2010 Elk Forecast & Notes
November 04, 2010
A look at what elk hunters can expect afield in different states and Canadian provinces.
Elk Forecast is available HERE
Elk numbers are declining in southeast Alaska. There is only one archery-only elk hunt in Alaska and that's by draw. No changes are expected for 2010. Contact: Alaska Dept. of Fish &Game, (907) 486-1880, http://www.wildlife.alaska.gov/index.cfm?adfg=hunting.main.
Some over-the-counter tags are available to anyone, without restrictions, but they're in non-traditional areas with low elk populations. Arizona is attempting to eliminate elk in those areas. Contact: Arizona Game and Fish Department, (602) 942-3000, www.gf.state.az.us/welcome.html.
Nonresidents can only hunt Arkansas during the Private Land Hunt unless they hold a lifetime sportsman license. Nonresidents must also have written permission from a landowner. Contact: Arkansas Game and Fish Commission, (501) 223-6360, www.agfc.com.
Two more archery-only bull tags have been added to the Owens Valley hunt. There are also many changes in zones and hunt formats so read the regulations carefully. Contact: California Dept. of Fish and Game, (916) 653-7203. www.dfg.ca.gov.
Weather during the past two firearms seasons was not ideal for elk hunting so there should be a good carryover of mature bulls this year. Check out the 12 minute "Elk Camp Colorado" online video at the DOW website. Contact: Colorado Division of Wildlife, (303) 297-1192, www.dnr.state.co.us/.
A total of 2,766 elk were killed in Idaho by archers last year. The elk population continues to decline, in part because of wolf predation, which has been extensive in some areas. Contact: Idaho Dept. of Fish and Game, (208) 334-3700, http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/.
For the first time, elk licenses will be available over-the-counter to general residents statewide with two exceptions, so check the regulations carefully. Contact: Kansas Dept. of Wildlife and Parks, (620) 672-5911, www.kdwp.state.ks.us.
Elk numbers in the elk restoration zone have increased dramatically but have begun to stabilize. Applications must be received by April 30 and there were 800 elk licenses available for the 2010-2011 season. Contact: Kentucky Dept. of Fish and Wildlife Resources, 1-800-858-1549, www.state.ky.us/agencies/fw/index.htm.
The elk herd is being intentionally reduced in Michigan. There are no separate archery seasons so no specific archery harvest data is available. Contact: Michigan Dept. of Natural Resources, (517) 373-1263. http://www.michigan.gov/dnr/0,1607,7-153-10363_10856_10893---,00.html.
Both quantity and quality of the elk hunting in Montana is highly dependant upon local conditions. Some areas are considered to be below objectives. Contact: Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks, (406) 444-2612, http://fwp.mt.gov/hunting/.
Elk numbers are increasing at a rate of about 15% per year in Nebraska. Sixty-five bulls, 66 cows, and 7 calves were taken by all weapons. No data exists on whether any were taken with a bow. Contact: Nebraska Game and Parks Commission, (402) 471-0641, http://www.ngpc.state.ne.us/hunting/hunting.asp.
Due to increased tag quotas in recent years, a trend that continues in 2010, there are fewer bulls greater than seven years old than in the past, according to Mike Cox, big game biologist. However, Nevada still offers premium elk hunting if you can draw a tag. Contact: Nevada Division of Wildlife, 1-800-576-1020, www.ndow.org.
Landowner authorizations are available from landowners that participate in the Elk Private Land Use System or from some outfitters. No draw is needed, but the landowner may charge an additional fee. Contact: New Mexico Department of Game and Fish, 1-800-862-9310, www.wildlife.state.nm.us.
All hunters who draw Units E1 and E2 may hunt with a bow during the archery season or with any legal weapon during the regular season. Contact: North Dakota Game and Fish Dept., (701) 328-6300. http://gf.nd.gov.
There is no special archery season in Oklahoma, so it wasn't known if any elk were taken with a bow last fall. Contact: Oklahoma Dept. of Wildlife Conservation, Game Division (405) 521-2739, www.wildlifedepartment.com.
Oregon's elk population is virtually half Roosevelt elk and half Rocky Mountain elk. The harvest is close to that ratio but success rates for Roosevelt are about half that for Rocky Mountain elk. Contact: Oregon Dept. of Fish and Wildlife, (503) 872-5260 www.dfw.state.or.us/.
They're growing some huge bulls in Pennsylvania. Last year a nontypical bull scored over 423 and the state record is 425 2/8. Contact: Pennsylvania Game Commission, Bureau of Wildlife Management, (717) 787-5529, www.pgc.state.pa.us.
160 license fee is for an either-sex elk, and the $110 license is for an antlerless elk. Managers are working to increase elk numbers in the Black Hills. Contact: South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks, (605) 773-3485, http://gfp.sd.gov/.
If you do not apply for a limited-entry permit, once-in-a-lifetime permit or bonus point at least once in a three-year period, you will lose all your bonus points. Contact: Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, (801) 538-4700, http://wildlife.utah.gov/dwr/hunting.html.
Washington's elk population is stable with some variation according to unit. Nonresident license fees are set at 10 times the cost of a resident license, but they are available over-the-counter. Contact: Washington Dept. Fish and Wildlife, (360) 902-2200, http://wdfw.wa.gov/.
The statewide elk population estimate is from 2008. Elk numbers decreased slightly but are still considered to be stable. Wyoming does not directly calculate archery success rates. Contact: Wyoming Game and Fish Dept., (307) 777-4600, http://gf.state.wy.us/.
Alberta has expanded antlerless elk hunting in many areas into January. These special licenses are available to residents only. Contact: Alberta Natural Resources Service, (403) 427-2079, http://www.srd.alberta.ca/FishingHuntingTrapping/Hunting/Default.aspx.
The hunting on Vancouver Island/Sunshine Coast is for Roosevelt elk. No specific archery data was available. Contact: British Columbia Ministry of Environment, Lands and Parks, Wildlife Branch (250) 387-9717, www.env.gov.bc.ca/fw/.
To help control the prevalence of bovine tuberculosis, the elk population in GHA 23 and 23A has been intentionally reduced over the past five years. Contact: Manitoba Dept. of Natural Resources, Wildlife Branch, 1-800-214-6497, www.gov.mb.ca/natres/wildlife/index.html.
There is no defined archery elk season so there is no specific archery elk hunting data available. Contact: Saskatchewan Environment & Resource Management, Fish and Wildlife Branch, (306) 787-2314, http://www.environment.gov.sk.ca/hunting.