Mandatory Harvest Reports
Every sportsman who hunts deer, elk and antelope in Idaho must fill out a mandatory harvest report. It's not only the law, but provides critical information for wildlife managers. Hunters' harvest reports are the backbone to analyzing how many people went hunting, where they hunted and how many were successful. Wildlife biologists rely on this information to manage big game populations and help set hunting seasons for the next year.
This is the third year for the mandatory harvest report. Unfortunately wildlife managers are finding fewer sportsmen are sending in their reports. Hunters are supposed to fill out the harvest report within 10 days of harvesting an animal or within 10 days of the end of the deer, elk or antelope hunting season. In the first year of the program, 92% of the hunters returned their reports on time. In the second year only 80% filed their reports. This year is showing an additional decline.
When one out of five hunters don't report their hunting experience on time, it leaves a large gap in the information managers need to manage the state's wildlife and to know if sportsmen are participating in the hunts being offered.
If hunters have lost their harvest report, they can do it now in a number of ways. They can get an new one from any license vendor. They can file their report using the department's website or call a toll free number (877-268-9365) to give their report over the phone.