September 7, 2012
Fall Archery Deer and Turkey Seasons Open September 15
The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) reminds sportsmen that the 2012 fall archery hunting season for deer and wild turkey opens September 15. From September 15 to December 31, bowhunters can hunt for both deer and turkeys on designated state lands and on private land where they have written permission of the landowner. In zone 11 (Fairfield County area) and zone 12 (Connecticut shoreline towns), archery hunters can hunt for deer and turkeys from September 15, 2012, until January 31, 2013.
When hunters harvest a deer or turkey, they are required to fill out a Harvest Tag, sign it, and keep the Harvest Tag with the animal until it is processed for consumption. When transporting a harvested deer or turkey, the tag does not have to be attached to the animal. Hunters can carry the completed, signed Harvest Tag in their pocket so there is no chance of losing it. However, if the animal is left in the woods or at a vehicle, the Harvest Tag must remain with the animal. In this instance, it is recommended that the Harvest Tag be placed in a plastic bag and secured to the animal. Copies of Harvest Tags are on page 27 of the 2012 Connecticut Hunting and Trapping Guide and are also available on the DEEP Web site at www.ct.gov/deep/hunting
Hunters are required to report their deer and turkey kills within 24 hours using one of two methods. Kills can be reported on the DEEP website (www.ct.gov/deep/hunting
) or by calling a toll free number (1-877-337-4868). Deer hunters in deer management zones 11 and 12 who take advantage of the Replacement Antlerless and Earn-a-Buck tag programs must complete this same tagging and reporting procedure prior to going to a check station that issues replacement tags. A listing of replacement tag vendors is available on the DEEP Web site, at DEEP offices, and at most licensing agents. After reporting their harvest via the Internet or by telephone, hunters will be given a confirmation number to write on their Harvest Tag. This confirmation number serves as proof that the harvest was legally reported.
Bowhunters are reminded that they must wear 400 square inches of fluorescent orange while walking to and from their tree stands during the firearms deer hunting season. However, once in a tree stand, elevated at least 10 feet off the ground, bowhunters may remove the fluorescent orange clothing.
“The outlook for the 2012 hunting season is very good,” said Howard Kilpatrick, a Deer/Turkey Program biologist for the DEEP Wildlife Division. “Although there are good deer hunting opportunities throughout most of Connecticut, the southwest corner of the state and many of the shoreline towns provide the best opportunities, especially for bowhunters. Many landowners use the archery deer hunting season as a safe and effective method of reducing deer populations, especially in the more developed areas of the state where firearms hunting may not be feasible.”
In these areas (deer management zones 11 and 12), the DEEP has continued to liberalize the deer hunting season to maximize hunter efficiency and lower deer populations to more desirable levels.
The fall 2012 acorn crop appears to be low to moderate. A poor acorn crop usually equates to higher hunter success rates due to increased movements of deer traveling between bedding and feeding sites.
All private land archery hunters, whether they are hunting deer or turkey, are required to carry a DEEP consent form signed by the landowner and dated for the current season. Deer and turkey permits can be purchased on-line at www.ct.gov/deep/sportsmenlicensing
or at participating town halls, vendors, and at some DEEP offices. The guide and consent forms also can be accessed on the DEEP Web site at www.ct.gov/deep/hunting
. Hunters should consult the DEEP Web site for an up-to-date listing of new state lands open to archery hunting. Bowhunters also are reminded that they are required to have a bowhunter education certificate before purchasing an archery deer permit.