May 24, 2018

Maine: Recommended Record Number of “Any-Deer Permits”, Moose Permits Not So Much

It was announced recently that the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW) has decided to issue an all-time record number of doe permits (Any-Deer Permits). The reason they give for this unprecedented increase is: “…that in all but six of the state’s Wildlife Management Districts the projected doe harvest was not reached last fall.”

There could a number of reasons the doe harvest fell short statewide – the number of hunters, weather conditions, available food supply (for the deer, not the hunters), more hunters with doe permits taking bucks instead – to name a few.

So the question becomes, will increasing doe permits to a record number achieve the desired harvest? Another question might be, does MDIFW have a clue as to the reason the harvest wasn’t achieved? Was it simply not enough permits issued? What the rate of does harvested comparable to the rate in other years? Or, is MDIFW just issuing more permits and hoping for the best? We’ll never know.

It appears that the issuance of permits and the bulk of the increase is focused on much of Central and Southern Maine where deer survival has been good. This increase in those areas makes sense.

Key to this decision might be what MDIFW reportedly said about what was behind this increase other than achieving harvest goals: “The proposed increase in permits is a result of the goals and objectives set by the public in the state’s big-game management plan, which was recently revised.” (Note: I find it interesting that at least certain members of the MDIFW seem to be going out of their way to tell us that the “public” has made all these decisions about the ins and outs of game management. It wasn’t until recently when the Draft Management Plans for deer, bear, moose, and turkey were made available to the public for their comments. It is quite dishonest, therefore, to label those members who gave of their time to assist in formulating new management plans, the “Public.” In addition, MDIFW likes to give lots of weight to the fake “surveys” they paid a lot of money to get. I have written on this topic before and it is quite unfortunate that MDIFW decided to, not only conduct this biased, outcome-based survey but to put so much emphasis on it and then call it the “Public” and thus the “Public” devised these game management plans. Isn’t this a convenient scapegoat when and if management goals fail?)

So, from the perspective of deer management, according to MDIFW the public wants a lot fewer deer in Central and Southern Maine. And where’s the science in this decision or is it all society demands? Giving the benefit of any doubt to MDIFW biologists in meeting harvest goals is understandable. What is not is a move to issue a record number of doe permits because the public demands such.

If MDIFW is saying these decisions are based on the new management plans, then are we to assume also that this is being partly justified as part of achieving a “healthy” deer herd rather than a focus on the population?

It will be interesting to see if making this decision to liberally increase doe permits results in MDIFW reaching their harvest goals.

As far as the moose hunt and management goes, issuing a meager 2,500 permits, to be taken by lottery, doesn’t seem to be fitting the explanations we have been given for moose management and the new healthy moose agenda.

When you consider that at a time when the Maine moose population was estimated at anywhere between 70,000 and 90,000, permit issuance reached a high of over 4,000 permits, 2,500 is out of proportion. According to CentralMaine.com, that estimated “healthy?” moose population is estimated at 50,000 – 70,000. Information gathered from an ongoing moose study indicates that the density of moose is directly proportionate to the number of deadly winter ticks, and yet, if MDIFW is gearing toward a healthy moose population, the increase in permits appears a bit meager to me.

And, the majority of the increase in moose permits, from 2,080 to 2,500 are for those areas where MDIFW has been studying moose. Is this increase really about achieving a healthy moose population or a move to manipulate study results? Hmmm.

From this study area, we were told that winter tick presence had dropped around 68% and that moose calf survival rates were at near 100% – for collared moose.

In some ways, I can understand the “conservative” approach to moose permit issuance, but indications are MDIFW doesn’t really want to accept the fact that too many moose results in too many ticks and that it can’t be blamed on global warming.

So, we will have to wait two years to know whether the 2018 deer season will result in the Department’s doe harvest goal, and over one year to find out about the moose. God only knows how long it will take before MDIFW decides exactly what they plan to do with the moose.

It would be nice to have updates on study findings and to get game harvest results in some kind of reasonable fashion. Instead, I expect that with this announcement of paying less attention to game numbers, placing the focus on “health” (wink-wink) MDIFW will eventually stop counting harvested game. With it will disappear even more accountability.

Government as usual.

 

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Secretary Zinke Proposes Expansion of Hunting and Fishing Opportunities at 30 of America’s National Wildlife Refuges

Press Release from the Department of Interior:

WASHINGTON – Continuing his efforts to increase access to public lands, U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke today announced a proposal to open more than 248,000 acres to new or expanded hunting and fishing opportunities at 30 national wildlife refuges.

