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    Wildlife viewing basics workshop scheduled at Sipe Wildlife Area

    Wildlife viewing basics workshop scheduled at Sipe Wildlife Area

    The Arizona Game and Fish Department will conduct its annual public wildlife-viewing basics workshop on Saturday, Sept. 18, at the Sipe White Mountain Wildlife Area, near Eagar in eastern Arizona. This popular program is designed to help people find, observe and enjoy many of the state’s wildlife species on their own.

    The program begins at 2 p.m. with an information program that focuses on wildlife viewing in Arizona, giving suggestions on how and where to find wildlife. Department personnel will also discuss natural history and behavior of one of Arizona’s most recognized wildlife species, the Rocky Mountain elk. Workshop participants will go into the field that evening on the Sipe property, applying viewing principles and techniques to find and observe some of Arizona’s majestic elk up close. The wildlife area is located seven miles southeast of Eagar.

    “We’ve designed this workshop to provide people with sufficient information for them to have a quality, first-hand experience in the outdoors, and to be able to regularly find and watch wildlife on their own,” says Bruce Sitko, spokesman in the department’s Pinetop office. “If you’ve never heard a bull elk bugle in the rut, you’ve missed one of nature’s most awesome sounds. This will be an excellent opportunity to see and hear elk.”

    Because it will be necessary to maintain a small group once in the field, the clinic is limited to 30 participants. “Also, because wildlife viewing in general does require patience and a minimum of movement and noise, we request that children under the age of 14 not attend,” Sitko says.

    The workshop is free, but pre-registration and a refundable deposit of $20 per person are required to ensure that spaces aren’t blocked off and then not used. The deposit will be returned to those who attend, but cashed if someone doesn’t show up.

    Registration can be done at the Pinetop Game and Fish office at 2878 E. White Mountain Blvd., or by calling the office at (928) 367-4281 and giving a name, contact phone number and the number of people attending to one of the customer service representatives. Participants will be given instructions at that time for mailing in the refundable registration deposit.

    Wildlife viewing events for the public such as this are supported by the Heritage Fund, a voter initiative passed in 1990 to assist wildlife conservation efforts in the state through Arizona Lottery ticket sales.

    “Arizona is a state rich in wildlife resources,” Sitko notes. “More than 900 different species of fish and animals can be found here. We highly encourage folks to pause and discover not just the visual beauty of Arizona’s settings, but also to learn to find, view and appreciate the different creatures that live in and about our state’s diverse landscapes.”

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    Posted on 22nd August 2010
    Under: Arizona News, Conservation Groups, Events | No Comments »

    Nominations Sought for Commission Awards

    Nominations sought for 2010 Commission Awards

    The Arizona Game and Fish Commission is soliciting nominations for the 2010 Commission Awards to recognize Arizonans who have contributed significantly to the welfare of the state’s wildlife and the mission of the Arizona Game and Fish Department.

    Categories for nomination include Award of Excellence, Youth Environmentalist of the Year, Outdoor Writer of the Year, Media of the Year, Conservation Organization of the Year, Conservationist of the Year, Natural Resource Professional of the Year, Volunteer of the Year, Educator of the Year, Mentor of the Year, Advocate of the Year, and License Dealer of the Year. Descriptions of each category are on the nomination form.

    To download a nomination form, click here.

    Nominations may include individuals, organizations, clubs, foundations or government agencies. Arizona Game and Fish Department employees are not eligible for nomination.

    Return the nomination form and all supplemental materials to: Arizona Game and Fish Department, Attn: Marty Fabritz - DOHQ, 5000 W. Carefree Highway, Phoenix, AZ 85086. Forms can also be faxed to (623) 236-7299 or e-mailed to Mfabritz@azgfd.gov.

    The submission deadline is 5 p.m. on Sept. 10, 2010.

    Winners of the 2010 awards will be honored at the Meet the Commission banquet in Phoenix on January 15, 2011.

