s quantifiable by numbers or estimated numbers, when you say fully recovered, what was, what were their goals and what was that target objective for recovery?

00:11:58:23 –> 00:13:20:16
That’s a really good question, and that actually changed over time based on the science. And so, you know, early on the number was fairly low. The number was like, you know, around 400 bears was considered recovered. But, but essentially what work, what I, what I define as recovered in, in modern science is 500 drizzly bears that have breeding popula, breeding bears occupying a majority of the, of the ecosystem and mortality levels at, at levels that allow the population to be stable. So what all that means is 500 bears. There’s, you know, minimum, absolute number of 500 bears for genetic diversity. There’s the, the ecosystem is divided up into 18 bear management units. And essentially one of the, those measures of recovery is, is having 16 of those 18 units occupied by females that are having cubs. So what that ensures is, is then you have a, you know, you have reproducing bears across most of the ecosystem. And then lastly that that mortality doesn’t cause problems. You know, that you’re not having excessive mortality from highway deaths or from hunters shooting ’em in self-defense and those kind of things.

00:13:21:00 –> 00:13:40:27
When you say these ecosystems, are you just talking about Wyoming, because I know you guys have a, like a tri-state, m o u with, with Idaho and Montana as well, but we’re just talking about this northern Yellowstone ecosystem. Is that kind of how it’s defined northwest

00:13:40:27 –> 00:13:41:15
Wyoming, or,

00:13:42:15 –> 00:14:05:03
No, it’s actually, it’s not, it’s a very, and that’s another nuance of, of wildlife management with this particular species, is that it actually span the ecosystem spans portions of all three of those states. Okay. And that’s why there’s a necessity to have a three state agreement because this population isn’t ma managed based on political boundaries or state boundaries.

00:14:05:03 –> 00:14:05:28
Yeah, just a species.

00:14:06:06 –> 00:14:07:23
It’s managed based on the ecosystem

00:14:08:04 –> 00:14:10:18
Where their, where their suitable habitat is. Yeah. And

00:14:10:18 –> 00:14:21:28
When, and when you guys talk about a recovery plan and efforts, is that just, what does that mean? Is that just not, not hunting them? Is it augmentation? I mean, what does that mean when, when you

00:14:22:02 –> 00:14:46:23
Essentially Yeah, essentially recovery, the recovery plan put into place or, or established what all of the different agencies involved should put into place to ensure habitat for grizzly bears was either protected or enhanced. And that population management was done at a level that would allow grizzly bears to reach recovery.

00:14:47:04 –> 00:14:47:18
I gotcha. In

00:14:47:18 –> 00:14:49:15
That, that’s essentially what the plan detailed.

00:14:50:02 –> 00:15:16:17
So does this, this includes the three states, but not, there’s a segment up in northern Montana near Glacier National Park. Is that part in Northwest Montana? Is that, we’re not talking about that part in this ecosystem, right? That part of Montana, there’s, there’s a gap. Gap between exactly right. There’s a gap in between that very northwest Montana and down this south, we’ll just call it Southwestern Montana, right?

00:15:16:27 –> 00:15:45:13
Yep, that’s exactly right. They’re two separate populations, and right now they’re not connected. And so what we’re talking about is just that what they define or what they call the greater Yellowstone population, which is a main, most of it’s in Wyoming, but there is a significant portion in southwest Montana and then a little portion of it in northeastern Idaho, or you know, gotcha. Yeah. Not up into the panhandle, but kind of the,

00:15:45:29 –> 00:15:53:28
That’s stuff adjacent to the park, you know, to Yeah. You know, eastern Idaho along, you know, along the Wyoming and Montana border, so, okay.

00:15:54:00 –> 00:16:09:16
Exactly. And so do you feel like, do you feel like the elimination of some of those, the dumps and garbage sites and different things have kind of forced ’em to spread out and maybe even, you know, into these 18 management units actually spread out a little quicker than maybe if they’d have kept that and and how did that

00:16:09:26 –> 00:16:10:05

00:16:10:05 –> 00:16:10:10

00:16:10:18 –> 00:16:11:04
Push ’em out.

00:16:11:04 –> 00:16:43:02
Certainly those at one time, yeah, certainly they, they artificially concentrated grizzly bears. Yeah, there’s no doubt about that. And, and so not only that, but all of the recovery planning and the protection of, of those remote habitats is really what allowed grizzly bears to expand not only their population, but also their distribution to the level that it is now. I mean, it’s, you could, it’s, it’s more than doubled in size, the distribution of grizzly bears.

00:16:43:18 –> 00:17:21:09
Was there anything done other than the, you know, the main, Hey, we’re gonna maintain the habitat the way it is, these pristine remote areas, you know, avoid fragmentation, things like that. Obviously they’re gonna have to be the problem bears that just couldn’t learn right out of the gate, you know, after the dumps were shut down and they had to be removed. But once those, those bears were weaned off at or killed or whatever, was it just were bears then left to do it on their own. There were no transplant or type effort augmentation like that going on was there, to my knowledge, I don’t know.

00:17:21:12 –> 00:17:35:13
No, there wasn’t. Yeah. No. In fact, the only thing that was really going on, and that was even closely related to that was removals with bears that came into conflict. And a lot, most of the time it was bears that were, that were preying on livestock.

00:17:35:26 –> 00:17:42:19
And so would you put them some of these units that maybe you were trying to augment, so to speak, or, or recover?

00:17:44:11 –> 00:18:15:16
You know, we really, when we move bears, and even going back historically moving bears, we would, we would place ’em in places where they were already occupied habitats. Yeah. Where they had the least chance of getting into conflict again. And so those areas that weren’t occupied were out kind of on the fringes, and they were closer to humans. You didn’t want ’em. And, and transplanting a problem bear is, you know, you’re asking for trouble if you put ’em in a place where they’re likely to just get right back in trouble again. So we’d actually move ’em to the more towards the core of the ecosystem.

00:18:15:28 –> 00:18:16:06
I gotcha.

00:18:16:22 –> 00:19:00:17
We do wanna throw a little shout out to Kent’s optics. David and Jeff Harrell, they make our members good deals. They have great prices, the best of anywhere I’ve seen, been out in the field and ordered up Binos and had ’em sitting in my house in one day. So anyway, these guys are awesome. They’re hunters themselves and, and they appreciate your business. That’s one thing I do like about ’em as well as they have a huge variety in stock. They have a, an incredible supply of optics in their back room and, and have, I imagine anything you need. So whether it be Vortex or night four pho, whatever you want to use, they’ll have it. So anyway, give these guys a call. It’s 4 3 5 2 5 7 7 0 1 4. Tell ’em Jason and Adam sent you, I’m sure they’ll make you a screaming deal. You can also go to kenoptic.com.

00:19:00:26 –> 00:19:25:08
So at at what point, and I don’t need an exact year, but, but at what point did you say it was the early two thousands you believe that, that the, the basic recovery targets of, you know, the 500 bears, you know, with, you know, reproductive success and occupying the majority of their, you know, suitable ecosystem, roughly when do you think most of those targets were met?

00:19:25:15 –> 00:19:36:15
Yeah, so 2003 is certainly there’s, it’s pretty much unquestionable that by 2003 all those were met. It’s possible it was before that, but yeah, it’s for sure 2003.

00:19:37:08 –> 00:19:58:21
And so it takes from then until now to basically it’s a, it’s a political issue. It’s a management issue trying to figure out, okay, how can we truly hunt these and maintain and, and what, what makes sense for where we’re at? Is that, I mean, tech technically, I guess you, you’re, you’re saying we could have possibly started hunting them mid two thousands.

00:20:00:03 –> 00:20:35:29
Yeah, we could have, and actually there was a, a delisting rule that was when they were recovered in the early two thousands. They put together the service, put together a delisting rule, and they actually had ’em delisted for a short period of time, 2007, 2008. And there was a 2007 rule. They were delisted in 2008 briefly, and then litigation put ’em back on the list again. And they stayed on the list from then all the way up until here recently when the service did another delisting rule and, and got ’em off the list again,

00:20:36:09 –> 00:21:01:28
Similar to, similar in a similar way to wolves. I mean, wolves followed somewhat of the same pattern. They, they met their recovery efforts in some of these same three states, although it’s not the exact same, you know, geographical area, but, but same three states involved, but then it was years and years and years before they were actually delisted and stayed delisted. Some states, you know, Wyoming, Montana, Idaho, it’s called

00:21:01:28 –> 00:21:02:28
Working Out the Kinks. Yeah,

00:21:02:28 –> 00:21:51:16
It was, it was a lot of effort. But, but similar thing, it’s a political, it’s litigation, like you said, it’s, you know, we’ll call ’em, you know, defenders of wildlife type groups that, you know, maybe are just focused on, you know, complete preservation without any, without any possible means to have management sportsmen manage them or things like that. That’s not an option for them. They’re, they’re heavily involved to where, you know, their lawyers and things like that continually grind in this long period of time, 15 plus years perhaps, until they were formally, again, delisted last summer. I think I read on you guys’ website or US Fish and Wildlife website that now the numbers projected it’s over 700 bears. Is that, is that kind of a number? That’s somewhat, yeah.

