FWP offers deer, elk licenses

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Montana Fish, Wildlife & Game began offering over-the-counter and surplus B licenses for anterless deer and elk on Monday, Aug. 6.

A few important dates remain for hunters looking for licenses for this upcoming hunting season:

• On Aug. 9, general antelope and antelope B drawing results will be available.

• On Aug. 13, surplus general antelope, antelope B and antelope archery 900-20 licenses go on sale.

• On Aug. 15, antelope archery season opens for the 900-20 license.

The 900-20 archery antelope licenses were drawn on July 16. These licenses allow bowhunters to hunt antelope from Aug. 15 to Nov. 11 in any hunting district starting with 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7. All other antelope licenses will be drawn Aug. 9.

In the past, all antelope licenses were drawn at the same time, typically late July or early August, which did not give biologists enough time to complete their antelope surveys and make any final changes to license numbers. Antelope surveys cannot begin before mid-July because fawns typically are not up with herds before then. By drawing the 900-20 archery licenses early, it allows those archery hunters time to plan their hunt, and by drawing all other antelope licenses on Aug. 9 it gives biologists time to do their final surveys.

This year, archers applied for the 900 licenses as the first and only option. It wasn’t available as the second choice on other antelope license applications as in the past. This change allowed FWP to offer elk and deer surplus licenses earlier.

Surplus licenses are those that remain after Montana’s recent special hunting license drawings. The remaining licenses are sold on a first-come first-served basis. A list of available surplus licenses for deer and elk are posted on the FWP website at fwp.mt.gov. A list of available surplus licenses for antelope will be posted on the afternoon of Aug. 9.

These licenses and permits can be purchased online, over the counter or by downloading a paper application (the latter is not recommended due to first-come first-served basis).

FWP license providers will also have access to the licenses. License providers are listed on the FWP website; click on Hunting and then click License Providers.

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