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Hunter

Hunters Corner: Luck running out for writer’s moose permit

My phone wasn’t ringing off the hook last Saturday, so I suspected that luck was not on my side for the Maine moose lottery. On Sunday, I logged on to the Maine website, went to lottery results, hit “W” and there it was: Robert Washburn has been drawn. Unfortunately, that particular Robert Washburn was a Maine resident.

Fast forward to the first day of summer and New Hampshire’s moose lottery. It was wall-to-wall wannabe moose hunters. Governor Hassan was present to acknowledge the importance of moose hunting both recreationally and to the state’s economy and the fine job Fish and Game has done managing our moose population. Governor Hassan started the computer program that quickly assigned the winning 275 permit holders and 70 residents and 40 alternates. There were four or five lucky winners in the crowd that added to the festivities. One recently retired and two current and Fish and Game employees were permit winners. The crowd cheered loudly when Alexandria resident Tom Flynn’s name was called. Flynn is the former hunter safety coordinator and current highly respected manager of the Owl Brook Hunter Education Center.

In recent times, a reclining chair was given away as a door prize, making for the most comfortable deer stand or a welcomed addition to one’s man cave. This year, Skip’s Sport Shop had a free drawing for a Ruger American rifle in .30-06 caliber. This is the proud product of longtime Newport manufacturer Ruger Arms.

Volumes have been written about the versatility and effectiveness of the .30-06. It has long been held that if you could only have one rifle, it should be in .30-06. But then again, most of us aren’t restricted to one rifle. Thanks go to Skip’s Sport Shop for making an enjoyable morning all the more enjoyable. Skip’s is located on Lake Street in Bristol and is open Tuesday-Saturday.

The only remaining moose lottery is Vermont. The deadline for submitting an application is July 5. The best way to obtain one is to go online and check out their moose management units and allocated permits per unit.

The Wildlife Heritage Foundation of New Hampshire announces the launch of the 2013 N.H. moose permit auction. Official bid guidelines and documents can be downloaded from the foundation’s website at nhwildlifefoundation.org or by calling 496-2778.

This year marks the fifth annual auction run by the Wildlife Heritage Foundation. As the official nonprofit partner of New Hampshire Fish and Game, the foundation is authorized to auction up to five permits to the five highest bidders. New for 2013, the highest winning bidder will also win a 50-percent off coupon toward a state-of-the-art Redemption muzzleloading rifle of the winner’s choice, courtesy of LHR Sporting Arms of Rochester. The next four highest bidders will receive a free N.H. 2013 fishing, hunting, bear or turkey license of their choosing.

Proceeds from the auction help support critical fish and wildlife conservation initiatives along with the education programs of Fish and Game, such as canine search and rescue, Barry Youth Conservation Camp, Owl Brook Hunter Education Center, Orphan Bear Cub Rehabilitation Center, and aerial stocking of remote ponds, to name a few.

“Every year, the auction provides the foundation with a way to support Fish and Game programs and initiatives that are important to the people of this state. It is critical that we find ways to sustain wildlife conservation education and outreach programs. Particularly for the youth of New Hampshire who are the future stewards of our natural environment,” Foundation Chairman Steve White said.

Last year, the auction garnered 12 bids from 11 states, with the highest bid at $8,750. Two winners came from New Hampshire, two from Massachusetts and one from Pennsylvania.

Successful bidders in the 2013 auction will need to show proof of a previous hunting license or certificate of completion of an approved hunter education training program. Winning auction permit holders will be able to harvest one moose of either sex in a wildlife management unit of their choice, and will be responsible for purchasing their own 2013 New Hampshire hunting license to accompany their moose permit. Individuals who receive a permit in the 2013 New Hampshire moose hunt lottery are subject to the rules of the lottery and will not be eligible to participate in the auction. A portion of the winning bid may be tax deductible as a charitable contribution; potential bidders should check with their tax advisors to determine eligibility.

(Bob Washburn can be reached at hunterscorner@aol.com.)

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