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Montana Bill Would Limit Certain Animals to One Per Lifetime

Glacier National Park

Montana House Bill 390 would make changes to age requirements for certain licenses, as well as limiting the take of certain animals to one per lifetime.

Representative Denley Loge [R] introduced the bill to the house on February 5th. The bill amends Section 2. Section 87-2-702, MCA, to read: “A person may take only one of each of the following species in Montana in that person’s lifetime.”

  • grizzly bear

  • antlered moose

  • ram mountain sheep

  • mountain goat

This does not apply to licenses issued for disease management and depopulation purposes. We can assume this provision allows for more tags to be issued Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks for areas that become overpopulated as a result.

Persons under the age of 18 would no longer be able to apply for antlered moose, mountain goat, mountain sheep or grizzly bear license under this new bill. However, they would still be able to apply for antlerless moose and ewe mountain sheep. Previously the regulations stated that an applicant could be 12 years or older.

Our Take

On the surface, this bill gives the appearance of increasing the odds of a license draw. However, there are so many hunters applying for tags that just isn’t the case. In reality, the bill punishes those under 18. Look at it like this, a young hunter now has to wait an additional 6 years before they can start earning draw points for a license that is already extremely difficult to get.

Does this really help the conservation of these species? Could they not be managed by controlling the number of tags issued as is the current law?

Status Update 4/10/19

The bill was introduced to the house on February 5th. It was heard by the Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks Committee on February 26th. Currently, it missed the deadline for revenue bill transmittal. Historically this has meant that the bill is dead. However, the bill could be revised or reintroduced. If passed, the bill would take effect March 1st of 2020.

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