00:21:51:22 –> 00:21:57:23
You know, wondering, you were 500 ish, around 2003, where how have you grown? Where are you at today, do you figure?

00:21:58:06 –> 00:22:47:05
Yeah, so the, so that’s, I’m glad you brought this up because this is another very important component of grizzly management. One thing you’re gonna hear over and over again as we talk about this is that, that all of the estimates and that all of the management practices that are applied related to this species are, are extremely conservative. Yes. And so that that population estimate of 700 roughly bears is biased. Very, very low. Yeah. And they’re, none of the experts and scientists that study this bear population will tell you anything, but that it is because of the model that is used in the way that it makes assumptions, it biases the population estimate low, and actually as the population gets bigger, the bias becomes even greater,

00:22:47:14 –> 00:22:59:26
Really. So that is, in the layman’s terms, that is a, a scientific number that is like the lowest absolute it could possibly be, you know, I don’t know how to put it in lay terms more than that.

00:22:59:26 –> 00:23:01:11
That’s an excellent way to put it, really.

00:23:01:23 –> 00:23:02:17
And since we’re talking,

00:23:02:23 –> 00:23:03:21
We can be confident.

00:23:03:27 –> 00:23:10:07
And since we’re talking, so frankly, what’s your, what’s your, can you say what your opinion is? What do you feel like you’re

00:23:10:07 –> 00:23:18:29
At? Yeah, so yeah, you know, really, and it’s not just my opinion, there’s science that indicates that there’s up to 1200 bears in this ecosystem. Oh

00:23:21:12 –> 00:23:24:02
Yeah. They need my tag, my tag needs to be on one of them.

00:23:26:02 –> 00:23:54:02
That’s a lot of bears one, if you really look at this area, I mean, we’re, we’re, that’s a lot of bears. That’s a lot of bears in that size of area. And I’m, I’m, I mean, it is a good chunk of Wyoming from, you know, let’s just say from Cody West, you know, obviously over into the Idaho a little bit and north into Zerka, Beartooth parts of Montana. But still, that is not that big of an area in my mind for that type of number. It seems a lot. I mean, its a, not that’s a high density density.

00:23:54:02 –> 00:23:56:07
Is that a, is that a lot to you, Brian? It seems like a lot.

00:23:56:11 –> 00:24:52:11
Yeah, it is. It’s a lot of bears. And we, you know, we certainly believe that because the, you know, and the, this, this is the, the leader of the study team’s term, I like to quote him on this because he’s a, he’s a very smart guy and he knows these bears really well. But you know, he talks about there’s a sardine can and the sardine can is full and he can’t put any more sardines in this can. And so that’s why one of the things we’re seeing in both Montana and and Wyoming is, is because the, the, the CCAR capacity or the, the core of the ecosystem is essentially can’t handle many more bears. They’re moving out into more unsuitable habitats habitat closer to humans and places where you wouldn’t expect to see a grizzly bear. I’ll give you an example, you know, north and east of Cody, we have regularly, we have grizzly bears out in corn fields,

00:24:53:16 –> 00:24:53:23

00:24:53:23 –> 00:24:54:06
You know, that’s just

00:24:54:24 –> 00:24:55:02

00:24:55:04 –> 00:25:00:06
Is raiding Yeah. Eating ears of corn, ripping ’em apart, like they’ve point some

00:25:00:06 –> 00:25:02:13
Point. We’re gonna have to give depredation tags on bears.

00:25:03:19 –> 00:25:04:05
That’s right.

00:25:04:19 –> 00:25:09:13
Yeah. So you thought, you thought you had problems with elk and corn fields. Now you got grizzlies.

00:25:09:27 –> 00:25:14:00
That’s a new one for me. That’s a new one. Do they eat the corn? I mean Oh yeah.

00:25:14:06 –> 00:25:19:25
It’s a great place for a bear to be because they can, they have cover and they can eat corn. And

00:25:20:12 –> 00:25:26:02
I can see this whole landowner tag, a grizzly bear going crazy. Landowner tags for bears, grizzlies. I can see this.

00:25:26:26 –> 00:25:28:12
Yeah. I don’t think we’re there yet, but

00:25:28:13 –> 00:25:32:01
Anyway, have to do a whole nother 40 years of study. I

00:25:32:01 –> 00:25:36:17
Can tell you I have some friends that are landowners there that would just Yeah. That would really like that to

00:25:36:17 –> 00:25:44:05
Be the case. So there are legitimate, like it’s not a, it’s not a casual ss sighting in a to ha or something like there’s legitimate bears in cornfields.

00:25:44:17 –> 00:26:42:01
Absolutely. And, and bears that find themselves in larger towns, like Cody, we’ve had grizzly bears in the town of Cody. Geez. We’ve had grizzly bears in the town of dubois. And so, you know, they’ve, and and again, you know, grizzly bears are, they are, they’re a really, really cool critter. And they have, they’re really good at filling their belly and really that’s their, that’s all they do. That’s what they’re, they’re good at. And, and they do it in a lot of ways. And they’re, you know, we call ’em opportunistic omnivores, meaning that they can find a lot of different foods to meet their caloric needs. But you know, that’s just what grizzly bears do. If, if the easy thing to do to, to meet their needs is to go out in a cornfield and eat corn. And if they go back to where they just came from up in the wilderness where they got their butt kicked by a big male, bear it, it makes sense biologically for a bear to go to a cornfield. Yeah.

00:26:42:02 –> 00:27:37:16
Geez. Well, and, and we’ve heard, you know, we’re, we’re avid hunters and, and we talk to a lot of big game hunters and outfitters that are hunting, you know, goats and sheep and moose and elk and all, all the different types of big game in parts of Wyoming over the last, you know, let’s say 10 or 20 years and how it feels. And I know you guys are, you, you got your pulse on this way more than, than we do in southern Utah, but it feels like the prevalency rate. And, and you alluded to it earlier, that the saturation level is so high within the true core grizzly habitat that the prevalency rate of hunters encountering bears. And maybe we’ll take it as far as saying that the human, the hunter bear conflicts feels like they’re more and more common as we, you know, as I’m sure these bears have just, you know, they’ve reached about all the, the mountains can hold, I guess to put it, put it simple. Well,

00:27:37:16 –> 00:28:02:14
It’s just crazy what, what we’re, we’re dealing with a lot of hunters that have elk tags up there, and we even had a good friend of ours, John Alderson, on a podcast where a bear pushed him up a tree, which there’s a lot of that going on, a lot of that. And that’s what Adam’s saying. I mean, there’s just so many bears that, you know, hunters, regular hunters, maybe even, I don’t know if I could say the majority of elk hunters in some of this country end up seeing bear or dealing with bear conflicts. Well,

00:28:02:14 –> 00:28:18:28
And you’ve dealt with, dealt with a generation or two or three or four of bears that have had this level of protection and, and that, and that’s, they don’t really assimilate danger and humans together. Is that kinda right, Brian? I mean, for a lot of various reasons. I mean from,

00:28:19:10 –> 00:29:31:19
I don’t know if I could quite get there. I mean there are definitely, there’s a lot of hunter conflicts and the reason there’s a lot of ’em is because there’s a lot of bears and there’s a lot of hunters. But we actually see very cyclical changes in those conflicts in some years. We just don’t see, I mean, even with the same number of bears, we don’t see as many. And then, you know, you, you have another year and it’s a, it’s a different kind of a food year or like this past year we had really heavy snows in high country early on. Yeah. And in what you ended up with is though those high country bears ended up down in, in the ground between, you know, winter range and, and high elevation summer range, and that’s where the elk were and that’s where the hunters were and that’s where all the bears were. Yeah. And so we had a lot of conflicts there. At the end of the day though, one of the things we see for the most part is bears avoid contact with humans. Yeah. They don’t like humans. And I’ve personally seen this, I mean, I, I’ve seen both sides of it. I’ve seen bears that as soon as they see you, you know, they’re moving out. And, and then I’ve seen bears too that, that give you that look. Like don’t forget I’m at the top of the food chain

00:29:32:04 –> 00:29:32:28
And get outta my

00:29:32:28 –> 00:29:56:23
Way. And don’t, they don’t necessarily show fear, but, but by and large, I’ll tell you that this is the, this is kind of a good news story is that the, the, the trend line on conflicts is certainly up, there’s no doubt about it. There’s more hunters coming in conflict with bears, but the proportion of those conflicts to the population is actually declined. Meaning that Yeah,

00:29:56:24 –> 00:29:58:29
Your bear numbers are just so, so high that,

00:29:59:22 –> 00:30:05:10
And people are doing the right things with trying to prevent ’em. Yeah. You know, back in the more prepared Yeah.

