Outdoors briefly

2012 deer bow statistics

North Dakota bowhunters compiled what is likely a record archery deer harvest during the 2012 season, according to statistics recently released by the State Game and Fish Department.

The Game and Fish Department issued 19,940 resident and 2,336 nonresident bow licenses last year, 245 more than the previous record bow license sales in 2010. Approximately 19,300 of those license buyers actually hunted, taking an estimated 6,856 deer, for an overall hunter success rate of 35.4 percent.

The total harvest included 6,440 whitetails and 416 mule deer. About 71 percent of the whitetail harvest was adult bucks, and 96 percent of the mule deer taken were adult bucks.

“As an agency, we are not surprised by the high number of archery hunters during a season in which deer gun license numbers were down considerably from previous years,” said Randy Kreil, Game and Fish Department wildlife chief. “Based on the high success rate, the archery harvest may become a significant factor in future deer management, particularly if habitat conditions continue to deteriorate and deer populations remain low.”

The 2013 archery deer season begins Aug. 30 and runs through Jan. 5, 2014.

Prospective bowhunters are reminded that this year for the first time, deer bow licenses and accompanying tags are only available through electronic purchase, either online at the Game and Fish Department website, (; by calling (800) 406-6409; or at license vendors in counties that are linked to the Game and Fish Department’s online licensing system.

In counties that are not on the Game and Fish system, deer bow licenses will not be available at the usual license vendors. In addition, hunters who purchase bow licenses online from a personal computer should allow for several days to receive their tag in the mail.

County auditors and all their authorized license vendors that are part of the Game and Fish Department electronic licensing system are: Adams, Barnes, Benson, Bottineau, Bowman, Burleigh, Cass, Dickey, Grand Forks, Grant, McIntosh, Mercer, Morton, Ramsey, Ransom, Rolette, Sargent, Stark, Steele, Stutsman, Walsh, Ward and Williams.

BOW workshops scheduled

The North Dakota Game and Fish Department is accepting registrations for Becoming an Outdoors-Woman hiking and waterfowl hunting workshops.

Hike the Maah Daah Hey is Sept. 13-15. Designed for women in good physical condition or who have previous hiking or backpacking skills, participants will experience one of North Dakota’s preeminent hiking destinations while learning backpacking tips and tricks, how to set up camp and outdoor cooking. A workshop fee of $30 includes lunch, dinner and group gear. Each participant must provide personal gear, such as a sleeping bag, hiking boots and backpack, and should pack clothes, toiletries and snacks.

A waterfowl hunting workshop is scheduled Oct. 5-6 in Bismarck. Participants will learn firearm and waterfowl safety, shotgun shooting, waterfowl identification, water/field decoys and gear, and techniques for decoying and calling waterfowl. A mentored hunt will be featured Oct. 6.

Participants for the waterfowl hunting workshop must possess a hunter education certificate, current hunting licenses and provide their own hunting clothing, boots or waders. Workshop fees of $20 include instruction, program materials and use of equipment. No lodging is provided.

BOW workshops are designed primarily for women with an interest in learning skills associated with hunting, fishing and outdoor endeavors. Although open to anyone age 18 or older, the workshops are tailored primarily to women who have never tried these activities or who are beginners hoping to improve their skills.

To receive an information brochure and enrollment form, access the Game and Fish website at (, or contact Nancy Boldt, BOW coordinator, at 328-6312.