"Jerry, why does Game and Fish own heavy equipment?"
You may have seen Game and Fish working with heavy equipment, like skid-steers, backhoes, trackhoes, loaders, dump trucks and tractors, around the state this time of year. The departmentís habitat and access branch owns and rents heavy equipment to take care of Wyoming Game and Fish Commission-owned Wildlife Habitat Management Areas and Public Access Areas and the maintenance of elk feedgrounds.
We do a lot of work ourselves because it is cost effective and reduces the disturbances to fish and wildlife resources, but sometimes we contract work. The habitat and access branch also completes projects to help improve recreational facilities and better habitat for wildlife and fish. Sometimes these projects are on private lands, state lands and federal lands. Work you might see us doing includes:
Installing boat ramps, docks, bridges, cattle guards, culverts, irrigation ditches, pipelines, fish passages, water guzzlers and goose pits
Developing and maintaining wetlands for waterfowl
Restoring streams to protect bank erosion
Upgrading parking areas and roads
Maintaining elk feedgrounds
Performing habitat work like mowing, aerating, dixie harrowing
Interseeding meadows to enhance vegetation, reclaiming disturbed areas, planting food plots for wildlife, applying herbicide for noxious weed control, blading roads and trails for public use, and wetland enhancement.