Big game hunting deadlines approaching fast, 2014 changes

Photo by and in courtesy of Utah Division Of Wildlife Resources

ST. GEORGE — Time is running out to submit your application to hunt big game animals in Utah this fall.

Online applications and resources

Big game hunting applications — including deer — are due online through Utah’s Division of Wildlife Resources no later than 11 p.m. on March 6.

In order to avoid an online logjam, the DWR highly suggests applying before the last day.

“If you apply before March 6,” Judi Tutorow, wildlife licensing coordinator for the Division of Wildlife Resources said, “you should be able to get your application in fast.”

If you wait until March 6, however, you could face some challenges.

Thousands of hunters wait until the last day to apply,” Tutorow said.  “Receiving that much traffic — in such a short period of time — slows our website and the entire application process down.”

If you decide to wait until March 6 to apply, make sure you start applying before 11 p.m.  If you start applying before 11 p.m. — and you don’t log off the system before you’ve completed your application — the system will allow you to finish your application.

“If you log off before 11 p.m., and then you try to get back into the system,” she said, “you’ll be out of luck.  After 11 p.m., a bonus point and a preference point are the only things you can apply for.”

Before you apply for a general deer hunting permit, make sure to visit the DWR’s Web page on deer hunting linked here.  The Web page has information that will help you decide which of Utah’s 30 deer hunting units to apply for.

Everything you need to know to apply for a permit is available in the 2014 Utah Big Game Application Guidebook.

You can get the free guidebook from the DWR online here, at DWR offices and from more than 300 hunting and fishing license agents across Utah.

Tutorow has a reminder for lifetime license holders: By March 6, make sure you complete the online lifetime license questionnaire and select the unit you want to hunt.

Hunt all three deer seasons

Would you like to hunt all three general deer hunting seasons (archery, muzzleloader and rifle) on the unit you draw a permit for?

You can if you join the Dedicated Hunter program.

To give yourself a chance to join the Dedicated Hunter program, you must do two things: Complete an online orientation course that teaches you more about the program, and apply for and draw a 2014 general deer hunting permit.

The online Dedicated Hunter course takes about 30 minutes to complete.

To learn more about the program and how to join it, visit the DWR’s Dedicated Hunter Web page here.

Applying for a point

If you’re not going to hunt in 2014, you can still apply for a bonus point or a preference point.  Earning a point increases the chance you’ll draw a permit the next time you apply.

Your application for a point must be received online no later than 11 p.m. on March 20. Learn more about bonus and preference points here.

Please remember that you must have a hunting license or a combination license to apply for a point or a hunting permit.

General-season deer hunt web page

A general-season deer hunting change that started in Utah in 2012 will continue in 2014: Instead of hunting deer in five large regions, hunters in 2014 will hunt on 30 smaller units.

If you have questions about applying for a general-season deer permit, the DWR has the answers online; start here and follow links provided, including:

  • a map that shows where Utah’s 30 general-season deer hunting units are located
  • a link that will take you to detailed maps and a boundary description for each unit
  • drawing odds for each unit in 2013
  • a list of frequently asked questions and answers

Lifetime license holders

If you have a lifetime hunting license in Utah, you can select the general deer hunting unit you’d like to hunt by doing two things: completing the online lifetime license questionnaire and selecting the unit you want to hunt.

Access to the questionnaire is available in the 2014 big game application online linked here, which must be completed by March 6 as indicated.

If you don’t complete the questionnaire and select your unit by March 6, and the DWR doesn’t have a hunt choice on file for you, trying to obtain a general deer hunting permit that wasn’t taken in the draw will be your only option.

However, all of the general season deer permits might be taken in the draw, so there might not be any permits available.

More information

If you have questions about applying for a 2014 Utah big game hunting permit, call the Utah Hunt Application office at 1-800-221-0659 or the nearest Division of Wildlife Resources office.

Submitted by Utah Division of Wildlife Resources

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Photo by and courtesy of Utah Division Of Wildlife Resources
Photo by and in courtesy of Utah Division Of Wildlife Resources

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