00:30:05:16 –> 00:30:06:11
Not putting themselves

00:30:06:11 –> 00:31:12:26
Back needs, there weren’t food storage rules and people didn’t hang their food and they didn’t hang their meat and they didn’t carry bear spraying and they didn’t, you know, there’s a lot of things that people did differently. And now over time they’ve learned and we’ve tried to help with that through our bear wise program, learn to try to live and, and not have conflicts with grizzly bears. And so it’s in a lot of ways, while the, the number overall numbers up, the proportion is not up. So that speaks to hunters though, doing, you know, hunters are a huge part of, of grizzly bear conservation. Oh yeah. And they are, it, it’s because of hunters that this great recovery, the success story in wildlife management has happened. You know, the state of Wyoming has invested $50 million nearly now in recovery. Grizzly bears, geez. More than any one, any other entity. And that $50 million came from hunters and fishermen, Pitman, Roberson, that sportsman dollars money. Yeah.

00:31:13:05 –> 00:31:33:29
Well that’s crazy. I remember clear back in the late nineties, we had, my dad had an elk tag in 61 up there by Matsi and anyway, seeing a grizzly up there and it was just, man, they’re kind of give you the heebie-jeebies a little bit. You just, you know, you start to realize they’re, they’re out there. It’s not just, you know, hearing about ’em.

00:31:34:02 –> 00:31:59:09
Especially for us where we don’t, you guys throughout your life or whole career, obviously you used to, you’ve dealt with them. Yeah. You prepared for ’em. But when we go outta state, you know, that’s why in our magazine we highlight, hey, you to our hunters and, and subscribers expect to encounter grizzly bears here because it’s something that, you know, 95% of the hunting, you know, masses, you know, especially outside of Wyoming, they never, they don’t have that.

00:31:59:17 –> 00:32:08:01
Yeah, I’m looking like when I go up there, I want a fire extinguisher sized can of pepper spray. I don’t want any of these eight ounce little whatever. So I don’t want,

00:32:09:02 –> 00:32:09:06

00:32:09:18 –> 00:32:09:21

00:32:10:05 –> 00:32:11:07
Jason remembered 10

00:32:11:07 –> 00:32:12:00
Pounds of pepper spray.

00:32:12:04 –> 00:32:16:25
You had one tell, tell the listeners about you had one sniffing outside your tent. Oh,

00:32:16:29 –> 00:32:19:15
I had one up there. Yeah. And the wind rivers up there, sheep unit

00:32:19:27 –> 00:32:20:24
10, 10 10,

00:32:20:24 –> 00:33:08:28
Yeah. Du Bois country up there. And we were clear up on the top above Timberline and in a little tent. And my dad and I were in there and anyway, there was a little, I don’t know what you call it, wooing, whatever, you know, outside of our tent Yeah. Huffing Dylan, you know, in camp. And you know, and I was like, I wonder if I’m just hearing something. I, it was windy, you know, it’s windy up there anyway. And I’m like, I don’t know, you know, and I, and anyway, and it kept going on and it was like right outside the tent and I’m like, I turned to my, or I didn’t turn to, I mean it was dark, you know, it’s pitch dark. We’re sharing a tent. And I’m like, do you hear that? And he goes, yep, I see. And I said, and he says, and I says, I said, you got your gun.

00:33:09:10 –> 00:33:39:26
You know, right there it was between us. I said, you got your gun ready. He goes, oh, there’s one in the pipe. And, and that was it. And it was, I mean, we didn’t move a muscle and got up the next day and sure enough, giant freaking coffee can, you know, type tracks outside and just, anyway, one of those kind of stories that reminds me of like, I need to invent the fire. You know, I think you’d sell some fire extinguishers. I really think especially horseback throw, throwing the panyard how, what, you know, it just makes you feel better. I want something that’ll spray 50 yards. So, well

00:33:40:02 –> 00:34:19:20
That’s interesting is, is you guys probably like you Brian, your game wardens a back country wardens and, and the outfitters up there, they, it’s not a big deal to them. I mean, what I, what I say, they’ve done it enough and they’re prepared enough. They may have a dog or two around ’em in camp or the way they take all the precautions, which I know legally they have to do the, the, the certain things about food and all that. But you talk with them and they laugh at us quote pansies when we talk about going up there in grizzly country. Just ’cause they deal with it. It’s part of their life. They’ve never not had to deal with it their whole lives up there. And yeah, they take the precautions, they respect them, but it’s not something that governs their every thought and move like a look

00:34:19:20 –> 00:34:24:12
At us. Well they probably enjoy us, you know, squirming some other Utah guys being a little bit nervous, but

00:34:24:17 –> 00:35:13:12
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00:35:13:14 –> 00:35:17:25
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00:35:31:03 –> 00:36:38:16
One thing I did, you know, I do think’s awesome and like wolves and Adam and I have both taken a wolf or two, but you know, is it is awesome. They’re quite a trophy. It’s like you said, they’re really an awesome animal. It is. It’s cool that we have ’em, it’s, it’s kind of cool. Yeah. We just need to manage ’em, we’d like to hunt elk too, right. And so, right. You know, there’s things about it. I think it’s great that, that this is coming out hopefully, and we can talk about this, you know, kind of your plan, what, what the plan is and we’ll let you present that from your perspective and then, you know, how people can get involved to ensure, or at least help the odds of this actually going through. Sure. You know, and obviously the few bears you’re looking at taking is very minimal compared to the populations, but, and would obviously have a very minimal, if any kind of effect really on what’s going on out there. But, but it is conservative and that’s what’s, and and that’s why it’s, it’s nice to see that and that that really should be a good chance of going through and, and actually having a season on these. But, but anyway, it is awesome the, you know, while we don’t necessarily love wolves, it, it is one of our most cherished trophies. Wouldn’t you agree, Adam?

00:36:38:19 –> 00:37:45:05
Yeah, it is. And I mean, and we’re gonna add the same thing probably just like you, Brian, I mean the grizzly bear has a place, it has a place it was here before us and it definitely has a place to, to stay here. And I guess that’s just the message now that we’re probably gonna start getting into as we start talking now about the current proposed management plan, which does involve a piece of sport sport harvest in that because of the numbers we just talked about, the 700 to 1200, whatever, but far exceeding any recovery goals and therefore let’s have a tool to help manage, because let’s just face it, if you left, you’re already alluded to some of the problems that you’re starting to see because in many areas they’re saturated the available habitat and you got dominant bears kicking out sub dominance and they’re wandering and they’re trying to find a place in the world. And, and that’s not gonna get any better if, if, if other mechanisms aren’t in place to just to start the process to have the selective removal and harvest by sports from the bears. So from

00:37:45:05 –> 00:38:06:24
Your perspective, chief of Wildlife, tell us, tell us how you got to the plan you’re at and obviously, you know, if you feel like it’s a modest plan and, and definitely doable and let’s just talk about some of those things and, and kind of go through it. Obviously you’ve got a, you know, I know you’ve got a female provision in there and some different things, and so let’s talk about that a little bit.

00:38:07:20 –> 00:39:17:05
You bet. So I’ll just start by saying that we are strong subscribers to the notion that for decades, many, many decades, a century almost the North American model of wildlife management has worked well and it works well for those species that are eaten and those species that eat other species, you know, and, and so what I mean is, is it’s, it it’s worked for other large carnivore species like black bears and mountain lions, and it’s also worked for deer, elk and antelope sheep, moose, mountain goats. And so, you know, having those folks who use the resource be responsible for managing the resource both financially and through the establishment of policy is something we believe very strongly in. And that’s a core part of, of how we approach wildlife management. With that said, you know, one of the things that, that we wanted to do, we knew this was, there were opinions on, very diverse opinions on, on how grizzly bears would be managed.

