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Important: This information is about the 2020 antlerless hunt and is provided for reference only. View the latest antlerless application guidebook.

How to obtain a 2020 antlerless permit

Your first, and possibly only, chance to obtain a Utah antlerless permit is through the state's antlerless drawing. To apply for the drawing, you'll need to:

  1. Know what types of antlerless permits are available
  2. Research your hunts using the online Utah Hunt Planner
  3. Know when, where and how to apply for a permit
  4. Know how bonus points and preference points work
  5. Understand the drawing process and refunds

Types of antlerless permits

— Utah Administrative Rule R657-62-20

You can apply for all of the following antlerless permits in the 2020 drawing:

  • One antlerless deer permit (except in areas where two-doe permits are available)
  • One antlerless elk permit (only general season and resident CWMU permits are available through the drawing)
  • One doe pronghorn permit (except in areas where two-doe permits are available)
  • Either one antlerless moose permit or one ewe bighorn sheep permit (but you cannot apply for both species in the same year)

If you drew a bull moose permit in the 2020 big game drawing, you may not apply for an antlerless moose permit or bonus point.

If you drew a ram bighorn sheep permit in the 2020 big game drawing, you may not apply for a ewe bighorn sheep permit or bonus point.

If you drew a pronghorn permit in the 2020 big game drawing, you may not obtain any other pronghorn permit except one that’s used to address a depredation situation.

If you don't draw an antlerless permit in 2020, you might still be able to participate in a depredation hunt or obtain a CWMU voucher, an elk-control permit or a private-lands-only permit.

When, where and how to apply

— Utah Administrative Rule R657-62-6, R657-62-11, R657-62-12, R657-62-20 & R657-42

There are a variety of dates and deadlines to keep in mind if you plan to apply for antlerless hunts this year:

May 28: Apply online for permits, bonus points and preference points

Beginning May 28, residents and nonresidents can apply online for permits, bonus points and preference points. You can also apply by calling any Division office.

Applying as a group

— Utah Administrative Rule R657-62-7

Instead of applying for antlerless hunts as an individual hunter, you and your friends and family can apply together as a group. Here's what you need to know:

  1. Everyone in the group must apply during the same online session — you cannot add group members at a later date.
  2. Both residents and nonresidents can apply together. (However, if you're a Utah resident and you decide to apply with a nonresident, make sure nonresident permits are available for each hunt your group is applying for.) If permits are not available for everyone in your group, the entire group will not be allowed to draw for that hunt unit.
  3. Up to four hunters can apply together for antlerless deer, antlerless elk or doe pronghorn permits.
  4. Remember: Youth may apply together in youth-only groups. If you are a youth who wants an opportunity to draw from the 20% of antlerless permits reserved for youth, you must either apply as an individual hunter or as part of a youth-only group. See additional details.
  5. When you apply, all fees for all applicants in your group must be charged to one credit or debit card.

If your group is successful in the drawing, all of the applicants in your group who have valid applications will receive a permit.

New this year: If your group members need to surrender their permits, all group members must surrender their permits no later than 30 days before the hunt opening date in order to have their previously acquired bonus/preference points reinstated. They will not accrue points for the current year.

If any member of the group surrenders their permit less than 30 days before the hunt date, then all group members will lose their bonus/preference points for that species/permit. See the Surrendered permits and refunds page for details.

To apply for a resident permit, you must be a resident on the date the permit is purchased. July 9, 2020 is considered the purchase date of the permit and the date by which you must establish residency in the state of Utah. (Please see the residency definition to learn whether you qualify as a resident.)

When you submit your application, you'll be charged a nonrefundable $10 application fee for each species, bonus point or preference point you apply for.

Important: Starting July 1, 2020, all license, permit and application fees for nonresident hunters will increase. This change will not affect people who obtain antlerless permits through the hunt drawing. However, it will be in effect if you purchase one of the remaining antlerless permits, starting July 22, 2020. See the fee table for details. All of the new nonresident fees will be listed on the License, permit and miscellaneous fees page starting July 1, 2020.

Application fees, license fees and any donations you've authorized will be charged to your credit or debit card when you apply. Permit fees will be charged after the drawing, if you are successful.

You can use American Express, Discover, MasterCard and VISA credit or debit cards as payment, and they must be valid through August 2020. You can also use a pre-paid credit card.

Please keep in mind that the Division is not responsible for any bank charges incurred for the use of credit or debit cards. To change the credit or debit card associated with your application, call 1-800-221-0659.

