March 5, 2017 The Yellow Pine Times

March 5, 2017 The Yellow Pine Times – Valley County, Idaho

Village News:

stpaddyday-a

St. Patrick’s Day

St. Patrick’s Celebration at the Yellow Pine Tavern. Friday March 17th at 2pm Potluck. Corned Beef and Cabbage provided by the Tavern.
— — — —

Vet Day

Cascade Vet Clinic has tentatively scheduled us for the morning of Wednesday June 14 for our annual Vet Day clinic. Please call (208) 382-4590 to get on the list.

Note: this date may change depending on how many folks sign up.
——————————–

Local Observations:

Monday (Feb 27) snowed during the night, 1.5″ new snow, average 18″ on the ground, patchy blue sky. Small birds twittering from the trees, very quiet. A little sun mid-day, chilly breezes. Heard a hairy woodpecker calling. Occasional flakes and/or sunshine during the day and breezy, a few short snow flurries, no accumulation. Snowing at midnight and probably most of the night.

Tuesday (Feb 28) light snow falling, overcast with breaks to the east, a scant 3/4″ new snow and average 18″ on the ground. Small birds calling, river sounds up. Flaking snow off and on during the day, and breaks in the clouds. More sun in the afternoon and a little melting. Snowmobile traffic. Evening breeze had a bite to it and temps dropping with the sun. 1/4″ of snow fell before midnight. A skiff of snow fell before 7am.

Wednesday (Mar 1) overcast and breezy this morning, occasional flakes of snow. Jays and small birds calling, fresh canine (fox?) tracks in the road. Occasional flake of snow fell before lunch. Fire Hall siren tested at noon. Partly sunny afternoon. Neighbor with snow plow scraped the loose snow off the streets. Clouds breaking up before dark, mostly clear cold night.

Thursday (Mar 2) hard freeze (low of 10 degrees) high hazy clouds at sunrise, warming up quickly. Jays calling. Red-breasted nuthatch visiting the feeder. Thicker clouds mid-day, then a little clearing early afternoon and warmer. Not much melting. Clouds thicker before dark and still above freezing. Cloudy and below freezing by 11pm.

Friday (Mar 3) not as cold overnight, partly clear, then mostly clear this morning, an average of 17″ of snow on the flat. Breezy afternoon and windy evening. Quiet. Rain overnight.

Saturday (Mar 4) probably did not get below freezing last night and rain. Slushy and wet this morning, light fog, low clouds and light rain with occasional flakes of snow, looks like snow line is about 5500′. Light rain off and on during the day. Flaking snow before dark, then rain/snow mix, then snow all night.

Sunday (Mar 5) we got a “March Snow” storm during the night, a little over 6.5″ of wet heavy new snow, average 23″ on the ground and still snowing. Saw a junco and heard a jay. Snowed pretty much all day, about an inch accumulation. Thinner clouds later in the afternoon and temps dropping below freezing before sundown.
———————————-

Letter to Share:

Commissioner Cruickshank’s February 2017 Newsletter

From the desk of Commissioner Cruickshank,

Wednesday February 1st
I participated in an Idaho Association of Counties (IAC) Legislative Committee Conference call to discuss legislation, important to county government, that is being worked on while the Idaho Legislature is in session. This call was for several hours.

Thursday February 2nd
This morning I attended an Americas Best Communities (ABC) Project Lead meeting in Cascade to review the status of our projects and discuss the final reporting due before the end of March.
This afternoon I worked on emails and sent a request for an opening speaker for the ABC Forest Restoration Summit after my prior requests were turned down.

Friday February 3rd
Speaker confirmations came in so that helps complete that part of the Forest Restoration. Next I sent emails asking for biographies of all the speakers to be sent in.
Replied to several emails concerning the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Planning 2.0 Rule that many are working on to have it repealed as it takes any upfront discussion with local government out of the planning phases.

Saturday February 4th
Worked on more emails to remind folks of the invite for the Forest Restoration Summit, responded to more emails on the BLM 2.0 Rule and read emails received when I asked for comments on the proposed Health District legislation that is being considered for a funding formula change.

Sunday February 5th
Worked on finalizing the agenda for the Forest Restoration Summit and reviewed documents for the IAC Legislative Conference which will be held this week in Boise.

Monday February 6th
Today we held a 1/2 day commissioners meeting so we could travel to Boise for the Conference tomorrow. The minutes of this meeting can be found on the Valley County website at http://www.co.valley.id.us click on the commissioners section and look for Meeting Minutes and Agendas. Minutes are there once approved at a future meeting which is generally within two weeks.
Tonight I attended the IAC Board of Directors meeting at the Local Government Center on Vista Avenue.

Tuesday February 7th
This morning I along with many other commissioners attended a training on Public Defense guidelines and rules developed by the Public Defense Commission.
This afternoon I attended the IAC Commissioners and Clerks meeting.

