OLYMPIA -- The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife has scheduled
two public meetings this month to discuss recent changes that impact bear and cougar
The first meeting will be held Jan. 27 in Moses Lake at the Grant County Public
Utilities District auditorium at 312 West 3rd Ave.
The second meeting will be held January 30 at the Department of Fish and
Wildlife's northern Puget Sound headquarters in Mill Creek. The address is 16018 Mill
Both meetings will begin at 7:30 p.m. and last until 9:00 p.m. Representatives
from the department's Enforcement and Wildlife Management programs are expected
to be on hand to answer questions.
In recent weeks, important changes affecting bear and cougar hunters have
occurred. In November, Washington voters passed Initiative 655. The measure made it
illegal in the state to hunt or pursue cougars, black bears, bobcats or lynx with the aid of
a dog or dogs.
The initiative, which became law 30 days after it won voter approval, also made it
illegal to hunt black bears with the aid of bait.
In December, the Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission adopted a new,
statewide three-year hunting seasons and rules package for all game species. The
package contains significant changes over previous years with regard to cougar and
Persons who have questions about the recent changes, but cannot attend one of
the meetings, can contact the department's Public Affairs office at (206)775-1311, or