Oregon's emergency 2017 tag cuts for antelope and mule deer seasons

Pronghorn in field
Photo credits: Shutterstock

The upcoming antelope and mule deer seasons in eastern Oregon don’t look good. Harsh winter weather has impacted mule deer, elk and antelope herds and biologists anticipate that the winterkill tally will only continue to increase as spring surveys are completed. Because of this, the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) is reducing the number of tags for both deer and antelope in Baker, northern Malheur and Union counties.

According to an ODFW press release, these counties will see a 25% to 50% reduction in available tags. Officials hope this emergency reduction will help stabilize herds still recovering from freezing weather and high snowfall. ODFW warns that those who hunt these units will likely see fewer yearling animals (spikes and 2-points) – age classes which made up roughly 33% of Baker County’s harvest last year. For more details about which hunts will be affected, see the chart below:

2017 Oregon emergency tag reductions

Hunt NumberHunt name% tag
# of tags
now available
100 Series Buck Deer
153Catherine Cr-35%273
154AE. Mt. Emily-35%137
162Pine Creek-50%193
164Lookout Mtn-50%159
165ASE Beulah-40%297
166Malheur River-35%1,210
167ANE Owyhee-25%103
600 Series Antlerless Deer
651TBaker No. 1 Youth-50%17
651ASumpter-Unity Ag-100%No tags
663AKeating Ag-100%No tags
400 Series Antelope
451bSouth Sumpter-52%13
464Lookout Mtn-53%8
464RLookout Mtn Bow-50%11
467ROwyhee Bow-25%54

In addition to the above reductions, all landowner preference tags will also be decreased to allow wildlife to recover.

Here is a summary for the tag reduction per county:

Baker County:

  • Antelope and buck deer tags will be reduced by 50%
  • Two doe hunts on agricultural lands are canceled.

Union County:

  • All tags will be reduced by 35%.

Malheur County:

  • Beulah Unit: All tags will be reduced by 40%.
  • Owyhee Unit: All tags will be reduced by 25%.

If you have already applied for one of the impacted controlled hunts, ODFW is allowing you to change your hunt choice free of charge until June 1, 2017 using the Controlled Hunt Application Change Request form. 





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