11:36am

Mon May 14, 2012
Wildlife and Hunting

Big Game Hunting: More Licenses for Moose, Bears; Fewer for Elk, Deer

The Colorado Parks and Wildlife Commission has approved big game hunting license numbers for the upcoming fall hunting seasons.

Wildlife managers will issue fewer tags this year for the so-called ‘big three’ – elk, deer and pronghorn – because of declining populations.

Parks and Wildlife spokesman Randy Hampton says the agency is focused on long-term management of herds in Colorado.

“There are some people that say, ‘Gee, fewer licenses mean I may not get a license and get to hunt this year.’ And so that can be a disappointment at first," Hampton says. "But most sportsmen recognize that, if we issue too many licenses, that can impair herds for the long term.”

On the other hand, Hampton says they will increase the number of licenses to hunt moose and black bears this year, after biologists determined the population is larger than previously thought.

A 2008 study [PDF] shows big game hunting in Colorado provides more than $430 million per year in economic impact – and supports more than 4,600 jobs in the state.