More than 72,000 applied for Maine moose permits by deadline

By Julie Harris, Bangor Daily News Staff

Approximately 72,294 people applied for a moose permit according to preliminary numbers released by the state on May 16. That’s about 150 fewer than last year.

The deadline for filing electronic applications for one of the 4,105 permits to kill a Maine moose was 11:59 p.m. May 15.

“That [number] is likely to change, as we review applications, but that is our preliminary number,” Mark Latti, communications director for the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife said.

Last year, 72,446 people applied for the permits.

The biggest day for people submitting applications was May 15 when 7,609 applied. The day before, 5,576 applications were filed. Other large days were April 1 with 4,790 applications and April 2 with 5,340, Latti said.

The moose permit application period opened on April 1. This was the first year that the state accepted all applications electronically. No paper applications were accepted.

The peak hour May 15 was between 9 and 10 p.m., when 940 applications — approximately 15 per minute — were processed, he said.

The number of permits allowed in 2023 was the same as this year, but only 2,440 moose were killed during all hunts, including the adaptive hunters. The record for applications was 94,532 in 1994, when only 1,200 permits were issued.

The next step is for the state to verify that all applicants are eligible, and then the permits will be drawn from 1 to 5 p.m. June 15, at Riverside Park in Fort Kent

Those who are drawn must pay for their permit and are given a deadline to do it. The fees are $52 for residents and $585 for nonresidents. The permits are mailed out about two weeks before the designated hunting week, according to MDIF&W.

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