Wednesday February 8th
This morning started with the IAC Transportation Committee meeting. At 9:45 A.M. the IAC General Session was held where we heard from Lt. Governor Little, Retired Chief Justice Jim Jones on Water Rights and held a business meeting to discuss legislative issues.
At 1:00 P. M. I attended a meeting, at the State Capitol, to discuss the process for changing the name of Craters of the Moon from a National Monument to a National Park. Counties in this area would like to see this change as it would help with their economy.
At 3:30 P. M. I attended the IAC Public Lands meeting where we heard about litigation against doing Fire Wise for Orgrande, Idaho as it borders the Inventory Roadless Area (IRA). This Fire Wise project is less than 300 acres of a 50,000 acre IRA parcel. Next we heard about the BLM Planning 2.0 Rule, Idaho Department of Lands spoke on the Good Neighbor Authority and how it works with the Forest Service and State Forestry.
Tonight was the IAC Legislative Reception where many of the State Legislators attended and visited with county elected officials and other organizations.

Thursday February 9th,
Early morning at 6:30 A.M. breakfast meeting for the IAC Legislative Committee to review and discuss legislation.
Next was meeting up with NACo President Desloge from Leon County, Florida as he was attending the conference here in Idaho to welcome him and address any needs he might have and to introduce him to the folks in Idaho.
We then attended a session on Political Polarization, Civility and Collaborative Governance.
This afternoon we heard a presentation from a retired CIA person who provided his career as being Under Cover for the CIA as a Different Kind of Career.
The I had the honor of speaking along with NACo President Desloge, NACo Legislative Director Cox and fellow Idaho folks who represent Idaho on the NACo Board of Directors about the workings of NACo and how NACo advocates on counties behalf in all areas. President Desloge also talked about his Brilliant Ideas at Work: What Counties are Doing Right initiative. At the NACo Annual Conference this summer President Desloge wants to recognize 100 Brilliant Ideas and was asking counties to submit their ideas to share with other counties.

Friday February 10th
This morning I participated in a conference call with the Federal Highway Administration and Valley County Road Superintendent to discuss the preferred design for Warren Wagon Road and adding shoulder width where available to help with pedestrian and bicycle safety.
This afternoon I participated in a NACo Transportation Committee Conference call to discuss the upcoming meetings while in Washington DC and to discuss minimum heights for Drones to operate.
I also had several calls on flooding concerns, snow/mud slides and snow removal due to the recent change in weather. With having to move heavy equipment on a Saturday I informed the Sheriff’s Office of the emergency so they would be aware the Road Department would be moving equipment on Saturday.

Saturday February 11th
Received a message that Warren Wagon Road slide was cleared enough to allow passage.

Monday February 13th
Commissioner day today. Please see minutes of the meeting on Valley County website. Discussed today was flooding concerns within the City of Cascade with the Mayor and a City Councilwoman. Also discussed the mud slide issue on the East Fork Road into Yellow Pine and if we need to declare an emergency. This afternoon we heard from the Emergency Services Manager, Road Superintendent and State of Idaho Emergency Management on the process of declaring an emergency.
I sent emails tonight to our congressional offices requesting their support for the Secure Rural Schools program.

Tuesday February 14th
As Chairman of the Board of Commissioners I signed a document requesting an Emergency Declaration for Valley County to start the process of looking into receiving additional help and funding to clean up the snow/mud slides in Valley County.
For the past several months I along with a sub-committee have been working to finalize the agenda for the Americas Best Communities Forest Restoration Summit which will be held in two days. Last minute details were worked on and last minute reminders were sent out today.
Tonight I received a report on the amount of debris, soils, logs and rocks involved to clean up the slides from the Road Superintendent

Wednesday February 15th
Sent some emails to others on the slides so they have this information.
At noon I attended the Americas Best Communities meeting to watch a webinar on final work that needs done by the end of March to submit our final report. Discussed options for projects to be funding into the future when we WIN and worked on our final meeting dates to insure we have the correct information for the final report.
Tonight I attended the Payette Forest Coalition, Lands Allocation Sub-Committee meeting in McCall.

Thursday February 16th
Valley County hosted the Americas Best Communities, Forest Restoration Summit today in Cascade. I was well pleased with the diverse attendees as it well represented agencies, organizations, industry, companies and elected officials to understand more about how forest restoration helps with the healthy environment we all enjoy.

Friday February 17th
I called and visited with the NACo staff assigned to the Western Interstate Region (WIR) to discuss changes proposed to the WIR By-Laws that I will present at the upcoming meeting in Washington DC during the NACo Conference.
I sent out a news release that explained both Idaho Senators had signed onto supporting the Secure Rural Schools program to all the commissioners and clerks in Idaho.
I worked on a report of the Forest Restoration Summit from my notes that will be used when a summary of the event will be created.

Saturday February 18th
I sent out emails to remind folks of my interest to run for the vacant office on the NACo Executive Board to represent the 15 western states as the Western Region Representative which is the governance side of NACo. To be able to serve you must be an elected official as well.

Tuesday February 21st
Early morning I received a call from Congressman Labrador’s staff to discuss a Dear Colleague letter concerning Secure Rural Schools payments.
Our commissioner meeting is today. Please review the minutes once approved and found on our website at http://www.co.valley.id.us . Of interest today was the Tax Deed Auction where Tamarack Resort Properties were being sold for past taxes owed. We received no bids for the properties so the commissioners will regroup and decide how we will proceed with disposal of these parcels.

