s: Will CDFW support the idea of reintroducing grizzly bears in California?
a: While it’s an intriguing concept, CDFW is not convinced that reintroducing the Grizzly to present-day California is a good idea due to California’s high population and intense urban development in much of what was historically a prime home to graying.
Historically, grizzly bears inhabited hills, valleys, and coastal areas. Inland, they can be found wherever there is an abundance of unfamiliar fish, acorns, or large herds of spiny-horned antelope and elk tulle. Along the coast, they can be found wherever there is an abundance of marine mammals and invertebrates.
These places were subject to development. For example, major highways have been built and the landscape no longer provides adequate space to roam. California is already facing wildlife connectivity issues, urban-wild interface problems, and vehicle mortality with existing species. We think reintroducing grizzlies will exacerbate these problems.
CDFW also has public safety concerns. The Sierra Nevada in California is nothing like the Yellowstone ecosystem. Sierra Nevada receives millions of visitors annually. More people live, play and work there. Human-wildlife conflicts and looting involving species such as mountain lions, black bears, and wolves are increasing across California, creating a heavy burden on management personnel. We fear the return of the bears will add to that burden.
s. How many crime perks do the California Department of Fish and Wildlife receive each year through CALTIP?
a. CALTIP, which stands for “California Turns in Poachers and Polluters,” began in 1981 to serve as a tool for the public to report crimes involving wildlife including plants, habitats and pollution. It is basically a secret witness program where concerned citizens can report crimes and choose not to be identified.
The CALTIP program receives approximately 6,000 reports each calendar year. In 2015, CALTIP incorporated TIP411 as a tool for reporting violations using a text, mobile app, or “Report Poachers and Polluters” link on the CDFW homepage at wildlife.ca.gov. About 2,000 reports are currently submitted via TIP411 per calendar year.
Reporting through CALTIP allows the public to be additional eyes and ears for wildlife officers as they help protect California’s resources from those who choose to act illegally by unlawfully killing animals, uprooting protected plants, or polluting California’s waterways.
The four ways to send a crime tip through a CALTIP or TIP411 are:
- Call 1-888-334-2258
- Use the “Report a Violation Online” link on the CALTIP page or download the free CALTIP smartphone app available at wildlife.ca.gov/Enforcement/CalTIP
s: I am a new hunter and planning to hunt upland game birds and small animals like rabbits and squirrels. I was told my gun needed to be “plugged up”. what does that mean?
a: Wildlife regulations require that guns used to hunt mammals and birds in the game be restricted to a maximum capacity of three shotgun shells. This means that the total capacity of the gun, including the magazine and the chamber, cannot exceed three shells.
Since some guns come from the factory unplugged, which means they are capable of accepting more than three shells, you should check your rifle to see how many shells it will carry. If it has more than three, you must purchase or make a plug to limit the magazine capacity.
See the California Regulatory Code, which also states: “If a plug is used to reduce the ability of the magazine to meet the requirements of this section, the plug shall be a one-piece, non-removable without disassembling the gun.”
E-mail [email protected] With questions for CDFW.
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