Antlerless Deer Hunting Deadline

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The deadline for hunters to apply for Hunter's Choice and bonus antlerless deer permits for the 2002 deer hunting seasons is July 20. Department of Natural Resources wildlife biologists estimate the statewide fall 2002 whitetail population will be around 1.7 million animals.

Last year, hunters harvested 446, 957 deer in all seasons according to DNR wildlife managers. A relatively mild winter didn't cause any significant winter mortality and managers expect strong reproduction this spring in all regions, including the Chronic Wasting Diesease (CWD) management zone.

Because July 20 is a Saturday this year, completed applications must be post-marked no later than July 20, or dropped off at a Department of Natural Resources Service Center no later than 4:30 p.m. on July 19 to be accepted. Hunters can purchase their $3 application sticker and pick up the application form at any of the more than 1,500 locations that sell licenses using the state's Automated License Issuance Service (ALIS), over the Internet through the DNR Web site www.dnr.state.wi.us or toll-free over the telephone at 1-888-945-4236.

There is a $3 application fee for a hunter's choice permit and a $12 fee for each bonus antlerless permit for residents and a $20 fee for nonresidents.

For the first time this year, hunters will be able to submit their Hunter's Choice/Bonus applications through the DNR Web site via the Internet. There is no additional fee to submit the application online, and the hunter will receive an immediate, printable confirmation that their application was received.

"Applying has never been easier, or faster," says Randy Reeg of the DNR Bureau of Customer Service and Licensing. "This service should be available beginning the first week of June."

Conservation Patron license holders are exempt from the application fee, and should receive their application forms in the mail if they purchased their license before June 1. Hunter's choice permits allow hunters to shoot either antlered or antlerless deer, and bonus permits allow hunters to shoot an additional antlerless deer; all permits must be used in the unit for which they are issued. Hunters may use the permits in the archery, gun and muzzleloader deer hunting seasons.

Application information for hunter's choice and bonus antlerless deer permits can be found in the "2002 Wisconsin Antlerless Deer Permit Information" packet is available on the DNR Web site in Portable Document Format (.pdf) file that requires Adobe Acrobat Readerand at license outlets. It contains information about permit availability and deer management unit boundaries.

2002 Zone T units for the Oct 24-27 Zone T hunt

There will be a special early antlerless firearm hunt in Zone T units (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, 11, 12, 13, 14, 19, 20, 27, 28, 29A, 34, 35, 36, 47, 49B, 51A, 51B, 54C, 59D, 61, 62B, 63A, 63B, 65B, 66, 67A, 67B, 68A, 70A, 70E, 72, 74A, 75C, 75D, 78, 80A, 80B, and 81 ) from Oct. 24 through Oct. 27.

Units 70A, 70E, 75C, and 75D are also part of the CWD Management Zone in southern Wisconsin. In June, the Natural Resources Board will consider emergency rules that will affect these units by extending the gun hunting seasons in the CWD Management Zone. Specifics of those rules will be issued following the NRB decision.

Hunters should not apply for hunter's choice or bonus permits for Zone T units. Hunters will be issued a free permit for each gun-deer license and another for each archery-deer license. A regular gun deer license back tag can be used on a buck or antlerless deer in these units. The Zone T hunt was created to help control crop damage caused by deer.

Bonus permits remaining after mail-in applications are processed will go on sale over the counter at select DNR service centers around Sept. 9.

First-time graduates of a Wisconsin Hunter Education Course will again be able to harvest an antlerless deer during the nine-day gun deer season using their regular gun deer license in most areas of the state.

FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: Kurt Thiede or Bill Mytton (608) 266-2194