Hunters helping condors
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Three condors, one with wings spread, the other two perched on a cliff

Hunters Helping Condors program

Participating hunters can obtain free ammo and win prizes

Good news if you hunt big game in southern Utah's Zion Unit. You may be able to:

These opportunities are part of Utah's Hunters Helping Condors program. The program encourages hunters to make a few small, voluntary changes to help the critically endangered California condors that live in southern Utah.

Why do condors need help?

Over the years, many of these enormous rare birds have been inadvertently sickened and killed by lead poisoning. Lead poisoning is, in fact, their leading cause of death. A frequent source of that lead is the remains of hunted animals, a common meal for condors. (See Rescued from the brink of extinction.) The Hunters Helping Condors program is reducing condors' exposure to lead.

Obtain a coupon for free non-lead ammunition (up to $50 value)

All hunters holding Zion Unit permits are eligible to receive a coupon for free non-lead ammunition from an approved vendor listed below (up to $50 value). These will be mailed to you in time to redeem them for your hunt. Be sure to watch your mailbox! You will also receive some emails from us explaining the Hunters Helping Condors program and encouraging you to participate.

Hunters who have landowner or mitigation permits for the Zion Unit can claim their coupons at one of the DWR's Southern Region offices (in Cedar City or Quail Creek Reservoir). Anyone hunting in the Zion Unit with a General Season Any Bull Elk tag may also obtain a coupon at one of these offices.

Redeem your coupon

Once you have your coupon, you can redeem it at one of the following vendors. You must surrender the original coupon to the vendor. Hunters may redeem only one coupon each year. The vendors are as follows:

  • Sportsman's Warehouse — Visit the Sportsman's Warehouse website to find the location nearest you and then walk in to redeem your coupon.
  • Doubletap Ammunition — Visit the Doubletap Ammunition website to place an online order, call 435-383-3208 (ask for Morgan or Mike), or visit the Cedar City location (at 450 North 200 West) in person to redeem your coupon.
  • Bass Pro Shops/Cabela's — Download and print the mail-in order form and then send it with your coupon to the following location:

    Bass Pro Shops/Cabela's
    Attn: Business Sales-UT Ammo
    2500 E. Kearney St.
    Springfield, MO 65898

  • International Cartridge Corporation — Download and print the mail-in order form and then send it with your coupon to the following location:

    ICC Ammo
    Attn: Utah
    2273 Rte. 310
    Reynoldsville, PA 15851

    Note: Private citizens may not have ammunition shipped to a California address. Check California regulations for details.

As an added bonus, if you use non-lead ammunition during your Zion big game hunt — and show it to DWR personnel — you will be entered into the prize drawing. Hunters who harvest an animal with lead-based ammunition can also enter the prize drawing if they bring the gut pile from the animal they harvested to a DWR check station or office (locations listed below).

As you are likely aware, ammunition supplies are severely restricted. Manufacturers are having great difficulty keeping up with demand. Our contractors are trying diligently to support the hunters in our Hunters Helping Condors program. We suggest you redeem your coupons as soon as possible and, please, be patient. We appreciate your support.

rifle prize

Participate in the prize drawing

It's easy to participate in the condor prize drawing, and you could win a gift certificate for $800 in outdoor merchandise!

To participate in the prize drawing, you must have an any legal weapon (rifle or muzzleloader) permit to hunt big game on the Zion Unit, and you must also meet the following requirements:

  1. Demonstrate that you are hunting with non-lead ammunition OR hunt with lead ammunition and remove all of the harvested animal's remains from the field.
  2. Stop by a check station or any DWR regional office no later than Dec. 31, 2023 to verify participation and be entered into the drawing.

What happens at the check station?

When you visit a check station, you must have either a box of non-lead ammunition (that matches the cartridge of the firearm you're hunting with) or the remains of the animal you harvested with lead ammunition.

Condor check station map, showing locations were you can turn in the remains of the animal you harvested with lead ammunition

A check-station staffer will verify that you meet the requirements and then request your DWR customer ID number. (This number is located on your hunting permit.) DWR personnel will receive lead-tainted animal remains from hunters and dispose of them. All animal remains must be bagged. (The DWR will provide bags.) Animal remains may only be turned in at the official check stations, the DWR Cedar City office or the Washington County Field Office.

After the DWR verifies your eligibility, you will be entered into a prize drawing that will occur each January at the DWR Cedar City office (1470 N. Airport Rd. in Cedar City). You do not need to be present at the drawing to win.

Where can I find a check station?

The following check stations will be open from 11 a.m. until dusk at two locations around the Zion unit during October. Dates and locations are as follows:

  • The intersection of Yellowjacket Road and Hancock Road. (This site is approximately 3.25 miles north of the entrance to Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park.) This checkpoint will be open on Oct. 11, 14–15, 21–24 and 28–29.
  • On State Route 14 in Cedar Canyon (east of Cedar City, approximately half a mile east of Canyon Park and ¾ of a mile west of Rusty's Ranch House). This checkpoint will be open on Oct. 11, 14–15, 21–24 and 28–29.

Can I enter the drawing at a DWR office? What if I'm hunting when a check station isn't available?

If your hunt occurs outside the October timeframe or during the middle of the week, you can enter the prize drawing by visiting the DWR's Cedar City office or Washington County Field Office (located at Quail Creek Reservoir) or any other DWR regional office. (Please note: Animal remains can only be turned in at check stations, the DWR's Cedar City office or the Washington County Field Office.) The offices are open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Remember to register no later than Dec. 31, 2023.

A DWR conservation officer can also verify eligibility and enter you into the prize drawing while you are in the field, but only if you can demonstrate that you are hunting with non-lead ammunition. Officers cannot accept animal remains.

Any questions about the program?

If you have additional questions about participating in the prize drawing, please contact the DWR office in Cedar City at 435-865-6100.

Terms and conditions. Applicants must possess one of the following any legal weapon permits — antlerless, big game, or any bull elk — that allows them to hunt the Zion Unit for the season. Applicants must also show a box of non-lead ammunition matching their firearm or verify that all harvested animal remains have been removed from the field. Applicants must be at least 18 years old on the date of entry or provide written consent from the applicant's parent or legal guardian allowing their participation. The Division of Wildlife Resources reserves the sole right and discretion in verifying eligibility. No fee will be assessed to applicants. Limit one application per valid Zion Unit permit. The DWR is not responsible for lost, late, incomplete, ineligible, or unintelligible applications, or for problems of any kind resulting in applications not being considered during the prize drawing. The DWR reserves the right to suspend or terminate the prize drawing for any reason. Prizes must be claimed within 30 days of the drawing. Unclaimed prizes will be forfeited. Prizes won by ineligible applicants will be forfeited. Prize winners agree to pay all licensing fees, taxes, and costs associated with the prize. If a prize winner is under the age of 18 when claiming a prize, the prize will be given to the prize winner's parent or legal guardian. The DWR makes no representation or warranty as to the quality or condition of the prizes. Applicants release and waive all claims against the Division arising out of the prize drawing and agree to indemnify, save and hold harmless the DWR, its agents, employees, and volunteers from and against all claims, demands, damages, and causes of action in any way connected with the prize drawing or use of the prizes.

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Wildlife Blog: Views from DWR employees
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