There’s a lot of hopeful elk hunters in Wisconsin. The state recently announced that over 38,000 hunters applied for the chance to draw one of four permits available for Wisconsin’s first-ever elk hunt this fall. While the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest elk hunt has a quota of 10 bull, Chippewa tribe members will receive five tags and the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation will raffle off one more, Wisconsin Public Radio (WPR) reports.
That leaves only four licenses for the general public.
“There’s plenty of hunters from Wisconsin that go to western states to hunt elk and I think it’s just the excitement of having that same opportunity right here in Wisconsin,” Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (WDNR) Big Game Ecologist Kevin Wallenfang told WPR.
As goHUNT previously reported, this monumental hunt is a result of successful reintroduction efforts that have spanned the last 23 years. In 1995, Wisconsin officials relocated 25 Michigan elk in an effort to reintroduce the animals to their native range. This herd is now referred to as the Clam Lake herd and the herd targeted for this elk hunt. In 2015, more elk were relocated from Kentucky to create another herd in the Black River State Forest and, according to WPR, the state says there is about 50 to 60 elk between the two herds. This is great news for Wisconsin hunters interested in hunting elk in their home state.
“So, those populations are growing and as they grow we would anticipate that through the years we're going to be able to offer more hunting opportunity for elk in the state,” says Wallenfang.
According to the WDNR website, the drawing for elk tags will take place in early June. The Clam Lake elk hunt will run Oct. 13 to Nov. 11 and Dec. 13 to 21.