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2008 Montana Bison Season Is a Bust
March 5, 2009.
The 2008/2009 Montana bison season ended on February 15, 2009.
A total of 44 tags for bull bison were issued, and up to 100 cow/calf licenses were approved for issuance on an on-call basis.
Throughout the entire season, only 1 bison was taken. That bison was taken in HD385 near Gardiner on the opening day of the season.
Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks officials cite "very mild" winter conditions as having a tremendous impact on the hunt. Yellowstone's 3,000 bison never left the interior of Park and entered National Forest Land where they would be huntable.
In addition to bull tags, Montana maintains a cow/calf roster and calls hunters on that list when hunting opportunities become available. No hunters were called from the cow/calf list.
During the previous 2008 season, 63 bison were taken by hunters and another 103 were taken by American Indian tribes that have claimed treaty rights to hunt the animals. 1,600 were also captured and slaughtered by the Montana Department of Livestock last year, significantly reducing the number of bison available to hunters.