00:39:18:03 –> 00:40:14:18
We went out and we talked to the public before we ever even had a proposal on the table. And we just said, look, here’s some background on this population, here’s where we’re at, it’s delisted, we want to hear from you on all of the components of management, not just hunting, but all of them. And, and we’re gonna use the feedback we get from you to make some decisions about how we implement the grizzly bear management plan in Wyoming. And that was very informative for us. That process happened last October, November timeframe. And, and like I said, just we got a lot of excellent feedback from both people in the state and people outta the state, hunters and non-hunters and people on all sides of this, of this issue. And based on that feedback, we decided that it was definitely supported to move forward with a conservative and a very tightly regulated hunting season.

00:40:15:22 –> 00:41:44:13
And so that’s the proposal that’s out there right now is what I would definitely term a is a very, very conservative hunting season. The, you know, the other thing that’s, that you guys alluded to that I thought was pretty thoughtful on your part is the fact that, you know, there’s, there’s bears that are in conflict that right now, essentially the way they’re being managed is a guy or a gal in a red shirt is having to kill ’em, you know? Yeah. One of my folks that works for the agency is having to kill ’em and to the, you know, one of our goals with any kind of a hunting season is to the maximum extent possible to reduce that number. There’s no sense to not have, you know, somebody have that kind of an experience of being able to hunt a bear. That that’s for us, at the end of the day, that’s a better, much better option than somebody from our agency having to, having to shoot a bear at the back of a culvert trap, you know? Sure. Yeah. So, so anyway, that’s, you know, we came up with this season, it’s very conservative. It’s, it allows the, the, the actual number that, that we use to start the calculation for how many licenses we can have and how many harvests of bears we can have actually is predetermined. Essentially it’s a formula that it, it changes each year based on several factors, but that number’s not something that the state of Wyoming just sits down and, and has a lot of discretion over how it’s developed. Yeah. It’s something that we’ve agreed to in that,

00:41:44:16 –> 00:41:44:23

00:41:44:26 –> 00:41:46:10
That three state memorandum. Yeah.

00:41:46:10 –> 00:42:40:07
Yeah. Yeah. It’s just like, it’d be similar to what you already have in place in some of your, you know, big game management plans for other species. In, in other units you have parameters in place and in different parts of the state you have, you know, elk management plans that your hands are, I won’t wanna say tied, but your, your partnership with a lot of the private landowners in that unit to, you know, tolerate more elk numbers, less elk numbers, all that. It’s not just, you know, you’re not a dictatorship throwing out what you want. It’s a, it’s part of a bigger collective approach. And in this case, even more because we’re talking about something that just had 40 years of federal protection and now you’re given the reins as Wyoming Game and Fish, Idaho Game and Fish, Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks too. All right. 40 years has worked, don’t screw it up. You know, let’s, let’s, yeah, exactly. Let’s keep it, let’s keep it going. No

00:42:40:12 –> 00:42:42:10
Pressure, but don’t screw this up. Yeah.

00:42:42:16 –> 00:42:47:29
Don’t be too aggressive right off the bat. Right off the bat and have to be, you know, not hunting them for another 10 years, I guess,

00:42:48:01 –> 00:42:51:01
I guess throw em back on a list because of some challenge or whatever else

00:42:51:01 –> 00:43:02:23
It does feel like you guys are, you know, had that in the back of your minds maybe, maybe from the wolf issue or different things, just basically feels very modest. Methodical, yeah. A modest take, you know, perspective.

00:43:03:03 –> 00:43:06:02
Yep. And that’s, that’s really the way we approached it. So

00:43:06:11 –> 00:43:53:08
Could you talk about there, there’s kind of two different hunting, I I don’t wanna call ’em zones because that’s probably the right term, but there’s, but there’s one grouping of units that you’re gonna manage under a limited draw strategy that you have unit sub quotas as well as female, female sub quotas involved with them. And then another pool of permits that is, that is, I’ll guess call it more on the fringe of some of the core grizzly habitat that you’re gonna have another 12 hunters there. Can you talk about some of the two basic, we probably can’t talk about every single X and O within them, but talk about the, those two different management strategies based on the two bigger areas I guess we’re talking about here.

00:43:54:12 –> 00:44:44:04
Sure. And, and that’s one thing we haven’t talked about yet is this thing that’s called, it’s a scientific term, but it, it’s called the demographic monitoring area. And essentially that area was developed by scientists, grizzly bear scientists many, many years ago. And really what it defines is, is those areas that are both biologically and socially suitable for grizzly bear occupancy. So inside the D M A it meets those two criteria outside the D M A, it may not meet that, those criteria, in fact, in most cases it doesn’t. Some places outside of the D M A are have some suitable habitats biologically, but doesn’t have suitable habitats socially because we know based on past experience that when grizzly bears occupy those areas,

00:44:44:11 –> 00:44:45:12
You’re gonna have problems.

00:44:45:13 –> 00:44:47:08
They’re gonna be Yeah. They’re gonna be in trouble. It does

00:44:47:08 –> 00:44:47:13

00:44:47:15 –> 00:44:47:24

00:44:48:06 –> 00:45:30:22
Doesn’t work. You know, the south end of the Wyoming range is a great example. There’s a lot of livestock there, there’s a lot of human uses, there’s a lot of roads, there’s not as much remote country. And we know that grizzly bears in the south end of the Wyoming range is, is something that’s not gonna work for grizzly bears or people. And so anyway, that’s how that line was drawn and, and really we’re held accountable for the population. And all those recovery criteria that I talked about we’re, we’re held accountable for those within inside that D M A. Okay. And essentially bears that are outside the D M A that are either harvested or counted either way, either one don’t count towards

00:45:32:02 –> 00:45:49:12
Mortality of the population. Yeah. They’re just gravy bears that exist and you’re not, it’s kinda like your feet aren’t held to the fire on those as much because they’re, it’d be like some of the wolf areas that are outside of the, around recovery. Yeah, exactly. The ones that wander clear down into Utah and northern Arizona that are, you know,

00:45:49:24 –> 00:45:51:00
Classified as a predator.

00:45:51:11 –> 00:45:52:12
Yeah. So,

00:45:52:25 –> 00:46:23:14
Yeah. And the, the difference though with, with grizzly bears and wolves is, is wolves essentially outside of those areas aren’t, they’re not managed at all. And, and we, they’re still intend to tightly regulate Okay. Grizzly bears outside of that area. So the thing that’s interesting though is, is there’s, you’re right, there’s no mortality limit or there’s no female limits or anything like that outside of the D M A and that’s why we can just, you know, issue 12 licenses and we incur no risk there.

00:46:23:22 –> 00:46:27:02
Those are the, those are the 12 that are, that are, that are drawn

00:46:27:09 –> 00:46:28:00
In area seven

00:46:28:09 –> 00:46:42:20
And yeah, those are, we’ll call ’em outside the, that demographic, you know, de lined area and 12 people go have fun if you kill one. Great. Do you still have a female sub Cote in there though? Within those 12? No, nothing in that. So it could be all 12

00:46:43:06 –> 00:46:45:02
Could be females, you’re not, it

00:46:45:02 –> 00:46:47:17
Won’t be, but in theory it could be. I guess it’d be,

00:46:48:04 –> 00:46:48:11

00:46:48:16 –> 00:46:49:16
Yep. That is

00:46:49:16 –> 00:46:54:11
Correct. So 1212 guys can go out and not have to call in, not have to wonder if the quota’s been met, whatever.

00:46:54:29 –> 00:46:55:06

00:46:55:19 –> 00:47:03:14
They don’t. They would now they do have to report it. Yes. But they wouldn’t have to worry about, you know, the quota like you said.

00:47:03:17 –> 00:47:19:07
Could you, yeah. And could you briefly describe the unit seven area? I mean, in terms of geographically where, where roughly that is, I know it’s the southern Wyoming range part of it, but it’s more some of the, would you call it fringe? It’s the, some of the fringe habitat, right? I mean,

00:47:19:24 –> 00:48:04:22
Yeah, it is. It’s the stuff that’s just adjacent to, just adjacent to the D M A in areas where we do have, it’s, it’s considered occupied grizzly bear habitat in most cases may not have a lot of bears. The densities may be low, but places like the Southern Wyoming range, places like, you know, the Green River Valley and some of those private lands, you know, places east of Highway one 20, which is the highway that runs through Cody and Mai out in the al or in the, oh, out there in the, in the east. The 15 mile Creek country, east of Mai and the cola peaks east of Powell, Southeast of Powell.

