Hunting & Fishing Getting More Expensive

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Hunting and fishing are getting more expensive in Nevada.

Starting Monday, the cost of a regular hunting license goes from $24 to $33, an increase of 37.5 percent. A regular fishing license goes up 38 percent, from $21 to $29.

The increases, approved by the 2003 Legislature, were needed to maintain current fish and wildlife programs, the Nevada Department of Wildlife said.

"The largest portion of NDOW's funding comes from licensed hunters and anglers in Nevada," department Director Terry Crawforth said in a statement. "By purchasing a license, they not only support our wildlife resources for themselves, but also for future generations."

The department said its last major fee increase was eight years ago and without the hike, wildlife programs would have suffered a cumulative $6.5 million shortfall by fiscal 2007.

Along with the higher license fees, a new $10 stamp will be required of all people planning to hunt upland game.

Doug Hunt, chief of habitat for the department, said funds generated by the sale would be used for the development, preservation and acquisition of habitats for upland game birds.

The Wildlife Commission will approve all projects for which upland game funds will be used. Hunt said a key project would be the maintenance of water developments, or guzzlers, for upland game birds, possibly including a permanent work crew to maintain the guzzlers.

"We have been sorely lacking in maintenance for the more than 1,500 guzzlers that are out there. About 50 percent are in need of some maintenance and, of those, about 15 percent need moderate to major maintenance," Hunt said.

As part of the new fees, $3 of every hunting and fishing license will be set aside for fish and wildlife habitats. Likely projects include range or fire rehabilitation and cheat grass eradication to benefit hunters and stream and reservoir restoration to benefit fish.

Nevada's license year runs from March 1 through February.