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Wyoming 2014 hunting forecast

 

Wyoming State Flag
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The Wyoming Game and Fish Department says that hunters can expect fair to excellent hunting for elk, deer and antelope this season, depending on region and weather conditions during the high hunter activity periods of the hunts. 

We’ve summarized the official report to give you an idea of what to expect this upcoming season. 

MULE DEER

Jackson

  • Excellent opportunity for hunters to find older bucks
  • Deer numbers have increased thanks to high over-winter survival
  • Summer rains allowed for high nutritional state of vegetation, allowing for more bucks with exceptional antler growth

Cody 

  • Mule deer numbers are still depressed in southern portion of the Bighorn Basin, and hunting is expected to be fair-to-poor
  • Doe/fawn license quotas have been reduced or eliminated to help build populations
  • Some limited quota areas should see fair-to-good hunting
  • Hunting is expected to be fair-to-good in the northern portion of the Bighorn Basin 
  • Mule deer hunters may have fewer older buck deer available in the North and South Forks of the Shoshone River

Sheridan

  • Deer hunting is expected to be about average in much of the area with below average conditions in the northeast portion of the region
  • Overall, hunters with access to private lands are expected to continue to have high success, while hunters on public lands can expect large numbers of hunters and comparatively lower success
  • Antler growth and body condition of deer appear to be good in those areas where deer have had access to better forage during this summer

Green River

  • Hunters will likely experience better hunting for mule deer in 2014
  • Overall survival of deer was very good during the last two winters in all areas, resulting in increased deer numbers across the region
  • Hunters can expect a good variety of buck age classes to choose from, and antler growth appears to be good this year due to habitat conditions

Laramie 

  • Mule deer herds across the region experienced good over-winter survival rates
  • Improved habitat has contributed to good body condition, increased fawn ratios, and increased antler growth in bucks
  • White-tailed deer hunting in southeast Wyoming should be good, especially for hunters with access to private land
  • Hunters are encouraged to review the 2014 deer hunting regulations because there have been changes in hunt areas, season dates, and limitations in the Laramie Region

Lander

  • Mule deer populations have continued to decline over the last couple of years due to poor fawn productivity and drought conditions
  • Hunters should expect shorter seasons, a reduced opportunity to harvest an antlerless deer, and antler point restrictions

Casper

  • White-tailed deer numbers are still much lower than those of the past decade
  • Following several years of poor fawn productivity, the number of mature mule deer bucks available to hunters has declined much across the region, especially on public lands where hunting pressure is heavy
  • There are quality bucks available, but numbers are low

Pinedale 

  • Hunting conditions should be good this fall
  • The Sublette and Wyoming Range deer herds are two large populations with special management strategies designed to provide high quality hunting opportunities, older age-class deer, and high buck-to-doe ratios

ELK

Jackson 

  • Outlook is generally good across the region
  • Hunters are encouraged to check regulations for season dates for hunting areas
  • Hunters are encouraged check the elk regulations for specific restrictions in the different hunt areas
  • Hunters will have opportunities to hunt on the National Elk Refuge with reduced price cow or calf licenses

Cody 

  • Overall, there is ample opportunity for elk hunting in the southern Bighorn Basin, along with some very good bull quality in most areas
  • Elk populations on the northern part of the Bighorns remains healthy and this fall there will be good opportunity again to harvest an elk
  • Better management of migratory and non-migratory elk population segments has led to dramatic changes in hunt areas northwest of Cody

Sheridan 

  • Hunters who drew an elk license for a hunt area in the Bighorn Mountains, the Rochelle Hills, or the Fortification will have the opportunity for a great hunt with the possibility of bringing home a real trophy
  • Success for general license hunters and limited quota antlerless elk license hunters tends to be much lower than those who have a limited quota elk license

Green River 

  • Elk numbers remain high and continue to increase across the region, with most populations remaining above objective, with exception of the two special management herds, South Rock Springs and Steamboat
  • Bull ratios remain high for this population
  • The West Green River herd remains above objective

Laramie 

  • Elk populations across the region have high bull ratios and productive calf ratios, demonstrating healthy elk populations with plenty of bulls available for harvest
  • Hunters should read regulations, as some seasons have changed from the 2013 season
  • Elk have learned to avoid areas with high hunting pressure, but plenty of good elk hunting should be available away from well-traveled roads and trails

Lander 

  • Elk populations are doing exceptionally well across the Lander Region
  • Favorable weather conditions should result in excellent harvest rates and hunter success in all areas

Casper

  • Elk hunters should continue to enjoy remarkable numbers of elk and good hunting success
  • Hunters in the southern Bighorns should expect to see improved bull quality and availability, with good access to antlerless elk as well
  • Elk hunters in the Laramie Range should enjoy outstanding hunt quality, especially for bull elk, as bull numbers and trophy quality remain strong

Pinedale 

  • Hunting conditions are expected to be good this fall
  • Elk numbers in the Pinedale herd remain near the upper limits of the post season trend objective despite increased hunter success and improved overall harvest in 2013
  • For the Upper Green River herd, sportsmen can anticipate good hunting conditions during the 2014 hunting season

ANTELOPE

Jackson 

  • Pronghorn hunting is very limited due to smaller amounts of pronghorn habitat
  • Hunters with permits should have good success

Cody 

  • Hunters may experience tougher hunts as drought conditions have impacted pronghorn numbers
  • Quotas are likely to be conservative
  • Hunters with type 1 any antelope licenses in hunt areas near Greybull will see good quality bucks

Sheridan

  • Outlook is generally good, with the exception of Gillette and Moorcroft
  • Hunters are allowed to purchase a second any antelope license and up to four doe/fawn licenses
  • Be aware that most pronghorn hunting is found on private land, so plan arrangements accordingly

Green River

  • Conditions were favorable for improved animal body condition and fawn production this year
  • Hunters can expect variable hunting opportunities, but outlook generally is improving
  • Fawns are exceptionally abundant in higher elevation habitats
  • Hunters are reminded to stay on established roads as region is much wetter this year

Laramie 

  • Many of this region’s herds are still below population objectives, but favorable conditions have resulted in increased fawn production and good body condition
  • Licenses were reduced this season due to lower populations, meaning hunting should be good for those with licenses
  • Hunters are encouraged to review regulations as much land in this region is privately owned

Lander 

  • Populations continue to be low across region
  • Increases in precipitation and forage production this year have led to good habitat conditions
  • Hunters can expect a better buck quality

Casper 

  • Outlook is good, but hunters should expect to see much lower antelope densities this year
  • License reductions have helped sustain hunter success rates and overall hunting opportunities
  • Buck quality will be better than normal

Pinedale 

  • Population estimates for the northern portions of the Sublette herd are slightly below objective levels
  • Pronghorn remain scattered throughout much of the area and sportsmen can expect to see a good number of bucks dispersed throughout the hunt areas

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