There is a new proposal being presented to the Game, Fish, and Parks commissioners that would change the way hunters apply for deer licenses.
At first glance, the proposal may make it sound as if Game Fish and Parks is trying to make it tougher for deer hunters. But the GF&P says it will actually increase the chances of a hunter getting his or her first choice in the season they want.
“Previously, deer hunters could select from any or all of six rifle hunting seasons. We didn’t restrict the number of applications previously,” said Trenton Haffley, with the GF&P.
“Now, the current proposal is to lump all six of those seasons and force deer hunters to make one choice. So it should restrict the number of overall applications that we’re accepting,” he said.
The seasons available are East River, Black Hills, West River, Custer State Park, Special Buck and Muzzleloader.
All of the drawings would be held on the same day.
If a hunter is not successful in the first round, he or she could apply for a license in the second drawing.
In a third drawing all resident hunters would be eligible for the remaining licenses.
“So, ideally, the result of this proposal will put more, first-choice selections in the hands of more deer hunters,” said Haffley.
The GF&P has opened up a 30 day comment period to get hunter’s input on the new proposal. A hearing will be held in Yankton on September 6 and 7. The matter will be decided at the GP&P commissioners meeting in Deadwood on October 4 and 5.
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