Apply now for the 2010 Minnesota elk hunt

Hunters have until Friday, July 16, to apply for one of 11 elk
licenses offered this year by the Minnesota DNR.

Licenses for the 2010 hunts will be available in the traditional
Grygla area and central Kittson County, which is a consolidation of
the north and south Kittson zones from last year. Maps of the two
hunt zones can be found at http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/hunting/elk.

“Annual elk hunts help manage population size and provide a
unique hunting experience for Minnesota hunters,” said Lou
Cornicelli, DNR big game program coordinator.

Seven licenses (two either-sex and five antlerless) will be
offered in the Grygla area. Four licenses (one either-sex and three
antlerless) will be offered in Kittson County.

“With the completion of our elk management plan, we’re
allocating elk licenses so that we can manage the two populations
at established levels,” Cornicelli said.

A total of three licenses (two in Grygla and one in Kittson
County) may be issued to qualified landowners in their elk zone in
a preferential drawing. Unsuccessful landowner applications will
then be added to the general drawing, from which the remaining
applicants will be selected.  Alternates will be selected in case
successful parties opt not to purchase a permit.

In total, there will be two seasons in each zone, divided as
follows:

• Sept. 18-26, two either-sex in Grygla, one either-sex and one
antlerless license in Kittson County.

• Dec. 4-12, five antlerless licenses in Grygla and two
antlerless licenses in Kittson County.

Applications may be made at any DNR license agent or the DNR
License Center, 500 Lafayette Road, St. Paul. Paper applications
will not be accepted. Hunters may apply individually or in parties
of two. There is a non-refundable application fee of $10 per
hunter. Successful applicants will be notified by mail. In order to
hunt, they must purchase an elk license for $250. Each party will
be authorized to harvest one elk.

If no qualified landowners apply, all licenses will be drawn
from the general pool of applicants. In Minnesota, elk hunts are
considered once-in-a-lifetime opportunities, which means parties
that choose to purchase their license will not be eligible to apply
for future elk hunts.

Applicants must select a single zone in which to hunt. Choices
are Zone 10 (Grygla) or Zone 20 (Central Kittson County).
Applicants may not apply for both zones. Applicants successful in
the lottery will be randomly selected for season and license.

“The early hunt is timed to coincide with the elk rut, so
hunters will have a good opportunity to try calling a bull,”
Cornicelli said. “During the second season, elk should be
congregated in larger groups with snow on the ground, making
tracking and trailing easier.”

All successful applicants will be required to attend an
orientation session at Thief Lake Wildlife Management Area
headquarters in Middle River prior to the hunt. Hunters also must
register

their elk in their hunt area. Some biological information
relative to elk physical condition will be collected at the check
station. Elk will be tested for chronic wasting disease and bovine
tuberculosis as part of Minnesota’s wild cervid surveillance
program.

Hunters should be aware that both elk zones include private
land. Permission to hunt these lands should be obtained prior to
purchasing their license.

Categories: Rob Drieslein

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