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Nest Predator Bounties Start Slower Than 2022; 10 East River Counties Get 63.65 of Payouts So Far

South Dakota’s Nest Predator Bounty Program is off to a slow start. As of end of tail business Friday, April 14, Game Fish and Parks reports receiving 4,001 varmint tails—3,310 raccoon, 335 opossum, 317 striped skunk, 21 red fox, and 18 badger. Around 2,500 tails came in Tuesday. At this point in the 2022 trapping season, GF&P had received around 6,900 tails from the bold two-legged predators who lay snares and wait for the small furry creatures whom we scapegoat for our degradation of pheasant habitat to stumble into slow agonizing deaths.

Trappers get $10 per tail. Individuals are limited to submitting 59 tails each year, since GF&P doesn’t want to have to issue 1099 forms to prolific trappers. Thus, your only compensation for kill #60 and beyond is possum stew.

50.5% of predators vanquished so far have come from seven counties that have crossed the $2,000 threshold for tail payouts. The top 10 tail-snipping counties account for 63.6% of bounties:

County Bounty Amounty (% of statewide tail payouts as of April 14)
Minnehaha $5,820 14.55%
Codington $3,430 8.57%
Davison $2,530 6.32%
Deuel $2,170 5.42%
Brookings $2,140 5.35%
Yankton $2,080 5.20%
Kingsbury $2,030 5.07%
Hutchinson $1,800 4.50%
Moody $1,730 4.32%
Lake $1,720 4.30%

No word yet on the inflationary impact of this influx of government cash into these bloodthirstiest counties.

14 counties need not fret the inflationary impact of additional government subsidies for critter slaughter, as they have submitted no tails: Campbell, Custer, Edmunds, Fall River, Hand, Hyde, Jones, Lawrence, Meade, Mellette, Oglala Lakota, Stanley, Tripp, and Ziebach.

The state will continue to pay tail bounties until July 1 or until it has received 50,000 hind ends of targeted varmints, whichever comes first.


  1. larry kurtz 2023-04-15 08:03

    A hundred scientists have signed a letter condemning the US Fish and Wildlife Service for not cracking down on rogue red states like South Dakota.

    The Chinese ring-necked pheasant isn’t wildlife but it is a canary in a chemically and genetically engineered corn mine.

    Over a hundred native species in South Dakota are at risk to the Republican Party including the endangered pallid sturgeon, paddlefish, black footed ferret, northern long-eared bat, the black-backed woodpecker that feeds on bark beetles and a bird that actually walks underwater – the American dipper, just to name a few. Threatened by the increased conversion of native prairie to cropland the most endangered plant in the chemical toilet that is South Dakota is the white-fringed orchid (Platanthera praeclara) found mainly in tallgrass prairies west of the Mississippi River.

    The reasoning is hardly mysterious: it’s all about the money prostitution, the Sturgis Rally, policing for profit, sex trafficking, hunting and subsidized grazing bring to the South Dakota Republican Party destroying lives, depleting watersheds and smothering habitat under single-party rule.

    Blend the slaughter of apex predators, the resulting rise of mesopredators, increasing numbers of domestic dogs and cats then stir in a melange of industrial chemicals with climate change and voila: red state collapse on parade!

  2. All Mammal 2023-04-15 08:17

    Say hi to Dr. Mengele when you see him in hell, you rank witch.

  3. Donald Pay 2023-04-15 10:14

    Some of the most interesting research on the prairie ecosystem began in the early 1970s at Caylor Prairie near Lake Okoboji, Iowa. William Platt studied the impact of badgers, particularly their digging of mounds, on prairie plant ecology. Badger mounds not only provide habitat for certain fugitive prairie plants and thus increase plant diversity, but also improve soil physical and chemical properties, making these mounds more productive for plants that subsequently displace the fugitive plants at the former mound. When you remove species like badgers from an area, you are having a negative impact on a lot of things you never knew about.

  4. buckobear 2023-04-15 10:35

    “As of end of tail business Friday, April 14, ….”
    I see what ya did there.
    Well done.

  5. Arlo Blundt 2023-04-15 14:21

    Donald is correct…Badgers are a unique and beneficial prairie predator. Their impact on pheasants is probably the same as their impact on geese and I haven’t noticed a geese shortage.As usual, the Governor’s thinking on this program is mostly focused on its’ public relations value with an uninformed public. I doubt there are ANY Biologists in the GFP who privately support this nonsense. If you wanted to kill a prairie predator that reeks havoc on young pheasants, we’d be shooting feral cats. Feral cats, of which there are thousands, decimate not only pheasants but song birds.

  6. larry kurtz 2023-04-15 15:31

    Mrs. Noem is a Koch addicted ecoterrorist with flagrant disregard for anything that interrupts her cash cows.

  7. Mark Anderson 2023-04-15 15:44

    Cory, you could arm the badgers. After all if Noem can arm her two year old granddaughter, why not. Anythings possible in the Maga land of So. Dak.

  8. OLDTIMERdon 2023-04-15 19:20

    Why do I suspect that Noem’s grandchildren are shooting these critters to raises money for her Presidential campaign. She will be running short very soon. waaaaaa waaaaaa

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