Applying early boosts chances for hunters seeking antlerless tags
HARRISBURG – Pennsylvania deer hunters who want to better their chances of obtaining an antlerless license will want to send in applications during the first round of sales set to kick off on Monday.
During the first two weeks applications are accepted, only Pennsylvania residents may apply. Non-residents may apply beginning July 28. Then beginning on Aug. 4, residents and non-residents alike may apply for any unsold licenses that remain. The second round of unsold license sales is set to begin on Aug. 18.
Applications received before the Monday start of any round will be returned to sender.
Compared to the previous license year, 59,500 fewer antlerless licenses have been allocated statewide this year, and most wildlife-management units (WMUs) have fewer licenses available. That means submitting a timely application is as important as ever for hunters, said Game Commission Executive Director R. Matthew Hough.
“In wildlife-management units where the allocation is relatively small, it never takes long for licenses to sell out,” Hough said. “And while we’ve held steady the number of licenses to be allocated in a few WMUs, and have increased it in one, the fact remains there are fewer licenses available this year and hunters who want to be sure they get one would be wise not to wait.”
Hunters applying for 2014-15 antlerless deer licenses will follow the same process that has been in place during recent years. License fees also remain unchanged.
Antlerless deer license applications must be mailed directly to a county treasurer’s office, with the exception of the Philadelphia and Lehigh county treasurer offices, which no longer issue antlerless deer licenses. Treasurers across the state will accept applications for antlerless licenses covering any wildlife-management unit (WMU), but hunters should note that only county treasurers issue tags. The Pennsylvania Game Commission does not accept applications.
A list of participating treasurers and their mailing addresses, as well as the number of licenses allocated for each WMU, appear on Page 47 of the 2014-15 Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest, which hunters can pick up from a licensing agent.
The digest also is available to view online at the Game Commission’s Web site, www.pgc.state.pa.us.
Applications must be mailed in the official pink envelope issued to hunters at the time they purchase their general hunting licenses.
Hunters who are Pennsylvania residents need to submit with each application a check or money order to cover the $6.70 license fee. The license fee for non-residents is $26.70. If an application is rejected due to licenses being sold out, the uncashed check or money order will be returned to the hunter by mail.
Hunters may apply for only one antlerless license in the initial round. If licenses remain for a hunter’s chosen WMU, he or she may apply for a second license on Aug. 4 and a third on Aug. 18. Except in WMUs 2B, 5C and 5D, hunters may purchase no more than three antlerless licenses. In WMUs 2B, 5C and 5D, there’s no cap on the number of antlerless licenses that can be purchased and hunters may submit three applications per mailing beginning Aug. 4. Antlerless licenses for WMUs 2B, 5C and 5D also are sold over the counter beginning Aug. 25, providing the allocation has not been exhausted.
Hunters are allowed during each round to select their top three WMU preferences. If antlerless licenses are sold out for the WMU that is the hunter’s top choice, for example, a license for the second choice will be issued if available.
Applications from up to three separate hunters may be submitted in the same envelope. If the WMU preferences for all applications mailed in the same envelope are exactly the same, payment may be made with a single check or money order. If the applicants have different WMU preferences, payment by separate checks or money orders is strongly recommended. That way, a check won’t end up written for the wrong amount if licenses in one WMU sell out before the application is processed.
Applying early during the first round of sales helps to ensure hunters will get their antlerless licenses by the start of archery season. Archery season begins Sept. 20 in WMUs 2B, 5C and 5D. Statewide, the season begins Oct. 4.
Over-the-counter sales for licenses covering other WMUs begin Oct. 6. Hunters may apply over the counter to county treasurers for any other WMU with antlerless licenses remaining.
A listing of antlerless licenses allocated by WMU, as well as the remaining allocation, can be viewed on the Game Commission’s Web site (www.pgc.state.pa.us), by clicking on “Doe License Update” in the “Quick Clicks” box in the right-hand column of the homepage.