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Waterfowl season for N.D. residents opens Sept. 22

North Dakota’s 2018 waterfowl season opens for state residents Sept. 22, while nonresidents may begin hunting waterfowl Sept. 29.

The season for swans opens Sept. 29 for both residents and nonresidents who have purchased a swan license.

Hunters may take six ducks per day with the following restrictions: five mallards of which two may be hens, three wood ducks, three scaup, two redheads, two canvasbacks and two pintails. Hunters can take an additional two blue-winged teal from Sept. 22 through Oct. 7. The daily limit of five mergansers may include no more than two hooded mergansers. For ducks and mergansers, the possession limit is three times the daily limit.

The hunting season for Canada geese will close Dec. 16 in the eastern zone, Dec. 21 in the western zone and Dec. 28 in the Missouri River zone. The season for whitefronts closes Dec. 2, while the season on light geese is open through Dec. 30.

Shooting hours for all geese are one-half hour before sunrise to 1 p.m. each day through Nov. 3. Beginning Nov. 4, shooting hours are extended until 2 p.m. each day.

Extended shooting hours for all geese are permitted from one-half hour before sunrise to sunset on Saturdays and Wednesdays through Nov. 21, and on Saturdays, Sundays and Wednesdays from Nov. 22 through the end of each season.

The bag limit for Canada geese during the regular season is eight daily and 24 in possession, except in the Missouri River zone where the limit is five daily and 15 in possession.

The daily limit on whitefronts is three with nine in possession, and light goose is 50 daily, with no possession limit.

In accordance with state law, nonresidents are not allowed to hunt on North Dakota Game and Fish Department wildlife management areas or conservation PLOTS areas from Oct. 6-12. 

Sandhill crane season opens Saturday, ends Nov. 11

North Dakota’s sandhill crane season opens Saturday and runs through Nov. 11.

Limits are three daily and nine in possession in unit 1 (west of U.S. Highway 281), and two daily and six in possession in unit 2 (east of U.S. Highway 281). Shooting hours are one-half hour before sunrise to 1 p.m. each day through Nov. 3. Beginning Nov. 4, shooting hours are extended until 2 p.m. each day.

Game and Fish allocates three bighorn sheep licenses

The North Dakota Game and Fish Department is allocating three bighorn sheep licenses for the 2018 hunting season, two fewer than 2017.

One license is available in Unit B3 and one in B4. Also, one license, as authorized under North Dakota Century Code, was auctioned in spring by the Midwest Chapter of the Wild Sheep Foundation, from which all proceeds are used to enhance bighorn sheep management in North Dakota.

Similar to last year, Game and Fish announced in February that the status of the bighorn sheep hunting season would be determined after completion of the summer population survey. Now that the survey is complete, the bighorn lottery was held and successful applicants were notified.

South Dakota fish hatchery releases education app

SPEARFISH, S.D. — Visitors to the D.C. Booth Historic National Fish Hatchery and Archives in Spearfish can now become "agents of discovery."

"We're really excited about that," said Archivist April Gregory, who assisted in creating the hatchery's version of the Agents of Discovery, an interactive, educational technology platform.

The free app is up and running and can be downloaded onto a smartphone or tablet. Users assume the roles of secret "agents" on a "mission" as they complete challenges specific to the location. For example, at the Spearfish hatchery, users are challenged to correctly identify various kinds of trout, "throw" honeycomb to catch a pollinator or answer questions about the history of the hatchery, natural and cultural history of the area.

The app uses geolocation, so as people walk the grounds, the app scans their location and brings ups nearby "challenges" to complete, which appear as icons to click on. Directions are provided at each step, and Gregory told the Black Hills Pioneer that the app is currently designed for young people, elementary-aged and older. However, everyone can use the app and will likely learn something as they complete challenges.

Gregory said the hatchery has long desired such an interactive tool, especially during the months when the buildings on the hatchery grounds are not open.

-- Compiled from press releases, wire services and staff reports

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