FWP accidentally issues too many moose, bighorn sheep licenses; recall ordered

Four Montana moose hunters and 60 bighorn sheep tag applicants are in for some very bad news.

Fish, Wildlife & Parks over-allocated these highly prized tags in seven different hunting districts in its recent drawing. Realizing the mistake, the agency is issuing a recall.

Operator error inputting incorrect quotas was to blame, said Greg Lemon, FWP spokesman. Although the data is double-checked, the errors weren’t caught. The bureau’s staff realized the error on May 16 and put a block on the ability for successful applicants in the affected districts to purchase their license.

The way the drawings are held, the Licensing Bureau can see the order in which hunters drew their tag and make the necessary correction to match the quotas.

“It’s a travesty,” said Doug Krings, board member for the Central Montana Chapter of Backcountry Hunters & Anglers. “I can’t imagine finally drawing a permit like that just to have it pulled back.”

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