MONTPELIER, Vt. – Vermont moose hunting permit applications are now available on the Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department’s website. Printed applications will be available from Vermont license agents in early May.
A total of 63 regular moose season permits and 17 archery moose season permits will be issued for Vermont’s 2017 October moose hunt. The archery season is October 1-7. The regular season will be October 21-26.
The number of permits is reduced from last year’s 165 total number of permits, and permits will only be issued for bulls this year. Hunters are expected to harvest close to 33 moose with the reduced number of permits.
“We recommended a reduction in permit numbers and permits only for bulls this year based on biological data, and our population estimates indicating moose densities remain below management goals in many areas,” said wildlife biologist Cedric Alexander, Vermont’s moose project leader. “The intent of the proposal to allow controlled population growth.”
Alexander estimates Vermont has 1,750 moose statewide with the greatest concentration in the Northeast Kingdom.
“We continue to take a very conservative approach given recent regional and national trends of moose populations and health,” added Alexander. “Moose biologists from the southern tier of moose range across North America are increasingly concerned about the effects of warming temperatures on moose health. Moose can easily become stressed by warmer weather causing them to feed less, and early spring snow melt that results in higher winter tick loads the following year.”
Lottery applications are due July 3. There is a fee for both Vermont residents and nonresidents. Hunters will also have the option to bid on five moose hunting permits in an auction to be announced later. Beginning in 2016, hunters who held a permit within the past five years are not eligible to apply for a permit or to buy a bonus point. A person who had a permit before 2016 must wait three years.