Opportunities include places like Hackmatack National Wildlife Refuge in Illinois and Wisconsin, and deer hunting in Philadelphia at John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge being proposed for the first time. The proposal also outlines expanded hunting and fishing opportunities at 136 national wildlife refuges. If finalized, this would bring the number of units of the National Wildlife Refuge System where the public may hunt to 377, and the number where fishing would be permitted to 312.

“As stewards of our public lands, Interior is committed to opening access wherever possible for hunting and fishing so that more families have the opportunity to pass down this American heritage,” Zinke said. “These 30 refuges will provide incredible opportunities for American sportsmen and women across the country to access the land and connect with wildlife.”

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s (Service) proposal would open more new acres to hunting and fishing than in the past and takes steps to simplify regulations to more closely match state hunting and fishing regulations. The changes would be implemented in time for the upcoming 2018-2019 hunting seasons.

Hunting, fishing and other outdoor activities contributed more than $156 billion in economic activity in communities across the United States in 2016 according to the Service’s National Survey of Fishing, Hunting and Wildlife-Associated Recreation, published every five years. More than 101 million Americans – 40 percent of the U.S. population 16 and older – pursue wildlife-related recreation – such as hunting, fishing and birding.

“Ensuring public lands are open for multiple uses supports local economies and provides important opportunities for recreation. Further, this proposal means that families and individuals across our nation will be better able to participate in our nation’s tradition of hunting and fishing. We appreciate Secretary Zinke and the Interior Department for advancing this priority, and we will continue to work to improve access to public lands for our sportsmen,” said Senator John Hoeven.

“Public lands should be open for the public to enjoy,” said Chairman Rob Bishop of Utah. “The Department of the Interior’s latest decision to expand acreage and access for hunting and fishing on wildlife refuges was the right move. Secretary Zinke’s decision will help our economy grow and enable those who hunt and fish to spend more time catching game and less time caught in red tape.”

“North Dakota is a sportsman’s paradise. The decision to expand access to public lands by opening more than 248,000 acres across the nation to hunting and fishing will provide new economic opportunities for local communities as well as open up new areas for anglers and hunters,” said Congressman Kevin Cramer. “For the first time, the J. Clark Salyer and Lostwood National Wildlife Refuges will be open to moose hunting. I commend the Secretary’s decision and look forward to working with the department.”

“Hunters, anglers and shooting sports enthusiasts play a crucial role in funding the management and conservation of North America’s wildlife,” said Service Principal Deputy Director Greg Sheehan. “We are providing sportsmen and women with more access to our national wildlife refuges and streamlining regulations to more closely align with our state partners. And that’s good news for our customers.”

The Service manages hunting and fishing programs to ensure sustainable wildlife populations while also offering other traditional wildlife-dependent recreation on public lands, such as wildlife watching and photography. The Refuge System is an unparalleled network of 566 national wildlife refuges and 38 wetland management districts. There is a national wildlife refuge within an hour’s drive of most major metropolitan areas.

“The proposed expansion of hunting and fishing opportunities through working partnership with the states is a demonstration of Secretary Zinke’s commitment to our nation’s outdoor heritage and the conservation community,” said Virgil Moore, President of the Association of the Fish and Wildlife Agencies and Director of the Idaho Department of Fish and Game. “These efforts reaffirm the tremendous value of quality wildlife habitat and outdoor recreational opportunities, including hunting and fishing, in connecting millions of Americans to the outdoors.”

“We applaud Secretary Zinke and the Fish and Wildlife Service for their continued commitment to increasing opportunities for hunting and fishing within the National Wildlife Refuge System,” said Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation President Jeff Crane. “We look forward to continuing to work with the Department of Interior on increasing access for sportsmen and women.”

Hunting and/or fishing will expand or be opened on the following refuges:

Arkansas

California

Florida

Illinois

Illinois and Missouri

Illinois and Wisconsin

Indiana

Maine

Maine and New Hampshire

Maryland

Michigan

Minnesota

Montana

New Jersey

New Jersey and New York

New Mexico

North Dakota

Ohio

Oregon

Pennsylvania

Utah

Wisconsin

  • Trempealeau National Wildlife Refuge: Open hunting of certain gamebirds, small mammals and furbearers for the first time, and expand existing migratory game bird and big game hunting.

