SALEM, Ore.—Don’t wait until the last minute to apply for a controlled or premium hunt as the May 15 deadline falls on a Sunday this year.
Apply online at ODFW’s Licensing System (which accepts applications until 11:59 p.m. on May 15) or at a license sale agent during store hours. Applications are $8 per hunt series (buck deer, antlerless deer, elk, pronghorn, bighorn sheep, Rocky Mountain goat) and an annual hunting license is also required.
Remember there are changes to archery elk hunting this year. New for 2022, archery elk hunting is controlled in 13 units and three subunits in eastern Oregon’s Blue Mountains (see the regulations for a map). For the second year, all archery deer hunting in eastern Oregon is controlled. These controlled deer and elk archery tags are not valid during general archery seasons. For a list of other major changes see the 2022 Regulations and What’s New for 2022.
Here are some tips for applying for a controlled hunt, see how-to for step-by-step instructions to apply online.
- Use group purchase. One person can apply for an entire hunting party and for their family and friends. Directions on how to use Group Purchase.
- Double-check regulations before applying. Even if you’ve applied for the same hunt for years, check your hunt number and be sure the hunt hasn’t changed.
- Don’t wait until the last minute. ODFW offices are closed so staff will not be available to help customers by phone or email during the weekend. If you wait until the last weekend and have problems with your online account, ODFW recommends you visit a license agent to make your purchase.
- Be sure to apply for a Premium Hunt—deer, elk and pronghorn antelope tags with a four-month season (Aug. 1-Nov. 30) and any-sex bag limit. Everyone has an equal chance to draw these tags (including non-residents). Premium tags are additional meaning you can also hunt a controlled or general season.
- Change your mind after applying? You have until June 1 to change your hunt choice through your account or license sale agent.
As of May 1, 164,706 controlled hunt applications have been sold. Last year (2021), a total of 526,361 controlled hunt applications were received with most applications coming in the last week before the deadline.
“We again urge hunters to not wait until the last minute this year,” said Jeannine Smith, ODFW Licensing Services Manager. “The majority of applications come in during the last few days before the deadline and our hold and email response times peak.”
Big game herds fared well over the winter, as the mild weather resulted in little over-winter morality. But severe drought conditions are exacerbating poor habitat conditions for mule deer resulting in some emergency tag reductions.
If you have problems with your online account, call Licensing at (503) 947-6101 or firstname.lastname@example.org.