Permit Changes for 2010 Nebraska Panhandle Elk Hunters

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New elk hunting statutes will impact Panhandle landowners who want to be included in hunting zones in 2010. Those zones qualify landowners for limited numbers of elk permits.

"The ability to qualify for landowner elk hunting permits is different than landowner permits for other Nebraska big game," said Todd Nordeen, Panhandle district wildlife manager for the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission.

"It is important that landowner elk permits are available to those landowners impacted the most by elk use on their property," Nordeen said. "While the total numbers of elk hunting permits for the Panhandle have increased, the demand for landowner permits has increased significantly in recent years as well."

Landowners seeking inclusion in a zone for 2010 should do so by Dec. 31. The deadline for landowner bull elk applications will be in mid-May.

Elk hunting zones are established to identify private property that has elk usage, elk depredation and supports consistent elk habitat and numbers. The zones are much smaller than the elk hunting units used when hunters apply for elk permits. The entire Panhandle is located within elk management units, including the Hat Creek, Ash Creek, Bordeaux, and North Platte River units.

Interested landowners that have significant elk usage and can meet other requirements will be considered for acceptance into the zone.

The following are some of the changes in landowner requirements for 2010 as a result of the passage of LB 105 by the Legislature:

  • -- To qualify for a limited permit, a resident landowner must own 320 acres, lease 640 acres or own or lease any combination of 640 acres.
  • -- A limited landowner antlerless-only permit may be issued to a nonresident, or immediate family members, who own or lease 1,280 acres.
  • -- To qualify for a limited permit, one must be a landowner, leaseholder or member of the immediate family of landowner or leaseholder, including siblings who share ownership. A qualifying child no longer is required to live in the same household as the landowner or leaseholder.
  • -- The number of limited permits issued annually for each farm or ranch may not exceed the total number of acres divided by 320.
  • -- The Commission will begin issuing preference points in 2010 to landowners who are unsuccessful in drawing a landowner bull permit in 2010.

For more information on Panhandle elk zone landowner requirements and eligibility, contact the Alliance district office of the Commission at (308) 763-2940 or the Ponderosa Wildlife Management Area at (308) 665-2924.