    For more information, visit www.azgfd.gov/inside_azgfd/commission_awards.shtml.

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    Posted on 21st August 2010
    Under: Arizona News, Conservation Groups, Events, General, Press Releases | No Comments »

    Public sees bighorns-a-plenty at two viewing workshops

    Public sees bighorns-a-plenty at two viewing workshops

    Another awesome event - kudos to AZGFD! ~DesertRat

    Standing majestically along a ridgeline, or bent down at the Colorado River’s edge, the Black Mountains desert bighorn sheep made for a memorable experience for nearly 100 members of the public.

    The Arizona Game and Fish Department’s Region III office in Kingman hosted two bighorn sheep workshops on July 30-31 and Aug. 6-7 for the attendees, who were drawn at random from approximately 150 applications.

    Following a Friday night classroom presentation on bighorn sheep, participants were taken on a four-hour boat trip from Willow Beach to the Hoover Dam to view these majestic animals in their native habitat. More than 90 bighorns were seen over the two weekends, many of which were bending down for a drink at the river’s edge.

    Mocarski said as the population becomes urbanized, the disconnect people have with nature has increased, and it’s important to provide people with education and to get them outside to see these animals in their native habitat.

    “These workshops, and others conducted by Game and Fish, provide an opportunity for people to learn about wildlife and the issues the animals and the department face, and to get outside and see what the outdoors has to offer.”

    The classroom segment provided information on bighorn sheep biology, predation, disease, habitat, and efforts to prevent continued habitat fragmentation, as well as an overview of the activities of the Game and Fish Department.

    Along with the bighorn workshops, Game and Fish offers watchable wildlife opportunities involving bald eagles, elk, California condors, and hummingbirds in various regions. There are also numerous birding festivals around the state. These types of opportunities for the public are made possible by the Heritage Fund, which was passed by voters in 1990 to help further wildlife conservation efforts in the state through Arizona Lottery ticket sales

    “There’s no shortage of opportunities for people to see and learn about wildlife,” Mocarski said. “I’d really like to see more people join us on these workshops rather than sitting in front of a television. You’ll learn a lot more getting out than sitting down.”

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    Posted on 20th August 2010
    Under: Events, General, Press Releases | No Comments »

    Desert Rat At Cabela’s Fall Great Outdoor Days

    I will be attending Fall Great Outdoor Days at the Glendale Cabela’s store this coming weekend, August 21-22.

    I will be on site both days from Noon - 4:00PM and I will be talking to folks about the great products from Trophy Bag Koolers. Trophy Bag Kooler’s game Fresh System is the pride of their line-up, and I’ll have the system there. Trophy Bag Kooler founder/owner Steve Glass is a friend and asked me to help out - I’m happy to oblige!

    The Game Fresh System™ includes everything you need to keep meat as fresh as possible from the field to the processor or taxidermist. The Game Fresh Spray™ is an antimicrobial spray, that when applied to dressed and cleaned meat, helps disinfect and control the growth of bacteria and microorganisms on wild game or raw meat. Our specially formulated KoolerGel™ is re-useable and stays colder longer than conventional ice.

    The Trophy Bag Kooler™ has the durability to last for years. And best of all, it is made right here in the USA! For the best solution to transporting game from the field to the processor or taxidermists, make it The Game Fresh System™ by Trophy Bag Kooler™, the first step to great tasting meat!
    The Game Fresh System

    * One (1) Trophy Bag Kooler™*
    * One (1) 6-pack of KoolerGel™
    * One (1) 8-oz bottle of The Game Fresh Spray

    Events include:

    Fall Great Outdoor Day Events
    Saturday & Sunday:

    10:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m. - Arizona Fly Casters, Fly Tying for Beginners
    10:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m. - Desert Reptiles - Identify, Observe Up Close
    10:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m. - Meet Cliff Perch, National Guard Pro Angler.
    11:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. - Meet Steve Chappell, Cabela’s Pro Staff.
    11:00 a.m. - Intro to elk calling for youth and beginners, presented by Arizona Elk Society (Saturday only)
    12:00 p.m. - Tips from a pro - calling big bulls, with Steve Chappell.
    1:00 p.m. - After the Kill - proper filed care and preparation of your big game, with taxidermist and big game hunter Rick Lopez (Saturday only).
    2:00 p.m. - Tracking and Glassing big game in Arizona.

