New Brunswick

Sex-specific moose licences considered by Natural Resources

The Department of Natural Resources is considering sex-specific moose licences among other possible changes for the 2017 provincial moose-hunting season.

DNR says they would allow for a 'modest increase in licenses through reduction in hunter success.'

Natural Resources says it will complete research and stakeholder consultations before committing to any changes. (Justin Hoffman/CBC)

The Department of Natural Resources is considering sex-specific moose licences among other possible changes for the 2017 provincial moose-hunting season.

According to documents obtained by CBC News through the Right to Information Act, hunters being regulated to harvesting moose of a specific sex would allow for a "modest increase in licences through reduction in hunter success."

The documents show the province has been exploring four other options for moose hunting seasons in the years to come.  

The first document details the creation of a split season. Memos detail the "optimum timing" for the two seasons to take place at the end of September and "the week before deer rifle season," which is usually held at the start of the last full week of October. 

It lists avoiding another rifle season and giving butchers time to process meat as benefits to the model. 

The option to allow hunters to choose which season they would prefer is also being discussed with the implementation of a split-season. 

'Way to early' to discuss 2017

The documents detail two other options including a return to the three-day season, or five-day season models.  

"At this time the department has limited written materials related to a split season," wrote Denis Landry, minister of the Department of Natural Resources.

"But [the department] is exploring the possibility and will be conducting research on the matter and speaking with shareholders about the issue in the coming months." 

The department has also considered the implementation of a three-day season with a reduced harvest rate, similar to hunts prior to 2011. This would allow DNR to regain management flexibility according to documents.  

The earliest a split season would come into effect would be 2017. Documents show the split season has been under consideration since 2013. 

The 2016 moose hunt will return to a three-day hunt after the province ran five-day seasons in 2015 and 2014. 

CBC reached out to DNR for comment on the proposed changes.

Marc Belliveau, a department spokesperson, wrote in an email that "it's far too early to discuss potential changes to 2017 season. Way too early." 

About the Author

Shane Fowler

Reporter

Shane Fowler has been a CBC journalist based in Fredericton since 2013.

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