New Moose Hunting Rules Proposed

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The McGuinty government is asking for public input on proposed regulations intended to protect and manage declining moose populations in eastern Ontario.

"We clearly face some challenges in ensuring sustainability of the moose population in the Pembroke and Bancroft areas," said Natural Resources Minister David Ramsay. "We think the proposed plan will lead to real, positive change that will help the moose population recover while still providing important hunting opportunities."

The proposed regulations would establish a moose calf tag system and a new archery season for Wildlife Management Units (WMUs) 48, 55A, 55B and 57 in Pembroke and Bancroft Districts.

High calf harvests in recent years have contributed to declining moose populations in the four wildlife management units, and introducing a calf tag system will reduce those high harvests. The ministry is proposing a new archery season to compensate for reductions in hunting opportunities resulting from the introduction of the calf tag system.

Another element of the regulation involves a harvest tracking and management system. Successful hunters would have to register their harvested moose at a provincial check station and unsuccessful hunters would have to report their hunting activity. These measures would provide important harvest data to help the Ministry of Natural Resources make effective moose management decisions.

The moose management measures in the proposed new regulations are based upon the recommendations from the public consultation process called the Eastern Ontario Moose Management Round Table.

The public can comment on the proposed regulations through the Environmental Bill of Rights (EBR) Registry at www.ene.gov.on.ca. To review the posting, click on EBR under Menu. Written comments may be directed to Doug Skeggs, 31 Riverside Drive, Pembroke, Ontario, K8A 8R6, by fax to (613) 732-2972, or by e-mail to doug.skeggs@mnr.gov.on.ca.