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2016/17 ALBERTA HUNTING REPORT

Where did your 2016/17 Hunting Licence Dollars go?
  • A total of $18M in revenue was collected from the sale of hunting licences, hunting draw applications and WiN cards.
  • Over 47% of hunting licence revenue goes directly to the Alberta Conservation Association levy in support of programming (For more information please visit
    www.ab-conservation.com).
  • Licence allocation and administration fees accounted for just over 25% and provides compensation to licence issuers, pays for licensing services including the annual hunter harvest & effort survey delivered through AlbertaRelm.com
  • *The Alberta Professional Outfitter Society levies are applied solely to non-resident alien licences.


For more information, visit
mywildalberta.com/BuyLicences/AnnualSalesStatistics

Alberta Hunters
● 137,500 hunters hunted in Alberta in 2016.
● 10% of Alberta hunters are women.


Alberta Big Game Hunters
● Over 118,000 big game hunters in Alberta.
● 18% purchased Bowhunting Permits.

 
Youth Hunters in Alberta in 2016
● 8,350 Youth Wildlife Certificates were sold in 2016. A Youth Wildlife Certificate costs $8.30 and includes a Game Bird Licence.
● 7,000 Youth White-tailed deer and 1,750 Youth Mule Deer Special Licences were sold in 2016 at a very reasonable fee of $8.25.
● Did you know that you can legally share almost any big game Special Licence opportunity with a youth hunter using the Youth Partner Licence for only $12.00. In 2016, 128 youth hunters took advantage of this mentorship opportunity allowing them to hunt elk, moose, bighorn sheep, pronghorn antelope and Merriam’s turkey.
 
Hunter Hosts in Alberta in 2016
● In 2016, over 2,500 Albertans hosted over 3,000 friends and family to hunt with them in Alberta.
● 90% of hunters hosted were Canadian while 10% were from outside of Canada.
 
Alberta Special Licence Draws
● 104,800 hunters made over 435,000 draw applications with over 85% of applications being made online at AlbertaRelm.com
● Compared to last year, 7% fewer hunters participated; however, each hunter applied on more draws averaging 4.2 applications per hunter.
 
 
Hunter Activity and Harvest Reports
● 32% of Special Licence holders and 26% of General Licence holders completed over 85,000 harvest and effort surveys in 2016.
● Hunter harvest and effort information has been collected every year for over 20 years and is used to assist wildlife managers in making allocation decisions.
● Since 2014, hunters who participate in the survey are given a chance to
win a Special Licence opportunity of their choice for either an elk, moose, mule deer or antelope.
● For 2017, submission of hunter harvest information will be more
convenient than ever before, allowing hunters to report harvest and effort in real-time at AlbertaRelm.com.
● Please visit mywildalberta.ca to see 2016 survey results.

ENFORCEMENT UPDATE
New for the 2017
Hunting Season


● Enforcement Officers have a new tool designed to assist hunter/angler licensing compliance.

● Officers are able to quickly scan a hunter’s licences and tags to ensure that they are valid.

In 2017, 14,913 Number of Hunters Checked
998 Number of Wildlife Related Offenses

Did you know that in 2015, there were more than 3000 wildlife-related enforcement actions taken that also included investigations and response from calls on the
Report A Poacher line.


TOP 5 Offenses
1. Loaded firearm on vehicle/aircraft/boat
2. Fail to carry a licence while hunting
3. Hunting without a licence
4. Possession of a weapon in a wildlife sanctuary/corridor
5. Unlawful possession of wildlife

Source: Fish and Wildlife Enforcement Branch, Justice and Solicitor General.




VOLUNTARY BLACK BEAR TOOTH SUBMISSION PROGRAM

The department has initiated a 3-year pilot voluntary black bear tooth collection program in two parts of the province. Data generated from laboratory tooth analysis will allow biologists to determine black bear age structure, reproductive statistics, and better inform black bear management. Laboratory aging of an animal is based on the cementum annuli growth in the tooth.

Fish and Wildlife are asking successful hunters to take the skull to an identified Fish and Wildlife office where staff will extract a premolar tooth. The premolar tooth is a small peg-like tooth located just behind the canines. Skulls submitted in a frozen state will be kept for a period of time to allow for thaw and extraction, whereupon the skull will be frozen and returned to the hunter. Extraction of a premolar tooth will not impair the display quality of a skull.