00:48:04:27 –> 00:48:14:04
So with even low densities, how low does that, what do you mean by that? Like, is it still good, high enough densities, they’re viable tags? Or are they just, you

00:48:14:04 –> 00:48:40:12
Know, I I I think they are, I think especially the first year. Yeah. I think that, you know, it’s not gonna be easy. There’s some places where it’ll be easier than others, but it’s gonna be a hunt. Yeah. And that’s just my, you know, that’s my prediction that it’s not gonna be like riding up the Grable River in Elk hunt area 61. Sure. And being able to see, you know, a couple grizzly bears a day, it will not be like that. Yeah.

00:48:40:18 –> 00:48:40:27

00:48:42:08 –> 00:48:56:04
The other thing about that area outside of the demographic monitoring area is we do anticipate that if we have, you know, it’s during hunting season or close to hunting season, if we are having problems with a specific bear, we can send hunters that direction. Yeah,

00:48:56:04 –> 00:48:56:17
That’s great.

00:48:56:24 –> 00:49:04:06
So you’re gonna help bear, you’re gonna, you’re gonna, you’re, you guys are willing to help hunters. I mean, you obviously want this to be successful.

00:49:05:21 –> 00:49:05:28

00:49:06:01 –> 00:49:26:28
And you want Yeah. If you’re gonna go kill one yourself, like you said by a red shirt, you know, one of your employees and he’s in, he’s in, you know, the, the 12 outside demographic area, hunt boundary, turn, turn, turn some of the loose, direct them there. Yeah. Let them kill it versus Yeah. You just go shoot it and you know, whatever happens to it after that. So.

00:49:27:21 –> 00:49:28:00

00:49:28:06 –> 00:50:06:03
And how could you, then, let’s contrast that area, which is gonna be a hunt, like you said, two, the, I guess we’ll just call ’em the core units where you, where you’re gonna draw permits, but you’re gonna do it in a calculated way. You’re not gonna turn all 12 people, you could kill 12 bears, but, but you do have a female sub quota within those subunits in place of, I believe two female bears. And once that happens, it shuts down. So really you’re gonna let each harvest dictate if it stays open or not. And kind of talk us through, talk us through that, those, those subunits within the core demographic area.

00:50:06:11 –> 00:50:42:05
You bet. So you, you described that fairly well. There’s actually two quotas. There’s no more than 10 male bears, no more than two female bears. And again, those are numbers that are based on a calculation that is predetermined. So, and if you do that, if you think through the logistics of this, it actually means that you couldn’t actually take more than 11 bears because once either one of those quotas, the male or the female quota is reached, okay. It stops the season. Okay. So if you’ve killed one female bear and then you kill 10 more males, it, it stops,

00:50:42:05 –> 00:50:43:05
It shuts it down because you’ve

00:50:43:05 –> 00:50:43:29
Hit 10 males. If

00:50:43:29 –> 00:50:47:08
You kill two females and no and no males, you got two. Right.

00:50:47:26 –> 00:51:12:22
That’s right. If you killed all male bears, it would actually stop at 10. Yeah. So, so yeah. It’s, it’s, it’s a challenge because we do not wanna exceed that female mortality limit. Yeah. And so how do you issue licenses to hunters and have ’em go a field when you’ve only got two females in the quota and expect to not exceed the quota?

00:51:12:24 –> 00:51:29:14
Yeah. It’s gonna happen. So you came up with this stratified one or two hunters at a time approach or tell us how that’s gonna work. You know, you, yeah. You do a draw, but, but really you’re not drawing 12 people all at once and saying you gotta tag, but Yeah, it’s unique. Tell us how it’s gonna work. There’s,

00:51:30:08 –> 00:51:38:14
Yeah, so it’s, we’re calling it kind of a priority license issuance list. And so you, you know, you’ll put in, we used to do similar license

00:51:38:14 –> 00:51:39:11
License Yeah.

00:51:39:20 –> 00:51:52:06
And you’ll put in and you’ll get on the list and there’ll be a list of names from one to 5,000 and, and we’ll call up number one and number two and say, you know what, you just did better than hitting the lottery. Yeah.

00:51:52:16 –> 00:51:58:26
You’re going hunting, you can’t hunting, you’re gonna kill a bear. Because even if both of you kill females, you’re both gonna kill bear, leave the

00:51:58:26 –> 00:52:00:13
Fire, extinguishing home, bring the gun.

00:52:04:15 –> 00:52:12:08
Well good. Yeah. And so, so we’ll send those two folks out and we’re actually gonna give ’em some training beforehand to try to help ’em

00:52:12:12 –> 00:52:19:02
Differentiate between male and female. Judge male. That’s what I was wondering if you’d have an online course or how you guys were gonna go about that or

00:52:19:25 –> 00:52:38:25
You know. Yeah, we’re gonna give ’em, we’re just gonna give ’em a course on some of the difference in their behavior, some of the difference in how they appear. And then remember that two thirds of all the females are gonna be protected anyway because they’re gonna have cubs at their side and it’s not legal to take a bear or the cubs either one. Yeah,

00:52:39:06 –> 00:52:39:14

00:52:39:29 –> 00:53:16:13
If they’ve got a cub at side. So, so yeah, I mean it’s, I, the, the tendency is gonna be more, it’s gonna be more likely that people will shoot a male bear versus a female bear. Even if, even if you did it just completely randomly. But we’re gonna try to even give ’em more tools so that they’re very selective towards a male bear. And, and then we will not allow more than two folks, or I’m sorry, we will not allow any more than what’s left in the female quota to be in the field at any one time. So as long as there’s two females available, we’ll have two hunters in the field. One, when they get done

00:53:16:13 –> 00:53:25:05
Soon, as soon as one female gets harvested from that point forward, it’s gonna be one person at a time until they harvest. Oh, you killed the male. Alright, make go to the list

00:53:25:08 –> 00:53:26:02
Just to make sure they can’t

00:53:26:03 –> 00:53:26:12

00:53:26:23 –> 00:53:28:23
Three females on accident. Yep,

00:53:29:07 –> 00:53:30:07
That’s exactly right.

00:53:30:11 –> 00:53:39:20
And how long do they have? Let’s say Adam and I are the first guys out of the hat, which is probably gonna happen. How long, how long do we have before you call the next two hunters

00:53:40:06 –> 00:53:41:14
Until they kill bear? So

00:53:41:14 –> 00:53:47:26
We’re gonna give you 15. The proposal right now is 15 days. Okay.

00:53:47:26 –> 00:53:48:04

00:53:48:10 –> 00:53:48:23

00:53:48:28 –> 00:53:53:12
So you gotta get to there. Start. What would be the opening day? Tell for our listeners what would be the earliest?

00:53:53:16 –> 00:54:02:08
So opening day. Yeah. September 15th through November 15th. Okay. And so once we tell you you’re it, and you can go, you’re gonna have

00:54:02:21 –> 00:54:04:01
15 days to make

00:54:04:13 –> 00:54:10:23
15 days and, and, and you know, we’re still taking some public comment on that and that could change a little bit. Yeah. But

00:54:11:01 –> 00:54:16:05
Some guys wanna, might wanna apply for a specific 15 day slot. You know what I mean? And

00:54:16:05 –> 00:54:20:02
You’re not really, yeah. You can’t really assure that. It’s like, well, if you’re called, you better,

00:54:20:09 –> 00:54:21:11
You’re called, you can either, you

00:54:21:11 –> 00:54:22:23
Better make your schedule work is what

00:54:22:23 –> 00:54:28:08
You’re, I guess, I guess if you’re called, you could, you could decline. No, I can’t make it that those 15

00:54:28:08 –> 00:54:29:07
Days, somebody might do that

00:54:29:07 –> 00:54:30:02
And you’d go to the next guy.

00:54:31:08 –> 00:54:39:19
Yeah. And that could happen. You, or you could have somebody say, well, when I applied, everything was good, but now I can’t really spend $6,000 on through

00:54:39:19 –> 00:54:50:04
A tag and, and potential guide. Right. This is gonna fall within the, this gonna fall within the non-resident big game, trophy game. Wilderness.

