By Jan Schultz
The Imperial Republican
Some of them were gone in July. Others are dwindling fast in number.
That’s the reality for firearm deer hunters who hope to get a permit in the popular Frenchman Unit for the 2015 season.
With the nine-day season kicking off this Saturday across the state, those hoping to hunt in the Frenchman Unit, which includes Chase County, have to act quickly.
On Monday, three permit options were still available in the Frenchman Unit.
The Frenchman Antlerless Only Season’s Choice had 665 permits left of 1,000 available.
In the Frenchman West Antlerless Only Season’s Choice, just 40 remained, 10 percent of the original 400 available.
In the Frenchman Whitetail, just 34 were left out of an original 500 offered.
All of the 1,700 resident and nonresident Mule Deer Conservation Area permits up for draw were filled in July, said Game & Parks Officer Brian Piernicky of McCook, who is helping cover Chase County in the absence of an officer here.
That popular permit has more applications than permits so hunters’ names are drawn in July for the 1,656 resident and 144 nonresident mule deer permits.
Piernicky doubted any of the few whitetail permits still available early this week would still be so by the weekend.
Hunters can check permit available on the Game & Parks website: outdoornebraska.org
While he hasn’t spent a lot of time in this area, with other officers also helping to cover, he said it appears there are good numbers of deer in the Chase County area.
He believes success rate will compare to previous years.
Based on weather forecasts of 60-degree conditions Saturday, it will be warmer than hunters like, he noted.
That means successful hunters will need to make plans to get the deer dressed and cooled down quickly.
Game & Parks: prospects look good for success
Nebraska Game & Parks officials say hunting prospects look good as restrictions on antlerless deer permits in recent years have resulted in deer population increases in most areas of the state.
Among the advantages of deer hunting in Nebraska are ample opportunities on private and public land, they say.
The Open Fields and Waters program offers public walk-in hunting access on private property, with sites displayed in the 2015 Public Access Atlas.
Available public ground also includes nearly 250 state-owned wildlife management areas.
Hunters are reminded to that anyone hunting deer with a firearm permit during a firearm season must wear blaze orange. This also includes archers hunting during the firearm season.
The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission offers these additional reminders:
Only take good shots into a vital organ. The best shot is made on a broadside or quarter-away deer and hits the heart and lungs.
Have a plan for the cleaning, cooling, transporting and processing of deer.
Firearm deer hunters and archers harvesting deer during the firearm season must deliver their deer to a check station no later than 1 p.m. on the day following the close of the season.
The season runs Nov. 14-22.
In Chase County, Laker’s in Enders is an official Game & Parks check station.