Last winter’s mild weather and this summer’s exceptional drought could have contrasting effects on big game hunting in southwest Montana this fall, according to wildlife managers.
The predictions come as staff at Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks prepare for chronic wasting disease surveillance during the upcoming deer and elk archery season and general rifle season. Southwest Montana is a priority surveillance area this year.
Montana’s archery season runs from Sept. 4 to Oct. 17 and rifle season runs from Oct. 23 to Nov. 28. Hunters can also bag antlerless elk on private land in some areas of southwest Montana during early and late shoulder seasons.
The shoulder seasons vary between hunting districts. In August, officials…