The Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks Commission is seeking public comment on a proposed change in the application deadline for special either-sex and bull elk permits and special buck deer permits. Beginning in 2012, the application deadline for these special permits is March 15. The previous deadline was June 1.

The proposed earlier deadline would enhance customer service for residents and nonresidents who apply for special elk and deer hunting permits, according to the FWP. Benefits would include: hunters will know where and when they’ll hunt in mid April instead of late July; more time for hunters to make vacation and hunting plans; hunters could contact landowners earlier in the season for permission to hunt on private property; elk and deer special permit hunting districts will be listed on the drawing applications.

Comments must be received by 5 p.m. Sept. 30. Send comments to Hank Worsech, FWP licensing bureau chief, at hworsech@mt.gov.

– Big Sky Weekly wire services