The Service will seek comments from the public on the proposed rule for 30 days, beginning with publication in the Federal Register in coming days. The notice will be available at www.regulations.gov, docket no. FWS-HQ-NWRS-2018-0020, and will include details on how to submit your comments. An interim copy of the proposed rule is now available at https://www.fws.gov/home/pdfs/Proposed_2018-2019_Hunt_Fish_Rule_signed.pdf.

More than 53 million Americans visit refuges every year. National wildlife refuges provide vital habitat for thousands of species and access to world-class recreation, from fishing, hunting and boating to nature watching, photography and environmental education. In doing so, they support regional economies to the tune of $2.4 billion dollars per year and support more than 35,000 jobs.

Under the National Wildlife Refuge System Improvement Act of 1997, the Service permits hunting and fishing along with four other types of wildlife-dependent recreation, including wildlife photography, environmental education, wildlife observation and interpretation, when they are compatible with an individual refuge’s purpose and mission. Hunting, within specified limits, is currently permitted on 337 wildlife refuges and 37 wetland management districts. Fishing is currently permitted on 277 wildlife refuges and 34 wetland management districts.

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Maine’s “Coded” Moose Management Messages

The Bangor Daily News printed an article about the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW) need to reduce either the moose population, the tick population, or both. Even though MDIFW has announced that the number of moose is proportionate to the number of ticks, one would think the simplest approach – that is one that can be most easily regulated by management – would be to reduce the number of moose, even if only temporary until managers and researchers can explore ways of killing the winter ticks that are killing the moose.

Instead, we are getting odd, coded messages which leave some of us scratching our heads. I admit it doesn’t necessarily take all that much to cause me to scratch my head but consider these words taken from the Bangor article that were placed in “quotations” by the author: “One thing that’s likely to happen in western Maine, in one way or another, is that there’s going to be less moose than people have seen over the years,” Kantar said. “That’s either going to be a byproduct of ticks, or perhaps there will be some management actions we can take as well to try to reduce the parasite issue that we’ve been seeing there.”

We are being told that there will be fewer moose “than people have seen over the years.” Okay, we got that…sort of. With these cryptic messages being published throughout the media about focusing on “healthy” game instead of the number of game, is this another way of alerting Maine people that this shift in management strategy will result in fewer game animals across all species?

We are being told that this result of fewer moose being seen is going to happen one of two ways – either winter ticks are going to kill the moose off or managers are going to take “actions we can take as well to try to reduce the parasite issue.” [emphasis added]

I can read this statement and formulate some speculations, but what exactly is MDIFW trying to say? First of all, if there are going to be fewer moose, by this statement are we to believe the MDIFW only plans to let the ticks continue to do the work managers should be doing to reduce the populations to levels that will mitigate the bulk of the winter tick problem? And what is “some management actions we can take” to reduce the parasite issue? Is MDIFW even considering “some management actions” that include letting moose lottery winners “reduce the parasite issue?” When MDIFW indicates they might “TRY” some actions to reduce winter ticks, it’s easy to assume that doesn’t include issuing more permits to kill moose. What does it then mean? Hope and pray that global warming will go away? Or maybe that sea levels with rise so high that the ocean drives all the moose so far north there are none left to manage. Geez!

MDIFW tells us in another Bangor News article that there’s little managers can do about reducing the bear populations because the Legislature has that locked up. I don’t think this is the case with moose. Isn’t it simply a matter of determining how many moose permits should be issued for each of the Wildlife Management Areas to accomplish moose management goals? If so, and any one area needs a reduction in moose numbers, then MDIFW should issue the appropriate number of permits. What’s the problem?

I can also speculate that the reason for such “coded” messages is that there exists a fear of environmentalist’s retaliation should MDIFW simply announce they intend to kill more moose through permit lottery in order to achieve a “healthier” moose herd.

As the old saying goes, “Oh, what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive.”

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Time to Stop Blabbering About “Climate Change” and SHUT UP ALREADY

Oh, my! I just read a sorrowful report from a writer lamenting about all the changes he’s seen in his lifetime caused by Climate Change. Here’s a summary:

Lyme Disease – evidently the ONLY reason there are more deer ticks is due to Climate Change. Forget all the other science on the subject. Climate Change is it!

Hemorrhagic Disease in Deer – Again, to those smitten with the nonsense of Climate Change, the ONLY explanation is Climate Change. Don’t look for real answers.

Minnesota Moose Loss – Disregarding all historic and scientific accounts that easily explain the loss of Minnesota’s moose, the mentally challenged can ONLY focus on Climate Change.

