Region 4 – Elk, Mule Harvest Down, Whitetails Up On Rocky Mountain Front
By Kamp Cook
Elk and mule deer taken by hunters remain below average on the Rocky Mountain Front, but the white-tailed deer harvest is up at the end of the second weekend of the 2015 general big game season.
The numbers were collected at Fish, Wildlife and Parks’ check station in Augusta, says Brent Lonner, FWP wildlife biologist.
“Elk harvest remains 25 percent below the 10-year average,” Lonner says, “but slightly above last year at this time.”
Concerning the mule deer numbers, Lonner says: “Total mule deer harvest remains 46 percent below the 10-year average. But remember this is the second year there has been no antlerless mule deer hunting. That’s a contributing factor to the harvest reduction.”
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.
Elk hunters so far have brought in 49 elk (23 bulls, 23 cows and three calves) compared to the long-term average of 65 elk.
Mule deer at the check station have numbered 29 bucks. The long-term average is 52 animals.
With whitetails, this year’s count in Augusta stands at 49 (26 bucks, 16 does and seven fawns), while the 10-year average is 44.
So far 771 hunters have stopped at the Augusta station, which is about four percent above average.
The general deer and elk season runs through Nov. 29.