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Utah proposed Elk changes
Looks like some changes coming to Utah.
They will make the right decisions
Seems like they’re continually moving from quality opportunities to quantity opportunities (and increased tag revenue). I also fail to understand how giving out 15,000 spike tags annually is a justifiable biological strategy to improve herd health. Makes me wish I could’ve burned my 16 points a while back…..
How does this affect non-residents?
"Six additional general-season any bull elk hunting units in the Nine Mile, Paunsaugunt, West Desert, Central Mountains, Book Cliffs and Box Elder areas across the state, while also adding a new general-season spike hunt in the Diamond Mountain unit in northeast Utah."
Pulling a page from the Colorado playbook. Liberal tag numbers for sure. Basically creating several OTC units.
I'm meaning the increased LE tags in the above listed areas? Will non res get any of those?
Usually NR gets about 10% of tags (minus expo tags)
So new LE tags would probably add more opportunities. The way they justify more tags will be to lower age objectives in LE units, thus a decline in trophy quality.
More spike tags theoretically don’t negatively affect herd populations.
Not sure what to make of all the changes.
The diamond unit will suffer just like the Bookcliff with that added spike hunt…don’t those idiots learn anything
They are just Proposals, let's see how they play out and are finalized.
I don't see anything about tag allocation % changes?? so those should stay within the 10% one would consider.
Good luck, Robb
I take it Robb you don’t care for any of the proposed changes?
Utah has it all wrong for average hunters and will be until they completely revamp their approach. The only people who benefit now are landowners, guides and the rich. Throw in rifle hunters who get an unusual opportunity to hunt peak rut, but that comes with an enormous loss of opportunity for everyone. Adding some more overhunted otc areas and killing more spikes isn't going to help.
Based on 35 years of hunting all over the west, here's my recommendation. No more spike hunts (killing most spikes lowers bull to cow ratios and makes weird herd distributions. It also really depresses the rut activity because of a lack of harassing young bulls). No more otc units (lots of lousy hunting doesn't make anyone happy). No more preference points, bonus points instead (try telling a 20 year old that he can hunt those big bulls in 25 years if he starts paying now). Archery elk runs Sep 1-30. Muzzy runs Oct 1-14. Rifle runs Oct 15-30 (no more shooting the biggest bulls at 900 yards during the peak of the rut). Let the biologists set the herd size objectives. Then you allow the most hunters in each area that you can yearly, based on normal weapon success rates. No one will be able to hunt every year, but you'll get to go every few years. No more waiting 20+ years to chase bulls. They'll still be big bulls as long as you don't overharvest. NM, MT and WY have big elk just like Utah, they just aren't as easy to kill.
^^^^ all of this except shorten the muzzy and rifle hunts to 7 and 5 days respectively. Move both muzzy and rifle start dates back a week.
I’ll never take Utah seriously because of the expo and auction tag theft. These jackwagons pad the wallets and are the only reason certain private organizations exist.
Hope to draw archery elk next year and be done. Hopefully before they lower the age structure.
When they lower the age classes for the LE units as proposed, it’ll allow them to really ramp up the LE tag quotas and make it even more crowded.
A non-resident can archery hunt spike bulls and cow elk every year for around $400 bucks. That’s the best deal in Utah.
^^^ no they can't Charlie. Price went up.
I learned the hard way years ago that I'll lose every time by bitching and moaning about Change in any State I hunt.
Now, I just try and see how I can turn the 'New Changes' into a positive option for me to still be able to draw if needed and to hunt.
I've drawn 3 LE Bull Bow tags (Ressy) over the years with all the chitty bow dates and with the changes over that time period.
Good luck, Robb
I will never understand the Spike tag concept. Seems ridiculous
^^^ it's a tradition. It's all about family fun in the outdoors.
Yeah. Gives opportunity without killing all the breeding bulls. It's a bad idea though. I saw it in the blue mountains in WA state too. Really messed up herd distribution with almost no middle age bulls. I didn't realize how much it suppresses the rut until this year.
Its obvious some get the downside of killing lots of spike elk. Just in case anyone isn’t aware, a spike bull isn’t some genetically inferior animal, it’s merely a 17-20 month old bull (last year’s bull).
I had a spike tag in NV this year, they gave out 10 in the unit i hunted and we never saw a spike after 8 days of hunting and two days of scouting. We talked to a park ranger who lived in the middle of the unit and he said he hadn’t seen a spike in over two years, said he couldn’t understand the rational for the hunt and also commented on the negative impact the drought has had on the herd in recent years. The unit I hunted was due south of Ely, NV which isn’t far from the UT border. I guess the good news it there was a lot of monsoonal rain over the late summer and the range looked like a golf course, although most of the higher springs and 50% of the lower springs were still dry.