Loss of Habitat – I think this one is funny and probably perpetuated by none other than the crook and lying SOB Al Gore. Deer are dying in Maine because of loss of habitat and the “two consecutive BRUTAL WINTERS” are to blame. Huh? Oh, that’s right Mr. Gore. Climate Change (we’re all gonna die) causes everything and anything. While freezing to death and struggling to pay heating bills, global warming is causing it.

Maine’s Moose – Maine’s moose are suffering from the infestation of a blood-sucking tick. To a blind person, the ONLY reason there are more ticks is that of Climate Change. Even though the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW) has come out and said their studies indicate the increase in moose ticks is being caused by too many moose, Climate Change is the ONLY possible answer. Which brings me to another point. It has been said that due to Climate Change wildlife in Maine that are at their southern border habitat (the moose and Canada lynx to name two) are being affected and will be migrating northward toward cooler climes. If Maine, as this writer laments, is suffering so from Climate Change, how has Maine been able to grow its moose population from near zero to a point where biologists finally think there are too many moose? In the reverse, the whitetail deer, it has been said, is at the northern fringe of its habitat. (A convenient excuse when management has failed) If Maine is suffering so from Climate Change, then wouldn’t it make sense that the deer population should be growing? Instead, it’s shrinking. And yet, Climate Change is the ONLY answer.

Fish Habitat – I will concur that the cutting of forests around brooks and rivers causes the water in those waterways to warm. This phenomenon is bound to have effects on fisheries. But it is NOT Climate Change that is causing it.

Weather – Weather is not necessarily climate. Since the beginning of time, we have experienced weather and weather phenomenon. That will continue no doubt. Since the beginning of time, there has been flooding and droughts. There are more answers to these events than to label it all Climate Change.

And if you think the Climate Change blame game can’t get any worse, we see here that sporting camps in Maine are shutting down due to “the loss of hunters and anglers.” And that loss, of course, is because of Climate Change.

I wonder if the author ever considered that maybe the loss of hunters and anglers is caused by a changing society that threatens you with your life, sometimes, if you dare harm an animal by hunting it or hooking it with a lethal hook? Or perhaps these camps have lost hunters and anglers because the management of the game animals is so poor, now heavily taken over by environmentalism, people who once traveled to Maine for their hunting and fishing are looking elsewhere or have simply given it up.

But no, all of this is because of Climate Change.

Melting Ice and Rising Water Levels – The author speaks of one article he read of how the ice in Greenland is melting faster than at any time in the last 450 years but fails to mention that, even if that is going on, the ice in most other places is growing at a rate much higher.

And, we’re all gonna die because “sea levels may rise as much as 20 feet.” I would suggest the author read how it is virtually impossible to melt enough sea ice to cause sea levels to rise.

But Don’t Go Look!

The author says it’s time to stop talking about Climate Change and do something about it. A more sensible solution is to stop talking about such fabricated nonsense, designed for instilling fear and increasing profits, and actually get back to looking for real solutions to real problems and stop blaming everything on something that doesn’t really exist.

If the MDIFW has honestly concluded that the winter tick problem is due to too many moose and intend to do something about it, I congratulate them on not simply walking away and blaming it on Climate Change.

Is there hope?

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It’s Official: Maine’s New Game Management Plan Focuses on Health Not Numbers

The super-secret head deer biologist for Maine recently was quoted in a Maine newspaper as saying, “I think maybe the biggest thing we’re going to see is we’re kind of moving away from these management strategies that are geared toward achieving a certain number of animals or a certain density of animals,” Bieber said. “We’re trying to strive more toward animals that are healthy, at a level that is socially acceptable, at a level where they’re not doing damage to habitat.”

So, there you have it. But consider the contradictions also stated that shows how this “new strategy” of scientism’s environmental insanity is at work to show “flexibility” in management, i.e. to avoid accountability as much as possible and find more and more ways to get rid of any sort of responsibility toward managing game herds for surplus harvest. And were you one of the those that thought the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife would support a constitutional amendment that included a mandate to manage game for surplus harvest? Well, they won’t and now you know why. They want their “flexibility.”

But the contradictions! Bieber (super-secret head deer biologist) said his goal is “to strive more toward animals that are healthy…” That statement is pretty cut and dry. But, then he says, “…at a level that is socially acceptable,” and that’s where we begin getting into serious trouble. First of all, it is IMPOSSIBLE to seek “a level” without some form of counting. It is IMPOSSIBLE to know how many deer, bear, moose, or turkeys there are that is socially acceptable without knowing how many animals there are. What nonsense! Herd numbers are THE number one first step toward the goal of a healthy crop of game animals. You can’t not have a good accounting of animal populations and expect to have any goal of managing for a healthy herd of anything.

