Gov. Mark Gordon is asking the Wyoming Game and Fish Commission to consider suspending the sale of short-term out-of-state fishing licenses to discourage travel into the state, he announced Wednesday.
Gordon, speaking during a news conference, also said the state Game and Fish Department emailed more than 43,000 non-residents who own hunting and fishing license to ask them to stay away from Wyoming in the short-term.
“I, just this morning, asked the commission to consider suspending the sale of short-term or temporary fishing licenses simply because if you are going to be here for 14 days before you go out, it doesn’t seem the correct thing to do to issue temporary or one-day licenses,” the governor said.
Gordon said the email told non-residents “in no uncertain terms” that if they can’t agree to self-quarantine for 14 days upon entering Wyoming then “they should stay home.”
“We are particularly concerned about our neighbors in a lockdown states like Colorado coming up from Wyoming,” he said.
“They seem to be traveling up in droves to Wyoming. We’re trying to put a stop to that,” he added.
Gordon said his message was also being delivered at point-of-entry boat inspection stations.
“I’d also like to ask all of our neighbors to resist coming to Wyoming for antler collection,” he said.
Earlier this week, the Game and Fish Department advised Wyoming citizens to stay close to home and not to travel out-of-state if engaging in outdoor activities.
At that time, a spokesperson said the department had no plans to cancel hunting or fishing seasons.
Wednesday’s announcement won’t change that, although suspension of the sale of fishing licenses will likely have some impact on the number of out-of-state anglers in the state.
The discussion of non-resident fishing in Wyoming appeared to begin when Cheyenne Mayor Marian Orr on Monday announced, via Twitter, that more than 150 out-of-state fishing licenses were sold on Saturday and Sunday.
“Dear Visitors: We love that you appreciate all Wyoming offers, including recreation and our great outdoors. The fact 153 non-resident annual fishing licenses were sold this weekend alone signals you are not staying at home. Please stay away. We’ll welcome you back another day,” she said.