Minnesota hunters harvested nearly 270,000 deer during 2006, the second highest deer harvest ever recorded, according to a final numbers announced today by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR).
With nearly 500,000 deer hunters enjoying long seasons and liberal bag limits, DNR officials anticipated a strong 2006 deer harvest. In total, firearms hunters harvested 229,000 deer while archery and muzzleloader hunters harvested 25,000 and 13,500 deer, respectively. Hunters who participated in the early antlerless season tagged 2,300 deer. Overall, the statewide firearm harvest was up 6 percent, archers enjoyed another record season and increased 8 percent, while muzzleloader harvest decreased 4 percent from their record 2005 harvest.
For the 2007 season, the deadline for the either-sex permit application is Sept. 6. Archery deer hunting will begin Sept. 15. The early antlerless deer season will be the weekend of Oct. 13-14. The statewide firearms deer-hunting season will open on Nov. 3. The muzzleloader season will open Nov. 24.
Spring light goose hunting begins Mar. 1
In Minnesota the harvest of snow geese, including blue-phased and the smaller Ross' geese will be allowed under a federal conservation order this spring. Hunting this year will be open from March 1 to April 30.
A Spring Light Goose Permit is required and may be obtained after Feb. 18 at any of the 1,800 Electronic License System agents statewide. Spring light goose permits will also be available by telephone at 1-888-665-4236 or online after March 1 at www.dnr.state.mn.us. No other license, stamp or permit is required to participate. Although the permits are free, there is a $3.50 application fee to cover the cost of issuing the permit.
A summary of regulations will be available from license vendors, DNR wildlife offices, or by calling the DNR Information Center at (651) 296-6157 or toll free 1-888-MINNDNR (646-6367).
DNR QUESTION OF THE WEEK
Q: The DNR is pushing the Archery in the Schools program. What is this program all about?
A: The Archery in Schools Program has three prepackaged components that make teaching target archery in K-12 classes very safe, effective and easy, particularly for inexperienced archery teachers and students. The gear is state-of-the-art and designed to fit every student in the class.
The training and instruction aids provided to teachers enable them to set up ranges in their gymnasiums and safely teach new archers proper form and technique consistent with the USA Olympic archery program. Finally, the curriculum and lesson plans enable teachers to integrate the program into a rigorous academic environment. Archery is usually the most popular physical education unit because every student can excel, regardless of natural athletic ability. Archery is lifetime sport that students can enjoy for decades.