ID BHA Opposes HB 469

February 6, 2024


Representative Ron Mendive

Chair, House Resources & Conservation Committee

P.O. Box 83720

Boise, ID 83720-0038


Chairman Mendive:


The Idaho Chapter of Backcountry Hunters & Anglers (“ID BHA”) respectfully opposes House Bill No. 469, which would prohibit the Idaho Department of Fish and Game (“IDFG”) from making or enforcing regulations that would not permit the use of 209 primers, pelletized powder, or sabots within muzzleloader-only hunting seasons in Idaho. While these technologies have been implemented in other states, Idaho has a history of maintaining more primitive muzzleloader technology which has helped to ensure the balanced and abundant opportunity for pursuing wildlife with multiple methods of take that we currently enjoy. We understand and appreciate the intent of granting Idaho hunters access to more modern technologies; however we would prefer to see any such changes brought through the rigorous public process already in place through IDFG and the Fish and Game Commission.

Backcountry Hunters & Anglers (“BHA”) is the voice for our wild public lands, waters and wildlife. We seek to ensure North America’s outdoor heritage of hunting and fishing in a natural setting through education and work on behalf of fish, wildlife and wild places. With chapters in 48 states, Washington D.C., two Canadian provinces and one Canadian territory, as well as over 1,000 dues paying members in Idaho, BHA attracts sportsmen and women, as well as other public land users, from across the continent.

While Idaho BHA has no formal opinion on the use of the muzzleloader technologies contemplated in this bill, and many of our members may utilize these tools in other states where they are legal, we remain steadfast in our support of the Idaho Fish and Game Commission and IDFG to set such regulations. ID BHA does not endorse advancing wildlife management policies and decisions by state or federal legislation or voter referendums and ballot initiatives.

Many of our members in Idaho hunt during muzzleloader seasons, and we fully understand and appreciate the goals of this bill. However, we do believe that the existing public rulemaking process allows muzzleloader hunters to have a strong voice, and we believe regulations pertaining to methods of take should be set through that process. Idaho hunters have a deep understanding of the need to balance efficacy and opportunity, and we fear that legislation that prioritizes more effective methods of take may result in decreased opportunities to pursue game.

Determining methods of take for wildlife, both in specific and in general, is a highly complicated process that has been and should continue to be discussed by IDFG and the Fish and Game Commission in coordination with the public. To that end, we request that the House Resources and Conservation Committee hold House Bill 469. Thank you.


The Idaho Chapter of Backcountry Hunters & Anglers

About Nick Fasciano

Nick lives in Boise and currently volunteers as the Idaho Chapter Policy Chair. He is accustomed to wading into the waters of conservation policy and is committed to helping ensure the public land hunting and fishing opportunities we have in Idaho.

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