    Don’t miss:
    Arizona Fly Casters fly tying demonstrations
    Reptiles of the Southwest exhibit
    Operation Game Thief representatives
    WEAR IT boat on display
    Maricopa County Parks and Recreation display
    Western Skulls dermestid beetle exhibit
    MEC Reloading demonstration

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    Posted on 18th August 2010
    Under: Events, General, Products | No Comments »



    2010 Warrior Conference Fund-Raiser to Benefit HAVA (Honored American Veterans Afield)

    Longmeadow, MA – The nation’s top firearms trainers will gather in Reno, Nevada on August 10 – 13 at the 2010 Warrior Conference to share the latest training methods. They will also rally support for HAVA (Honored American Veterans Afield), the industry supported non-profit organization that helps returning veterans re-connect with shooting sports. Through the raffle of a Smith & Wesson M&P15T rifle with accessories from Crimson Trace, Leupold and XS Sights, the group will contribute several thousand dollars to support HAVA events and spread the word about the good works of this organization that is expressing the industry’s support for America’s returning heroes.

    “HAVA is very pleased at the opportunity to share the stage with the nation’s top trainers and to add their voices to the broad support for disabled veterans and active duty military,” said Tom Taylor, HAVA Chairman. “As HAVA approaches its 4th full year of operation, we will host over 500 disabled veterans at events nationwide in 2010 and we need support from the entire industry to continue growth. The Warrior Conference is a key opportunity for us to spread the word about our mission and to raise funds to support it.”

    “The Warrior Conference is a gathering of top trainers, many of whom are combat veterans, that understand the enormous difficulty of a returning veteran’s re-entry into civilian life,” said conference founder Wes Doss. “Partnering with HAVA gives our attendees a voice in supporting this important work, and a way to offer encouragement to these industry volunteers who give of their time to express the nation’s gratitude.”

    Please go to www.warrior-conference.com for more details about the conference and raffle.

    About HAVA:
    HAVA is a 501(c)3 organization formed by companies in the shooting and outdoor industry with the purpose of raising awareness and further assisting disabled veterans with their healing process through guided hunts, shooting sports, and other active outdoor sports activities. The sustaining sponsor companies are Crimson Trace, Hornady, Leupold, NRA, Mossberg, Smith & Wesson, Surefire, Yamaha and FMG Publications. Those who would like to learn more and contribute to the HAVA mission can do so at www.honoredveterans.org.

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    Posted on 3rd August 2010
    Under: Events, General | No Comments »

    Huachucha Gold’s NWTF Chapter Hunter Heritage Banquet on July 31st

    The Huachuca Gould’s Chapter would like to invite you to their 12th Anniversary Hunter Heritage Banquet to be held on July 31, 2010 at the Knights of Columbus Hall, 156 W. Kayetan Drive, in Sierra Vista, with doors opening at 4:30PM. Thirteen quality firearms will be raffled, along with activities for children, women package raffles, many live and silent auction items from well known artists, bonus raffles and above all, fun for the entire family.

    Ticket costs are as follows: Single - $60.00, Couple - $90.00, JAKE - $30.00. Each ticket includes a one year membership into the NWTF, a dinner(s), and a chance at a door prize. NOTE: Ticket sales at the door on July 31 beginning at 4:30PM will cost an additional $5.00/person.

    Plan on arriving early to reserve a good seat, especially if attending as a group. No additional tables will be added to accommodate large groups.

    For more information on the banquet or upcoming activities sponsored by the Huachuca Gould’s Chapter please contact John Millican at 520-508-4272 or by email at: j2dbmill@msn.com or Steve Brown at 520-266-2282.