Wednesday February 22nd
I printed off documents for the upcoming National Association of Counties (NACo) Legislative Conference starting the end of the week in Washington DC.
I participated in a conference call to discuss and finalize the Western Interstate Region By-Laws so they can be presented at the NACo conference.
I drove to Boise to attend the Idaho Association of Counties Legislative Committee meeting this afternoon.
I received a phone call asking if I would submit my name as a potential Commissioner to testify on Public Land Management in front of a Congressional Committee. After consideration I okayed my name to be submitted.

Thursday February 23rd
I flew to Washington DC for the NACo Legislative Conference.
I received an invite to have lunch with several other NACo Leadership and the Chief of the Forest Service while attending the NACo Conference.

Friday February 24th
I toured the hotel where the conference is held to familiarize myself with the meeting rooms.
I had the opportunity to join other NACo Leadership at the White House Bowling Alley and go bowling. I can say I finished in the top half of the 12 attendees with my bowling score.
Tonight several of the Idaho attendees in town joined for dinner.

Saturday February 25th through March 1st
Attached is my report of attending the NACo Legislative Conference so please see the attached document.
NACo Legislative Conference Feb  2017.pdf

This concludes the month of February and it appears spring is a ways off yet due to the new snow on the ground.

Thanks for reading the newsletter.
Gordon
————————————–

Idaho News:

Fire destroys Willey Lane out-building on Saturday

By Tom Grote for The Star-News March 2, 2017

Fire destroyed a 500-square-foot out-building on Willey Lane southeast of McCall, but no one was injured, Donnelly Fire & EMS reported.

The building, located on a ranch owned by the family of Valley County commissioner Bill Willey, caught fire about 6:40 a.m. Saturday, Donnelly Fire Chief Juan Bonilla said.

The building was engulfed in flames when firefighters arrived, Bonilla said. Eleven firefighters and three pieces of equipment responded to the scene.

McCall Fire & EMS was called to assist and sent a water tanker and two firefighters, he said. Firefighters were on the scene for about two hours.

Spontaneous combustion of oily rags was cited by Bonilla as the cause of the fire.

The building was set up to be a personal meat shop, said Jill Wright, a member of the Willey family who lives on the ranch.

full story The Star-News:
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Budget writers approve $50M to help hard-hit Idaho communities

Gretchen Parsons, KTVB March 01, 2017

Boise – The Joint Finance Appropriations Committee unanimously approved $50 million in funding to help those Idaho counties where a disaster has been declared.

For many parts of the state, winter disasters aren’t over and if this measure is ultimately approved, help will be on the way fast.

… “This has been very harsh, there’s been a lot of freezing, there has been a lot of thawing, avalanches, floods,” said Idaho Transportation Department spokesman Vince Trimboli.

… “Roads, bridges, culverts, anything where there is damage, where people cannot travel to school, perhaps roofs, not personal homes,” added Bell.

full story:
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Overlooked ski hazard can be deadly

Dean Johnson, KTVB February 28, 2017


Ethan Goss skied into a tree well at Brundage Mountain. Luckily, he was able to get out alive.

A 34-year-old Meridian man was found unresponsive in a tree well near the Can-Can ski run on Bald Mountain on Saturday. Derek Klein marks the fourth ski-related death in the country this season due to tree wells.

Paul Baugher, who’s the director of the Northwest Avalanche Institute, says tree wells are one of the most overlooked ski hazards on any resort; almost every year someone ends up dying in one.

“This is one of those main hazards you have to worry about associated with powder skiing,” Baugher said.

On average, about three people every year lose their lives due to tree wells or snow immersions.

continued:
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

What you need to know about the rise of short-term rentals

Morgan Boydston, KTVB March 01, 2017

Boise — As Idaho becomes a desirable destination for businesses and events, more and more people are visiting.

Traditionally, those people would be staying in hotels. But now, short-term vacation rentals are popping up all over the state, providing tourists more options. As with anything that’s relatively new, short-term rentals present a whole new set of challenges.

… The Idaho State Tax Commission says they are finding that many homeowners on those sites aren’t aware that they need to charge certain taxes.

“These taxes apply whether you’re a hotel chain, a bed and breakfast, or a private residence,” Idaho Tax Commission Public Information Officer Renee Eymann told KTVB.

This is the requirement in Idaho: Anyone who provides and charges for temporary lodging – meaning 30 days or less – has to collect and remit 6 percent sales tax, 2 percent travel and convention tax and any resort city or auditorium district sales tax that applies. For example, the Greater Boise Auditorium District tax (5 percent) applies to rentals within the district.

“We want to make sure everybody is charging the tax because it’s only fair to the others – the hotels and bed and breakfasts that are already charging the tax. Otherwise they’re at an unfair advantage with the private homeowners,” Eymann said.

