Wild turkey hunters and black bear hunters have until close of business on Dec. 10 to apply for available permits for the 2014 hunting seasons.

Spring 2014 turkey season

Preliminary permit levels for the 2014 spring turkey season are set at the same level as in 2013. Final permit levels are not set until after the close of the fall turkey season, but will likely not differ significantly from preliminary permit levels.

The 2014 spring turkey season officially begins with the April 12 -13 Spring Turkey Youth Hunt. The regular turkey season begins on the following Wednesday, April 16 and consists of six 7-day time periods, ending on May 27. The drawing for permits will take place in late December or early January. Successful permit applicants can expect to receive a postcard by late January. All applicants may also check their drawing status online through the Online Licensing Center on the DNR website starting in late January.

With the start of the 2014 license year on March 5, 2014, permit winners may then purchase their required 2014 Spring Turkey License ($15 for Wisconsin residents and $60 for non-residents; go to dnr.wi.gov and search for “first-time buyer” to see if you qualify for reduced license costs) and 2014 Wild Turkey Stamp ($5.25). The permit (also known as a carcass tag) will be printed at the time of purchase. Conservation Patrons and Senior Citizen Recreation Card holders do not need to purchase a turkey license or stamp when they go to pick up their permit.

Permits remaining after the initial drawing for the 2014 spring turkey season will be available for purchase in late March, at a date to be specified later.

Applications for Special Turkey Hunts for Hunters with Disabilities also due Dec. 10

As a reminder to those hunters with disabilities who wish to hunt turkey next spring on private lands, there is an alternate opportunity available using a separate application and authorization form.

Applications to conduct a Spring Wild Turkey Hunt for People with Disabilities on private land must be submitted using DNR Forms 2300-271 and 2300-271A. Forms need to be submitted by December 10th to the local DNR Wildlife Biologist or Department office for the county within which the hunt will take place. Please note that any hunter applicant who applies for a disabled turkey hunt on private lands using the above forms may NOT also apply for a permit through the regular spring turkey drawing.

More information is available on the DNR’s Wild Turkey webpage.

Black bear

Bear hunters are reminded that harvest permits are strictly limited, and hunters must apply for several years before receiving a permit.

Harvest numbers from the 2013 black bear season are not finalized, but hunters harvested more than 3,800 bears in during the season. DNR staff and the bear advisory committee are in the process of determining 2014 quotas.

Bear hunters can apply for a permit or purchase a preference point for future years. In order for bear permit applicants to retain their accumulated preference points, they must apply at least once during any three consecutive year period or they will lose all previously accumulated preference points.

If a zone is selected at the time of purchase and the hunter is selected in the February drawing, their preference points will be reset to zero, even if they do not purchase the harvest permit. Winners in the drawing will be notified by mail shortly after the drawing and may purchase their 2014 Class A bear license beginning in early March.

The 2014 bear season begins Sept. 3 and runs through Oct. 7 with bait hunters starting first in all zones.

Apply online, at license agents, DNR service centers or by phone

Applications for the permit drawing cost $3 and may be can be purchased: through the DNR website, dnr.wi.gov, using the key words “Online Licensing Center,” at any DNR Service Center; at all authorized license agents; or by calling toll-free 1-877-WI LICENSE (1-877-945-4236). .

More detailed information is available in previous news releases on turkey and bear seasons and at dnr.wi.gov, search keyword “bear” or “turkey.”

Hunters interested in receiving email updates can sign up for the DNR’s GovDelivery service. Just go to the DNR’s website and click on the “Subscribe to DNR Updates” link at the bottom of the page – look for the red envelope! There, you can select your subscription preferences.

FOR MORE INFORMATION on turkey season contact: Scott Walter, Upland Wildlife Ecologist, 608-267-7861 or Krista McGinley, Assistant Upland Wildlife Ecologist, 608-261-8458: on the bear season contact David MacFarland at 715-365-8917 or Dan Kaminski at 608-261-7588

Logo courtesy Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources

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