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The first things you may need are the regulations and links
According to Statistics Canada (2015), Saskatchewan had an estimated population of 1,142,570 people and its capital is Regina. Saskatchewan has a Land Surface of 591,670 km2 (228,450 sq mi) square miles and a Water Surface of 59,366 km2 (22,921 sq mi) square miles. That gives this province a population density of 1.93 people per sq km. Wikipedea
Saskatchewan Hunting Zones
Pronghorn, formerly known as antelope, are neither a deer, nor an antelope, but belong to their own separate family, Antilocapridae. This designation is a result of their unique horns, whose keratin sheath is shed annually and makes pronghorn the only species worldwide to do so. Pronghorn primarily inhabit the southwestern portion of the province, although large numbers are being detected in westcentral regions (Figure 9). Generally found in semi-arid prairies, pronghorn prefer ecosystems with a mixture of grasses, forbs and shrubs to provide both forage and bedding cover, but will also capitalize on certain agricultural crops (e.g. pulse crops or tame hay) at various times of the year. Given pronghorns reliance on their excellent eyesight to avoid predators, habitat with low-growing vegetation is optimal for this species. Saskatchewan is the northern extent of the pronghorn range and as such, pronghorn are susceptible to the extreme environmental conditions at this latitude.
Pronghorn populations continue to slowly increase in part due to favorable winter conditions. In response, new zones are proposed.
Mule deer, named for their large mule-like ears, are most commonly found in the prairie and parkland regions of the province. Although primarily browsers of woody vegetation, mule deer have readily adapted to capitalize on agricultural crops and rely heavily on grass in the winter months. Therefore, snow depth plays a key role in determining the severity of winter on mule deer, especially in areas where winter forage can quickly be made unavailable by a major snow event.
Provincially, mule deer populations are still in the process of recovering from a recent series of severe winters that have impacted the reproductive age classes of age 2 through 5. As a result, population recovery will take time.
From a 2014 report - White-tailed deer are the most abundant and widely-distributed ungulate in Saskatchewan. Named for its characteristic “white tail”, which is held like a flag when alarmed, white-tailed deer generally thrive in Saskatchewan and the province is known for its trophy bucks. Being both browsers and grazers, feeding on a wide variety of plant material, this species is found in a variety of habitats across the province, although preferring open forests bordering fields or grasslands. Winter weather is often a limiting factor on provincial deer populations, as Saskatchewan is the northern limit of the white-tailed deer range in North America.
Two harsh and cold winters causes a drastic decline in Whitetail deer populations (report Nov. 2014) and Saskatchewan decreased tag allotments from 35,000 to 21,000 tags. White-tailed deer numbers continue to be below the longterm average. The winter of 2015-16 was mild with less than average snow cover, which will support population recovery. However, a full recovery of white-tailed deer populations will take a few more years with favorable winters.
Caribou, a medium-sized member of the deer family, are unique in that both males and females carry antlers. Caribou are well-adapted to the northern regions of the continent, with large, concave hooves that function well to support the animal in deep snow and are efficient scoops when the caribou paws through the snow to uncover its primary food source, lichens. Although specializing on lichens in the winter, caribou shift to green vegetation with higher protein content come spring. Disease, accidents, wolves and humans are the major sources of mortality for caribou. Disturbance, habitat loss and alteration are also important limiting factors on caribou populations over the long-term. Caribou are split into four subspecies. About half of the caribou in Canada are barren-ground caribou, a smaller and lighter colored subspecies of caribou. The ranges of at least three barren-ground caribou herds extend into Saskatchewan, the Beverly, Qamanirjuaq, and occasionally the Bathurst herds. In the late 1980s, retired Government of Northwest Territories (GNWT) biologist Anne Gunn (pers. comm.) named a migratory population of caribou that calved in the Queen Maude Gulf area of the Arctic coast, the Ahiak Herd. From locations of collared females of this population, she found that their range extended south into Saskatchewan and overlapped to some extent with the traditional Beverly Herd range. More recently, biologists John Nagy and Mitch Campbell contend that what she identified as the Ahiak Herd was actually the Beverly Herd using a more northerly calving ground. The current official position of the GNWT and Government of Nunavut is to identify a non-migratory population of caribou that are located along the Arctic coast as the “Ahiak Herd”. All herds calve in Nunavut and portions of the herds migrate into northern Saskatchewan during the winter months (November to March). The Beverly herd typically migrates into northwestern and north central Saskatchewan, sometimes migrating as far south as Carswell Lake and Cree Lake. The Qamanirjuaq Herd migrates into north eastern Saskatchewan from the east, sometimes ranging as far south as the Churchill River. There appears to have been a gradual retraction northward over the past fifty years, especially in the western and central parts of their Saskatchewan range. See map of range.