You will not be charged a permit fee unless you draw a permit.

Antlerless elk-control permits

— Utah Administrative Rule R657-5-33

If you obtained a permit (including general season) to harvest a buck, bull or once-in-a-lifetime species on any of the units listed on the elk-control permit page (not including CWMUs), you have the option of purchasing an antlerless elk-control permit.

The elk-control permit allows you to harvest an antlerless elk in the same unit where you’ll already be hunting a buck, bull or once-in-a-lifetime animal. You may hunt the antlerless elk only during the season dates — and with the same weapon — listed on your buck, bull or once-in-a-lifetime permit.

Note: During the 2020 season, there will not be any antlerless elk-control hunts on spike bull elk hunting units.

For more information about antlerless elk-control permits, visit the elk-control permit page.

June 18: Deadline for permit applications, bonus points and preference points

Applications for antlerless hunting permits, bonus points and preference points must be submitted online no later than 11 p.m. MDT on June 18, 2020.

Please remember that you must have a hunting license or a combination license to apply for permits and points. If you don't already have one of these licenses, you can buy one online when you apply.

If you need help with your online application, please call any Division office before 5 p.m. MDT on June 18, 2020. A Division employee will be available to help you.

June 18: Deadline to withdraw and resubmit your application

Did you make a mistake in your online permit application? Simply withdraw your original online application and submit a new, correct application before 11 p.m. MDT on June 18, 2020.

You must have your confirmation number, your customer ID and your date of birth in order to withdraw your application. For each new application you submit, you will be charged a $10 application fee.

If you need help with your online application, please call any Division office before 5 p.m. MDT on June 18, 2020.

June 18: Deadline to withdraw your application

If you decide not to hunt, you can withdraw your online permit application until 11 p.m. MDT on June 18, 2020.

Please remember that the fees you submitted with your application are not refundable.

July 9: Antlerless drawing results available

You'll be emailed your drawing results on or before July 9. Starting July 9, you can also see your drawing results online or call 1-800-221-0659 to obtain them.

Multiple elk permits

— Utah Code § 23-19-22 and Utah Administrative Rule R657-62-20 & R657-5-33

In 2020, a hunter can again obtain up to three elk permits in Utah, with the following limitations:

  • A maximum of one permit can be for a bull elk.
  • A maximum of one antlerless elk permit can be obtained through the antlerless drawing.
  • A maximum of two antlerless elk permits can be obtained over the counter. These might include antlerless elk-control permits, private-lands-only permits, mitigation and CWMU vouchers or any permits that remain available after the antlerless drawing.

For the purposes of obtaining multiple elk permits, an archery elk permit (hunter's choice) is considered a bull elk permit. Likewise, a general-season archery elk permit is also considered a bull elk permit. Antlerless elk-control or private-lands-only permits are considered antlerless permits.

If you obtain two antlerless elk permits for the same area — but the permits are for different seasons — you may harvest both elk during the same season as long as you use the appropriate weapon type.

And don't forget: you may harvest an antlerless elk while hunting general-season buck deer or bull elk, as long as your permits are for the same area and you use the weapon type listed on your general-season permit.

New this year: Starting July 1, 2020, all license, permit and application fees for nonresident hunters will increase. For details, see the License, permit and miscellaneous fees page starting July 1.

All general-season bull elk permits will be available starting July 16, 2020 at 8 a.m. MDT. For additional details about these hunts, see page 24–25 of the 2020 Big Game Field Regulations Guidebook.

Beginning July 22, 2020, at 8 a.m. MDT, eligible hunters may purchase additional antlerless elk permits that remain available after the drawing. See the list of remaining permits. The permits will be available online on a first-come, first-served basis and from license agents and Division offices.

If you draw a permit, you'll receive your permit in the mail near the end of July.

Please be aware that if you receive your permit, and then the credit card you used for payment is refused, your permit becomes invalid and you may not participate in the antlerless hunt. If this happens, please call 1-800-221-0659 to resolve the problem.

July 22: Remaining antlerless elk and private-lands-only permits available

Any antlerless permits remaining after the drawing — as well as private-lands-only antlerless elk permits — will be available beginning July 22. Visit the Division's website starting in early June to learn more about antlerless permits and to see purchase times and locations.

