The general hunting season in Montana starts this Saturday. Regional Wildlife Manager for Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks, Mike Thompson, says the season runs for five weeks through the Sunday after Thanksgiving.

"This is the time of year we're hunting mule deer, white-tailed deer, and elk, although some of the special trophy seasons have been going on for some time now," Thompson said. "With a permit, hunters have been going after moose, bighorn  sheep and those species. Of course, you'll need a license to hunt for any animals in Montana, and you can pick up a license at just about any sporting goods store, or here at the FWP office."

Thompson said safety is the number one concern that Fish, Wildlife and Parks officials have about hunters in the field.

"You definitely want to be seen, and you want people to see you, that's why wearing hunter's orange is so important," he said. "We just don't want any accidents out there. What a way to ruin a person's life, we just want everybody to be safe out there."

Thompson said most new hunters think the hardest job is finding the game, but experienced hunters know better.

"Field dressing an animal is so important," he said. "There are lots of videos on YouTube that can show you how to properly field-dress an animal. You've got to get the carcass cooled down as quickly as possible. That's when the real work starts, getting the animal dressed and out of the wild. If you'll be leaving part of the carcass, place it so you can see it from a distance, so that when you return, you can see other predators that may be  nearby. A bear or a lion is tougher than you are, so let them have their quarter, and wait till they're gone."

Thompson said wolf season has been underway for some time.

"An individual can take up to five wolves, either by trapping or hunting, but cumulatively, there is no limit to the number of wolves that can be taken in the state," Thompson said. "The rifle season for wolves continues through March 15th."

Thompson said to dress in layers for comfort and safety, and to make sure you either hunt with a partner, or let someone know where you are going and when you plan to return, so that if something happens, they will know where to start their search.


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