OLYMPIA - Hunters have one last chance for a special big-game permit this fall, as the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) will sell raffle tickets until Aug. 7 for deer, elk, moose, California bighorn sheep and mountain goat hunts.
One winner will be chosen for each hunt. Winning tickets will be selected at random by computer, and winners will be notified by Aug. 15. Raffle tickets are $5.98 each, $11.45 for sheep, and can be purchased at http://fishhunt.dfw.wa.gov on the Internet, toll-free by telephone at 1-866-246-9453, or at license vendors statewide.
The winner of the deer hunt can hunt between Sept. 1 and Dec. 31 in any open game management unit (GMU), except Private Lands Wildlife Management Areas, and those GMUs that are not open for either general season or special permit hunts.
Winners of the elk hunts can hunt between Sept. 1 and Dec. 31 in any open game management unit, except Private Lands Wildlife Management areas and those GMUs that are not open for either general season or special permit hunts.
The winner of the moose hunt will be allowed to hunt between Oct. 1 and Nov. 30 in any GMU open to moose hunting. The winner of the bighorn sheep hunt will be allowed to hunt between Sept. 1 and Oct. 31 in the five sheep units that are open to raffle and auction hunting. The winner of the mountain goat hunt can hunt between Sept. 15 and Oct. 31 in the four goat units open to raffle and auction hunters.
New this year is a special raffle hunt for Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep in the Blue Mountains. Bighorn sheep haven't been hunted in this area for 10 years due to a disease die-off, but their numbers have rebounded to a level that allows one ram to be taken by a raffle winner. The hunt can take place between Sept. 1 and Oct. 31 in GMUs 166, 169, 181, and 186.
The Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep permit is being raffled through Washington Chapter of Foundation for North American Wild Sheep (FNAWS). Deadline for purchasing a raffle ticket is Aug. 2, and more information is available on the Washington FNAWS chapter website, www.wafnaws.com.
More information on big-game permit raffles is available in the 2005 Big Game Hunting Seasons and Rules pamphlet or at http://wdfw.wa.gov/huntcorn.htm on the Internet.