… Hosts must also report the income they get from short-term lodging rentals on their income tax returns.

full story:
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Soon, a plane could fly you into Idaho’s backcountry in the dark of night

by Zach Kyle Idaho Statesman March 2, 2017

… Night-vision goggles aren’t just for helicopter pilots anymore. A Boise company has big plans to help small airplanes safely navigate terrain in the dark or to deliver military supplies to troops during the darkest nights.

Aviation Specialties Unlimited sells and installs night-vision systems in aircraft and trains pilots around the world to use them. Until now, 90 percent of its business dealt with helicopters.

Last month, the company received approval from the Federal Aviation Administration to carry passengers and cargo for hire in single-engine airplanes whose pilots wear its goggles.

The goggles could be used by Idaho backcountry outfitters who could not previously deliver customers or supplies at night, said Hutchison, Aviation Specialties’ chief pilot.

full story:
—————————————–

Public Lands:

Study: Humans Responsible for Half of Northwest Wildfires

Fires started by people expand ‘fire niche’ nationwide

University of Idaho news release

Moscow, Idaho — Feb. 27, 2017 — A first-of-its-kind analysis of wildfire records from 1992-2012 showed that humans started 84 percent of all wildfires nationwide. In northwestern states — including Idaho, Washington, Oregon, and Montana — humans started about half of all wildfires.

The startling numbers show the importance of the governments and citizens of Northwest states working to reduce human-started fires, which often have direct impacts on infrastructure given their tendency to occur in the wildland-urban interface, said University of Idaho researcher John Abatzoglou.

“We are all familiar with the ingredients to make a campfire,” Abatzoglou said. “You need dry fuel or vegetation and an ignition. The seasonal drying of fuels, primarily driven by weather and climate, primes the system to be receptive to igniting and carrying a wildfire. Not all fire is bad, but humans are intentionally and unintentionally adding ignitions to the landscape in areas and seasons when natural ignitions are sparse. We can’t easily control how dry fuels get, or lightning — but we do have some control over human-started ignitions.”

Abatzoglou, an associate professor of geography in the UI College of Science, worked with project leaders Bethany Bradley of the University of Massachusetts Amherst and Jennifer Balch of the University of Colorado-Boulder on the analysis, published today in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science.

continued:
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Bill to create national park in Idaho introduced

3/1/17 AP

Boise, Idaho — A key state senator is backing legislation urging Congress to turn Idaho’s Crater of the Moon National Monument into a national park.

Sen. Jeff Siddoway, chairman of the influential Senate State Affairs Committee, introduced his proposal to legislative leaders on Wednesday. It must now clear a legislative hearing.

The goal is to convert the 54,000-acre monument into a national park with no changes to how it’s currently managed — which include maintaining access to grazing and hunting. Currently, there are no national parks in Idaho.

continued:
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Crowds descend on Capitol to celebrate public lands

by Devan Kaney Sunday, March 5th 2017

Boise, Idaho (KBOI) — Outdoorspeople traveled from all over Idaho to rally to protect public lands at the Statehouse Saturday morning.

“Idahoans need to hear that public lands need to stay in public hands,” said Luke Nelson, a professional runner from Pocatello.

Idaho is 62% public lands, and outdoor enthusiasts came out in full force to show their support for keeping it that way.

continued:
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

New Start Minerals Proposed Plan of Operations Project Update

USDA Forest Service 3/2/2017

The Forest Service is seeking scoping comments for the New Start Minerals Plan of Operation Project located on the Idaho City Ranger District. Information regarding the project can be found on the project website:
http://www.fs.usda.gov/project/?project=49771.

The Forest Service is contacting interested persons, groups, and agencies to make them aware of the project and to gather pertinent feedback. Even if you have no specific concerns, I am asking that you respond if you desire to stay on the project’s mailing list.

To be most helpful, please submit your scoping comments by March 31, 2017, and make your comments as specific as possible. Your comments will help us refine the proposal, and identify preliminary issues, interested and affected persons, and possible alternatives. Comments received in response to this request will be available for public inspection and will be released in their entirety if requested pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act. Comments received in response to this request will also be available for public inspection on the “Public Comment Reading Room” on the New Start Minerals Plan of Operation Project webpage
http://www.fs.usda.gov/project/?project=49771

Individuals and entities who submit specific written comments during the scoping comment period will be eligible to object. A second comment opportunity will also be provided during the notice and comment period for review of the NEPA document and those who provide specific written comments during that comment period will also be eligible to object. In cases where no identifiable name is attached to a comment, a verification of identity will be required for objection eligibility. For more information on 36 CFR 218, see the Federal Register, Volume 78, No. 59, March 27, 2013.

How to Comment

Written, facsimile, hand-delivered, verbal, and electronic comments concerning this project will be accepted.

Written comments must be submitted to: Idaho City Ranger District, Attention: Melissa Swain, P.O. Box 129, Idaho City, ID 83631. The office hours for those submitting hand-delivered comments are: 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, excluding holidays. Verbal comments may also be provided at the Idaho City Ranger District office during normal business hours or via telephone 208-392-6681.