New this year: There are two important changes this year that will affect those who purchase remaining antlerless permits or private-lands-only permits. Both of the following changes go into effect on July 1, 2020:

  • All license, permit and application fees for nonresident hunters will increase. For details, see the License, permit and miscellaneous fees page starting July 1.
  • If you obtain a general-season antlerless permit over the counter (after the antlerless drawing) or a private-lands-only permit, you will lose any preference points you've previously accrued for that specific antlerless hunt.

Remaining permits are available on a first-come, first-served basis. You must have a valid hunting license or a combination license to buy one of these permits. You can buy the permits online and at license agent locations and Division offices.

Under certain circumstances, you must obtain written permission before you can use a private-lands-only permit. We strongly encourage you to obtain written permission to hunt on private land before purchasing or using one of these permits. See details on the Division's website.

July 22: Antlerless elk-control permits available

Antlerless elk-control permits will be available beginning July 22. Visit the Division's website starting in early June to learn more about antlerless permits and to see purchase times and locations.

Important: If you purchase an antlerless elk-control permit, you will not lose any preference points you've accrued for antlerless elk.

For detailed information about how elk-control permits work and when you may use one, please visit the Antlerless elk-control permits webpage. To learn more about Utah's antlerless elk-control units, visit the Utah Hunt Planner.

Other types of permits

Waiting periods

— Utah Administrative Rule R657-62-20

Waiting periods keep successful applicants out of the drawing for a few years. This gives unsuccessful applicants a better chance at drawing a permit in the future. The antlerless moose and ewe bighorn sheep hunts are the only antlerless hunts with a waiting period.

Antlerless moose

The waiting period for antlerless moose is five years.

Ewe bighorn sheep

The waiting period for ewe bighorn sheep is five years.

Bonus points and preference points

Bonus points

— Utah Administrative Rule R657-62-8

In the antlerless drawing, bonus points apply to antlerless moose and ewe bighorn sheep. A bonus point is awarded for each unsuccessful application to hunt antlerless moose or ewe bighorn sheep.

If you decide not to apply for an antlerless moose permit, you may still apply for an antlerless moose bonus point. Likewise, if you decide not to apply for a ewe bighorn sheep permit, you may still apply for a ewe bighorn sheep bonus point.

You may apply for an antlerless moose bonus point by selecting the appropriate hunt choice code (ANM) on the application and paying the $10 application fee.

You may apply for a ewe bighorn sheep bonus point by selecting the appropriate hunt choice code (ANR) on the application and paying the $10 application fee.

You must have a current Utah hunting or combination license in order to apply for an antlerless moose bonus point or a ewe bighorn sheep bonus point.

You cannot apply for a hunt or receive a bonus point if either of the following conditions apply:
  • You are currently under wildlife license suspension for big game hunting.
  • You are currently under a waiting period for the species you want to hunt.

The Division began issuing bonus points for antlerless moose in 2006. The 2020 season is the first time the Division has issued bonus points for ewe bighorn sheep.

How your bonus points work in the drawing

Fifty percent (rounded down) of the permits for each hunt unit number are reserved for applicants with the most bonus points. The following antlerless moose example explains how the process works:

  1. You receive one random drawing number for your antlerless moose application and one for every bonus point you have for antlerless moose. (Your lowest random number is used in the drawing.)
  2. In the drawing for antlerless moose, applications are sorted into groups by the number of bonus points, from highest to lowest. (There's a group for hunters with three bonus points, one for hunters with two bonus points and so forth.)
  3. Applications are sorted from lowest to highest draw number, and permits are awarded in order.
Bonus points and surrendering permits (new)

If you draw an antlerless moose or ewe bighorn sheep permit this year — and then learn that you won't be able to hunt — it's in your best interest to surrender the permit as soon as possible.

New this year: If you need to surrender an antlerless moose or ewe bighorn sheep permit, be sure to do so at least 30 days before your hunt begins in order to keep the bonus points that helped you draw the original permit. You will not earn a point for the current year.

If you surrender an antlerless moose or ewe bighorn sheep permit less than 30 days before the season opens, you will lose all of your previously accrued bonus points for that species, and you will not earn a point for the current year. See the Surrendered permits and refunds page for details.

Preference points

— Utah Administrative Rule R657-62-9

Preference points are used to ensure that applicants who are unsuccessful, or who apply for a preference point in the drawing for antlerless deer, antlerless elk and doe pronghorn, will have first preference in the next year's drawing for the respective permits.

