Montana wildlife officials say fewer yearling elk expected

Missoula, Mont. (AP) – Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks
officials say weather and a reduced number of yearlings could
hamper elk and deer hunters this year.

A combination of hard winters, liberal hunting allowances and
increased predator activity has reduced the number of antleress elk
and deer permits released this year. Wildlife Manager Mike Thompson
says the adult elk and deer population numbers are good, but
hunters’ ability to find them will likely depend on snow and cold –
which are a little less likely because of a predicted El Nino
winter.

Game Bird Coordinator Rick Northrup says the grouse populations
in western Montana should be close to average. But he says the
colder, wetter springs that hit northeastern and southern Montana
this year may have depressed chick survival.

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