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Elk Archery Hunting Regulation Advisory Committee

In November 2008, the FWP Commission received additional information on elk archery hunting regulations in 23 hunting disricts outside the Missouri River Breaks. Ultimately, the commission decided to keep the regulations in place for another season.

Background Information

In response to public requests, in March 2008 the FWP Commission asked FWP to form an Elk Archery Hunting Regulation Advisory Committee to continue working on this issue. A mix representing organized hunting groups, livestock and agriculture groups, outfitters, local governments, local businesses, unaffiliated hunters and landowners, and nonresident hunters formed the committee. They were guided by the following principles:

  • The Montana hunting community includes resident and nonresident hunters, wildlife managers, guide, outfitters, land managers, and private landowners.
  • Montana's wildlife is held in trust by the state of Montana for the enjoyment of all.
  • Montanans respect and understand that access to private land is a property right controlled by the landowner.

The group met six days between June and October to develop recommendations aimed at resolving hunter crowding, access issues, inequities between archers and rifle hunters, and other issues associated with recently adopted regulations.

Some committee members recommended that the FWP Commission:

  • continue permit system in the 23 districts outside the Missouri Breaks with all districts grouped into one bundle and with permits capped at 150 percent of the 2008 permit level;
  • offer A9/B12 antlerless elk licenses for archery on private land in hunting districts that are over objective;
  • maintain elk archery permits in hunting districts 410/417, 620/621/622, and 700/701 at 100 percent of the 2008 permit level; and offer party application for elk archery permits in both areas.

These recommendations, however, did not have full agreement from all committee members. Due in part to the lack of full agreement, the FWP Commission did not consider adjustments to the 2009 season. Instead, the existing season will remain in place. The season's purpose and effectiveness will be evaluated and changes could be proposed during Montana's next biennial hunting season-setting process beginning in December.

The results of the committee's work and deliberations are available here.