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OROGRANDE, N.M. - Big game hunters should not waste time applying for the 2001-2002 or 2002-2003 McGregor Range mule deer and antelope hunts. Due to military requirements and a lack of resources, the range is closed to all big game hunting for two years. "We don^t want people to be disappointed when they apply for these canceled hunts," said Mark Madsen, Southeast Area game manager for the New Mexico Department of Game and Fish. Madsen learned of the closure Feb. 28. He was notified of it by George Bankston, Chief of Range Development and Enforcement at Fort Bliss. Bankston said the move was necessary due to budget cuts. There are three McGregor Range deer hunts listed in the 2001-2002 Big Game and Furbearer Regulations now available on the Department of Game and Fish web site and being distributed to vendors around the state. The deer hunts that will not be held are DER-1-115, DER-1-116, DER-1-117. Do not apply for them. Two antelope hunts are listed: ANT-3-003 and ANT-3-004. Do not apply for those, either. If you already have applied for those hunts, contact the Department^s Special Hunts Division, (505) 827-7488. In the past, the range also has been open to cougar and Barbary sheep hunting. Those are closed as well. #

Uploaded: 3/29/2001