Work continues on elk management efforts
HELENA – At its Feb. 4 meeting, the Montana Fish and Wildlife Commission approved hunting regulations for the 2022 and 2023 hunting seasons with a significant focus on changes to elk hunting opportunities.
All final regulations approved at the meeting will go into effect when the new license year begins on March 1. New regulation booklets for moose, sheep, mountain goat, bison, deer, elk and antelope will be available online this month and in print by mid-March. Hunters should make sure to read through the new regulations before applying for permits and licenses this spring. The first application deadline for deer and elk permits is April 1.
“Friday’s commission meeting was the culmination of hard work by staff and an amazing amount of input from hunters, landowners, and outfitters across the state,” said FWP Director Hank Worsech. “My hope was to engage the public on improving hunter access to elk and elk distribution across public and private land. And though some proposals were controversial, the commission and the department heard from more people than ever before with input and ideas on how to improve elk management. I think we have made progress and will focus now on implementing and monitoring the effectiveness of these regulation changes.”
FWP continues to focus on improving elk management. This includes elk plan development, work ongoing with the Private Lands Public Wildlife Committee, and organizing the Elk Management Citizen Advisory Group which is currently seeking applicants.
A recap of decisions from the Feb. 4 Commission meeting follows.
The commission set quotas for limited archery-only elk permits in hunting districts 411, 412, 417, 426, 447, 502, 535, 555, 590, part of 701, 702, 704, and 705. In these hunting districts, the archery-only permits will be the first and only choice for applicants, which means if people want to hunt in one of these districts, they will only be able to apply for that specific district.
The commission also set quotas for limited archery-only permits in hunting districts 410, 620, and 700. In these hunting districts, the archery permits will be available as the first or second choice for applicants.
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