Recieved this today from Bill Crenshaw;
If you have attended one of the public waterfowl meetings over the past five years, you will remember our discussions about moving the Missisquoi Bay area to the Vermont Interior Zone. There seemed to be a lot of support for this change from both Missisquoi and late season diving duck hunters.
This year we have a once-in-five-year opportunity to make minor adjustments to waterfowl hunting zone boundaries. Below is a news release about a proposed boundary change to remove the Missisquoi Bay and Delta from the Lake Champlain Zone and place it in the Vermont Interior Zone.
Please note that there will be a public hearing to discuss this change on Monday, April 25. I hope those of you with an interest in this proposal will consider attending this meeting. If you are not able to do so, but would like to provide comments, you can contact your local F&W Board member. If you prefer, you are also welcome to provide comments to me and I will keep track of them for the Board.
One question that has already been raised is whether this proposed rule will allow hunting from the shoreline of Maquam Bay and Hog Island when the Lake Champlain Zone is open and the Vermont Interior Zone is closed. It is the Department’s intention that this be allowed.
Attached is a map showing the boundary change and list of VT F&W Board members.
William J. Crenshaw
Vermont Department of Fish and Wildlife
111 West Street
Essex Junction, VT 05452
VERMONT FISH AND WILDLIFE DEPARTMENT
For Immediate Release: March 14, 2011
Media Contacts: William Crenshaw, 802-879-5699; Mark Scott, 802-241-3700
Vermont Waterfowl Hunting Zone Boundary Change Proposed
WATERBURY, VT -- The Vermont Fish and Wildlife Board has given its initial approval of a proposal by the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department to establish the boundary between two Vermont waterfowl hunting zones in the northwest corner of the state. The proposed boundary is a change from previous years.
Vermont has three Waterfowl Hunting Zones: the Lake Champlain Zone, Vermont Interior Zone, and Connecticut River Zone. During recent years, each zone has been allowed a 60-day duck hunting season with one split (two segments). Waterfowl hunting seasons and zone regulations must follow criteria established by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. States are allowed to make minor modifications to zone boundaries once every five years.
The proposed boundary change would remove the Missisquoi Bay and Delta area in Swanton, and the Mud Creek Controlled Waterfowl Hunting Area in Alburgh, from the Lake Champlain Zone and place these areas in the Vermont Interior Zone.
The Missisquoi and Mud Creek marshes usually freeze up by late November. These areas have more in common with the Vermont Interior Zone than the Lake Champlain Zone which offers waterfowl hunting opportunities until mid-late December. Moving these areas to the Vermont Interior Zone will provide more ice-free hunting days in October when the Lake Champlain Zone is traditionally closed. The proposed change will also make it easier to set hunting seasons for the Lake Champlain Zone.
Instead of following VT Route 7 to the Canadian border, the new boundary would follow US 7 to VT 78 in Swanton; VT 78 to VT 36; VT 36 to Maquam Bay; along and around the shoreline of Maquam Bay and Hog Island to VT 78 at the West Swanton Bridge; VT 78 to VT 2 in Alburgh; VT 2 to the Richelieu River; along the east shore of the Richelieu River to the Canadian border.
Two more votes are required by the Board in coming months before the proposed change will be adopted. A public hearing is scheduled for Monday, April 25, 2011, 7:00 – 9:00 p.m., in the Swanton Village Complex (Auditorium), which is located at 120 First Street, Swanton, VT. If approved, the boundary change will be in effect during the 2011 hunting season.
The text of the proposed regulation change can be viewed on the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department website www.vtfishandwildlife.com. Click on “About Us” and then “Fish and Wildlife Board.”