Changes in VA Urban Deer Season

Virginia DeerAs opening day for Deer Season in VA, there is an important to note is that during the early urban antlerless season which opens Saturday September 7, firearms will be allowed.

Based on the regulations on blaze orange, since firearms will be used during the early season, all hunters, including archery hunters, are required to wear blaze orange during the early urban season and again when regular firearms season opens through the end of the late antlerless season in March. [Read more…]

Would you consider this your best hunt?

This is from one of our Winded Bowhunter buds, John.

John Rager 10 Point
John got his early season doe out of the way as we have an “Earn-a-buck” program in Virginia. Then he spent a lot of seat time hunting a big 8 point John had seen around. John let many deer walk under his stand including a piebald 4 pointer that locked horns with a nice 6 pint under his stand, boy that was awesome to see. [Read more…]

Colorado Wildlife Commission Approves 2010 Big Game Regs

DENVER, Colo. – The Colorado Wildlife Commission finalized 2010 big game regulations at its regular meeting Jan. 11.  The Commission approved a variety of changes, some providing expanded opportunities for hunters.

Key revisions include:

Hybrid Draw:
The Colorado Division of Wildlife established a “Hybrid” drawing for select elk and deer licenses for the 2010 hunting seasons.   The purpose of the drawing is to give hunters the additional opportunity to draw a license for some of the state’s premier elk and deer hunting areas.    Hunters with five or more elk or deer preference points that select as their first choice a unit requiring 10 or more resident preference points for that species will be automatically included in the random drawing. Approximately 15 elk and three deer units qualify for the drawing.

[Read more…]

Hunters Should Use Their Antlerless Deer Tags

Hunters still possessing licenses for antlerless white-tailed and mule deer in Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks’ Region 6 should plan to harvest those animals before the end of November, state wildlife officials said Friday.

That’s because at this point there are no plans to schedule any additional special deer management hunts after the general deer season ends on Nov. 29, said Region 6 Supervisor Pat Gunderson. If no additional deer management seasons take place, unused 2009 licenses will simply expire.

In past years deer management seasons — used to control populations of big game animals that are over objectives — typically took place after the general hunting season was over. This year, however, big-game managers are running two special management seasons in select Region 6 hunting districts at the same time as the general deer season.

Nonresidents participating in these hunts can purchase the special licenses at a reduced rate if they possess a prerequisite license. Montana residents can buy special management licenses for $10 each.

As of Nov. 6, there were 573 of the 699-01 Deer “B” licenses left. These licenses cover the special white-tailed deer management season now taking place in Hunting Districts 630, 640, 641, 650, 651 and 670.

Also as of Nov. 6, there were 78 Deer “B” 640-01 licenses that remained unsold. These licenses cover a special antlerless mule deer management season now underway in Hunting District 640.

In addition, as of Nov. 6 there were 832 other antlerless mule and white-tailed deer surplus and over-the-counter licenses available for sale for use in Region 6. Resident hunters also can purchase one 006-10 regionwide, antlerless, white-tailed Deer “B” license apiece. All of the other Deer “B” licenses are being sold on a first-come, first-served basis.

For the general 2009 big game season, each hunter may possess up to seven “Deer B” licenses in any combination via drawing, over-the-counter, or surplus purchase. Because the special management seasons are administratively separate from the general season, hunters may purchase up to four more of the 699-01 or 640-01 licenses — or a combination of these two license types — apiece.

This expanded license possession limit is in addition to the “Deer A” license, which can be used for harvesting a buck deer or either-sex deer in many Montana hunting districts.

More Deer Hunters Sought in Northeastern Montana

Resident and non-resident hunters heading to northeastern Montana during the 2009 big game season will again have many extra opportunities to harvest deer.

In addition to excellent hunting expected during the general rifle season — which runs from Oct. 25 to Nov. 29 — the Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife & Parks will concurrently run two special management seasons in Region 6 for antlerless white-tailed deer and mule deer during the period. The state’s archery deer season is already underway.

Non-residents participating in the special management hunts, which are taking place in a limited number of hunting districts, can purchase the licenses at reduced prices. The licenses are being sold on a first-come, first-served basis.

Only those hunters holding a 699-00 or a 640-00 prerequisite license are eligible to participate in the special management seasons. The management season licenses cost $10 apiece for Montana residents. Non-resident hunters will need to buy a $75 prerequisite license to be eligible to purchase management season licenses for $20 each.

As of Oct. 14, there were 2,602 of the prerequisite 699-00 licenses left. In Hunting Districts 630, 640, 641, 650, 651 and 670, a total of 2,000 additional 699-01 “B” licenses for antlerless white-tailed deer were authorized this year. As of Oct. 14, there were 1,430 of these licenses remaining.

