By Lars Dalseide | January 28 2014 12:05

From the Colorado Parks and Wildlife - CPW seeks input on hunting season structure

Colorado Parks and WildlifeDenver, Colorado - Colorado Parks and Wildlife is seeking public input on the structure of the big game hunting seasons for 2015 through 2019.

Major issues that are considered during the big game season structure process include the number of seasons for each species, the overlap among different seasons, breaks between seasons and the beginning and ending dates of hunting seasons. The hunting 'preference point’ system and totally limited elk hunting units will also be discussed as part of this process.

"The five-year season structure is designed to provide sportsmen, hunting-related businesses, landowners and communities an opportunity to plan ahead for the upcoming seasons," said Craig McLaughlin, Terrestrial Section Manager for Colorado Parks and Wildlife. "The public input process gives stakeholders the chance to comment on some of the major hunting issues."

Every five years, the Colorado Parks and Wildlife Commission sets the big game season structure. This review process allows the Parks and Wildlife Commission to consider public input along with information from wildlife biologists and managers to shape the structure of deer, elk, pronghorn, moose, black bear and mountain lion seasons for the next five years.

"We want to hear from sportsmen and other constituents about how the current hunting season structure is working for them and how it can be improved," added Bob Broscheid, Director of Colorado Parks and Wildlife.

Colorado Parks and Wildlife is using multiple tools to share information on the process with the public and to collect public input into how hunting season structures or the preference point system may be improved. These include traditional and social media, the agency website, in-person meetings around the state, and a hunter attitude survey mailed to more than 7,000 big-game hunters. During the second half of February, Colorado Parks and Wildlife will hold 16 public meetings around the state. Public meetings are an opportunity for anyone who is interested to meet with agency staff and provide input to be considered in setting hunting season structure for the next five years.

Times and locations of meetings are posted below and on the Colorado Parks and Wildlife website and can be located by going to cpw.state.co.us and searching for "season structure." An official public comment form is available on the website along with more information on the process and opportunities to get involved. If you cannot find answers to your questions online, you can e-mail bgss@state.co.us to request more information.

Colorado's big game hunting seasons account for a nearly $1 billion economic boost each fall to the state of Colorado. A 2008 study found that elk hunting alone pumps $295 million into the Colorado economy and supports 3,400 jobs in the state.

Big Game Season Structure Public Meetings:

Northeast Region:
Feb. 12 - Denver - CPW office, Hunter Ed Building, 6060 Broadway, 6:30 - 9:30 p.m.
Feb. 20 - Loveland - The Ranch at Loveland, Larimer County Conference Center, Sandhouse, Beard and Brown meeting rooms, 5280 Arena Circle #100, 6:30 - 9:30 p.m.
Feb. 25 - Fort Morgan - Morgan County Community College, Founders Room, 920 Barlow Road, 6:30-9:30 p.m.

Southeast Region:
Feb. 14  - Lamar - CPW Area Office, 2500 South Main St., 6 - 8:30 p.m.
Feb. 19  - Buena Vista - Sangre de Cristo Electric Building, 29780 US Hwy 24, 6 - 8:30 p.m.
Feb. 21 - Colorado Springs - CPW Regional Office, 4255 Sinton Road, 6 - 8:30 p.m.
Feb. 26 - Pueblo- Lake Pueblo State Park Auditorium, 640 Pueblo Reservoir Road, 6 - 8:30 p.m.
Feb. 28 - Walsenburg - Lathrop State Park, 70 County Road 502, 6 -8:30 p.m.

Northwest Region:
Feb. 19 - Steamboat Springs - USFS/CPW office, 925 Weiss Drive, 6 - 8 p.m.
Feb. 20 - Eagle - Eagle County Fairground, 426 Fairgrounds Road, 6 - 8 p.m.
Feb. 24 - Meeker - Mountain Valley Bank, 4th and Main, 6 - 8 p.m.
Feb. 25 - Grand Junction - Doubletree Hotel, Kokopelli Rm, 743 Horizon Dr., 6 - 8 p.m.

Southwest Region:
Feb. 18 - Montrose - CPW office, 2300 South Townsend Ave., 6:30 - 8:30 p.m.
Feb. 19 - Gunnison - CPW office, 300 W. New York Ave., 6:30 - 8:30 p.m.
Feb. 25 - Monte Vista - CWP office, 0722 S. Road 1E, 6:30 - 8:30 p.m.
Feb. 26 - Durango - La Plata County Fairgrounds Extension Building, 2500 Main Ave., 6:30 - 8:30 p.m.

Colorado Parks and Wildlife manages 42 state parks, more than 300 state wildlife areas, all of Colorado's wildlife, and a variety of outdoor recreation.

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