Special big game permit deadline approaches

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The special big game permit application deadline is approaching. It is less than two weeks away, May 24. This deadline surprised me this year. The beginning of the submission period for Deer, Elk, Mountain Goat, Moose, Bighorn Sheep, and Turkey began on April 20 and will continue through midnight on May 24.

The Raffle hunt deadline July 14. More on these special hunts in future columns.

Get your hands on a pamphlet and study it. There is a bit of bad news this year. Here is how Fish and Wildlife states the status and tells the story.

Early last December, an arctic wind blew into the Pacific Northwest, marking the start of some of the roughest winter weather in the past decade. The east side of the state bore the brunt of it, braving three months of repeated snowstorms, frigid temperatures, thaws, and freezing rain.

This kind of weather can take a toll on wildlife populations, including game species such as elk and deer. Aerial surveys conducted by the department in March confirmed that winter mortality levels exceeded those in recent years, particularly in areas of central and eastern Washington

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