Also in Hunting District 640, which encompasses the far northeastern corner of the state, 200 additional 640-01 “B” licenses for antlerless mule deer were authorized. As of Oct. 14, there were still 141 of these 640-01 licenses and 153 of the prerequisite 640-00 licenses left.
[Read more…]

2009 Nonresident Deer and Elk Tag Quotas – Updated

The number of tags available may have increased due to return of unsold outfitter allocated tags.

You can get all the information here!

Idaho Southeast Region Hunting Forecast

IdahoFish-Game

By Toby Boudreau – Idaho Department of Fish and Game

Deer:

The forecast for mule deer hunting in the Southeast Region is a mixture of good and bad news.

The good news is that a fair number of deer made it into the three-year-old age class, and even some have made it into the four-year-old age class. These bucks should be more than 24 inches; antler growth appears to be better than average due to our wet spring this year that produced abundant forage early. People who are already seeing some of these deer are optimistic for the hunting season.

The bad news is that we again suffered low fawn survival, 32 to 38 percent, despite the relatively mild winter. This lower survival of fawns is because mule deer does came through the harsh winter of 2007-2008 with lower body fat reserves. This lead to lighter fawns being born during spring 2008, fawns which then grew at slower rates because of lower plant production from that summer’s drought. During the summer of 2008, no measurable rainfall fell between early June and Labor Day weekend in much of the Southeast Region. Hard winters combined with dry summers are the conditions that really suppress mule deer populations.

This lower fawn survival translates into fewer two-point bucks on the hill, since most yearling bucks are two points. Our two-year-old age class – small four-points and three-points – will also be weak from the low survival during the 2007-2008 winter.

There is no doubt that people will go out and see harvestable deer this fall and some nice deer will be taken. The overall numbers should be about equal to last year, with a slightly higher number of mature bucks.

Hunters should also be aware that there are a few bucks wearing radio collars in the region. It is legal to take these animals, but we would like to get collars back so we can re-use them in our on-going mule deer research projects.

Anyone who has questions, wants more information, or possibly wants to volunteer, please call Fish and Game at 208-232-4703.

Elk:

Elk hunting should be about what it was last year. Winter does not affect elk populations nearly as much as it does mule deer populations. Elk numbers have grown in areas within the Bannock Zone herd.

Biologists will be surveying the Bear River Zone elk this winter to and will compare that to the 2006 survey results. This population appears to be stable, based on harvest and hunter information. This winters survey will give Fish and Game a better chance to measure any changes.

The Diamond Creek Zone numbers from the January survey showed a decrease of nearly one-third of the population since 2005. Therefore, Fish and Game reduced this fall’s harvest. Cow elk tags were cut by one-third and bull tags by one-fourth, and extra-tag hunt permit numbers were reduced. During this reduction, archery hunter numbers also were reduced by capping the A-Tag at 1,837 permits – or about 350 fewer permits available.

Since the Diamond Creek elk herd is so productive at 33 calves per 100 cows, positive changes in that zone should be seen in the next couple years.

Upland Birds:

Upland bird hunting has started well, with good numbers of forest grouse being reported in some areas. It is still unclear whether the late spring rains were a positive or negative effect on pheasants, sharp-tailed grouse, gray partridge (Hungarian), and sage grouse. It appears from observations that populations appear to be good in some places and poor in others. Weather can have a positive or negative effect based on whether it rains when chicks are at the critical stage. Overall, upland bird hunting should be worthwhile throughout the region.

Waterfowl:

Waterfowl production was likely very good this spring. Waterfowl numbers suffered a setback with the recent duck die-off that has been blamed on botulism poisoning.

Biologists picked up 16,000-18,000 waterfowl and shorebirds from September 16 through 25on the north end of American Falls Reservoir. This may cause a reduction in the numbers of regional waterfowl in the early season before migrants from Northern Idaho, Montana and the prairie provinces of Canada show up late in the season.

However, even after that many dead ducks being picked up, large flocks of ducks were still observed in the area. So, it will still be worth heading to the duck blind this fall.

Hunters should not shoot waterfowl that look sick, cannot fly, or are having trouble holding their heads up. These birds might have botulism. They would be safe to eat if properly cooked, but hunting dogs may be at risk if they pick one up and ingest any of the toxin. Please call Fish and Game at 232-4703 to report any waterfowl that may be affected.

Please consult the regulations for current information on seasons and bag limits. And, don’t forget to use Fish and Game’s Hunt Planner when planning your hunting excursions this year. The Hunt Planner can be found online at fishandgame.idaho.gov.

Toby Boudreau is the regional wildlife manager for the Southeast Region.