Putting too much emphasis on social acceptance of animal numbers is way overrated and is nothing but a tactic of Environmentalism to ensure that the people demand and the people get all the animals that fit their perverse lifestyles, rendering any form of an actual and honest scientific process of wild game welfare useless.

The super-secret head deer biologist also wants to make sure there aren’t too many animals that will destroy the habitat. And just how in the heck is this going to happen without the sound knowledge of animal populations and densities? This is really quite unbelievable.

But I do understand what direction this is headed. Where you read of the garbage being taught to students at places that graduate wildlife biologists, it’s no wonder these graduates go out into the world full of Romance Biology and VooDoo Science. The idea is to convince these new “change agents” that if you get rid of the honest and real scientific process and replace it with Scientismic nonsense, it gives more “flexibility” in management processes. In other words, Science is gone and replaced with idealistic Romance Biology where there are no wrong answers.

Oooooh! It feels so good!

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Maine’s Big Game Management Plans

You can view this plan on the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife’s website.

*Note* – This is still the “DRAFT” of the Big Game Management proposal. The public can comment on it and make suggestions and CHANGES can be made (but I have serious doubts that they ever would).

 

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Piping Plovers Need Counting But Not Deer, Bear, Moose, and Turkeys

Maine says it wants to hire some scientists to monitor and manage piping plovers and least terns along the coast. Maine Public reports that: “The scientists will also conduct surveys of migratory shorebirds and map feeding and roosting areas.”

The only way that any scientists can “monitor and manage” these birds is to know how many there are. It is reported that “surveys” will be taken and maps will be drawn up to keep track of these birds. Why? Can’t we just have more “flexibility” in management if we know whether or not the flocks of piping plovers and least terns, regardless of their numbers, are “healthy?”

I say what is good enough for the deer, bear, moose, and turkeys is good enough for the piping plovers and least terns.

Maybe the object here is to focus the attention on the health of deer, bear, moose, and turkeys until they are extinct, like plovers and terns, and then hire “scientists” to “monitor and manage” them.

Job security!

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Maine’s Move To “Digital” Big Game Harvest Reporting

One has to wonder! With the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW) announcing – officially or not – that they are mostly abandoning the concept of keeping track of game populations and replacing it with concentrating on a “healthy” game herd, what bag of tricks they are sitting on that, as quoted, “will give the department more flexibility” in managing that wildlife.

Yesterday, we read that MDIFW is making plans to begin implementation of a digital form of recording game harvests to replace the paper version that some believe to be antiquated. What could go wrong?

Reading the article and trying at the same time get a grasp on what exactly MDIFW is planning to do left me scratching my head. Perhaps poor reporting or a worse explanation..maybe just a dumb reader. My take is that MDIFW plans to work slowly, starting with a “beta” version for the turkey season and then gradually overspreading the rest of the game harvests.

But what, precisely, are they going to do?

It sounds like they intend each tagging station to have a computer with Internet access. Instead of filling out the paperwork and then months later get around to mailing their harvest report to the Department, each game tagged will instantly be reported and sent to MDIFW. Sounds great.

It was quite a few years ago now, that I was told that an employee of the state approached the MDIFW with a proposal to design a computer program that would give the Department any and all data they wanted…instantly. They rejected the plan stating if they did that there would be nothing for biologists to do in the winter sitting in the office. Hmmm.

Depending on the design of the software that will be used to record this harvest data, this could mean that a harvest report should be available within hours of receiving the last tagging from the last station…well, providing that every station is so equipped. It seems that is not the case. If it is impossible to get necessary and needed tagging stations Online, then each of those stations should use the same program and then at the end of the season, download the data to a thumb drive and drop it in the mail – right frigging now!!!

If this is actually how the new harvest reporting system is going to work, I think it will be a great idea and about time. I have always bitched and complained that we have to wait nearly a year from the close of each hunting season to get harvest data. MDIFW blames it on stations refusing to mail in their data in a timely manner. Really? The dog ate my homework? Who is charge around here?

When you read some of the people at certain tagging stations say, “It usually takes me five minutes to tag each animal. I have to fill out the paperwork. It’s a process. It’s a pain.” perhaps MDIFW should consider not giving an inspection station to someone who views the process as a pain. With an attitude like that, it’s probably a “pain” to also gather together all the reports and mail them in. What kind of a “pain” is it going to be for some to go digital?

