JUNEAU - The general trapping season for marten, river otter, mink, weasel and beaver opened Dec. 1 for Admiralty, Baranof and Chichagof Islands.
The season runs through Feb. 15, 2010 for most species in Unit 4. Exceptions are the marten, mink and weasel season closure beginning on Dec. 31 in the northern Chichagof Island area, and also the beaver season which extends until May 15, 2010, throughout the unit.
In addition to obtaining a trapping license, trappers must have marten, river otter, and beaver hides sealed within 30 days after the close of the season by Alaska Department of Fish and Game staff, Alaska Wildlife Troopers or state-appointed fursealers.
Other new changes include a shortening of the wolverine trapping season.
Officials would like to remind trappers in Units 1 through 5 that traps and snares are required to be individually marked with a permanent metal tag with the trapper's name and address or the trapper's permanent ID number, or that they be set within 50 yards of a sign that contains the same information. Detailed requirements are located in the 2009-2010 Alaska Trapping Regulation handbook or online under "trapping information" at http://www.wildlife.alaska.gov.
Trappers are also asked by officials to use discretion in the placement of traps and snares near trails, as well as near recreational and residential areas where people and pets congregate. Recommendations say to avoid placing trap or snare sets in high use areas to help minimize conflicts between trappers and other users. It is in the best interest of pet owners to maintaining control over their pets in order to reduce an encounter with legally set traps and snares. Leash laws, where applicable, should be followed. It is illegal to obstruct, hinder, or disturb a lawful trapping effort.
For more information please call the Douglas ADF&G offices at 465-4265 or the Alaska Wildlife Troopers at 747-3254.