There are 244 antlerless elk tags up for grabs in August following the big game drawing, but they are mostly “Limited Opportunity” hunts – aka tough hunts.
The remaining tags are available on a first-come, first-served basis by mail only starting Aug. 13 at the Arizona Game and Fish Department.
“The limited opportunity hunts, by their very nature, can be tough going. Quite often, those are hunts where we are targeting resident elk in wintering areas. Sometimes, the elk densities are low. Some areas have dense pinyon juniper habitats. These are not our typical high quality elk hunts. We don’t want applicants to have false expectations on what is involved with these tags, but we also need those elk harvested,” explained Public Information Officer Rory Aikens.
The “limited opportunity” hunts were created this year as a tool to help address conflicts between elk and other land uses. A team of elk managers from across the state was assembled to look at the conflicts and come up with creative solutions. The team determined that 95 percent of the elk conflicts are created by approximately 5 percent of the elk population. The limited elk hunts target elk causing conflicts.
For those considering applying for the remaining limited elk hunt tags, check page 38 of the 2001-2002 Arizona Hunting Regulations under the title “Limited Opportunity Elk Hunts.”
The regulations explain that if you get one of these tags through the first-come, first-served process, you will not lose your bonus points.
“Some of these habitats include private land where elk are damaging crops, and some are on public land where the impacts from yearlong elk occupation have reduced the habitat quality for the wintering elk population,” states the Hunting Regulations.
Successful applicants for elk hunts in units 2B, 3A, 3B North, 4B North, 5A and 5B will receive information from the department that will be helpful in planning their hunt.
“Should you be drawn for any of the ‘Limited Opportunity’ hunts, additional information may be available from the appropriate regional office to assist with hunt planning,” states the regulations.
There are also 154 tags remaining for the Archery-Only Antlerless Elk season. Those are the typical, high-quality hunts.
There are also some permits remaining for first-come, first-served only. The following seasons have hunt-permit tags remaining:
· Juniors Only Turkey, 7 tags;
· Juniors Only Kaibab Deer, 228 tags;
· General Deer, 391 tags;
· Antlerless Elk, 90 tags;
· Archery Only Antlerless Elk, 154 tags.
For those who qualify there are military hunts available at both Ft. Huachuca and Camp Navajo. The information on leftover tags – via hunt number – will be available on the "Hunt Information Line" (602) 789-3702.
“The Juniors-Only Kaibab hunt is a tremendous opportunity for youth to get afield and have a high-quality hunt experience while helping the department trim a deer herd in an area where fire has impacted the habitat,”
Remember that first-come, first-served is by U.S. mail only, on or after Aug. 13. Applications cannot be received before that date. Click here for FIRST COME FIRST SERVE - LEFTOVER PERMITS.
For those who qualify there are military hunts available at both Ft. Huachuca and Camp Navajo. For more information contact: Ft. Huachuca @ 1-520-533-7083 or Camp Navajo @ 1-520-773-3274.