Comments may also be submitted through the New Start Minerals Plan of Operation Project webpage http://www.fs.usda.gov/project/?project=49771. To submit comments using the web form select “Comment/Object on Project” under “Get Connected” on the right panel of the project’s webpage.

Email comments must be submitted in a format such as an email message, plain text (.txt), rich text format (.rtf), Adobe (.pdf) and Word (.doc) to comments-intermtn-boise-idaho-city@fs.fed.us . Please put “New Start” in the subject line of e-mail comments.  Comments must have an identifiable name attached or verification of identity will be required.  A scanned signature may serve as verification on electronic comments.

Stay Connected to this Project via the Web

To assist the Forest Service in meeting its goals of reducing our carbon footprint and to achieve a sustainable operation, we are transitioning to a web-based electronic comment system that allows all interested parties to receive project material (scoping documents, updates, draft and final NEPA documents, and decisions) by e-mail. This new system gives you direct control over which mailing lists you are subscribed to and immediate electronic access to project documents as they are posted online. It’s easy, it’s good for the environment, and it gives “on-demand” access to projects.

To subscribe to this new system, go online to New Start Minerals Plan of Operations Project webpage http://www.fs.usda.gov/project/?project=49771. On the project webpage, you will see a box titled “Get Connected” on the right hand side of the page, click on “Subscribe to Email Updates”. When you click on that item, you will be prompted to provide your e-mail address and select a password. When you have logged in, you will be able to manage your account by subscribing to projects by Forest, District, project type, or project purpose. You will also be able to change your e-mail address and password. If you no longer wish to follow the project(s), simply delete your subscription. Once you are subscribed, you will receive all project information via e-mail, unless you specifically request hard copies.

For further information on the New Start Plan of Operations Project, please feel free to contact, Melissa Swain, Minerals Administrator, 208-392-6681.

Sincerely,
Aaron Stockton, South Zone NEPA Planner
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Century Link SUP Update

USDA Forest Service 3/2/2017

The Forest Service is seeking scoping comments for the CenturyLink Mores Creek Rim Road Special Use Permit project located on the Mountain Home Ranger District.

The Forest Service is proposing to grant a special use permit to authorize a Right of Way (ROW) to CenturyLink to install and maintain telecommunications line and infrastructure along Mores Creek Rim Road. The Project is located adjacent to Mores Creek Rim road in Township 4 North, Range 4 East, sections 21 and 28.

Project information can be found at
http://www.fs.fed.us/nepa/nepa_project_exp.php?project=50749.

The Forest Service is contacting interested persons, groups, and agencies to make them aware of the project and to gather pertinent feedback. Even if you have no specific concerns, I am asking that you respond if you desire to stay on the project’s mailing list.

To be most helpful, please submit your scoping comments by March 16th, 2017, and make your comments as specific as possible. Comments received in response to this request will be available for public inspection and will be released in their entirety if requested pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act. Comments received in response to this request will also be available for public inspection on the “Public Comment Reading Room” on the CenturyLink Mores Creek Rim Road Special Use Permit project webpage:
http://www.fs.fed.us/nepa/nepa_project_exp.php?project=50749.

How to Comment

Written, facsimile, hand-delivered, verbal, and electronic comments concerning this project will be accepted.

Written comments must be submitted to: Mountain Home Ranger District, Attention: Holly Hampton, 3080 Industrial Way, Mountain Home, Idaho, 83647. The office hours for those submitting hand-delivered comments are: 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, excluding Federal holidays. Verbal comments may also be provided at the Mountain Home Ranger District office during normal business hours or via telephone 1-208-587-7961.

Comments may also be submitted through the CenturyLink Mores Creek Rim Road Special Use Permit project webpage http://www.fs.fed.us/nepa/nepa_project_exp.php?project=50749. To submit comments using the web form select “Comment on Project” under “Get Connected” on the right panel of the project’s webpage.

Email comments must be submitted in a format such as an email message, plain text (.txt), rich text format (.rtf), Adobe (.pdf) and Word (.doc) to comments-intermtn-boise-mtn-home@fs.fed.us. Please put “CenturyLink Mores Creek Rim Road Special Use Permit project” in the subject line of e-mail comments. Comments must have an identifiable name attached or verification of identity will be required. A scanned signature may serve as verification on electronic comments.

Stay Connected to this Project via the Web

To assist the Forest Service in meeting its goals of reducing our carbon footprint and to achieve a sustainable operation, we are transitioning to a web-based electronic comment system that allows all interested parties to receive project material (scoping documents, updates, draft and final NEPA documents, and decisions) by e-mail. This new system gives you direct control over which mailing lists you are subscribed to and immediate electronic access to project documents as they are posted online. It’s easy, it’s good for the environment, and it gives “on-demand” access to projects.

To subscribe to this new system, go online to the CenturyLink Mores Creek Rim Road Special Use Permit project webpage http://www.fs.fed.us/nepa/nepa_project_exp.php?project=50749. On the project webpage, you will see a box titled “Get Connected” on the right hand side of the page, click on “Subscribe to Email Updates”. When you click on that item, you will be prompted to provide your e-mail address and select a password. When you have logged in, you will be able to manage your account by subscribing to projects by Forest, District, project type, or project purpose. You will also be able to change your e-mail address and password. If you no longer wish to follow the project(s), simply delete your subscription. Once you are subscribed, you will receive all project information via e-mail, unless you specifically request hard copies.

