Diseased Deer Prompt Immediate Changes to Region 4 Deer Hunting

By BRUCE AUCHLY for Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks

The Fish and Wildlife commission has taken additional action to address the effects of disease on white-tailed deer in north central Montana.

Over the counter Region 4 antlerless white-tailed deer B licenses purchased after Oct. 18 will not be valid in R4 hunting districts north and west of the Missouri River. They will be valid, however, for R4 districts south and east of the Missouri, except HD 455.

All white-tailed B licenses purchased before Oct. 18 will remain valid for the entire region, except HD 455.

In addition, Region 6 over the counter antlerless white-tailed B licenses are no longer for sale.

In a related action on Oct. 10, the Commission approved an emergency change to the deer hunting regulations for hunting districts 400, 401, 403, 404 and 406, north of Great Falls. In those districts, general deer licenses are now valid for either sex white-tailed deer and mule deer bucks. Previously, hunters could take either sex, either species.

This change is due to a disease hitting white-tailed deer. Epizootic hemorrhagic disease, EHD, was widespread in Montana this fall, including FWP Region 4. EHD primarily affects whitetails.

Landowners and sportsman have reported finding dead white-tailed deer throughout North central Montana since late July.