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Clarification on license requirements for SWA's like Loma

I contacted a CPW official and this was his reply about the change at the Loma Boat Ramp (and other SWA's):please bear with me because I want to give you a full answer including relevant history and background.

Colorado’s SWAs were originally acquired, and are managed today, primarily to restore, conserve, manage and enhance wildlife and wildlife habitat. Some of the important habitats protected by SWAs include wintering areas for big game, calving and fawning areas for big game, spawning habitat for fish, and nesting habitat for a variety of birds. These properties were also acquired to provide compatible wildlife recreation for hunters and anglers.

The funds used to acquire these areas were derived from the sale of state hunting and fishing licenses.

Historically, SWAs have been used by some people who did not hunt or fish for activities like wildlife watching, hiking, etc. At one time, those uses were limited enough that they remained compatible with the purposes for which the SWAs were acquired. Unfortunately, as Colorado’s population has grown and physically expanded into closer proximity with many of these SWAs, public uses have increased and are reaching the point where they are not compatible with the original wildlife purpose. Furthermore, these other public uses have placed increasing pressure on the property infrastructure and habitat, resulting in wildlife being pushed off the properties, habitat degradation and increased costs for CPW.

In some extreme cases, certain hunting programs had to be discontinued due to conflicts with users who did not purchase hunting and fishing licenses and were using SWAs for non-wildlife related activities like dog walking, running, etc. We do not believe it is fair to ask hunters and anglers to forego hunting and fishing opportunities because other uses are becoming incompatible. Nor do we believe it is fair to ask anglers and hunters to pay the increased costs for management and operation of these areas resulting from these other uses.
The change was made by the CPW Commission after studying how other states manage their State Wildlife Areas. Some states that require a valid hunting or fishing license to access State Wildlife Areas include: Louisiana, Oklahoma, Tennessee, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Delaware, South Carolina and North Carolina.

The license requirement is an effort to limit multi-use recreation on these properties, not encourage it. While hikers, photographers, birders and others may, in fact, be recreating by watching wildlife, only those with a hunting or fishing license are contributing to the purchase and maintenance of these properties.

A parks pass is not the same as a hunting or fishing license. Funds generated by the parks side of the agency are strictly segregated from the wildlife (hunting/fishing) side. When you buy a Colorado hunting or fishing license, you are contributing directly to wildlife conservation.

CPW's income from hunting and fishing licenses supports all wildlife programs in Colorado, including: programs for nongame, threatened, and endangered species, as well as hatcheries, habitat protection, education, law enforcement, wildlife research, big-game and small-game management, fisheries and aquatic management, and more. That is why a parks pass is not adequate.

All proper and valid hunting and/or fishing licenses will be acceptable for access to SWAs for the license year from April 1 through March 31 of the following year. A 1-day and/or 5-day fishing license would ONLY be valid the day(s) specified on the license.

Here are the current 2020 prices of resident licenses that are most cost-effective: Adult fishing, $35.17; small game, $30.11; combo small-game and fishing, $50.37. Senior fishing is $9.85. A person 18 years of age and older and under 65 years of age will also need a Habitat Stamp when applying for or purchasing a hunting or fishing license. No Habitat Stamp is required for applying for or purchasing a person’s first two one-day hunting or fishing licenses. The 2020 charge for a Habitat stamp is $10.13. That is a one-time charge in a 12-month period, so that is not charged on the purchase of another license(s).

Hope this explanation answers your questions. If not, I'd suggest checking out this page on our website that goes into greater detail about the decision:


Bill Vogrin
So, what you're saying is that those people who do not engage in hunting and fishing are otherwise so narrow-mindedly opposed to those whose pleasure and usage of the land differs from their own, that they are able to close it off, even to themselves? Hilarious! What DO they teach children in school these days? Reminds me of the drunk who pissed in his own boots and crapped in his own hat because he couldn't find the toilet.
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