Hunters looking to acquire deer management permits in portions of Jefferson, St. Lawrence and Franklin counties this year may be out of luck as the state Department of Environmental Conservation has eliminated their sale for select hunting area units for the first time in about 15 years.
The new deer management permit restrictions are for the departments unit 6A, an area north of Route 11 near the St. Lawrence River, crossing into Franklin County, up to Route 30 near the Canadian border.
The restrictions within the region are the first since the late 1990s.
Deer management permits, also known as doe tags, allow for antlerless deer to be killed in any valid hunting season.
The change will not affect other hunters with muzzle-loader or bowhunting privileges.
A DEC spokesman said the regulations were due to a limited number of deer in the region.
A DEC citizen task group, which last met in 2009, called for a 10 percent increase in deer populations in the region, leading to reduced deer management permits being offered in the three years since that plan was outlined. Despite these limitations, the department has tracked a decline in the deer population in the region.
Several other regions in the North Country area have also been labeled as not allowing deer management permits to be sold for the season
A map with these labels can be found at www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/30409.html. A description of each of the regions can be found at www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/9336.html#WMU6A.