The Utah Division of Wildlife has released its proposed permit numbers for the 2021 season. This section will cover the proposals for both elk and pronghorn. To check out the deer proposal click here.
Utah bases its elk herd harvest off of bull age class. Each limited entry elk unit will fall into four different age class categories. Those categories are as follows:
- 7.5-8 Years Old
- 6.5-7 Years Old
- 5.5-6 Years Old
- 4.5-5 Years Old
The DWR takes harvest surveys every year to properly age the bulls being taken off of each unit. Then they will look at the trends over a three-year period, then make changes to the permit numbers in each unit. As a result, the DWR reports permit proposals for each age class and the units that fall under it. Below we will list the proposed changes:
- 7.5-8 Years Old unit changes: These units will see a reduction of ten total permits across the units. Some individual units we see larger decreases while others will see increases in permits. This is a total reduction of about 4%.
- 6.5-7 Years Old unit changes: This category includes a lot more units than the 7.5-8 Year Old class. As a result, this age group will see a reduction of a total of 71 permits. This is a reduction of about 13% of permits across the age class.
- 5.5-6 Years Old unit changes: This age class is the first grouping to see an increase in elk permits. Because of age classes trendy upward in these units, the DWR is proposing an increase of 59 permits or about a 3% increase in permits.
- 4.5-5 Years Old unit changes: Only a few units are set at this age class. However, these units will see a slight increase of 3 permits.
Each year the DWR sets new permit numbers and adds permits to newly created units. This year is no different, as the DWR has newly created elk hunts that need permit numbers set. Seven elk units in the state were moved from the traditional limited entry to a new HAMS/Rut-Archery Hunt. These hunts will have different weapons, and dates compared to the limited entry hunts. The DWR is proposing that these hunts have a total permit count of 158.
Pronghorn Permit Proposal
The pronghorn proposal doesn’t go into the depth that the elk one did. However, the current pronghorn proposal will look to implement the following changes:
- Archery Permits: The archery permits will see a small decrease from 235 to 232 total permits.
- Muzzleloader Permits: Muzzleloader pronghorn permits will also see a 3 permit decrease from 137to 134 total permits.
- Rifle Permit: Rifle permits will see an increase from 775 to 807 or an increase of 32 total permits.
We covered a lot of information in this article but if you are looking for more unit by unit information you can watch the ten-minute video where the DWR explains the permit proposals, by clicking here.
So, what are your thoughts on the Utah elk and pronghorn permit proposals? Do you support or oppose the proposals? Let us know in the comments!