MONTPELIER, Vt. – Vermont’s muzzleloader season antlerless deer hunting permit applications are now available on Vermont Fish & Wildlife’s website at www.vtfishandwildlife.com. The deadline to apply for a muzzleloader antlerless deer permit is August 24.
New this year, hunters applying online for an antlerless permit will do so through the online license sales system as if they were purchasing a license or a tag using their conservation ID number, or CID#. Landowners who do not have a Conservation ID number will need to create a profile through the online license sales system to apply for a landowner application even if they do not intend to purchase a hunting license. Paper applications will also be available at license agents by the end of June.
The December 2-10 muzzleloader season would have 24,500 antlerless permits distributed in 18 of Vermont’s 21 Wildlife management Units (WMU), which is estimated to result in 3,608 antlerless deer being taken.
Landowners who post their land may not apply for a muzzleloader landowner antlerless deer permit.
“We are recommending an increase in muzzleloader season antlerless deer permits this year to account for the increase in the deer population following another mild winter in 2017,” said Nick Fortin, deer project leader for the Fish & Wildlife Department. “Much of Vermont has experienced two consecutive very mild winters. As a result, the recommendation is intended to stabilize or reduce deer densities in some parts of the state while allowing for moderate population growth in other areas.”
“We expect the statewide deer population to be about 157,000 prior to the start of the 2017 deer seasons,” said Fortin.
The Fish and Wildlife Board sets antlerless deer hunting rules for the fall deer hunting seasons based on the recommendations of department biologists and input from the public. The department’s annual recommendation is based on population estimates, biological data, winter severity data, and deer sighting rates reported by hunters, as well as input from game wardens, foresters and the public.
Antlerless deer may also be taken during the archery season and during youth deer hunting weekend.