While a total of 2,468 authorizations for the limited hunt entry of moose were distributed for the Cariboo this fall, the hunt has been impacted by the recent Supreme Court of Canada William Decision.
A Ministry of Forests spokesperson confirmed hunters have received a map indicating where the Tsilhqot’in title area is and have been advised not to violate Tsilhqot’in territory.
“Hunters with LEHs that are partly in the Tsilhqot’in Title Area, but partly out (moose and antlerless deer), or hunters with LEHs that are near, but completely outside the title area (four Mountain Goat hunts) have received their authorizations,” the ministry noted in an e-mailed response.
Four hunters have mountain goat LEHs that are outside of the Tsilhqot’in Title Area, but have access restrictions such as having to cross Tsilhqot’in territory to reach their hunt.
These hunters have been given the option of not accepting their LEH application and receiving a free application for the 2015 hunt or to utilize their LEH, with the understanding they should find alternative access to their hunt site that would avoid the title area.
Additionally, seven hunters with mountain goat LEHs entirely inside the Tsilhqot’in Title Area will not have access to their hunt LEH, and will instead receive a free LEH application for the 2015 hunting season.
“Residents seeking to hunt under General Open Seasons are advised to only do so outside of the Tsilhqot’in Title Area,” the ministry said.
To date, an agreement between the province and the First Nations around hunting has not been reached.
The Province is seeking a long-term solution to resident hunting in the Tsilhqot’in Title Area for future hunts, but said this will not be in place to allow for a Fall 2014 season in the affected areas.
Normally the number of authorizations exceeds hunting success rates, the ministry said, adding the average harvested moose during the last five years in this area was 961.