However, it seems that for some they think the digital form of reporting game harvest should go even farther. “David Trahan, executive director of the Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine, said his group is going to introduce legislation that would allow hunters to tag remotely rather than going to tagging stations.”

As much as I have complained about the lateness of game harvest reporting, I wouldn’t and neither should MDIFW, give that important data up simply to get a report to the people more quickly. Regardless of whether or not MDIFW thinks they can utilize more “flexibility” by concentrating on the health of the game herds rather than population numbers, it is still impossible to responsibly manage the wild game without having reliable data which includes numbers – yes, counting populations.

To allow hunters to simply pick up their cellphones/smartphones and register their harvest will spell disaster. States that have done this sort of reporting for years are only now struggling to find a better way of collecting harvest data – with some states moving toward having tagging stations or check stations.

A good software program loaded onto a computer for each tagging station – and one that is more than willing to do the job properly – will take the same data collected at present but make that data available to MDIFW instantly. Risking losing important data by allowing remote registering by the hunter is a move in the wrong direction. The Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine should rethink that position.

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Intensive Management in Alaska

From the Alaska Department of Fish and Game:

Harvesting wild game is extremely important to many Alaskan families. Participating in the hunt and sharing the bounty of economical, wild-grown meat are long-standing traditions.

The Alaska Legislature recognized the importance of wild game meat to Alaskans when it passed the Intensive Management Law in 1994. This law requires the Alaska Board of Game to identify moose, caribou, and deer populations that are especially important food sources for Alaskans and to insure that these populations remain large enough to allow for adequate and sustained harvest.

If the selected moose, caribou, or deer populations drop below what the Board of Game (Board) determines is needed to meet people’s needs, the Board directs the Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G) to undertake intensive management of that population. Intensive management is a process that starts with investigating the causes of low moose, caribou, or deer numbers, and then involves steps to increase their numbers. This can include restricting hunting seasons and bag limits, improving habitat, and predation control.

ADF&G is committed to maintaining healthy populations of all our resources, including moose, caribou, deer, wolves, and bears. The department will continue to manage Alaska’s wildlife populations with the health of all wildlife, sustainable harvests, and conservation as our guiding principles.

Understanding Predator Management

Wolves and bears are very effective and efficient predators on caribou, moose, deer, and other wildlife. In most of Alaska, humans also rely on the same species for food. Predators often kill more than 80 percent of the moose and caribou that die during an average year, while humans take less than 10 percent. In much of the state, predation holds prey populations at levels far below what could be supported by the habitat in the area. Predation is an important part of the ecosystem, and all ADF&G management programs, including control programs, are designed to sustain predator populations in the future.

General Information

Press Releases

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Deadline Approaches for Applying for Maine Moose Hunting Permit

*Editor’s Note* – It was noted by the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW)that their ongoing moose study has indicated that a reduction in the moose herd will mitigate the winter tick problem. Does that mean there will be more moose permits issued during this lottery? This could be the last best chance you have of getting your hands on a moose permit. 

If MDIFW seriously intends to reduce the moose population in Maine to a level to reduce winter tick infestation, will we ever know at what level they intend to bring it down to…if at all? Understand that if MDIFW plans to lower the moose population and keep it that way, once the population is at target levels, more than likely the number of permits will be reduced as well. Then again, if the moose herd is “healthy” they may prosper to a point they will always need to be pared down. Wink-wink.

Apply for a permit

To hunt for moose in Maine, you will need a permit; and due to high demand, these permits are administered through a chance lottery.

Apply Online: visit to maine.gov/online/moose and fill out the online moose permit application. There, you’ll be able to indicate several preferences, including:

  • WMD preferences – which districts you’d be willing to accept a permit in, and if you’d accept a permit in another WMD if your name is drawn and all of your top choices are filled
  • Season preferences – if you only want to hunt in a specific month.
  • Antlerless preference – whether or not you would accept an antlerless permit.
  • Your sub-permittee – This is someone authorized to participate with you in your moose hunt. You can designate an alternate sub-permittee, and can apply with MDIFW to change either of these names up to 30 days before the hunting season begins.

Application Deadline: 11:59 p.m. on May 15, 2018

Want to be there for the drawing?

Attend the Skowhegan Moose Fest June 8-10 at the Skowhegan Fairgrounds (drawing will take place on June 9). More info: skoweganmoosefest.com

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