Region 4 – At the end of the fourth weekend of Montana’s big game general season, harvest numbers for elk and mule deer are slow on the Rocky Mountain Front.
The numbers were collected at Fish, Wildlife and Parks’ check station in Augusta.
“Compared to the five-year average we’re below average for elk and mule deer,” says Brent Lonner, FWP wildlife biologist. “But compared to last year by this date, we’re only below average on mule deer.”
For white-tailed deer the numbers checked so far at Augusta are above both the five-year average and last year.
While the numbers at the Augusta check station – FWP Region 4’s sole biological check station – apply only to a handful of hunting districts on the Rocky Mountain Front, they often mirror conditions elsewhere in north central Montana.
Elk hunters so far have brought in 130 animals (79 bulls, 45 cows and six calves) compared to the five-year average of 164 elk.
Mule deer at the check station have numbered 107 (76 bucks, 30 does and one fawn). The five-year average is 175 animals.
White-tailed deer numbers stand at 138 (76 bucks, 58 does and four fawns), while the five-year average is 119
Last year, mild weather occurred the first three weeks of the season, then winter hit for the last two weeks. During that last two weeks on the Front, half of the season’s mule deer were harvested and about two-thirds of the elk and whitetail harvest took place.
Source: Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks