MDC taking applications for bear, elk hunting

The Missouri Department of Conservation is taking applications for elk-hunting and bear-hunting permits.

MDC will offer five permits to hunt bull elk in Missouri this fall with at least one permit allocated for qualifying area landowners and the remaining permits for the general public.

MDC will also offer 400 permits for the taking of a maximum of 40 black bears during the Missouri black bear hunting season this fall. At least 10 percent of black bear permits will be allocated to qualifying area landowners.

Only Missouri residents who will be at least 11 years old by the first day of the hunt for which they are applying are eligible to apply for elk and bear permits during the application period which ends May 31. All permits will be assigned through a random drawing .

For elk hunting, MDC has designated a nine-day archery portion running Oct. 15-23 and a nine-day firearms portion running Dec. 10-18. The five permits will be for bull elk and will be valid for both portions.

MDC will require a $ 10 application fee for elk-permit applicants. Those selected will then be eligible to purchase a permit at a cost of $ 50. All elk-hunting permits, including those allocated to approved area landowners, can be used on public or private property in Carter, Reynolds and Shannon counties, except the refuge portion of Peck Ranch Conservation Area.

The allowed hunting methods for each season portion will be the same as for deer hunting. The permits will allow for the harvest of one bull elk with at least one antler being six inches longer.

For more information on elk and elk hunting in Missouri, visit mdc.mo.gov/elkhunting.

Applications for the elk permit random drawing are available at mdc.mo.gov/buypermits, MDC’s free MO Hunting app, a permit vendor, or by calling 1-800-392-4115. Results of the elk-permit random drawing will be available online by July 1.

The black bear hunting season is Oct. 17-26. There is a fee of $ 10 per applicant. Applicants must select one of three Black Bear Management Zones when applying. Those selected through the random drawing will then be eligible to purchase a BMZ-specific permit at a cost of $ 25.

MDC has established three BMZs in southern Missouri and will issue annual permit numbers and harvest quotas for each of them. Each permit will be for a specific BMZ and may be used on public or private property within the BMZ. If the specific harvest quota is reached for a BMZ, the season for that BMZ will be closed.

Hunting hours will be a half-hour before sunrise to a half-hour after sunset. Hunters must call MDC prior to hunting each day to determine the closure status of the BMZ for which they are permitted. Hunters will be allowed to use archery and firearms equipment with allowable methods being the same as those for deer and elk, except atlatls may not be used to hunt bears. Baiting and the use of dogs is not allowed.

The harvest limit is one bear per permit. Only lone black bears may be taken. Hunters may not take bears that are known to be in the presence of others bears, including female black bears with cubs. Bears may not be disturbed, pushed, harassed or taken from a den.

Learn more about black bears and bear hunting in Missouri at mdc.mo.gov/bearhunting.

Applications for the bear permit random drawing are available at mdc.mo.gov/buypermits, MDC’s free MO Hunting app, a permit vendor, or by calling 1-800-392-4115. Results of the bear permit random drawing will be available online by July 1.

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