Oklahoma Furbearer Season Opens December 1

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For the first time, Oklahoma hunters and trappers will have the opportunity to pursue red foxes when furbearer season opens statewide December 1.

"It's another great opportunity for sportsmen. Furbearing species are plentiful, and this should be a great year for trappers, especially those focusing on bobcats, coyotes and raccoons," said Russ Horton, central region senior biologist for the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation. "Hunters and trappers have an important role in helping manage Oklahoma's furbearer populations."

Furbearing animals include raccoon, mink, badger, muskrat, opossum, weasel, bobcat, beaver, striped skunks and gray and red foxes. Many hunters and trappers harvest furbearers and sell their pelts.

"Last year prices were pretty strong, particularly for bobcats and the prices are generally expected to stay high this year," Horton said.

For a list of fur dealers in Oklahoma log onto the Department’s Web site at www.wildlifedepartment.com/furdeal.htm

Oklahoma's statewide furbearer season runs Dec. 1 - Jan. 31 except for bobcat season, which runs Dec. 1 - Feb. 28. Consult a copy of the "2006-07 Oklahoma Hunting Guide" for specific details on bag limits and other regulations concerning each furbearing species.

Those wanting to take bobcats, raccoons or gray or red fox must possess a special bobcat-raccoon-gray/red fox license. It costs $10 for residents, $51 for non-residents. Resident lifetime license holders are exempt from having to purchase the license.

A trapping license is required for all persons who trap. Cost is $10 for residents and $375 for nonresidents. Only resident landowners or tenants or their children who trap on land they own or lease (not including hunting leases) are exempt from purchasing trapping licenses. Sportsman must also carry a Hunting and Fishing Legacy Permit unless exempt.

Hunters and trappers are also reminded that all bobcat pelts must be tagged with an official identification tag, available from several Department installations and selected check stations statewide. For a list of bobcat check stations, log on to the Department's Web site at www.wildlifedepartment.com or contact the Wildlife Division at (405) 521-2739.