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    Posted on 29th July 2010
    Under: Arizona News, Conservation Groups, Events | No Comments »

    Az Deer Association Deer Hunting Clinic

    The Arizona Deer Association will be holding its Annual Deer Hunting Clinic on Saturday August 14, 2010 from 8:00 AM to 1:00 PM at the Ben Avery Shooting Facility located at 5000 W. Carefree Highway Phoenix, AZ. For more information visit us at www.azdeer.org or call (602) 395-DEER.

    This year’s clinic is free of charge and will be co-hosted with the Arizona Game and Fish Department. This will be a hands on clinic geared towards new hunters full of great information on deer hunting, tips, tactics, gear, meat care, cape preparation and proper use of optics to locate deer in the field.

    This will be a great opportunity to introduce new hunters to various hunting techniques while providing them the opportunity to gain hands on shooting and glassing experience with optics and guidance being provided.

    Hands on activities include assistance with rifle sighting in, youth archery shooting and hands on optics glassing techniques of 3D targets placed on the mountain side. The outdoor activities will take place from 8:00 AM to 11:00 AM at the BASF Rifle 1, Pistol 1&2 Ranges. This will be followed by a seminar in the Quail room at the Game and Fish main building from 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM. where we will cover game care, hunt preparation and other topics to help make your hunt a success.

    After this full day of activities the Arizona Deer Association would like to invite everyone over to the BASF Activity Center near the small bore range for a free BBQ lunch and a free youth raffle featuring a .22 youth rifle. Representatives from the Arizona Game and Fish Dept. and the Arizona Deer Association will be on hand to answer your questions at the BBQ.

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    Posted on 29th July 2010
    Under: Arizona News, Conservation Groups, Events | No Comments »

    Cunningham’s Shooting Range Set to Open

    I’m very excited at the prospect of having a shooting range 5 minutes away from my house! Cunningham’s Shooting Range is set to open July 3rd, and am excited to get in there and get some rounds down range. I have spoken with Mr. and Mrs. Cunningham and I can tell you that they have some awesome plans for the range. Of course, lots of shooting! Activities focused on new shooters, youth and ladies. Classes of various types, for brand-new shooters and experienced people too. The Cunninghams will have sales and rentals of both firearms and accessories. They are reaching out to the community in providing local law enforcement a place to shoot (currently they usually travel to the west valley), and they are also planning to have a section of their facility dedicated to Boy Scout fund-raising activities. They will have a variety of membership options available - you can learn more here: MEMBERSHIPS

    I was lucky in that the Cunningham’s gave me a sneak preview of their range a couple of weeks ago. Chris is an extremely knowledgeable gent, and it is plain to see he is excited, sincere and confident about this venture. There are no holds barred at this range - it is state of the art. Several thousand pounds of special rubber cubes replace the angled plate and sand catches that some us may remember. This material, combined with a highly efficient cooling and ventilation system ensure that there is no lead dust in the air inside of the building. There is a small viewing area for visitors and guests, with lots of lanes and a target retrieval system.

    The Grand Opening is scheduled for this Saturday, the 3rd of July, info below:

    Saturday, July 3rd from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., come hang out with our special guest, Peter Mayhew (Chewbacca) the man behind the mask, and members of the 501st legion Dune Sea Garrison stormtroopers.

    Come join the fun! There will be raffles, refreshments, and prizes, with proceeds from raffle to benefit the Queen Creek Crime Prevention Posse. Don’t miss your chance to hang out with Chewie!

    The Cunninghams report that the Town of Queen Creek has been very supportive in their efforts. I hope that we can all support the Cunninghams as well, and make their endeavor a huge success. Please, if you can’t make the Grand Opening, make it a point to visit their range in the near future. Also, I hope to have lots of things going on with the Range, moving in to the future, so stay tuned for more!