Elk, also known as Wapiti, are one of Saskatchewan’s larger ungulates. Found in herds across the province, elk prefer landscapes with a mix of forest and open grassland and capitalize on fringe habitats, particularly those bordering forage crops, such as peas and lentils. Two thirds of the province’s elk populations, outside of the Cypress Hills and Moose Mountain Provincial Park, are found in the east-central portion of the province, from Canora north to Cumberland Lake and Tisdale east to the Manitoba border. Elk herds are also found in pockets across the province.
Elk numbers in wildlife management zone 46 are above target levels and a longer season with increased antlerless quotas will be offered. Elk populations have stabilized in the Moose Mountain Provincial Park area and the draw season structure and quotas have been revised accordingly. Elk have large home ranges and therefore wildlife managers may combine a number of wildlife management zones in order to ensure harvest objectives are met. A number of these zone combinations have been revised for 2016 to better manage local herds.
Black bears are one of the largest mammals found in Saskatchewan and are a sought-after prize by resident and non-resident hunters, alike. Black bears can live in a variety of habitats, but generally prefer the dense woods of the boreal forest. Requiring significant amounts of food, particularly in the fall when building up fat reserves to survive hibernation, bears will utilize habitat with thick underbrush of berry and nut-bearing plants, which are often found along valleys and other waterways. Black bears will also utilize man-made food sources and can often be found feeding in garbage dumps. The black bear range extends from the parkland regions northward in Saskatchewan.
Moose, the largest member of the deer family, historically inhabited all regions of the province, with the exception of the mixed grassland ecoregion, but since settlement, have been restricted to boreal regions of the province dominated by spruce, aspen and pine trees (Figure 7). Cover and browse availability were thought to be the limiting factors to moose distribution from the forest and forest fringe ecoregions. Additionally, it was believed that temperature (particularly heat in the absence of cover) in the south would limit their expansion into more southern regions. However, more recently, moose have been expanding to agricultural regions of the province. Little is known about the resources ‘farmland moose’ are utilizing to further their annual growth and expansion to these regions. A research study, looking at moose ecology in agricultural regions, began in 2013.
Moose populations are identified and managed as northern (forested) populations and southern (farmland) populations. The overall quota in farmland zones remains the same in 2016. However, individual quotas in select wildlife management zones have been lowered as a result of reduced moose numbers while other zones have warranted an increase, especially in east-central zones. Moose quotas in the popular Melfort/Nipawin hunting area have been revised with separate quotas established for WMZs 43, 50 and Fort à La Corne Wildlife Management Unit. Forest moose populations appear to be experiencing a general decline and quotas have been adjusted in response.
Plains bison are the largest wild land mammal in North America with adult males ranging in weight from 600 to 850 Kg and standing nearly two meters at the shoulder (Caras 1967). They are distinguished by their large head, rounded shoulder hump, broad snout, and short stout black horns that curve upward. The front quarters are heavier than the hind quarters, with the head and front shoulders being covered in a heavy long wooly pelage. Plains bison are sexually dimorphic with females smaller than males. In Saskatchewan, plains bison are found in two distinct locations, described as the McCusker River population and the Sturgeon River population.
Photo Credit for Background
- Rylee Isitt - Flickr
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