Oklahoma Muzzleloader Deer Season Nears

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Oklahoma Muzzleloader Deer Season NearsWhile deer archery hunters are already afield hunting, hunters await the opening of the 2008 deer muzzleloader season slated for Oct. 25.

Muzzleloader season spans nine days (Oct. 25 – Nov. 2). The modern gun season opens Nov. 22 and runs for 16 days. Archery season remains open through Jan. 15, 2009.

From wide-open prairie to pine-covered mountains, deer call every part of Oklahoma home, and several wildlife management areas across the state offer hunting for at least part of the muzzleloader season, some through special draw hunts that give sportsmen a unique opportunity to change up their usual hunting routine.

To learn more about deer hunting on wildlife management areas, consult the current “Oklahoma Hunting Guide” or log on to the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation’s Web site at wildlifedepartment.com. The Web site offers regulations, useful hunting information and an award-winning digital wildlife management area atlas. And best of all, it is free. In addition to detailed maps, sportsmen can find information such as camping locations and contacts for local biologists.

During muzzleloader season, hunters can harvest a buck and two antlerless deer, and most of the state is open to antlerless hunting every day during the season. In addition to an appropriate hunting license and fishing and hunting legacy permit (unless exempt), resident muzzleloader hunters must possess a deer license for each deer harvested. If a hunter harvests two antlerless deer, at least one of those antlerless deer must be taken in antlerless zone two (consult page 21 of the current “Oklahoma Hunting Guide for a map of antlerless zones). Nonresident muzzleloader hunters must also carry a fishing and hunting legacy permit and a nonresident deer muzzleloader license for each deer harvested. However, nonresidents are exempt from the purchase of a hunting license while hunting deer.

Oklahoma Muzzleloader Deer Season NearsHunters can harvest a turkey with their muzzleloaders Nov. 1-2 in most of the state. A fall turkey license is required, unless exempt. Fall turkey gun season runs Nov. 1-21, and details on the season are available in the current “Oklahoma Hunting Guide.”

Hunters age 10-35 who have not completed hunter education can buy an apprentice-designated hunting license and hunt while accompanied by a licensed hunter 21 years old or older who has completed the hunter education course, or a licensed hunter 21 years old or older who is otherwise exempt from hunter education (includes those 36 years old or older, those honorably discharged or currently active in the Armed Forces or members of the National Guard). Hunters under 10 years old must complete a hunter education course to hunt big game or to buy any big game hunting license.

For specific information regarding which areas are open to muzzleloader season, licenses, bag limits, blaze orange clothing requirements or legal firearms, consult the current “Oklahoma Hunting Guide” or log onto wildlifedepartment.com.