00:54:50:04 –> 00:54:50:24
Wilderness solid

00:54:50:29 –> 00:54:52:26
Requirement, I assume. Right? It

00:54:52:26 –> 00:54:57:12
Will. Yeah. Yeah. So any in in the wilderness, the wildness, so if they’re not hunting the wilderness,

00:54:57:26 –> 00:54:59:08
You could go self, it wouldn’t, but

00:54:59:12 –> 00:55:02:20
Yeah. Yeah. But a lot of his country’s in the wilderness scene. Yeah.

00:55:03:03 –> 00:55:23:04
So it’s not cheap. And I know one thing that, we’ll, you know, a lot of people we’ve heard from Marty, 6,000 bucks. Good grief. Well, we just, we tried to point this out in our magazine. This, that was a fee that was automatically took effect based on a legislative fee approved. This is not up for debate right now.

00:55:23:05 –> 00:55:26:29
It’s not like people should be mad at you, Brian. Yeah. And, and it wasn’t something that was necessarily in your control.

00:55:27:04 –> 00:55:45:08
And it might be something in the future that could be, but, but during this comment period that ends April 30th, I mean, they can, they can voice some concerns on that. But don’t go off on that because that’s set, it’s set by legislature. That’s what’s gonna happen this year. Just like it or not. That’s the fee for a non-resident grizzly bear, right?

00:55:46:01 –> 00:55:53:16
Yeah, that’s, that’s exactly right. And they actually, the legislature didn’t even like recently developed that.

00:55:53:23 –> 00:55:59:02
No, it’s old. It just was in place. It ever, it’s been there forever. If it ever got passed, that’s what it’s gonna be. Yeah.

00:55:59:02 –> 00:56:03:08
Well, 6,000 is the largest fee of any western state for any non-resident tag

00:56:03:14 –> 00:56:06:02
Ever. So that’s why it catches people off guard.

00:56:06:04 –> 00:56:10:28
But, but maybe, maybe rightfully so. It’s quite a, quite a trophy species. Really just

00:56:10:28 –> 00:57:05:14
Wanna take a quick break and think. Another one of our sponsors, red Rock Precision, they make awesome rifles, custom rifles from the action rifle barrel right on up. They can customize the caliber to whatever you want. Scope combination. But they shoot all the, all the elite optic companies scopes. We shoot these guns, they’re awesome, trusted, long range, great western hunting rifles for a variety of different species. They’ve got lighter weight sheep rifles on up to more mountain rifles or even carbon wrap barrel rifles and everything. So give the guys at Red Rock Precision a call. Great guys used ’em for a lot of years. Red Rock precision.com. So within the, the, these potential 11 to 12 harvest zones here, there’s, there’s not, or is there sub quotas? There is sub quotas within subunits. Right. You don’t want ’em all to come outta one area.

00:57:06:07 –> 00:57:07:18
That’s exactly right. And

00:57:07:18 –> 00:57:07:28
There were six

00:57:08:05 –> 00:57:27:03
ERs. And so farmers will have their pick, they, they can pick where they want to go initially, but, but as those quotas fill up and those areas, they’ll have to, you know, if we, if the season does go on that long, they’re gonna have to go, you know, some of the, some of the stuff up next to the park, for example, where the quotas are lower, they may have to go somewhere else.

00:57:27:08 –> 00:57:31:04
So you’ll, so guys that come in first obviously have their pick of the litter, so to

00:57:31:04 –> 00:57:32:11
Speak, go wherever they want, and

00:57:32:11 –> 00:57:41:25
Then you kinda, then things might change and adjust and they’re, it’s not like they’re gonna say, yeah, I drew this bear and I always wanted to hunt here. That may or may not be available to ’em.

00:57:42:05 –> 00:57:42:21
That’s correct.

00:57:42:26 –> 00:57:58:04
How many, within that core demographic area you have, how many subunits do you have delineated? And it seems like I saw two on a lot of ’em, two a harvest quote of two, and a lot of the subunits. But how many subunits do you have it broken into and, and total

00:57:58:06 –> 00:58:10:22
Of six? Yep. Six units and two each 600 is, and it’s about, you know, there’s, there’s actually a couple, I think where it’s three, but I, and I don’t have that ding thing sitting here in front of me. Okay. But you know, roughly that’s what, it’s two

00:58:10:22 –> 00:58:28:22
To three maximum. And where if one subunit had two killed in it, you’re, that one’s shut down. But there’s still plenty of others. Again, we’re talking about areas within those six sub or the six zones that have a lot of bears. A lot of bears. I mean we’re, we’re talking now about the core.

00:58:28:22 –> 00:58:45:05
We’re expecting high harvest rate. The guy that’s aggressive, he, I mean, we’re expecting, like you said, the first year even on, you know, the non non-core area unit. But I mean, overall we’re expecting good, good high harvest rates. Is that what you’d agree with that?

00:58:45:08 –> 00:59:29:28
Yeah, I think it’s gonna be, I think it’s gonna be a pretty darn good hunt. I mean, even if, you know, you just talked to Ben and ago about the guy who’s got a, a specific area that he really likes to go, if he has to go somewhere else, there isn’t any of those units where I couldn’t go out and find a grizzly bear. I mean, there’s a lot of opportunity, there’s a lot of bears. I told you how many bears there are. Yeah. And it’s unbelievable. Yeah. And you know, this is gonna be a hunt where it’s gonna be very much kind of a spot in stock kind of a hunt. I think, you know, tracking is gonna be pretty important when you’re trying to focus on, you know, trying to find a big male bear, I assume. Yeah.

00:59:29:28 –> 00:59:30:17
Be nice to know. Most

00:59:30:17 –> 00:59:31:20
Hunters are gonna want a big male

00:59:31:20 –> 00:59:38:07
Bear. Yeah. It’d be nice to know how big a track you’re really looking for. I mean, for guys that aren’t, haven’t really been trained, you know,

00:59:38:29 –> 00:59:53:23
You know, five inch, five inch is kind of the number on, on black bear. You know, for Utah we have, they do a similar online course trying to increase, you know, male harvest of black bears, you know, five inch front pad or greater, you know, I don’t know if you guys have, so that, that

00:59:54:12 –> 00:59:55:23
Guys go through that course with whatnot,

00:59:55:23 –> 00:59:57:23
But I mean, for people Yeah.

00:59:57:23 –> 01:00:10:17
You know, you’re, you’re looking at at it somewhere in that actually a five inch grizzly bear isn’t too bad, but, you know, six inch bear is definitely a big mature male bear and there’s bigger, you know, yeah. There’s bigger

01:00:10:17 –> 01:00:13:19
Than six inch tracks. So, and so you got glassing. What other techniques?

01:00:14:02 –> 01:00:17:20
Certainly tracking I think is gonna be really important. And I you, you know, when

01:00:17:22 –> 01:00:21:28
The snow fits, especially right when you get a little dusting of snow, boom, cut a track and,

01:00:22:14 –> 01:00:28:01
And maybe, maybe even fire a rifle in the air just because they’re used to the rifle shot means dead elk. We’ve

01:00:28:11 –> 01:00:40:25
That Brian, we’ve heard that in places like the thrill fair in places, hey, you hear, they hear gunshots and the bear bears, they’re coming there before you can get to your dead elk. They’re coming. I suppose that’s happened now and then, but it can’t be like that, right? I mean,

01:00:41:23 –> 01:01:00:04
Yeah, I can tell you that, you know, I’ve hunted a lot there myself and I haven’t experienced that personally, but you know, enough people have reported that kind of behavior that, and, and bears are smart and it, it wouldn’t surprise me if the bears that really hone in on gut piles haven’t have some learned behavior

01:01:00:04 –> 01:01:02:22
Talking archery out season September. I

01:01:02:22 –> 01:01:11:11
Mean the old Pavlov’s dog philosophy, right? When they, instead of the bell, in this case, it’s a 300 wind mag going off and they know, hey, that means food. Any,

01:01:12:02 –> 01:01:14:22
Any electronic calls allowed or anything like that? No.

