About 2,000 firearms deer hunters might notice a small delay in receiving permits for special hunts or to harvest an antlerless deer, the DNR announced earlier this week.
The computer error that caused about seven percent of permits to be mailed late will not affect firearms hunters, who open the season on Nov. 6 in many parts of the state. The majority of the 34,000 permits to harvest antlerless deer have been mailed.
"Hunters who were successful in the lottery will have their permit in time for the hunting season," said Ed Boggess, policy section chief for the DNR Division of Fish and Wildlife.
The majority of hunters are able to purchase either sex deer licenses at ELS terminals statewide. However, in lottery deer permit areas where the number of antlerless deer are lower, hunters are required to apply for permits to take deer of either sex.
Hunters who do not receive a permit in the mail can check online at www.dnr.state.mn.us for official notification next week. The DNR Web site's notification page was taken off-line last week after the error was discovered.
Youth hunters take nine deer in Camp Ripley
Youth hunters took nine deer for a success rate of seven percent Oct. 9-10 at Camp Ripley. A total of 150 permits were issued and 127 youths hunted in a 15,000-acre area in the northern third of the military reservation.
ear-old Lucas Chapman, Princeton, took the first deer, a 99-pound doe. Cody Good, Stacy, took the largest deer, a 126-pound doe. Many of the nine animals taken were the first ever for the youths. All were paired with non-hunting adult mentors.
"The Minnesota Deer Hunters Association, Minnesota State Archery Association and Department of Military Affairs did a great job of planning and conducting this hunt," said Beau Liddell, DNR area wildlife manager at Little Falls. "Without their involvement and hard work it wouldn't have been possible."
Minnesota moose harvest up
Minnesota's moose season ended Oct. 17 with 246 parties harvesting 149 moose. That compares with 224 parties harvesting 143 moose in 2003.
Party success was 61 percent this year, compared with 64 percent in 2003. Lower hunting success rates and higher number of bulls in the harvest seem to be the trend over the last 10 years, said Tom Rusch, DNR area wildlife manager in Tower.
"Hunters are becoming more selective, passing up cows and calves in search of larger antlered bulls in this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity," Rusch said. "The bag limit is one moose of any age or either sex per party."
Hunters faced high winds and generally cool, blustery conditions over the first and third weekends. The harvest was heavily biased toward adult bulls early in the hunt. Hunters reported good rutting activity, as the moose mating season peaks in early October. Reports indicate that many successful hunters used calls to bring moose within range.
The DNR said only three of 54 radio-collared moose were killed during the season. There is an on-going moose mortality study in Lake and Cook counties. Collared moose are fair game. Hunters were told to ignore the collars because researchers want to get a better idea of how hunting influences overall mortality rates.
The moose population is estimated at 8,000 to 11,000 animals in St Louis, Lake and Cook counties. The harvest goal is set at 5 percent of the winter population.
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