For further information on the CenturyLink Mores Creek Rim Road Special Use Permit project, please feel free to contact Lori Ankrum at 1-208-587-7961.

Sincerely,
Aaron Stockton, South Zone NEPA Planner
————————–

Critter News:

New Boise Police K9 ‘trained and ready to go’ after loss of Jardo

by KBOI News Staff Friday, March 3rd 2017

Boise, Idaho (KBOI) — Boise Police has a new four-legged partner to help tackle crime.

BPD says 2-year-old Edo, a Belgian Malinois and German Shepard mix is from Slovakia. The K9 replaces Jardo, who died after surgery complications from injuries he sustained in a shooting on the Boise Bench last year.

Edo will be partnered with officer Shane Williams, who was Jardo’s handler.

Police will be introducing Edo to members of the local media later Friday.

source:
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Pet Talk Arthritis

By Dr. Karsten Fostvedt and Dr. Malia Wayment Mar 3, 2017 IME

While arthritis is predominantly a disease of elderly animals, it can affect younger pets as well.  The degree of arthritic pain depends on a variety of factors, including breed, activity level, previous injury, diet and weight.

Animals with arthritic pain will move slower on walks, often taking smaller steps. They may exhibit a stilted or abnormal gait, have difficulties going up or down stairs or exhibit trouble or stiffness when rising after rest. These signs often become much more pronounced during the colder months of the year.

Many older cats suffer from arthritic pain, but their signs tend to be more subtle and can often be missed. Often they aren’t able to groom as well, refuse to jump or exhibit changes in litter box behavior, associated with pain getting in and out of the box.

It is important to maintain your pet at its correct body weight. Obesity places additional strain on your pet’s joints, leading to arthritic changes as well as many other health problems. If you own a breed that is predisposed to arthritis (most large breeds) or has had a previous injury that can predispose it to the development of arthritis, prescription foods designed for joint health and/or joint supplements (glucosamine/chondroitin) are very beneficial. These aid in joint lubrication and general maintenance of healthy joints.

continued:
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Study shows effectiveness of nonlethal wolf deterrents

Recently published paper addresses Wood River Wolf Project

Greg Moore  Mar 3, 2017 IME

A seven-year study of the Wood River Wolf Project shows nonlethal deterrents to have been more than three times as effective as lethal control in reducing depredation on sheep.

The study’s results were published in the February issue of the Journal of Mammalogy. The paper’s seven authors include people involved in the project, which seeks to protect up to 22,000 sheep belonging to four ranchers each grazing season on nearly 1,000 square miles of the Ketchum Ranger District. The project uses shepherds, guard dogs, noisemakers and lights to scare off wolves.

“This is the first peer-reviewed study using nonlethal deterrents to protect both livestock and wolves across a large landscape,” said Suzanne Stone, Northwest senior representative for the conservation organization Defenders of Wildlife and primary author of the study. “The results of the study challenge historic predator management at its core, showing that traditional government lethal predator-control programs are substantially less effective than nonlethal strategies in protecting livestock, even in large mountainous landscapes.”

continued:
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Court rules to lift federal protections for Wyoming wolves

By Matt Volz and Dan Elliott – 3/3/17 AP

A U.S. appeals court on Friday ruled to lift protections that kept gray wolves an endangered species in Wyoming for years after federal officials removed packs in neighboring states from that list.

The ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia doesn’t take effect immediately, however. Environmental groups that want to keep the protections in place will have a chance to appeal.

Gray wolves were once hunted to the brink of extinction in the lower 48 states, but they recovered under Endangered Species Act protections and reintroduction programs. They now number around 5,500, including about 400 in Wyoming, according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Fish and Wildlife determined in 2011 that gray wolves were no longer a threatened species in Wyoming. State officials promised to maintain a population above the minimum 100 wolves, including 10 breeding pairs, outside of Yellowstone National Park and the Wind River Indian Reservation.

continued:
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

KWVR Oregon Wolf Education weekly Wolf Report

Last week of Feb 2017
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Wolf Education International

Newsletter first week of March 2017

Midwest, Wyoming lawmakers target wolf protections again

Wolf Predation on Moose in Yellowstone Region

Arizona Wolf Population Growing, Government Insists on Introducing More Fake Wolves
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Horse rescued from Valley County mountain on the mend

Alex Livingston, KTVB March 04, 2017

Eagle — A happy update for one Valley County horse.

Several agencies came together to remove the horse, now known as “Ryat,” by helicopter off a Valley County mountain near Boulder Lake in January.

At the time, officials said he was just days away from dying.

He had been stranded in six-feet of snow without food or water.

When he was rescued, Ryat was extremely thin, with his hip bones exposed and had frostbitten legs.

