Elk NetworkChanges Coming to Kentucky’s 2023 Elk Hunt

General | January 6, 2023

The Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources released updated information about proposed fish and wildlife-related regulation amendments related to fishing and hunting elk, deer and waterfowl. Those regulations are now in effect after receiving final legislative approval.

This administrative regulation codifies the requirements for the elk permit drawing and quota hunts, the conditions under which special commission permits, landowner cooperator permits, elk restoration permits and cooperator voucher permits can be used and necessary to effectively manage elk populations in Kentucky, while supplying optimal elk hunting and related tourism opportunities.

Changes starting in 2023 will:

  • Expand the elk hunt drawing application period. The application period will be Aug. 1 of the year preceding the given calendar year’s elk hunt season through April 30 of the year of that season (g. Aug. 1, 2023 – April 30, 2024, for 2024 hunts).
  • Create a “loyalty redraw” to reward long-time applicants who have never been drawn for an elk permit. Fewer than 75 people who have applied for the Kentucky elk hunt drawing every year since its inception still haven’t been drawn, and that number shrinks each year. The loyalty redraw will consist of a second random drawing for elk permits that were left unpurchased by applicants selected in the first drawing. This would have the double benefit of rewarding long-time applicants and increasing overall elk hunting opportunity. About 10 percent of elk permits go unpurchased each year.
  • Allow military personnel to defer the use of elk permits for up to 2 years if geographically reassigned. Some members of the military have been unable to use their elk permits, and many applicants to the elk hunt drawing have requested consideration after applying for many years without being drawn for a permit.

Go here to read the entire Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources news release.

(Photo credit: Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources)