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Whitetail Deer Harvest slows down in Northwest Montana

Hunting - Region 1

Wednesday, November 02, 2016

At the six northwest Montana check stations through Sunday, October 30, a total of 6,051 hunters checked 454 white-tailed deer (220 of these were bucks), 51 mule deer, and  45 elk for a 9.1 percent rate of hunters with game.  This compares to a 7.2 percent rate of hunters with game last year (see attached table).  The counts at the six northwest Montana check stations represent a sampling of the harvest and do not represent the complete number of animals taken.

FWP Wildlife Manager Neil Anderson notes that the number of hunters and the percentage of hunters with game declined from the highs observed in the opening weekend.  After two weeks whitetail buck harvest was similar to last year.  This was expected as the opportunity to harvest antlerless white-tailed deer on a general hunting license ended Friday the 28th for hunters 16yrs old and older.   “Even though the weather cooperated on Saturday, it was a slow day for check stations,” Anderson said. “Typically we see a decline in hunter success the second weekend because   deer are more wary after having a week of hunters in the field and rut has not yet started.”

Anderson reminds hunters only antlered white-tailed deer may be harvested on a general license in most hunting districts. Youth hunters 15 years of age and younger, and people with disabilities permitted to hunt from a vehicle, can take antlerless white-tailed deer through the end of the season. 

Hunters are reminded that elk hunting is brow-tined bull only and spike elk are not legal game.  These regulations apply in most Region One hunting districts.  Hunters are encouraged to check the Montana hunting regulations for the district they plan to hunt before heading out to the field. Hunters are also reminded to be bear-aware and properly store food and manage carcasses properly both in the field and at home

Attached: Region One Check Station Summary…

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