01:01:15:01 –> 01:01:34:06
No. What are prohibited meth? It’s baiting and calls. It’s just gonna be spot in stock. True. I guess mountain hunting, I mean, I guess if you did have a bear on a car because you found it on it, there’s nothing, you didn’t put that out as bait. Right? I assume that would be, that’s right. Fine. If it’s a naturally occurring or even a hunter remains of a carcass, it’s like

01:01:34:06 –> 01:01:41:05
You guys have problem bears in certain areas. So there’s, I mean obviously you could construe that as baiting, you know, if there’s, if they’re on some kind of

01:01:41:05 –> 01:01:42:05
Natural type

01:01:43:01 –> 01:01:45:02
Dump or whatever. But anyway,

01:01:45:17 –> 01:02:03:01
Yeah. Placed baits though will not be allowed inside the D M A and we are gonna have that available as an option outside the D M A, but it’s under very limited circumstances when we were trying to really target a bear. Wow. Yeah. And that require permit issued by the department and that kind of stuff.

01:02:03:06 –> 01:02:18:02
Also, it could be a possibility. You’re gonna wanna be ver watch it very closely, even more than like black bear BA stations that you get registered. Like, we don’t want a problem arising because we’re deliberately trying to draw on grizzlies in a certain wrong drainage or wherever else. So.

01:02:18:28 –> 01:02:32:13
Right. That’s cool. So anything else you wanna bring up as far as the, you know, hunting techniques? No electronic calls, I guess maybe hand calls put Bronson out there acting like a dying rabbit and he doesn’t wanna hold back. I’m not gonna be that guy.

01:02:33:25 –> 01:02:42:01
Yeah. You know, better have what those archery hunters tell me. Doing a cow call might, might bring, bring bear in. But I can also tell you I’ve done a lot of cow calling and I have never had

01:02:42:01 –> 01:02:42:29
A bear, even

01:02:42:29 –> 01:02:55:07
When I’m around a lot of bears. Yeah. But, but I really think tracking, tracking is gonna be a big deal even without snow. You get on bears, like to move on the path of least resistance, you

01:02:55:07 –> 01:02:58:24
Got a lot of rain too, so you have some fresh tracks in a lot of that country.

01:02:58:29 –> 01:03:22:18
Yeah. They walk the trails all the time. And keeping your eye on, on places where bears are gonna frequent, you know, hey, yesterday this track wasn’t here, it is here today. I think that’s gonna be a pretty effective method to know kind of what you got in the area. You know, you’re, if you got a a four and a half inch track and then a two or three little tiny sets of prints next to it, you’re not gonna waste your time on.

01:03:22:21 –> 01:03:23:05
No, you’re not.

01:03:23:21 –> 01:03:27:23
You don’t wanna, you don’t wanna run into her anyway. You don’t want to even see her. No.

01:03:28:09 –> 01:04:11:15
Not without the fire extinguisher. So tell, tell us, tell us, I know you’ve got go and you’ve got a big day ahead of you, but just want to kind of move into like what kind of pushback are you seeing and then how can we get involved to help you? And obviously this is a very minimal amount of take compared to the numbers we’re talking. It’s a very, it’s kinda like putting, you know, putting your toe in the hot water, so to speak. You’re not just jumping in. I mean, just So tell us about the pushback and then you know, that if there is any, and then how we can get involved. I know Adam talked to even a fellow hunter that was maybe somewhat against it Yeah. But wasn’t fully educated. Tell us a little bit about that, Adam, and then let’s go in and, and allow Brian to talk about the pushback a little bit, and then how we can get involved.

01:04:12:10 –> 01:04:49:06
Well, this is, as you well know, Brian, this is about, for, for people that don’t want grizzly bears, they root hunted, it’s more about perception than the reality of the situation. Meaning the seven to 1200 bears that you are comfortably know are in existence there. And we’re talking about potentially, I guess best case, worst case, however you wanna look at it from their perspective or ours, 23 to four bears potentially being removed. And we’re talking Wyoming, I think Idaho, I’ve seen a proposal floating out of like one bear, but you know what I mean? Such a very small number. And that’s, if it was, that’s in a perfect

01:04:49:23 –> 01:05:44:05
Situation, a very perfect situation in your, in your core area. And they, they killed 11 or so there and all the people in the, in the outside of the demographic area killed, killed bears, which is probably not gonna happen, but that’s the worst case. It could be. So it’s more, but, but they can portray it as drizzly bears are now gonna be slaughtered again, they’re open, blah, blah, blah. It’s about perception. And I, I did I get jumped, I got jumped the other day by a, by a, a hunter from Wyoming. He was from Wyoming. And just thought we were asinine for trying to encourage people for going to provide public input to support your proposal, Wyoming Game of Fish proposal to once again have hunting as a mechanism to help help harvest bears and to somewhat c curb their unregulated growth, you know, things that we’ve already talked about.

01:05:44:22 –> 01:06:15:00
And his thing he just said, he says, you can’t tell me that, that this, that we’re gonna main be able to maintain the kind of bears, you know, so that’s what people come to Wyoming for is the sea grizzly bears. That’s what makes us unique. And I agreed with all of it, but it was like I was talking to him about the proposal that you guys had put forth and how minimal I thought that that was even gonna have no effect, no effect really on the whole population. It’s a start, but it’s gonna have no effect on the population.

01:06:15:00 –> 01:06:47:26
But the numbers we’re talking about, you could probably take 20 bears out of each little subunit, you know what I mean? And, and, and, and yeah, then you’re starting to see an effect. But 23, 24 max statewide with the kind of numbers you’re talking about, such a minimal effect. And that’s Adam’s point is, you know, we’ve been paying for the $50 million been coming outta sportsman. I mean, at some point there’s gotta be some, we regulate everything else. Why, why should we not regulate grizzlies, especially to this recovery extent? What would be your take on that, Brian?

01:06:48:15 –> 01:07:30:01
Yeah, so, so you know, there’s definitely some people who you’re, you’re exactly right who don’t understand all the science here and it’s complex. And so I understand that I, I sympathize with the person who, who doesn’t understand the, you know, the, what it really means, the scale and the per, and I’ll just tell you this, you guys are exactly right. What we’re really talking about here is 11 bears that that population estimate of 700 bears. And where I told you there’s science that indicates there’s as many as 1200 bears. That’s only in the demographic monitoring area. So we’re talking in that area where recovery is actually measured 11

01:07:30:04 –> 01:07:30:14

01:07:30:14 –> 01:07:30:25

01:07:30:28 –> 01:07:34:17
The population is estimated is 11 bears. And I can What’s

01:07:34:17 –> 01:07:37:20
Your estimate unequivocally outside, what’s your estimate outside the d m A?

01:07:38:14 –> 01:07:42:05
You know, we just, we just don’t collect information there. We don’t have a great, but

01:07:42:05 –> 01:07:45:11
Let’s say it’s two blowing smoke, whatever, 300, I don’t know,

01:07:45:24 –> 01:07:46:27
Let’s say it’s a hundred even

01:07:47:15 –> 01:07:49:29
Whatever. Yeah. You know, it’s, it’s not that many. Yeah. It’s really not that many. 50,

01:07:50:00 –> 01:08:55:14
50 bears even. You’re turning 12 people loose and realizing the encounter. Yeah. You know, you might kill a handful of bears, who knows. We’ll see. But yeah, so I guess yeah, boiling it back, like you said, which is perfect, the core, the area that you, your feet are held to the fire of and Idaho Game and Fish and Montana Fish Wildlife parks and is that core demographic area of minimum 700 and we’re talking about removing 11 strategically up to 11, you know, strategically we’re talking, it’s nothing, we’re talking zero 1%. Yeah. We’re talking about really nothing. Right. And it’s a start and we understand, Brian, why we applaud you starting conservatively because we wanna see this start. And then as you know, you guys show and have data here, here’s what we’re taking and the numbers are still growing or, and we’re still having more and more conflicts or whatever you can add to that discussion and, and then gradually can increase. You have more reason to add a layer of, you know, hey, all right, next year I think we can add a little bit more. And so yeah, you’re, we applaud that and, and, and I think you got your hands full. I I mean the, the public comment period’s open now to the 30th of April and tell

01:08:55:14 –> 01:09:02:05
Us about that a little bit. Are you getting some, are you getting some pushback And, and, and do you want Hunter feedback and where can they go?

01:09:03:09 –> 01:09:54:18
Well, I, you know, I, we want, we want people who are interested in grizzly bears to provide their thoughts. Yeah. And, and so certainly you guys are obviously very passionate and you have a listenership that’s very passionate and I would encourage you and your listeners to, you know, submit comments and they’re, it’s, you can go on our website and figure out how to do it. And I, and I also encourage the folks that you described earlier that are opposed to this to do the same thing. You know, that’s what the purpose of the, of, of this process is, is to get feedback from the public. So I’ll tell you though, there’s another group, you, you know, you described the, the hunter who’s a pro hunter who doesn’t understand necessarily all the complexities in the biology, but you know, maybe could understand it better if they had all the facts.

