Ontario Announces New Big Game Management Advisory Committee
The Ontario government is working for the people by listening to concerns from hunters on how the province manages its moose population to ensure sustainability and hunting opportunities for future generations.
Last fall, the government announced a review of moose management in Ontario. Today John Yakabuski, Minister of Natural Resources and Forestry, announced the Big Game Management Advisory Committee (BGMAC), tasked with advising on improvements to how the province manages moose and other big game including deer, elk and black bear.
“We have heard concerns from hunters that the current approach, specifically the moose tag draw system, is not working for hunters or ensuring sustainability. We’re acting on those concerns and delivering on our promise to make life easier for Ontario’s hunters, while ensuring sustainable populations and continued hunting opportunities.” – John Yakabuski, Minister of Natural Resources and Forestry
The committee consists of members with diverse knowledge and experience in moose management and quota review, moose hunting, tourist outfitter operations, and previous experience on wildlife advisory committees. The initial task of the committee will be to develop recommendations on moose management, with a focus on how quotas are developed, and how tags are allocated to hunters through the draw.
The Committee will be hosting six listening sessions open to the public throughout May:
- St. Thomas – May 21, 2019
- Peterborough – May 22, 2019
- North Bay – May 23, 2019
- Sault Ste. Marie – May 28, 2019
- Thunder Bay – May 29, 2019
- Dryden – May 30, 2019
Interested hunters, members of the public and organizations are invited to attend one of these sessions to share their perspectives to develop a path forward. More details on the location of these listening sessions will be posted at Ontario.ca/moose.
“Over the next two years, our goal is to make moose hunting fairer, more accessible and simpler for hunters. Work is already underway to make immediate improvements to online resources so that we can better communicate with hunters,” said Minister Yakabuski. “As the review unfolds, we will continue to listen and engage hunters and stakeholders to help us improve how tag quotas are developed and distributed.”
- Hunting is worth over $431 million in Ontario.
- Ontario’s Government for the People is saving Ontario hunters approximately $1.6 million this year by freezing hunting licence fees and removing service fees.
- The 2019 moose tag draw opens today, and all interested hunters are encouraged to ensure they have a valid moose licence to enter the draw. Results will be made available in August on the Ministry’s new Moose in Ontario webpage.
- The 2019 elk tag draw also opens today. Results will be available on August 1.
- The 2019 black bear licences became available on March 1 and second tags became available April 15.
- Draw entry can be completed at participating ServiceOntario locations, private licence issuers, online (Ontario.ca/outdoorscard) or by calling the automated telephone line (1-800-288-1155). The online and automated telephone service channels are available 24/7.