Changes to surplus license process for 2020
By Moosetrack Megan

Posted: July 17, 2020
To give residents and nonresidents a more equitable opportunity for surplus licenses, Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks has developed a new system for issuing surplus licenses.

Resident and nonresident hunters will be able to sign up for the new Surplus License List, with some sign-ups starting next week. Surplus licenses are leftover licenses from the special license and permit drawings FWP conducts each year.

To sign up for the Surplus License List, resident and nonresident hunters can sign up through the MyFWP portal: https://myfwp.mt.gov/fwpExtPortal/login/login.jsp. As licenses become available, the list will be randomized. Hunters at the top of the list will be contacted via email with instructions to finalize their purchase. Hunters must keep their email address current in their ALS record. Payment of the license fee is not required to sign up on the Surplus License List. Obtaining a license from this list has no effect on your existing preference points.

Hunters must finalize the purchase of the license/permit within the timeframe specified in the email, otherwise, your opportunity will be offered to the next hunter on the randomized list. FWP may offer opportunities that have not sold out through the Surplus License List to over-the-counter customers at our internal and external license sale providers.

License numbers:

  • The total number of Deer B licenses/permits a hunter may hold each year (through a combination of licenses acquired through drawings, purchased over the counter and through surplus sales is a total seven). Hunters electing Deer B license/permit opportunities will have the option to purchase two through the Surplus List.
  • For Elk and Elk B licenses a hunter may hold a maximum of three each year. Only one of the three can be a general elk license, and two could be Elk B licenses through various sources such as the original drawing, game damage, or surplus. If you do not hold a general Elk license, you could obtain up to three Elk B licenses. Hunters electing Elk B license opportunities through the Surplus License List may only purchase one. However, additional opportunities up to your maximum of three may be made available through over the counter or damage hunt sales.
  • For antelope licenses, a hunter may hold up to three in a year, of which, one can be either sex. Hunters electing Antelope license opportunities will have the option to purchase one through the Surplus License List.

When to sign up:

The Surplus License List sign-up timeframes referenced below are based on when the original drawing date for each species is scheduled to occur and are subject to change from year to year.

  • Deer & Elk Permits, Deer B & Elk B License/Permits: July 21 through Aug. 7
  • Antelope, Antelope B, Swan, Crane, Special Mountain Lion: Aug. 12 through Aug. 24
  • Nonresident Hound Handler License: Sept. 16 to Sept. 28

Nonresidents who hold a NR Native license, Youth Combo license, or NR College Student Combination license may purchase Deer B and Elk B licenses at half price. For more information, contact the FWP licensing office at 406-444-2950 or fwplic@mt.gov.