Ask Idaho Fish and Game: Controlled hunt process

Q. How does the controlled draw hunt system work?

A. Here is a simplified version of how the controlled hunt drawing system works: The procedure has been computerized since 1973 and was certified random by Boise State University professors in 1977. Every applicant has the same chance of drawing. Officials verify that applicants meet all of the eligibility requirements to draw a tag. Each application is then assigned a randomly generated number, which is then scrambled and coded before being drawn by the computer system. The computer, located in the state controller's office, selects the successful applicants from the entire application file of eligible applicants. When a group of people enter on the same application, the group is assigned a single application number, and the system will recognize only one application number. The controlled hunt drawing system processes all first choice hunts in the first round. The system then does a second drawing to fill any open hunts with second choice hunts. No person can draw a second choice if that hunt has been filled by first choice people. When residents and nonresidents enter on the same application, the chances of drawing are limited to the nonresident chances. Nonresident hunters are limited to no more than 10 percent of the total number of controlled hunt tags for each species. In controlled hunts with 10 or fewer tags, not more than one nonresident tag will be issued. In controlled hunts with more than 10 tags, not more than 10 percent of the tags will be issued to nonresidents. If the computer draws an application and finds it includes a nonresident, it checks to see whether a tag is available for a nonresident. If the nonresident limit already has been met, the entire group application will be rejected and the computer simply goes to the next application. Hunters can improve their odds by doing a little homework. Using the odds and harvest results from the previous year, hunters can find hunts with fewer applicants and better odds of drawing.

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