Help for Early Archery Season Applicants in Pennsylvania

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While deer hunting seasons are more than two months away, Pennsylvania Game Commission officials and the Pennsylvania County Treasurers Association are urging deer hunters planning to participate in the new early antlerless deer archery season in Wildlife Management Units (WMUs) 2B, 5C and 5D - which is set to start Sept. 15 - to take an extra step when filling out their official yellow antlerless deer license application envelope.

Dot Derr, Game Commission Bureau of Administrative Services director, said that hunters should write the words "Early Archery" in red ink above the white box in the lower left-hand corner of the front of the yellow envelope. The white box is where hunters are instructed to write in the number and letter of the WMU to which they are applying for an antlerless deer license.

"By writing these words on the front of the yellow envelopes, hunters will let county treasurers and their employees who issue the licenses know that these applications need to be expedited so hunters can receive their licenses prior to the start of the early antlerless deer archery seasons in WMU 2B, 5C and 5D," Derr said.

"We understand that hunters want to get their antlerless deer licenses in advance of this early hunting opportunity," said Bruce Mackle, Wayne County Treasurer and PCTA's Antlerless Deer License Committee chairman. "By writing these two words on the front of the application, hunters will let us know that they need their licenses back before Sept. 15."

Under state law, only county treasurers may issue antlerless deer licenses. As such, the Game Commission and county treasurers have agreed to a specific timetable in which hunters can submit antlerless deer licenses and when county treasurers must have antlerless deer licenses processed and mailed back to hunters.

Resident hunters may begin applying for a WMU-specific antlerless license on Monday, Aug. 6. Nonresident hunters may begin applying for a WMU-specific antlerless license on Monday, Aug. 20. All hunters may apply for the first round of unsold antlerless licenses beginning Monday, Aug. 27; the second round of unsold antlerless licenses may be applied for beginning Sept. 10. Over-the-counter sales can begin in Wildlife Management Units (WMUs) 2B, 5C and 5D on Sept. 17. In all other WMUs, over-the-counter sales can begin on Nov. 5.

County treasurers are required to mail regular antlerless licenses and first-round unsold licenses to successful applicants no later than Monday, Sept. 17. Second-round unsold licenses will be mailed no later than Oct. 1.

Those who purchase a general hunting license are provided with a regular antlerless deer license application. Applications for unsold antlerless deer licenses can be found on pages 54 and 62 of the 2007-08 Pennsylvania Digest of Hunting and Trapping Regulations, which is provided to each license buyer.

A copy of the 2007-08 Digest has been posted on the agency's website, and can be viewed by clicking on "2007-08 Digest" in the "Quick Clicks" box in the upper right-hand corner of the homepage.

Created in 1895 as an independent state agency, the Game Commission is responsible for conserving and managing all wild birds and mammals in the Commonwealth, establishing hunting seasons and bag limits, enforcing hunting and trapping laws, and managing habitat on the 1.4 million acres of State Game Lands it has purchased over the years with hunting and furtaking license dollars to safeguard wildlife habitat. The agency also conducts numerous wildlife conservation programs for schools, civic organizations and sportsmen's clubs.

The Game Commission does not receive any general state taxpayer dollars for its annual operating budget. The agency is funded by license sales revenues; the state's share of the federal Pittman-Robertson program, which is an excise tax collected through the sale of sporting arms and ammunition; and monies from the sale of oil, gas, coal, timber and minerals derived from State Game Lands.