    18395 S. 186th Way #106
    Queen Creek, AZ 85142
    phone: 480-840-9202

    Hours of Operation

    Monday: 9am-8pm
    Tuesday: 9am-8pm
    Wednesday: 9am-8pm
    Thursday: 9am-8pm
    Friday: 9am-8pm
    Saturday: 9am-8pm
    Sunday: 10am-5pm

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    Posted on 29th June 2010
    Under: Arizona News, Events, General, Press Releases | No Comments »

    HOAL Raffle

    Here is an opportunity to win an awesome Christensen Arms rifle worth over $3500

    This is a Christensen Arms Hunter Custom in .270 Winchester with a Leupold Century Scope. Features include: Mossy Oak Treestand Camo stock, trigger worked to 3 lbs, muzzle brake, bedded barrel, bolt lightened and jeweled. Comes with a custom Christensen hard case and rifle is autographed by Jon Mogle, star of the Christensen Arms TV Show.

    Only 3500 tickets are being sold nationwide. Drawing to be held on August 7th. Proceeds going to Hunt of a Lifetime.

    Tickets are one for $20, 3 for $50, or 7 for 100.

    You can mail check or money order made to Hunt Of A Lifetime Foundation to the address below.
    Please make sure to have a return address, contact phone number and email and we will mail your tickets out to you.

    Please e-mail questions to azhoal@gmail.com

    mail to:

    Matt Minshall
    P.O. Box 2214
    Litchfield Park, AZ. 85340

    May be able to deliver tickets in Kingman, Holbrook or Show Low - contact for info.

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    Posted on 24th May 2010
    Under: Arizona News, Conservation Groups, Events, General, Hunting, Press Releases | No Comments »

    AZGFD Hosts Bighorn Sheep Workshops

    Bighorn sheep take center stage at workshops
    Free opportunity to learn about and view the animals

    The Arizona Game and Fish Department’s Region III office in Kingman is serving as host to the popular Desert Bighorn Sheep Workshops.

    There will be two separate, two-day workshops from July 30-31 and Aug. 6-7. The first night of the workshop is mandatory classroom education from 6-8 p.m. The second day provides the opportunity to view the bighorns in their native environment during a four-hour boat ride beginning at 10:30 a.m. on the Colorado River between Willow Beach and the Hoover Dam.

    “That is the time of year the bighorns are coming to the river pretty regularly,” said Zen Mocarski, public information officer with the Kingman office. “The hotter it is, the better the opportunity to see the sheep along the river’s banks.”

    These workshops are open to any member of the public 14-years-old and up. Nobody under 14 will be registered. Space, however, is limited to 40 people per session. Preference will be given to those who have not attended the workshop in at least two years. Applications should be limited to no more than four people.

    Participants will be selected through a random draw process. Applications received on or before noon on June 18 are eligible for the initial draw. Following the draw, all applicants are contacted by mail, or e-mail.

    Applications received after the deadline, and individuals not drawn, are placed on the reserve list.

    “Our goal is to reach as many people as possible, and that’s difficult with only 80 open spots over two weeks,” Mocarski said of giving preference to those who have not recently attended. “This is a great opportunity for people to learn about bighorn sheep, the department, and the conservation efforts of many different agencies in regards to bighorn sheep.”

    The workshops include an optional tour of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Willow Beach National Fish Hatchery prior to the Colorado River field trip. The 45-minute tour will begin at 9 a.m. and will feature both sport fish and endangered native fish.

    “Although the tour is not mandatory,” Mocarski said, “we’ve had many positive comments from those who made the trip. It offers people a chance to see the inner-workings of a hatchery.”

    To reserve a spot, a $20 per person refundable deposit is required in the form of a check made out to the Wildlife for Tomorrow Foundation to help reduce the problem of no-shows. The money is refunded when a person either attends the workshop or calls to cancel at least 48 hours in advance. Wildlife for Tomorrow is a non-profit group that works closely with the Arizona Game and Fish Department.

