NY: DMP numbers up by 10 percent statewide

Albany – DEC will boost Deer Management Permits by just over 10
percent this season, but the bulk of that jump is the product of
increased antlerless tag allocations in much of central and western
New York.

The statewide DMP target of 501,675 – which doesn’t include units
with no DMP targets – is up from the 2010 total of 451,400.

The 10 percent increase in DMPs comes on the heels of last year’s
reduction by a similar percentage. That occurred as biologists
sought a leveling off of deer numbers in much of the Southern Tier
due to stalled growth in the herd.

DEC wildlife biologist Jeremy Hurst cautioned, however, that the
statewide jump in tags may not be reflected in some wildlife
management units.

“Eastern and southeastern New York, for the most part, will have
pretty stable DMP numbers or even a slight drop in permits,” Hurst
said. “As you’d expect, the targets vary unit by unit.”

He added that much of central and western New York, except for a
handful of WMUs through the Southern Zone counties of Chautauqua,
Cattaraugus, Allegany and Steuben, are seeing an increase in DMP
numbers.

DMPs are generally the major tool used by the state to manage its
whitetail numbers. DEC annually uses a number of gauges in setting
permit allocations, grappling with factors such as the harvest by
the state’s bow and muzzleloader hunters as well as success rates
on DMP tags, which vary from one unit to the next.

Hurst said hunter success rates on DMPs range from just under 10
percent to as high as 35 percent in some WMUs, but generally run
just under 20 percent.

“When we set DMP targets, we start by evaluating trends in deer
population and harvest to assess what level of antlerless harvest
is appropriate in each WMU,” he said. “Then we have to account for
antlerless take by bow and muzzleloader hunters and on DMAP (Deer
Management Assistance Program) tags, and factor in DMP success
rates in each unit.”

Once DEC sets a target allocation, the odds of selection – high,
medium or low – are determined based on trends in the number of DMP
applicants in each unit, he said.

New York residents generally have a better chance of drawing one
and sometimes two tags, while nonresidents, in some cases, will
have no shot at securing one DMP but, in some units, could actually
score a pair of tags.

DEC officials always urge hunters to do their homework before
purchasing their hunting license. Posters are generally set up at
most license-buying locations to help hunters make their decision
on what unit to seek DMPs.

The deadline for applying for a DMP is Oct. 1, but hunters will
have the same odds no matter when they apply for the antlerless
tags.

A unit-by-unit allocation chart appears on Page 21. DEC also offers
a list of odds of selection for a DMP at its website:
www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/30409.html .

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