Moose Hunting Applications Are Available

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Vermont moose hunting permit applications are now available on the Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department's website (www.vtfishandwildlife.com). Under "Hunting and Trapping," click on Lottery Applications.

Wildlife biologists estimate Vermont's growing moose population at about 4,700 statewide, and they are recommending 1,115 hunting permits be issued this year, 70 more than in 2005.

Permit quotas for Wildlife Management Units (WMUs) D2 and E would remain at the level authorized in 2005 (780 permits) to ensure the moose population declines in those areas.

Permit numbers would increase by five to ten each for the following eight WMUs (C, D1, G, I, J2, M1, O1, and P. These increases are designed to maintain controlled population growth rates and to provide addition harvest opportunity.

WMU M2 would be open to moose hunting for the first time, with five permits being recommended.

The five remaining WMUs that were open to moose hunting last year (B, H1, H2, J1, L, and Q) would receive the same number of permits they did before.

The moose hunting season would again be split in WMUs D2 and E to maintain a quality hunting experience while allowing more hunting permits.

Ninety percent of Vermont moose hunting permits are issued by lottery to residents and the remaining 10 percent to nonresidents.

Lottery applications are $10 for residents and $25 for nonresidents. Winners of the permit lottery will purchase resident permits for $100 and nonresident permits for $350. Hunters also will have the option to bid on five moose hunting permits in an auction to be announced later.

Hunters took 640 moose in Vermont's 2005 hunting season with a statewide average success rate of 61 percent. Hunters are expected to take over 650 moose this year, according to the proposal now before the Vermont Fish & Wildlife Board.

"We are managing Vermont's moose population to keep it in balance with available habitat," said Cedric Alexander, Vermont's lead biologist on moose. "Carefully constructed hunting regulations enable us to once again enjoy having moose in Vermont on a sustained basis, while their numbers are maintained at levels that fit habitat capacity and the needs of people."