Moose Hunt Permit Winners Announced

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The adventure of a lifetime is in store for 525 people who have been offered permits to hunt moose in New Hampshire this October. They were the lucky winners in the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department's annual moose permit lottery drawing.

The winners, randomly selected by computer from a pool of more than 15,000 applicants, were offered permits to hunt moose during the October 16-24 season. Each winner can enlist one friend or relative and a guide to help on the hunt.

More than 90 people showed up at Fish and Game headquarters in Concord to watch this morning's drawing and swap stories about moose hunts past and future. Three of those in attendance were selected: Roger Lane of Franklin, who finally lucked out after applying to the lottery every year except one since 1988; Steven Johnson of Franklin, who was there with his father, Jim; and Terry Dawson of Francestown -- whose wife, Abby, was not in attendance but was also selected in the random drawing. Young volunteer Madison Schofield, of Manchester, just 22 months old, pushed the button to initiate the computerized selection of winners.

A total of 15,505 people applied for moose hunt permits this year, about two-thirds of them New Hampshire residents. The odds of winning a permit were about 1 in 23 for residents and 1 in 59 for out-of-staters. The names of the winners are posted here:

* Click here for list of 2004 moose lottery winners
*" target="new">Click here for list of 2004 alternates

Thanks to the recovery of moose populations, New Hampshire has had an annual moose hunt since 1988. That year, 75 permits were issued for a three-day hunt in the North Country.

The availability of 525 hunting permits this year, with some issued for every area of the state during the nine-day season, has been made possible by careful management of moose populations and good moose habitat. The resulting sustainable annual harvest of moose helps to regulate moose numbers and provides a unique recreational opportunity.

Each permit winner is assigned to one of 22 wildlife management units (WMUs) in which he or she can legally hunt. Twenty antlerless-only moose permits were issued for WMU A2 in northern New Hampshire, with the remaining 505 permits valid for taking any moose in WMUs across the state.

In 2003, hunters took 362 moose (485 permits were offered in the lottery). The success rate for moose hunters last year ranged from 20 percent in southeastern New Hampshire to 92 percent up north, with an average of 75.1 percent across the state.

Hunters whose names were selected in today's drawing will be notified by mail. Lists of successful applicants are available on the web; at Fish and Game headquarters in Concord; and at the Department's regional offices in Durham, Keene, Lancaster and New Hampton.

The New Hampshire Fish and Game Department is the guardian of the state's fish, wildlife and marine resources and their habitats. Moose research and other moose management activities in New Hampshire are funded by hunting license and permit sales, moose lottery application fees and the Federal Aid in Wildlife Restoration Program.