OLYMPIA – Citizens with opinions on how the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) should manage the state's game animals over the next six years can make their views known through an on-line survey on the department's website.
The game management public opinion survey, posted at http://wdfw.wa.gov/wlm/surveys/gamesurvey.htm on the Internet, will help WDFW develop a plan to guide game species conservation efforts and hunting seasons from 2003-2008. The plan will outline long-term management strategies and identify funding priorities.
The Internet opinion survey culminates an effort, started last May, to seek public views in identifying key state wildlife management issues. Survey questions were developed based on feedback from the Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission, the department's game management citizen advisory committee and an earlier random telephone survey of licensed hunters.
The opinion survey addresses a number of game management issues including:
- Scientific management of wildlife
- Use of hunting as a wildlife management tool
- Hunting season timing and length
- Land access for hunting
- Predator management
- Habitat loss and degradation
- Game regulation enforcement
- Tribal coordination
Survey results will be incorporated into a draft game management plan that will be made available for public comment later this spring. The final game management plan is scheduled to be adopted by the Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission in August.