Idaho Horse Rescue president Robert Bruno says that since the rescue, Ryat has put on between 100 and 150 pounds and has regained his energy.

continued:
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Elk roaming Boise: A reminder to give animals space

Morgan Boydston, KTVB February 27, 2017


Elk in Boise’s North End chomping on brush in a resident’s front yard. (Photo: Troy Colson\KTVB)

Boise — People who live in Boise’s North End have a visitor who has been bedding down in backyards for more than a week.

With record-breaking snow in the foothills and mountains, animals are coming down to lower elevations to survive. Even as it starts to warm up, the Idaho Department of Fish and Game wants to make sure people aren’t disturbing wintering wildlife like this female elk in Boise.

Fish and Game says they have been monitoring that elk for about 10 days. They say as of now, she’s not a public hazard.

continued:
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Elk feeding litigation continues

County files its own suit against wildlife feeders in Golden Eagle

Madelyn Beck Mar 3, 2017 IME

In response to continued elk feeding at Golden Eagle Ranch subdivision north of Hailey, Blaine County has filed a lawsuit against those feeding the animals. This comes after misdemeanor citations had been filed against two homeowners and one resident filed a lawsuit against the county.

… The county’s suit seeks a permanent injunction against feeding big game and compensation for the effort to stop it.

continued:
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Elk trained to eat from people’s hands put down for ‘safety of town’

Taylor Viydo, KREM March 02, 2017


Gladys the elk had to be put down after becoming aggressive toward humans. (Photo: KREM)

Silverton, Idaho – A cow elk that was nicknamed Gladys in the town of Silverton had to be put down this week.

The elk had reportedly made its way into town to search for food. The Idaho Department of Fish and Game said they had to euthanize the elk for the safety of people in town. It appeared that the animal may have been suffering too.

According to Idaho Fish and Game, some people in Silverton were feeding the elk. It got to the point that Gladys was so used to it, that she was eating out of people’s hands. Pictures and videos of that made the rounds on social media.

continued:
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Moose attempts to chase dogs in Moscow park

KREM February 28, 2017


Photo of a moose in Moscow, courtesy of City of Moscow.

Moscow, Idaho —  Moscow police are warning people of a couple of moose in one of their city parks.

Officials said the moose came toward a woman who was walking with her dog on a leash at East City Park after her dog barked at it. They said a dog who was not on a leash was also chased by the animals. Police said neither of these incidents were close calls.

Idaho Fish and Game have been notified about the moose. Officials said this is a problem every year.

continued:
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Boise falcon nest cam goes dark, but kestrel cam planned

3/3/17 AP

Boise, Idaho — Officials say there will be no live streaming video of peregrine falcons nesting in downtown Boise this year.

Erin Katzner of the Peregrine Fund tells the Idaho Statesman in a story on Thursday that the decision is part of a programming change after the popularity of the nesting falcons declined.

Last year, live streaming video recorded the incubation of the eggs in April and hatching of four chicks in early May.

Katzner says a live stream of an American kestrel family that nests on the roof of one of the Peregrine Fund’s buildings will return this year.

source:
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Bull trout lawsuit targeting Columbia Basin dams dismissed

By Keith Ridler – 3/1/17 AP

Boise, Idaho — A federal lawsuit filed by an environmental group seeking to force federal agencies to analyze whether about two dozen dams operating in Idaho, Oregon, Washington and Montana are harming bull trout has been dismissed.

U.S. District Court Judge Marco Hernandez in a ruling last week said federal agencies took action after the lawsuit was filed in July that met demands made by Montana-based Alliance for the Wild Rockies, meaning there was no need for the lawsuit to move forward.

The lawsuit against the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and U.S. Bureau of Reclamation sought to force the agencies to complete consultations with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on how to operate the dams in areas designated as critical bull trout habitat.

continued:
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Restoration efforts in Columbia Basin helping salmon

By Keith Ridler – 3/5/17 AP

Boise, Idaho — The $500 million spent annually on habitat restoration projects and improvements are helping salmon, steelhead and other wildlife in the Columbia River Basin, federal agencies responsible for operating 14 federal dams say.

The Bonneville Power Administration, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and U.S. Bureau of Reclamation released a report Thursday outlining projects from 2007 to 2015.

“It says we’re making very good progress in bringing fish back to the rivers and improving the numbers of fish in the Columbia River Basin,” said Lorri Bodi, vice president of Environment Fish and Wildlife for the Bonneville Power Administration. “But we still have a ways to go to achieve our goals.”

continued:
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Columbia Basin Bulletin

Weekly Fish and Wildlife News
http://www.cbbulletin.com
March 3, 2017
Issue No. 822

Table of Contents

* Agencies Receive Over 250,000 Comments On Scoping For Upcoming EIS On Columbia/Snake River Hydro System
http://www.cbbulletin.com/438422.aspx

* Task Force On Sea Lion-Salmon Predation Mulls Ways To Reduce Pinniped Predation on ESA-Listed Columbia River Salmonids
http://www.cbbulletin.com/438421.aspx

* Columbia River Basin Looking At Healthy Runoff, Water Supply Thanks To La Nina, Possible Records On Upper Snake
http://www.cbbulletin.com/438420.aspx

