- Associated Press - Monday, May 8, 2017

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) - The South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks Department wants to cut the number of deer hunting licenses and tags available for the next two years for the state’s two largest deer seasons by more than 10,000.

Proposals presented Thursday would cut doe licenses more drastically, with the East River seeing a 44 percent reduction, to just under 13,000 tags, and the West River seeing a 33 percent reduction, to about 5,800 tags, the Capital Journal reported (https://bit.ly/2qJH1z4 ).

Buck tags in the East River would be reduced by 5 percent to just under 18,900. Buck tags in the West River would see a 2 percent drop, to just over 16,000.

The department says that last year, 44 percent of East River deer hunters were successful, while 53 percent of hunters in the West River were successful.

However, Black Hills had a hunter success rate of about 72 percent in 2016. It ties with 2015 for having the highest hunter success rate in the late five years. The Black Hills season proposal asks for an increase of about 200 licenses, raising the license total to 4,300.

The East River season proposal also contains a request for a new hunting unit along the Missouri River in Brule county. It would be comprised only of public land and have 30, single-tag firearm licenses issued.

The proposals are scheduled to receive a public hearing and commission vote June 8.

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Information from: Pierre Capital Journal, https://www.capjournal.com


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