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Last chance to apply for MDC 2021 bear and elk hunting permits

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) reminds Missourians interested in hunting black bears and/or elk in the state this fall to apply by the end of May.

Apply by May 31 for both black-bear hunting and elk-hunting permits online at mdc.mo.gov/buypermits, through MDC’s free MO Hunting app, through a permit vendor, or by calling 1-800-392-4115. There is a $10 non-refundable application fee for each application. Missouri residents 11 years of age or older by the start of the season are eligible to apply. Eligible Missourians may apply for both.

Permit selection for bear-hunting applicants and for elk-hunting applicants will be determined by July 1 through a random drawing of all eligible applicants. Applicants can check to see if they have been selected for a permit by or after July 1 at mdc.mo.gov/buypermits by logging into “Manage Your Account” and selecting “View My Special Hunt History.”

Those selected to receive a permit must have their hunter-education certification or be exempt by age (born before Jan. 1, 1967) before they may purchase the permit. The bear-hunting permit is $25. The elk-hunting permit is $50. All permits are nontransferable.

More on Bear Hunting
MDC will be offering 400 permits for the state’s first black-bear hunting season this coming fall, Oct. 18–27. The maximum total harvest for the season will be 40 bears.

Bear hunting in Missouri is limited to Missouri residents and restricts bear hunting to three designated areas of southern Missouri called Black Bear Management Zones (BMZ). Hunters must apply for a specific Black Bear Management Zone. Permit and harvest quotas for the upcoming Oct. 18–27 bear season will be:

BMZ 1: Permit quota of 200 issued with a harvest quota of 20 bears.
BMZ 2: Permit quota of 150 issued with a harvest quota of 15 bears.
BMZ 3: Permit quota of 50 issued with a harvest quota of 5 bears.
Each permit will be for a specific BMZ and may be used on public or private property within the BMZ. At least 10% of the zone-specific black bear hunting permits will be for approved area landowners with qualifying property and the remainder for the general public.

To be considered for the bear-hunting permits allocated to approved area landowners, applicants must have at least 20 contiguous acres in the BMZ for which they applied and have their property information approved through MDC’s Landowner Permit Application before applying for a bear-hunting permit. Details can be found at mdc.mo.gov/permits/landowner-permits.

Hunters who are issued permits must call MDC prior to hunting each day to determine if the BMZ-specific harvest quota has been met. Quota information will be updated no later than midnight on each day of the black bear hunting season. If a BMZ-specific harvest quota is met, the season for that BMZ will be closed. If harvest quotas are not reached, the season will close at the end of the 10 designated hunting days.

For more information on black bear hunting in Missouri, including MDC’s new online Black Bear Hunting Digest, visit mdc.mo.gov/bearhunting.

More on Elk Hunting
MDC will be offering five permits for elk hunting this fall. MDC has designated a nine-day archery portion running Oct. 16-24 and a nine-day firearms portion running Dec. 11-19. The five permits will be for bull elk and will be valid for both portions.

At least 10% of the elk-hunting permits will be for approved area landowners with qualifying property and the remainder for the general public. To be considered for the elk-hunting permit(s) allocated to approved area landowners, applicants must have at least 20 contiguous acres in Carter, Reynolds, or Shannon counties and have their property information approved through MDC’s Landowner Permit Application before applying for an elk-hunting permit. Details can be found at mdc.mo.gov/permits/landowner-permits.

All elk-hunting permits, including those allocated to approved landowners, can be used in Carter, Reynolds, and Shannon counties, except the refuge portion of Peck Ranch Conservation Area.

For more information on elk hunting in Missouri, including MDC’s new online Elk Hunting Digest, visit mdc.mo.gov/elkhunting.