* Study: Salmon Spawning Sites Used Year After Year Could Be Priority Targets For Habitat Restoration
http://www.cbbulletin.com/438419.aspx

* Washington Fishery Managers Say Projected Low Coho Returns Will Restrain Some Fishing
http://www.cbbulletin.com/438418.aspx

* Research: Juvenile Salmon/Steelhead Seek Cool Water Refuges When River Heats Up, But Feed In Warmer Main Channels
http://www.cbbulletin.com/438417.aspx

* Balancing Water Supply Jump, Flood Control, Outflows, And Dissolved Gas Levels Getting Tricky At Dworshak Dam
http://www.cbbulletin.com/438416.aspx

* Judge Dismisses Lawsuit Over Impacts Of Basin Dams On Bull Trout, Agencies Had Met Consultation Requirements
http://www.cbbulletin.com/438415.aspx

* Corps Reclassifies Ice Harbor, Lower Monumental, Dworshak Dams From ‘Moderate Risk’ To ‘Low Risk’
http://www.cbbulletin.com/438414.aspx

* Ecosystem-Scale Management: Scientists Say Restoring Predators And Prey Together Speeds Recovery
http://www.cbbulletin.com/438413.aspx

* IDFG Says Avian Cholera Outbreak Deaths Climb To 4,200 Birds, Mostly Ducks
http://www.cbbulletin.com/438412.aspx

* Wolf Dies In Unintentional Take In Northeast Oregon After Encountering Device To Kill Coyotes
http://www.cbbulletin.com/438411.aspx
——————————-

Fun Critter Stuff:

360 VIDEO: Be a wing-man to a goose in love

Brian Holmes, Xanti Alcelay, Mike di Donato KTVB

Caldwell, Idaho – On this family farm just outside of Caldwell, Holly Schallberg says they have a wide assortment of animals.

“This is the original family homestead,” says Holly. “And we’ve got horses, mules, two goats, a bunch of chickens, and a miniature pony.”

A typical collection, but just this past week they’ve added one more to the menagerie – a Canada goose, that Holly has labeled “Lincoln.” Appropriately named because this honker has the hots for Holly’s hot rod Lincoln, a 2010 MKZ.

link:
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

broodingkittens-b
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Broody Hen Warming Kittens

Its well known that a broody Hen will sit on just about anything. You can hatch Ducks, etc without the need of a broody Duck. But today I found our Farm Cat had organized a Broody hen to watch over her kittens!


— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Chicken hatches Kittens

The hen is babysitting these kittens so momma cat can have a break. You can see that after a while everyone settles down and the kitten go to sleep.


— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

The Cat & The Ducklings


———————————–

Fish & Game News:

Winter feeding in motion on Tex Creek WMA

By Vicky Osborn, ID F&G Monday, February 27, 2017

Fire burned 22,000 acres of winter range on the Tex Creek Wildlife Management Area in eastern Idaho in 2016. To support elk and deer, and prevent private property damage, Idaho Fish and Game set in motion the largest winter feeding operation in Idaho’s history.

In recent years, an estimated 4,000 elk and 2,500 deer migrate to winter range on the Tex Creek WMA, where they find food and shelter. But with the grasses, forbs and brush burned off this year, elk and deer would naturally have moved on to forage elsewhere. They would find food just 13 miles away in farm fields, haystacks, livestock yards, neighborhoods and towns.

On Dec. 7, the crew started feeding up to fifteen tons of hay daily to upwards of 4,000 elk.

continued:
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Idaho Fish And Game Officers Help Untangle Bull Elk

The bull elk was stuck in a hay tarp. Fish and Game officers were able to free the animal.

Photo gallery at KTVB
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Possible increases for Fish and Game licenses

Gretchen Parsons, KTVB March 02, 2017

Boise – There are 540,000 people that hold Idaho hunting and fishing licenses, with more than 300,000 of those being in-state.

The Idaho Department of Fish and Game is proposing an increase in fees because they say the cost of business has increased.

Fish and Game spokesman Mike Keckler says House Bill 230 is a combined bill.

The first part is a 20 percent increase in resident and non-resident licenses and tags. But the fee would only apply to those who buy periodically.

“Meaning those who hunt and fish would have until December to buy a 2017 license and lock in at current prices, and would be able to keep those prices as long as they maintain their residence for a period of five years,” said Keckler.

The increase is expected to generate $3 million per year.

… The second part of the bill proposes an annual $5 charge for adult resident hunters, anglers, and trappers; and $10 for those out of state. Those fees would raise an additional $2 million per year.

continued:
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Idaho Department of Fish and Game Predation Management Plan For the Lolo and Selway Elk Zones

Revised December 13, 2011

pdf:
[h/t TM]
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

F&G News Releases

https://idfg.idaho.gov/press
———————————–

Seasonal Humor:

springaroundcorner-a
— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — —

Memories in late winter

I can recall warm summer days
of great beauty seen but rarely;
I can recall warm summer days,
but at this point only barely.

– The Bard of Sherman Avenue
———————————