OLYMPIA - Hunters have a chance to win one of nine 2011 special hunting permits if they report this year’s hunting activities for black bear, deer, elk, or turkey to the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) by Jan. 10.
Those who meet the deadline will be included in a drawing for five deer permits and four elk permits in various areas of the state. Those permits will be valid from Sept. 1 through Dec. 31, 2011.
To qualify for the drawing, hunters must submit a report for each black bear, deer, elk, or turkey tag they purchased in 2010.
All hunters, whether successful or not, are required to submit hunting reports for those species by Jan. 31. Failure to meet the deadline can result in a $10 fine, payable before a hunter can purchase a 2011 license.
Dave Ware, WDFW game manager, said the annual hunting reports are an important source of information for managing the resource and developing future hunting seasons.
"The drawing for special permits is designed to give hunters an extra incentive to file their reports early," said Dave Ware, WDFW game manager. "If everyone waits until the last minute, it creates problems with reporting."
Hunters can report by phone (877 945-3492) or the Internet https://fishhunt.dfw.wa.gov. Hunters should be prepared to give the game management unit they hunted and their individual WILD identification number, which is printed on license documents.
New this year, WDFW is requiring hunters to file separate reports for general-season hunting activities and for special-permit hunts for deer, elk, black bear and turkey. That change will give game managers more information about hunters’ success during both kinds of seasons - general and special permit, Ware said.
Whether reporting online or over the phone, hunters should follow the prompts until they receive a confirmation number for each report, he said.
More information the WDFW’s incentive permit drawing is available on page 13 of the Big Game Hunting pamphlet (http://wdfw.wa.gov/hunting/regulations/).