I have been fortunate to travel out west and hunt elk since the early 80's and killed a few elk on those trips. Lots of rag horns in CO and a few good bulls on my LE hunts. My biggest bull is far from my most memorable. I'm all for giving the most opportunity for the hunter.
I don't have any experience on any LE units that have spike hunts as far as drawing an LE bow bull tag as my LE unit is 1 of the 3 LE units that doesn't offer spike hunting.
Although, I see they are considering adding a spike hunt to 1 of the 3 in the proposals.
Another link (Land Owner Tags) as it looks like they are trying to Re-invent the Diamond Mnt. LE unit.
Good luck, Robb
Robb, there’s a lot of hunters that believe blowing up the land owner tag program is going to result in more tags for the public.
The truth is, nothing could be further from the truth.
What you’re going to have happen is this…..the landowners are going to lose out here and they’re all going to be calling in 72 hour kill notices. And the division of wildlife isn’t going to react to those notices. You know if and I know it.
And then they’re going to slaughter them to prove the point to the state. Anyone who thinks otherwise, isn’t thinking.
Sure, the public may get some extra tags for a year or 2. But the unit will end up being slaughtered from 72 hour kill Notices.
Yeah, it's screwy for sure Jeff.
There just seems to always be a lop hole or a go around to defeat the purpose.
Good luck, Robb
What’s a 72 hr kill notice?
In Utah, if a landowner has animals on his land that they don’t want on there, they call the division of wildlife and give them the legal 72 hour notice to remove the animals. Since the animals belong to the state, it’s the state’s responsibility to remove the animals. If the state doesn’t respond, which they never do, the land owner can kill them All, legally. I have a good friend that owns several thousand acres of corn. Last year, his crop damage was estimated at 300,000.00 from Bull elk.
^^^ can the LO back charge the division for damages during that 72 hr wait period...?
I am not sure if the actual details. This landowner gets quite a few depredation tags. But not enough to offset the true damages.
I don’t know if they can back charge If they get depredation tags or not.
“$300,000.00 from Bull elk” Yeah, because cows don’t eat corn.
It isn’t them eating it. The bulls go in and ravage it. Rake it, and cause an awful lot of crop damage.
This is a fact. I’ve seen it a lot. And oh yeah, they do offer the cow tags as well. But the property doesn’t get the cows very often.
I realize guys like us would love To have the crop Damage and have the elk. I know I wouldn’t care.
But I’d damn sure care if it were the elk destroying how I made my money. And don’t forget the private Property rights. Which I support 100%.
The animals belong to the state. The state has a legal obligation to remove them.
The rule/ law also states the LO is not entitled to keep the game meat and is also required to give their best attempt to preserve and care for the meat so the state can “donate” the meat.
Looks like the changes went through. Added 6 Units to the general any bull tag and a whole slew of other changes.
Spike hunts totally suck. And they don’t make the least sense. Had some horrible experiences as a result of them, and the brain dead they attract.
At least they're pushing some rifle hunts later and moving the archery dates back a bit. Going in the right direction. Too bad I won't live long enough to draw another tag.
No Paunsaugunt general archery elk hunt, and they removed the LE archery elk hunt altogether on the unit all in a matter of about 5 minutes. Piss on the archery hunters in Utah
75,000 applicants for 3100 tags…..yep, no matter what these fishing game department stew somebody is going to be ticked off.
They are taking the early rifle hunts down to 5 days.
Out of all the states screwing the NR these days, these latest Utah changes feel like a win.
Ya beat me to it Lung$hot, thanks for posting the link man.
Well, let's see what I can come up with to glide through all the options.
Good luck, Robb
Elk GS rifle and MZ dates are backwards.
So basically no changes for 2023 it seems......says will the effect 2024?
“The new plan, if approved, would take effect in 2023 and cover the next 10 years, though there would be a review of the plan in 2027 in case changes are needed along the way”
Thanks Robb's link starts with this regarding 2024, so it confused me: May 21, 2022 #1 "Anyone interested in the new LOA rules here is the proposal for the new rules that if accepted by the WB will go into effect in 2024".
Regarding this statement does anyone know which units they are proposing the additional tags?
"Slightly reducing age class objectives on select Limited Entry Units and combining the current structure into a more streamlined three-category age class system which will increase tags in certain areas to help move people through the LE system."
Limited resource. Soaring demand. A lot of people have the time and money to hunt elk every year. The resource and quality hunting will likely suffer. The golden years of elk hunting are likely in our rear view mirrors.
Well, they took away the Multi Season Any Bull hunt dang it!
$150 Ressy fee to hunt all three weapons of choice but ya could only harvest 1 Bull.
Now they are doing it on the Spike Bull units------there goes even more quality Big Bulls dying as a Spike.
They added Spike hunting on the Diamond Mnt. LE unit damn!
Good luck, Robb