01:09:55:06 –> 01:10:46:20
There’s also folks that are just adamantly opposed to hunting in general. And there are folks that are just adamantly opposed to any kind of grizzly bear hunting. And, and those folks, you know, they’re, it doesn’t matter what you tell ’em about the biology, they just don’t Yeah. Philosophically it’s emotional agree with, they don’t agree with hunting grizzly bears. Yeah. It’s just not something Yeah. You know, there’s an argument about, well, you don’t have to take the meat, it’s strictly trophy hunting. You know, that, that argument is certainly out there and, and our commission will be hearing that. But so what, so what I tell you is, is that it’s, it’s good for anybody who’s interested to submit comments. And the other thing I would just tell you is, is that, you know, our, our commission is very good at weighing public comment and, and doing the right thing for the people who they manage wildlife for and trust.

01:10:46:21 –> 01:11:38:00
And that’s really the end of the day under Wyoming laws, the citizens of the state. And so, you know, the, the, the Game and Fish Commission is believers in hunting as a management tool. They’re believers in the North American model, and they know that we’ve done this effectively with other species, you know, like black bears, mountain lions, and wolves. So what what I, what I think is important to understand too is, is there’s still litigation that’s going on out there, and at the end of the day, the commission could pass this thing. And I, my prediction is they will pass it and we could still not have a hunting season depending on how litigation goes. And I bring that up because we’ve certainly seen it happen before.

01:11:38:25 –> 01:11:40:01
Yeah, no, there no

01:11:40:01 –> 01:11:40:17
Doubt in the

01:11:40:17 –> 01:11:41:05
Past when there’s

01:11:41:05 –> 01:11:47:16
No doubt when, yeah, in the past when, when things have been stopped, it’s been based on litigation, not based on policy decisions,

01:11:47:21 –> 01:12:37:14
So, or good proper management. And I think what’s, what’s nice and what, you know, we, and you know, is that you guys have come forward with something that seems reasonable and presented the facts. There’s a lot of us, you know, out here that, you know, don’t necessarily live in Wyoming, don’t understand it, haven’t haven’t educated ourselves fully. And that’s what we kind of wanted to do on this podcast is to just get a little more feeling of what’s gone on and, and to create the policies that you’ve presented and, and the hunting seasons and regulations and whatnot. And so I think that’s what’s what’s great about, it’s just to educate the hunters. So, you know, of course we’re pro hunting, everybody’s pro hunting, but, but it’s nice to feel like you’ve got a program that you can get behind and, and truly support with proper biology. So,

01:12:37:27 –> 01:12:38:13
Sure, yeah.

01:12:38:19 –> 01:12:51:00
Regarding public comment period, it ends the 30th of April, then I believe the 23rd or 4th of May, I’m going off of memory, that’s when your commission meeting is scheduled to meet. Is that the right timeframe, Brian?

01:12:51:00 –> 01:13:00:16
Yeah, the 23rd of May in Lander at 10 o’clock in the morning is when the commission will meet. And right now they’re only scheduled to just address this issue in this

01:13:00:16 –> 01:13:02:00
Issue, probably be a full room. It’s

01:13:02:05 –> 01:13:02:13
Probably gonna be,

01:13:03:10 –> 01:13:04:25
I am guessing it’s gonna be a full

01:13:04:25 –> 01:13:44:08
Room. And then after that you, you know, obviously your anticipation and, and our ours is as well is it’ll get passed as proposed or modified or whatever. And currently you have a July, early July application period for the hunts we’ve described. And so I guess we’ll just have to stay tuned obviously on your Wman Game of Fish website as to the outcome of the commission meeting and then what happens between late May and early July, the application process and then what happens potentially from late July till September 15th. That’s, you know, I mean it’s, it’s, it’s gonna be an evolution I guess as, as the summer progresses. Yep. So

01:13:44:17 –> 01:13:57:25
Yeah, it will, yeah. And actually, we’ll the first season actually will be September 1st out. That’s the areas outside of the dma and then I gotcha. The areas inside the D M A are are September 15th. Yeah.

01:13:58:06 –> 01:15:05:19
Well, we did wanna mention too for, for our listeners, we do publish a monthly publication from December through June in the April issue, page seven in Adam Adam’s comments here. You can go to h https slash slash wgf.w.gov/gi involved slash public meetings to kind of view what we’ve talked about, view the proposals and whatnot. And then you may print and mail a comment card or you may go online and provide your comments online by April 30th, like Adam said. And so we encourage everybody that’s listening to do that, to go online. You could fish your way through it and find it without just typing in what I said. But we do encourage everybody to do that. And, and Brian, we just want to tell you how much we appreciate you taking time outta your schedule. I know you’re busy and we do have to wrap this up. And so anyway, it’s kind of exciting from our perspective. You got a, something new species to apply for and maybe even draw, which obviously I’m sure the, the odds like you said would be, you know, a lot better of winning the lottery than, than getting a bear tag. So

01:15:06:26 –> 01:15:09:05
Yeah, that’s probably a true, true statement,

01:15:10:02 –> 01:15:10:22
But, well, I

01:15:10:22 –> 01:15:23:29
Appreciate, so hey, thank you guys. I appreciate your, i I appreciate your time and it was great to have this conversation with you and discuss something that I’m certainly pretty darn passionate about, as are you and that’s wildlife and specifically grizzly bears.

01:15:24:07 –> 01:15:41:04
Well, thanks again. And we may have you back on again pending the commission meeting and application period and how it all shakes out. We may have you on one more time just to talk about anything that might change based on what it’s presented and out, out in front of us right now. So, but thanks again for your time, Brian.

01:15:41:17 –> 01:15:43:02
You betcha. You guys take care and

01:15:43:02 –> 01:15:45:22
As the chief game warden go easy on guys out there. All right.

01:15:47:02 –> 01:15:47:17

01:15:47:23 –> 01:15:50:20
I did, you know, I did hear about your son having a tag and

01:15:51:23 –> 01:15:52:02
You know,

01:15:52:29 –> 01:15:56:26
Just keep in mind that, you know, we’ll be keeping a watchful eye

01:15:56:27 –> 01:16:06:23
Oh, I’m sure. With pinging phones this day and age. Don’t worry, he will be shooting his first elk. So I’m way, I’m way excited out

01:16:06:26 –> 01:16:07:17
Standing. That’s pretty

01:16:07:17 –> 01:16:24:23
Cool. And we do, we sure appreciate, he had six points and, and have been applying for years and so he’s super excited. The kid’s 17 gonna be 18 this winter and so anyway, as you know, and, and I don’t know if you’ve got kids, but I mean they, they get ready to leave the nest and, and I get nervous and so we’ve loaded with tags this year, so

01:16:25:03 –> 01:16:41:11
Yeah, I’ll tell you what, it’s pretty cool. I hunt with my son and, and hunting some of the places you guys talked about actually up there in 61 and, and we sure have a good time and, and he’s, there’s, there’s not a lot of outdoor experiences that are better than being able to do it with your boy, so.

01:16:41:19 –> 01:17:05:29
Absolutely. Well, what’s crazy about Wyoming, you guys have a lot of desert country. Of course they’re known for antelope and, and, and deer and elk and everything, but the wildlife is unbelievable out, even out in that desert country. It’s a, it’s just crazy. The ducks and geese and predators and whatnot. It’s just a awesome state and it’s a state we don’t miss. We, we, we apply for it every single year. So anyway, thank, thank you for that.

01:17:06:29 –> 01:17:08:23
You bet. You guys take care and we’ll talk to you

01:17:08:23 –> 01:17:45:28
Soon, soon. Appreciate it. Thanks Brian. Talk to you later. So we do have a 2018 Epic Outdoors cover contest where we give away Vortex vinyls, the 15 by 56 chibas. We do wanna thank Vortex for their sponsorship here at Epic Outdoors. They do have great optics at a great price point. Raise my kids on Vortex. And so anyway, we do appreciate them. They have lifetime warranties, so a lot of great different models there at Vortex. So to view the different products they have or find a dealer you can go to vortex optics.com. So anyway, they’ve got their catalog shows and events as well as you can call ’em at 1-800-426-ZERO 0 4 8.