Texas public hunting draw system to be online-only

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Texas Parks & Wildlife Department
Texas Parks & Wildlife Department

Texas Parks and Wildlife Department’s Public Hunt Drawing System will be online-only beginning with summer applications for hunts ranging from deer and turkeys to alligators and exotics.

The drawings also include eight specifically for youth only.

Applications will only be accepted online, and in a change from the past, no “Applications for Drawings on Public Hunting Lands” booklets or application forms will be mailed out.

Hunters will be able to browse the drawn hunt catalog by hunt category and location using interactive maps, as well as complete an application and pay online, according to a news release. Selected applicants will be notified by email and can accept permits and pay fees online. Permits will be issued by email and can be printed at home or stored on a mobile device. Those applicants not selected may be eligible through a secondary drawing if permits are unclaimed by the payment deadline. There also may be opportunities for traditional standby hunts at some locations.

In addition to now being able to apply for multiple hunt areas within the same hunt category, the online system will give hunters more time to apply. Application deadlines start in August and wrap up in January. Applicants will have until midnight on the day of the deadline to apply.

Non-refundable application fees for drawn Special Permit hunts range between $3 and $10 for each adult applicant 17 years of age or older. Selected adult hunters pay an additional permit fee of $80 for regular hunts and $130 for extended hunts. There are no application fees or drawn hunt permit fees for youths age 8 to 16. There are no application fees for the e-postcard hunt or the U.S. Forest Service Antlerless Deer permits.

Applicants also will retain and continue to accrue Preference Points, now dubbed Loyalty Points. Points will stay with the category and be applied to each application equally.

The new online-only system will begin accepting electronic applications in July for 2014-15 Drawn Hunts, including Special Permit hunts, E-Postcard hunts and Forest Service Antlerless Deer Permits.

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