New Mexico Big Game Applications Due March 28th

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Hunters planning on entering the drawing for 2011-2012 big-game licenses have until March 28 to apply with the Department of Game and Fish. The deadline is earlier this year to allow hunters to take advantage of discounts available when they buy combination hunting and fishing licenses.

The Department is expecting more than 130,000 applications for about 62,500 licenses for deer, elk, pronghorn antelope, bighorn sheep, Barbary sheep, ibex and javelina. The deadline to apply through the online licensing system at is 5 p.m. MDT March 28. Paper applications must be postmarked on or before March 28, or delivered to the Santa Fe office by 5 p.m. March 28.

"The earlier deadline will allow hunters to save some money by buying combination licenses, and to have full use of their license when the license year begins April 1," said Alexa Sandoval, the Department's chief of administrative services.

Online applicants are encouraged to apply early to avoid missing the deadline because of forgotten passwords or other computer-related issues at the last minute. Late applications will not be accepted.

Applicants are reminded that everyone applying for a public-land license or permit, or purchasing a license via a private land authorization or the Valles Caldera must first obtain a free Customer ID Number online at or in person from any Department office. This number must be included on each application, paper or online, or the application will be rejected.

Hunters who held deer permits or elk licenses for the 2010-2011 season must have reported their harvest results before applying. Hunters who fail to report their 2010-2011 harvest results -- successful or not -- will have their 2011-2012 applications rejected. Harvest reports can be submitted online at or by calling toll-free (888) 248-6866. There will be an $8 late fee charged for hunters who missed the Feb. 15 reporting deadline.

For more information about big-game hunting in New Mexico, please consult the 2011-2012 Big Game & Trapper Rules and Information Booklet, available at all license vendors, Department offices, and online at Information also is available by calling (505) 476-8000.


hunter25's picture

I like when they put these

I like when they put these updates out to keep us informed of the looming deadlines. I generally wait until the last minute to avoid as much interest charges on my credit card as possible. I applied in New Mexico for the first time earlier this year in the Oryx draw. I was unsuccessful but I have to say they have a very smooth system and are very efficient with the draw and quick with your refund after it's over.

I plan to apply for antelope down there before the deadline and see if I do any better than I did with the Oryx tag. The odds are long but nearly as bad as they were for the Oryx.

Thanks for the heads up.