2022 Utah Big Game Tag Proposals


Photo credit: Dreamstime

The Utah Division of Wildlife has released its proposed changes for the 2022 season and is requesting public feedback. Over the course of the next month, the five Utah Regional Advisory Councils (RAC) will meet to discuss the proposals and then provide recommendations back to the Utah Wildlife board. Once received, the board will vote on the proposals.

Meeting schedule and online comment deadlines

Meeting Date and
time
Online comment
deadline
Central Utah RAC Meeting April 5, 2022
6 p.m
March 31 at 11:59 p.m
Northern Utah RAC Meeting April 6, 2022
6 p.m
March 31 at 11:59 p.m
Southern Utah RAC Meeting April 12, 2022
6 p.m
April 7 at 11:59 p.m
Southeastern Utah RAC Meeting April 13, 2022
6:30 p.m
April 7 at 11:59 p.m
Northeastern Utah RAC Meeting April 14, 2022
6:30 p.m
April 7 at 11:59 p.m
Utah Wildlife Board Meeting April 28, 2022
9 a.m
April 21 at 11:59 p.m

Comments can be submitted for any of the Divisions proposals electronically here or by attending any of the RAC or Board meetings. 

2022 Deer Proposals

DWR biologists are recommending a total of 73,075 general season deer hunting permits in 2022, which is a 950 permit decrease from 2021. The current management plan includes an objective to have just over 400,000 deer across Utah — there are currently an estimated 305,700 deer in the state. According to Covy Jones, DWR Big Game Coordinator, "The number of permits we’re proposing for 2022 will help us achieve or maintain the objectives detailed in Utah’s mule deer management plan for harvest size, animal quality and hunting opportunity.”

2022 general season deer tag number recommendations

Unit Buck:doe
(2021)
Buck:doe
(objective)
2021
permits
2022 recommended
permits
Net
change
Beaver 15 18-20 1400 1200 -200
Box Elder 30 15-17 3700 4000 +300
Cache 22 15-17 5000 6000 +1000
Central Mtns, 
Manti/San Rafael
20 15-17 7500 7800 +300
Central Mtns, Nebo 21 15-17 3800 4100 +300
Chalk Creek/East Canyon/
Morgan-South Rich
26 18-20 8100 8500 +400
Fillmore 19 18-20 1200 1400 +200
Kamas 21 18-20 1200 1400 +200
La Sal, La Sal Mtns 16 15-17 1400 1200 -200
Monroe 17 18-20 750 650 -100
Mt Dutton 17 18-20 225 250 +25
Nine Mile 17 18-20 1650 1500 -150
North Slope 19 18-20 2400 2400 --
Ogden 23 18-20 2500 3000 +500
Oquirrh-Stansbury 16 15-17 2300 2000 -300
Panguitch Lake 21 18-20 1200 1700 +500
Pine Valley 16 18-20 4100 1700 -2400
Plateau, Boulder/
Kaiparowits
21 18-20 825 1200 +375
Plateau, Fishlake 21 18-20 800 750 -50
Plateau, Thousand Lakes 21 18-20 225 225 --
San Juan, Abajo Mtns 27 18-20 2050 2250 +200
South Slope,
Bonanza/Vernal
17 15-17 1200 1200 --
South Slope,
Yellowstone
18 18-20 1400 1300 -100
Southwest Desert 14 18-20 650 325 -325
Wasatch Mtns, East 21 18-20 4250 4250 --
Wasatch Mtns, West 15 15-17 8100 7800 -300
West Desert, Tintic 13 15-17 900 800 -100
West Desert, West 13 15-17 500 450 -50
Zion 19 18-20 3100 2325 -775

Overall, there are some big changes in a number of units, most notably the 60% cut in tags in the Pine Valley Unit and a large cut on the Zion unit. However, some units did see big bumps in tag numbers, the highest being on the Cache unit with 1,000 tags.

Some tag numbers changed slightly with the Limited Entry Deer Permits but overall these were pretty minimal.

2022 elk proposals

Overall there were not a lot of recommended changes within the Limited Entry Bull Elk Permits but there are some notable changes in a few units. The Beaver, East unit has a recommendation of an additional 13 tags and an additional 9 going to Monroe.

There are also additional proposals to add nearly 20 tags to the September Archery hunts that were new last year.

2022 Antelope proposals

Within the antelope seasons most of the proposals included adding tags to the hunts but a few hunts did see some minor cuts. In general, hunts should expect minimal change in odds for 2022.


2022 Once in a lifetime Permit Proposals

Bison

There were some big changes to Bison this year with a total restructuring of the units in the Book Cliffs and Little Creek areas. Overall, there was a net increase of 9 tags proposed for 2022 Bison.

Moose

There are a few changes for Moose but most of these are fairly minimal. In total, the total number of proposed tags is down 2 permits from 112 to 110.

Desert Bighorn Sheep

Most of the proposed Desert Bighorn Sheep proposals are fairly minimal but there are a few big cuts. The Kaiparowits, West unit is seeing a proposed cut from 11 to 5 permits and the Zion late season, which had a total of 4 permits in 2021, is proposed to cancel.

Rocky Mountain Bighorn Sheep

Very few notable changes can be found in the Rocky Mountain Bighorn Sheep proposals but it is worth noting that all three of the seasons offered on the Box Elder, Newfoundland Mtn have proposed cuts with a total of 6 tags being cut from the three seasons. 

Rocky Mountain Goat

Overall, there were some big cuts in a few units for Rocky Mountain Goats, while most units saw little to no change. The Chalk Creek/Kamas, Unitas unit has a proposed change from 12 tags to 3 while the Noth Slope/South Slope, High Uintas Central, and North Slope/South Slope, High Unitas West hunts are seeing cuts of 4 and 6 permits, respectively.

Conclusion

Overall, most hunters will not be affected by the proposed changes, but a few are, and the changes could mean the difference between getting a tag and not. It will be interesting to watch the RAC meeting over the next month to see how the general consensus is with some of these.

Submit comments on the proposals here

Comments

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