OUTDOOR NOTES: Survey shows high hunting approval . . . .

Survey shows high hunting approval Results from a new national poll show approval of hunting is at its highest level since 1995. According to the survey by research firm Responsive Management, 79 percent of Americans age 18 and older said they ap...

Survey shows high hunting approval

Results from a new national poll show approval of hunting is at its highest level since 1995.

According to the survey by research firm Responsive Management, 79 percent of Americans age 18 and older said they approve of hunting, up 5 percentage points from 74 percent in 2011.

Responsive Management has been tracking trends in hunting approval since 1995.

Conducted in February, the survey polled 1,306 Americans 18 and older using random digit dialing and supplemental cell phone sampling.


The survey is the fifth in a series by the polling firm to track hunting approval trends, and the numbers generally have remained consistent: 73 percent in 1995, 75 percent in 2003, 78 percent in 2006, 74 percent in 2011 and 79 percent this year.

In a news release, the polling firm said it's not sure why hunting approval increased in the latest survey, but the uptick in hunting and shooting participation could be a factor. Since 2006, hunting participation has increased by 9 percent, according to the National Survey of Fishing, Hunting, and Wildlife-Associated Recreation, conducted by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Meanwhile, shooting participation has increased by 18 percent since 2009.

-- Herald staff report

King Kat tourney set for Saturday

The Cabela's King Kat catfish tournament circuit will be making its debut Saturday on the Red River, with fishing hours from 6:30 a.m. until 3 p.m. The LaFave Park boat ramp in East Grand Forks will be tournament headquarters.

Tournament boundaries will be from Riverside Dam upstream to Belmont Park, an area also known as Frog Point. There's a five-catfish limit per two-person team, and all fish must be alive to qualify; fish will be released after being weighed.

Teams that haven't preregistered can register from 5 to 7 p.m. Friday at the East Grand Forks Cabela's store. Entry fee is $200 per two-person team, and there's a $25 late fee for teams that register less than 15 days before the event. Teams also must be a member of the King Kat Association to fish the tournament, and a one-year membership costs $25. There's a guaranteed minimum payback of $5,000, and the top 20 teams will have a chance to advance to the Cabela's King Kat Classic, set for Sept. 26-28 on Kentucky Lake in Camden, Tenn.



-- Herald staff report

DNR names Franke to Crookston post

CROOKSTON -- The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has named Ruth Anne Franke as the new assistant area wildlife supervisor in Crookston.

A Florida native, Franke has been the wildlife technician in the DNR's Crookston office the past 12 years.

"I'm thrilled to have Ruth Anne as the new assistant area wildlife supervisor," said Ross Hier, DNR area wildlife supervisor in Crookston. "She knows our work area, works well with people and enjoys the diverse field work we are blessed with in this area."

Franke completed a bachelor's degree in wildlife science at Auburn University and a master's degree in wildlife science at South Dakota State University. Before joining the DNR in 2001, she was the wildlife manager for Chassahowitzka Wildlife Management Area in Hernando County, Fla.

"I feel fortunate to be continuing my career right here in Crookston," Franke said. "It's a privilege to able to manage wildlife in an area I love, and work with great people every day."


-- Herald staff report

DNR: Spruce rust no cause for concern

The Minnesota DNR says homeowners with spruce trees that are turning tan, yellow, orange or pink needn't worry. Most likely, the trees are infected with the spruce needle rust fungus, which presents an aesthetic problem but seldom a tree health problem.

Spruce needle rust infects current-year needles of blue spruce but also can be found on white and black spruce. Infected needles will turn yellow and then shed in the fall. Healthy buds on the ends of the branches will produce new needles the following year.

"Seeing favorite ornamental trees turn a rusty color and appear to be dying can cause concern, but homeowners shouldn't rush to cut them down," said Mike Albers, DNR forest health specialist. "The fungus only infects the current year's needles and does not spread from tree to tree."

In some years, such as this one, spruce needle rust is very common, but most years, it is difficult to find because it requires other plants and specific growing conditions to complete its life cycle.


-- Minnesota DNR


Did you know?

• Aug. 16 is the deadline to apply for the regular archery hunts at Camp Ripley near Little Falls, Minn. This year's hunts are scheduled for Oct. 26-27 and Nov. 2-3, and 5,000 permits, 2,500 per two-day hunt, will be available. Info:

• North Dakota's fall turkey season is set for Oct. 12-Jan. 5, and 4,020 licenses will be available, 125 fewer than last year. Stan Kohn, upland game management supervisor for the Game and Fish Department in Bismarck, said the license reduction results from four years of poor production. License applications will be available in the next few days, and the deadline to apply is Sept. 4. As many as 45 turkey licenses also will be issued for a concurrent experimental bow season in the city of Fargo and specific surrounding areas. Info:

• All migratory game bird hunters, regardless of age, must register with the federal Harvest Information Program before going afield. HIP certification is required for hunting ducks, geese, swans, mergansers, coots, cranes, snipe, doves or woodcock. In North Dakota, hunters who buy their licenses online at or by phone through instant licensing, (800) 406-6409, easily can get HIP certified. Hunters who've already purchased their licenses can go back to the Game and Fish website or call (888) 634-4798 to get their HIP certification and record the number on their fishing, hunting and furbearer certificate.

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