The Colorado Parks and Wildlife Commission vote 8 – 3 Thursday in favor of approving a ban on organized wildlife contests.
The vote, during a virtual meeting, prohibits contests for black-tailed, white-tailed and Gunnison’s prairie dogs, Wyoming (Richardson’s) ground squirrels and all furbearer species (species with fur having commercial value), according to a CPW news release.
The estimated effective date of this ban is June 30. The favorable motion is culmination of a process that dates to a November 2019 commission meeting in Wray.
“Wildlife contests are privately organized competitive contests where participants compete for cash or other prizes for taking animals in a specified location during a specified time period, often to alleviate damage caused by the animals,” the release said.
Colorado already has a partial statutory ban on wildlife contests, which prohibits contests for “big game.”
“We are committed to sound wildlife management in Colorado, and we always strive to review wildlife-related issues,” said CPW Director Dan Prenzlow in the release. “We studied the issue over the past several months and staff brought forward a thorough recommendation for the commission to consider, culminating in today’s decision.”
Thursday’s action further restricts contests for small game and furbearers.
“I believe we’re still leaving the opportunity for private landowners to manage their properties,” added Commissioner Marvin McDaniel in the release. “At the same time, I believe that for these hunting contests, the staff recommendation [to ban] is a good one.”
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