    Registration is by mail or in-person drop-off at the Kingman office only. Send the check to: Sheep Workshop, Arizona Game and Fish Department, 5325 N. Stockton Hill Road, Kingman, AZ 86409. Include the names of participants, address, phone, e-mail (if available) and specify which weekend is preferred (you may submit ‘either’). Also, please include a note if you are interested in the tour of the fish hatchery.

    Mocarski said e-mail addresses are kept private, will allow for quicker response time and cuts down on department costs.

    Cash donations, which are not mandatory to participate, will be accepted at the workshop to help offset increasing costs for boat rentals and fuel. Please do not send cash donations prior to the event.

    Participants are encouraged to bring a camera, water, snacks, a hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen. No tripods will be allowed on the boats, but small coolers are OK.

    “It will be hot on the river,” Mocarski advised, “but that’s when bighorn come down for a drink. There is limited shade on the boats, but the temperatures will be in the triple digits.”

    Anyone with questions about the workshop may contact Mocarski at (928) 692-7700, ext. 2301, or e-mail zmocarski@azgfd.gov.

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    Posted on 20th May 2010
    Under: Arizona News, Events | No Comments »

    Hunt for a Liver

    The beautiful young lady pictured below needs a liver. I am hoping that all of you can do something to help.

    Sadie was diagnosed with Auto-Immune Hepatitis in February 2008. She is now in need of a new liver.

    The following was posted by my friend Amanda over on the CouesWhitetail.com Message Board.

    You all have heard me talk about the Outdoor Experience 4 All before. This is a great group that takes kids with disabilities or illnesses out hunting/fishing/camping. One of the kids they have helped is Sadie Anderson. I have met Sadie several times and she is an amazing young lady. She is also a very good hunter. She has taken many big game animals in the last few years. Sadie has requested to go on a hunt before she starts the liver transplant process and Eddy Corona just told me that they have a bull buffalo hunt lined up for her. Mary Keebler has donated her buffalo tag to OE4A and so now we are working on getting Sadie up there for a hunt.

    Anyway, she needs a liver transplant and Derek Taylor is leading an effort to raise money for that.

    You can view/download the flier at the link above. They are raffling off the following hunts to raise money for Sadie:

    1) AZ Archery Deer Hunt - Fully outfitted, 4-day, value $2800 Ticket $35

    2) AZ Bear Hunt - Fully outfitted, 4-day, value $2800 Ticket $35

    3) Nebraska Deer Hunt - During the rut, 5-day archery or rifle, fully outfitted, value $3500 Ticket $50

    OR - One of each for $100 !

    Information - Contact

    Derek Taylor
    3856 E . Meadowview Dr.
    Gilbert, Az. 85296
    480- 223-2775

    Make checks payable to: Sadie Anderson

    Maybe you can’t afford a ticket, or aren’t interested in a hunt - throw 5 or 10 bucks in an envelope and send it along. Thanks ~Desert Rat

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    Posted on 18th May 2010
    Under: Archery, Arizona News, Conservation Groups, Events, General, Hunting | No Comments »

    Arizona Elk Society Project

    JUNE 12-13
    Unit 1 South and West of Springerville near Big Lake.
    Fence removal and Maintenance, Drinker Repairs and more

    Join us in the cool country and help us restore the wild in the woods. We will start by removing old unneeded fences and other work in beautiful riparian areas. Please tell your friends and neighbors about these projects. It is a great way to enjoy the outdoors and meet new friends.
    Camp set up will start on Fri. Meals will be provided for all the volunteers starting with dinner on Friday and ending with lunch on Sunday. Even if you can only come up for the day we would love to have your help.

    More details are posted on the AES website. Click Here for more info.

    Please register at the projects you plan to attend. This helps us plan for the food and meals. To register contact Tom Schorr.

    Thanks to all the volunteers that signed up for the May 22 Work Project in Unit 7E. See you in camp.

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    Posted on 17th May 2010
    Under: Events, General | No Comments »