Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks (FWP) reminds hunters that elk regulations in some west-central Montana hunting districts are more restrictive this season. Be sure to check the 2012 Montana Hunting Regulations before heading out.
One major change affects hunting district 270 (East Fork of the Bitterroot). In HD 270, all elk hunting (including antlerless and brow-tined bull) is limited to those that drew a special license or permit for the district. Youth hunters, ages 12-15 (or turning 12 by Jan. 16, 2013), are the only exception. Youth can hunt brow-tined bull or antlerless elk on a general elk license in HD 270.
However, in some west-central Montana hunting districts (HDs 200, 201, 202, 203, 250 and 285), youth hunters cannot harvest antlerless elk with only a general elk license, which is a shift from how things have been.
“We’ve had to be more conservative in these hunting districts due to declining elk populations or elk calf survival,” Mike Thompson, FWP Region 2 Wildlife Manager, says. “We’ve kept the extra opportunities for antlerless elk hunting on a general license in as many places as we can, but unfortunately conditions in some districts just won’t support it right now.”
Another major change this season is that a permit to hunt from a vehicle (PTHFV) no longer extends the privilege of harvesting an antlerless elk with only a general elk license. FWP added the opportunity for holders of a PTHFV to hunt for antlerless elk on a general license in most districts in west-central Montana in 2007, when elk numbers generally were high and could support extra harvest.
See the 2012 Montana Hunting Regulations for more details on current regulations.
Logo courtesy Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks