Deer, Elk Harvest Lags in Northwest Montana

By Beacon Staff

After the first few weeks of hunting season, white-tailed deer and elk harvests are slightly down in Northwest Montana, according to check station surveys.

A total of 5,575 hunters have checked 197 white-tailed deer, including 162 bucks, and 28 elk, equaling a 4.7 percent success rate, according to Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks. Last year’s success rate was 5.7 percent.

A total of 48 mule deer have been reported, which is slightly above last year.

The counts at the check stations represent a sampling of the harvest and do not represent the complete number of animals taken.

FWP Wildlife Manager Jim Williams predicted that, based on standard trends, deer and elk harvest should now pick up each weekend until the end of the hunting season, on Dec. 1.

Hunters have killed 18 wolves in Northwest Montana as of Nov. 5. Statewide, hunters have tagged 57 wolves.

Hunters are reminded that it is buck-only for white-tailed deer in Northwest Montana. Antlerless whitetails remain legal game for youth 12-15 years of age, and some qualifying 11-year-olds. Mule deer are buck-only for the entire season. Elk are brow-tine bull only. Spike bull elk are not legal game for any hunter in Region One. Hunters should refer to the hunting regulations for the hunting district they plan to hunt.

RELATED: 2013 Hunting Preview

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