2009 Nonresident Deer and Elk Tag Quotas

Here is the updated information on the Nonresident Deer & Elk Tag Availability for Idaho Fish and Game.

Note: The number of tags available may have increased due to return of unsold outfitter allocated tags.

DEER TAGS
TYPE QUOTA # OF TAGS AVAILABLE
Regular/White-tailed Deer 12,015 6,029
White-tailed Deer 1,500 1,500
ZONE ELK TAGS
QUOTA # OF TAGS AVAILABLE
Zone Elk A & B Tag 10,415 3,103
ELK TAGS
These tag allotments are taken out of the “Zone Elk A & B” quota and are not additional.
TYPE QUOTA # OF TAGS AVAILABLE
Lolo Zone – B Tag 356 161
Selway Zone – A Tag 254 211
Selway Zone – B Tag 284 9
Middle Fork Zone – A Tag 174 127
Middle Fork Zone – B Tag 267 86
Dworshak Zone – B Tag 215 SOLD OUT
Elk City Zone – B Tag 326 SOLD OUT
Diamond Creek Zone – A Tag* 772 SOLD OUT
Sawtooth Zone – A Tag* 106 28
Sawtooth Zone – B Tag* 265 72
* Added as per commission rules passed at the March 23-24, 2009 Commission Meeting.

Antlerless Deer Licenses Available

 

 

Hunters in FWP’s Region 6 will have additional opportunities to harvest antlerless mule deer and white-tailed deer during the general 2009 big game season, officials said Monday.

That’s because two special deer management seasons in a limited number of hunting districts will take place the same time as the general season, said FWP Region 6 Supervisor Pat Gunderson. Nonresidents participating in the hunts can purchase the licenses at reduced prices.

In Hunting Districts 630, 640, 641, 650, 651 and 670, Gunderson said a total of 2,000 additional 699-01 “B” licenses for antlerless white-tailed deer will be authorized. Also in Hunting District 640, which encompasses the far northeastern corner of the state, a total of 200 additional 640-01 “B” licenses for antlerless mule deer will be authorized. Both of these license types will be available for sale online and at all license providers starting Aug. 17 on a first-come, first-served basis.

Only those hunters holding a 699-00 or a 640-00 prerequisite license will be eligible to participate in the management seasons. The management season licenses will cost $10 apiece for Montana residents. Nonresident hunters will need to buy a $75 prerequisite license to be eligible to purchase management season licenses for $20 each.

For the general 2009 big game season, each hunter may possess up to seven “Deer B” licenses in any combination via drawing, over-the-counter, or surplus purchase. Because the special management seasons are administratively separate from the general season, hunters may purchase up to four more of the 699-01 or 640-01 licenses — or a combination of these two license types — apiece. That means hunters who participate in the special management seasons in Region 6 are allowed to possess up to 11 “Deer B” tags.

In past years deer management seasons — used to control populations of big game animals that are over objectives — typically took place after the general hunting season was over.

But Gunderson said a continuing trend of high deer populations in these districts and a desire to get deer harvested during the general season to take advantage of existing hunters and lessen impacts on private landowners prompted the action earlier this year.

In Hunting District 640, surveys show that mule deer numbers have increased steadily over the past five years. While biologists say mule deer numbers dropped about 39 percent during the severe winter of 2008-09, they are still above 10-year averages. There is very limited winter cover or forage in the district, and agricultural damage has been increasing.

Regarding whitetails, Gunderson said deer numbers in Hunting Districts 630, 640, 641, 650, 651 and 670 have been above long-term averages since 2002.   In Hunting Districts 630, 650 and 651, and 670 west of Highway 24, whitetail numbers have increased up to 54 % above long-term averages.

Rapidly increasing whitetail numbers brought a corresponding increase in depredation on private land.   Gunderson noted that numerous hunters and landowners have expressed concern to FWP regarding very high whitetail numbers and associated agricultural damages, especially along the Milk River corridor. He said damages to standing crops are already occurring in many areas, and damage to stored silage and hay is expected to take place again this winter.

“These measures are one way we can help reduce that damage,” Gunderson said. For more information about the special deer management seasons, call (406) 228-3700.  The rlease can be found here.

Enter Now for Second Controlled Hunt Drawing

 

 

Didn’t draw in the first round? It’s not too late to apply for the second controlled hunt drawing for the unclaimed permits.

The application period for the second drawing for deer, elk and pronghorn hunts runs through August 15. The drawing will be August 20. Any left over permits will go on sale August 25.

The application fee is $6.25 for residents, and $14.75 for nonresidents. Any left over permits will go on sale August 25. Residents began buying general season tags August 1.

Hunters can pick up tags at any license vender in the state, online at http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/cms/licenses/, or by calling 1-800-554-8685.