Alternatively, hunters can extract a premolar tooth in the field or request it of a taxidermist. The tooth can either be presented with the necessary harvest information to an identified Fish and Wildlife office or mailed in using a tooth submission envelope. Extraction is easily done just after the bear has been harvested when the jaw is still pliable. The tooth is easily loosened by running a knife blade on all sides of the tooth below the gum line and rocking the tooth back and forth. The tooth can then be removed with pliers. Care should be taken to ensure the root remains intact. Ensure that the tooth is free of tissue and dry prior to submission.

Information required as part of the program are harvest date, sex of bear, WIN, WMU where harvested, and either legal land location or latitude/longitude of kill site. When available, results for each tooth will be accessible online under your WIN number on the My Wild Alberta website (mywildalberta.com). Only WMUs 318, 320, 322, 324, 326, 328, 330, 332, 500, 501, 502, 503, 504, 506, 509, 510, 511, 512, 514, 515, 516, 517, 518, 519, 529, 530, and 531 are open to this program.

Fish and Wildlife offices accepting skulls or tooth submissions are: Fort McMurray, Lac La Biche, Athabasca, Bonnyville, Cold Lake, Rocky Mountain House, Sundre and Drayton Valley.


MARKED WILDLIFE

Some species of wildlife are banded, collared or marked by other means in an ongoing effort to gain additional population biology information. You can assist and cooperate in these programs by reporting encounters with any marked animal to the nearest Fish and Wildlife office.

Some of these marked wildlife, as well as certain nuisance animals (e.g., some black bears), may have received drugs for research purposes or to facilitate their capture and handling. Any such animal will be marked with a tag advising that the meat of the animal should not be consumed before contacting the Fish and Wildlife of Alberta Environment and Parks.

Report Waterfowl Leg Bands by Telephone or Internet
All waterfowl leg bands recovered in North America can now be reported by telephoning the toll-free number 1-800-327-BAND (1-800-327-2263). Band recovery can also be reported by internet at the website www.reportband.gov.


CHRONIC WASTING DISEASE AND DEER MANAGEMENT

Chronic wasting disease (CWD) is a chronic degenerative and ultimately fatal prion disease of cervids (primarily mule deer in Alberta). It is not known to infect humans but health authorities advise against eating any animal known to have any prion disease. In Alberta, CWD occurs in eastern and east central regions and particularly in the Battle River and Red Deer/South Saskatchewan watersheds. Up to date information, including maps of previous cases, is available on our wildlife disease web pages at http://aep.alberta.ca/fish-wildlife/wildlife-diseases/chronic-wasting-disease/default.aspx

Hunters and outfitters play a key role in assisting big game management by helping to reduce deer numbers and by providing heads from harvested deer for the ongoing CWD surveillance program. Alberta began looking for CWD in wild deer in the hunting seasons in 1998. Since then, we have tested over 60,000 heads and have found CWD in 516 mule deer, 73 white-tailed deer, 1 unknown deer, 1 elk, and 1 moose.

Note : It is a mandatory requirement to submit the head of all deer harvested in the following WMUs: 102, 116, 118, 119, 124, 138, 142, 144, 148, 150, 151, 152, 156, 158, 160, 162, 163, 164, 166, 200, 202, 203, 204, 206, 208, 228, 230, 232, 234, 236, 238, 240, 242, 254, 256, 258, 500, 728, and 730. New WMUs of special concern include WMUs 250, 252 and 260. Antlers and skull plate can be removed from bucks before the head is submitted. For European mounts, keep the top portion of the skull and submit the lower portion including the lower jaw, the tissues at the back of the throat, and the part of the skull that contains the connection between the spinal cord and the brain.


All heads for testing, including the partial skull samples (as above), must have a green CWD label which gives each head a unique identification number. Be sure to include either GPS or land location as well as WMU and your WIN number for each head. When available, test results for each NEGATIVE head are sent to the email address in the hunter’s AlbertaRELM account. AEP directly contacts each hunter who harvests an animal with CWD.

For more information about CWD, contact your local Fish and Wildlife office or visit aep.alberta.ca.


Alberta Health recommends that deer from the CWD mandatory areas be tested for CWD. For more information about potential human health risks associated with CWD visit health.alberta.ca



REPORT A POACHER

IMPORANT THINGS TO KNOW:
Report A Poacher can be reached all day, every day.
1-800-642-3800.

