Commission will consider limiting bait movement

Possibly creating regulations to limit what species anglers can catch and travel with for bait will be discussed at Thursday's Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism commission meeting in Topeka.

Chris Tymeson, agency attorney, said biologists will make several suggestions to the commission, including limiting the use of bait only to the water where it's caught, allowing the transportation of only a few well-known species fish or keeping regulations as they currently are.

Biologists and many fishermen fear such invasive species as Asian carp and white perch could be transported to new waters when anglers transport bait they've caught.

No formal action is expected on such restrictions until future meetings.

Things to be voted on include:

* Changing the checkout hours at state parks from noon to 2 p.m.

* Creating fall deer, elk, antelope and turkey seasons that mostly mirror 2010 seasons.

* Legalizing the use of suppressers for those who can legally have them and have special wildlife control permits.

Thursday's meeting begins at 1:30 p.m. with a 7 p.m. second session at the Wildlife and Parks regional office at 300 SW Wanamaker Road in Topeka. For more information call 620-672-5911 or go to www.kdwp.state.ks.us.

Women's programs begin — Kansas' first spring Becoming an Outdoors Woman program May 13-15 is nearly full of registrants.

Jami McCabe, program coordinator, is especially pleased with the experience of the students.

"We want 48 women, we're at 42 and they're all first-time BOW participants," McCabe said last week. "I'm guessing they're coming from word-of-mouth advertising from those who've been to a fall BOW."

Becoming an Outdoors Woman workshops are held in most states and teach women skills ranging from shotgunning to wild flower identification through half-day, hands-on classes. McCabe said the spring event will let students pick from 25 courses.

For about 17 years Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks has held BOW workshops in late September at the Rock Springs 4-H Center south of Junction City. Those, too, are seeing an increase in first-time participants.

Last year McCabe gave first-time registrants first shot at attending the program before opening registrations to BOW veterans. She expects the formal registration process for this fall's event to begin in mid-April. For details go to www.kdwp.state.ks.us.