If you do not want to hunt antlerless deer, antlerless elk or doe pronghorn in the current year, you may apply for a preference point by inserting the appropriate hunt choice code on the application. You will be charged a $10 application fee for every preference point you apply for (limit one per species).

The application period is May 28–June 18, 2020. You must have a current Utah hunting or combination license in order to apply for preference points.

If you are eligible for an antlerless deer, antlerless elk or doe pronghorn permit, you are eligible to apply for a preference point for that hunt.

You cannot apply for both a permit and a preference point for the same species. A preference point will not be issued if you are successful in drawing for the respective permit.

New this year: Starting July 1, 2020, if you obtain a general-season antlerless permit over the counter (after the antlerless drawing) or a private-lands-only permit, you will lose any preference points you've previously accrued for that hunt type. The Division began issuing preference points for antlerless deer, antlerless elk and doe pronghorn in 2006.

How your preference points work in the drawing

Here's how preference points work in the drawing:

  • Starting with the highest point level, the drawing looks at the hunter's first choice.
  • If a permit is available for the hunt, the permit is awarded. (In the case of a group application, permits are awarded if there are enough permits for the people in the group.)
  • If permits are not available, the application is skipped, and the first choice of the next person is considered.
  • After all first choices have been considered at that preference point level, the drawing will look at the first choices of hunters at the next-highest preference point level.
  • After all the applicants' first choices have been considered, the drawing will look at everyone’s second choices.
  • This process continues in the same way for third, fourth and fifth choices. If you draw an antlerless permit — regardless of whether it was your first, second, third, fourth or fifth choice — you will lose all of your preference points.

Preference points are averaged and rounded down when two or more applicants apply as a group. For example, if hunter A with three preference points and hunter B with zero preference points apply as a group, the preference points are averaged (1.5) and rounded down to one. Hunters with one preference point will be considered only after all groups or individuals with two or more preference points and before all groups or individuals with zero preference points.

In a second example, if hunter A with one preference point and hunter B with zero preference points apply as a group, the preference points are averaged (0.5) and rounded down to zero. This group with zero preference points will be considered after all groups or individuals with one or more preference points have been considered.

Preference points and surrendering permits (new)

If you draw an antlerless deer, antlerless elk or doe pronghorn permit this year — and then learn that you won't be able to hunt — it's in your best interest to surrender the permit as soon as possible.

New this year: If you need to surrender an antlerless hunting permit, be sure to do so at least 30 days before your hunt begins in order to keep the preference points that helped you draw the original permit. You will not earn a point for the current year.

If you surrender an antlerless permit less than 30 days before the season opens, you will lose all of your previously accrued preference points for that species, and you will not earn a point for the current year. See the Surrendered permits and refunds page for details.

You cannot apply for an antlerless deer, antlerless elk or doe pronghorn permit or a preference point if you are currently under wildlife license suspension for big game hunting.

Drawing process and refund requests

Antlerless drawing process

— Utah Administrative Rule R657-62-20

Antlerless permits are drawn in the following order:

  1. Antlerless moose
  2. Ewe bighorn sheep
  3. Youth elk
  4. Antlerless elk
  5. Youth deer
  6. Antlerless deer
  7. Youth pronghorn
  8. Doe pronghorn

Beginning July 22, 2020, any remaining antlerless permits will be available on a first-come, first-served basis. Important: Starting July 1, 2020, all license, permit and application fees for nonresident hunters will increase. For details, see the fee table or visit the License, permit and miscellaneous fees page on July 1.

Youth antlerless drawing and applying in a youth-only group

— Utah Code § 23-19-22 and Utah Admin. Rules R657-62-20 & R657-5-4

A full 20% of the antlerless deer, antlerless elk and doe pronghorn permits are reserved for hunters who will be 17 years of age or younger on July 31, 2020.

As an eligible youth, you can participate in the youth drawing for antlerless permits. You can submit an application as an individual hunter or as a member of a youth-only group.

Remember: Up to four young hunters can apply together in a youth-only group for Utah's antlerless deer, antlerless elk and doe pronghorn hunts. This allows youth to hunt antlerless animals in the same unit with siblings, friends and cousins.

When you apply in a youth-only group for antlerless hunts, all hunters must meet the age requirement. You will not be included in the youth drawing if you apply in a group with hunters who are not youth.

Permit refunds

— Utah Code § 23-19-38 and Utah Administrative Rule R657-42

The Division rarely issues refunds for licenses or permits, but there are some exceptions. See if you're eligible for a refund.

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