  • All calls are kept strictly confidential and you can remain anonymous.
  • If you see something that may be poaching, record as much information as possible:
    - Date and time
    - Location
    - Vehicle description and licence number
    - Description of who was involved in the crime
    - Details of the violation and any other details you can think of, no matter how insignificant they might seem
  • The information you provide could lead to a conviction (and possibly a reward for your help).
  • Poaching covers a wide range of violations including:
    - Fishing or hunting out of season
    - Night hunting
    - Hunting from the road
    - Exceeding limits
    - Hunting while intoxicated
    - Illegal sales of wildlife or fish
  • The Report A Poacher line can also be used for reporting major violations to land and habitat such as tree harvesting or destruction of stream beds.
  • Please familiarize yourself with Alberta's Hunting and Fishing regulations to help protect Alberta.

WILD GAME PUBLIC HEALTH ADVISORY

The wild game public health advisory for the Swan Hills area – originally issued on December 13, 1996, by the Provincial Health Officer – has been revised as a result of more extensive wild game testing. While recent test results confirm that eating wild game from the Swan Hills area poses no immediate threat to human health, it is recommended that individuals limit the amount of wild game eaten.

For more information contact Alberta Health and Wellness at 780-427-7164 or visit My Wild Alberta at http://mywildalberta.com/Hunting/SafetyProcedures/HarvestedWildlifeHumanHealth.aspx

Swan Hills Treatment Centre
15 km radius around Swan Hills Treatment Centre


COMMON LICENCE MISTAKES

GENERAL MULE DEER LICENCE
This general licence is valid during the “archery only” season, which precedes the general season. It is valid during the general season in the following WMUs: 316, 352, 353, 355, 412, 414, 432, 440-446, 512-519, 528-534, 536, 539-542 and 841. This licence is not valid during a season in which a Special Licence is required. In the Alberta Guide to Hunting Regulations, special licences are required for all seasons where a small black box is located beside the season date.

SUPPLEMENTAL ANTLERLESS WHITE-TAILED DEER LICENCE

The Supplemental Antlerless White-tailed Deer Licence is issued with two tags. The FIRST tag issued with the licence (but NOT the second tag) is valid for tagging a deer hunted in one of the following WMUs: 310-314, 322, 324, 330, 332, 336-349, 351, 354, 356, 357, 360, 436-439, 505, 507-510, 523, 526, 527, 535 and 537. Both tags are valid for tagging a deer(s) hunted in any of the following WMUs: 350, 352, 353, 355, 440-446, 511, 512, 515-521, 524, 525, 528-531, 534, 536, 539, 540, 542 and 544.

YOUTH MULE DEER LICENCE
This general licence is available for resident hunters who are 12-17 years of age and who are eligible to hunt. It is a general licence that is valid during the “archery only” season, which precedes the general season. It is valid during the general season in the following WMUs: 316, 352, 353, 355, 412, 414, 432, 440-446, 512-519, 528-534, 536, 539-542 and 841. This licence is not valid during a season in which a Special Licence is required. In the Alberta Guide to Hunting Regulations, special licences are required for all seasons where a small black box is located beside the season date.

YOUTH WHITE-TAILED DEER LICENCE
This licence is valid for resident hunters who are 12-17 years of age and who are eligible to hunt. It is a general licence and is valid during a general season (archery or rifle). Because it is a general licence, it can not be used during the rifle season in WMUs 404, 406 and 408 (a special licence is required). In the Alberta Guide to Hunting Regulations, special licences are required for all seasons where a small black box is located beside the season date.

SUPPLEMENTAL BLACK BEAR LICENCE
This licence is only valid in WMUs 224, 250, 258, 260, 320-360, 429, 445, 500-544 and 841.

SPECIAL LICENCES
If you are drawn for a special licence, your draw priority returns to zero and that draw cannot be cancelled. You may not be able to purchase a particular general licence once you have been drawn for a special licence of that same species. Example: if you are drawn for Antlered Mule Deer, Antlered White-tailed Deer or Antlered, Antlerless, or Calf Moose you will not be able to purchase a general licence for that species. If you are drawn for Either Sex Elk, WMU 300 Elk, Antlered or Antlerless Elk, you will not be able to purchase a general elk licence. Resident hunters are able to purchase an elk licence in combination with the WMU 212 Antlerless Elk Archery and the WMU 212 Antlerless Elk Special Licence. See licence combinations.