Its official Ontario Elk Hunt this fall


Well, its official, the first Ontario elk hunt in more than a Century gets under way this fall!

Thanks to Heather Visser of the MNR in Toronto for sending me this Press info:

The first elk hunt in Ontario in more than a century will be held in the Bancroft-North Hastings area this upcoming fall.

The elk population in the area has flourished and continues to grow at a healthy rate since being reintroduced to the province 10 years ago. The elk hunt will help manage the population in this area, and will be carefully harmonized to ensure a long-term sustainable elk population.

This is part of the government’s Open Ontario plan to support the region’s economy and environment.


“This hunt is a result of the successful restoration of elk in the Bancroft-North Hastings area and the first in more than a century. This is an opportunity to help the region’s economic growth and ensure a healthy elk population in the area for future generations.” – Linda Jeffrey, Minister of Natural Resources

“The McGuinty government has worked with all community partners to determine the best way to manage the elk population in the area.” – MPP Leona Dombrowsky, Prince Edward–Hastings

“The OFA was pleased to work closely with the Ontario government in establishing the first elk hunt in more than a century. We look forward to the implementation of the hunt which will help address issues raised by farmers in the area while ensuring a sustainable elk population.”- Bette Jean Crews, President, Ontario Federation of Agriculture

“The Ontario government, the Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters, and other partners have contributed countless hours and hundreds of thousands of dollars to restore elk to their original ranges in Ontario. We are pleased that this will provide a new hunting opportunity and some relief for the Bancroft-North Hastings agricultural community from the pressures created by the growing elk population.” – Mike Reader, Executive Director, O.F.A.H.

Applications for an elk licence and seal will be made available in the spring.

The open season for elk will be one week long and take place from the third Monday in September to the following Sunday.

Between 1998 and 2001, the elk population was restored by shipping elk herd from Alberta to four sites in Ontario including Bancroft-North Hastings.

For more information on the Ontario Elk Hunt:


40 thoughts on “Its official Ontario Elk Hunt this fall”

  1. Well, that does it, I guess I’m eating my hat

    so who gets the tags

    the farmers?

    so 10,000 people apply @ $49.00 per tags, and 6 tags are drawn, hmmmmmmmmmmm

    it’s the sceptic in me

  2. and rumor has it the OFAH is going to be putting on a mandatory course that’s three days long and costs $150.00 that will be a requirement before you can apply for one of the tags.
    They’ll talk about trespassing, hunting with blaze orange, ethics, proper use of a compass, knives and other equipment, oh and of course they’ll have a boutique set up where you’ll be able to buy all this stuff, of course with the OFAH brand stamped on it. 😉

    1. Come on Iggy, you must be at least a little satisfied that this elk hunt has come to fruition?

      I dont see any mention of a $150 training course, but I will try to find out!


  3. how come there is not one metion of the rocky mountain elk foundation .. they spent 17 years lay the foot work for this project….and not a mention … i guess the ofah has done it all for hunters….. i cant belive hunters are dumb enough to pay for this and get hosed by licence fees

    1. Chessy, you must fill in some blanks here..I’m not aware of that and you’re right, there is no mention of that organization.


  4. In 1998, the Elk Foundation Canada helped fund the release of 50 elk from Alberta’s Elk Island National Park (EINP) to the Nipissing-French River region to help boost struggling remnant herds in the province. Since then, more than 300 elk have been transplanted into other parts of Ontario, and the population is growing. Over the years, the Elk Foundation Canada was involved in numerous relocation projects to move elk out of EINP and help restore or build populations in other parts of Alberta, Saskatchewan, Ontario, Kentucky, Tennessee and Great Smoky Mountains National Park in North Carolina. Dozens of foundation volunteers from both sides of the border logged hundreds of hours and thousands of miles hauling elk to these places.This is a direct copy and paste from there website… i have a email off to them to see how much money they spent .. it would be intresting to see how much money the ofah spent on this project. it would be a good question a reporter can ask the ofah … as they wont talk to me

  5. I got a reply back from the RMEF

    We did record most of the expenses for the Ontario Elk Restoration project here at our International HQ. RMEF Canada was pretty good about getting this type information to us at the time. Unfortunately, we did not track with administrative time and expenses for our projects until the last couple of years, so we do not have any info of that type. We also did not track with volunteer time, although we are trying to achieve that in our new projects at this time. The only numbers I can come up with for direct costs to RMEF for the project are listed below.
    $15,220 Elk Restoration Feasibility Study
    $217,386.04 Elk Restoration

    Sorry we could not be more definitive but our earlier years were filled with more enthusiasm than record keeping. Not a bad model since we got accomplished!
    Best regards!”

    1. Thanks Chessy, it seems the RMEF played an important role in all this…I appreciate you contacting them.


  6. Jeff, the training course was tongue in cheek, but don’t think it didn’t cross their minds.
    I’m very proud of this work, however it now looks like the OFAH/MNR are forgetting a very important participant.
    Also there seems to be some very vocal criticism of the turkey reintroduction, I wonder if the the same complaints about elk are in the future

    1. No Iggy that’s fine, I’m glad you mentioned it actually…as I did pass that concern along to the MNR in Toronto this morning.

      Here is what they had to say:


      The MNR hasn’t had any discussions with OFAH (or others) about any specialized/required training course for elk hunting. The general practices, traditions and safety components are the same as with moose and deer hunting, which is covered in the Hunter Education Program.

      In order to participate in the hunt, you need a valid resident outdoors card (hunting version) and should follow the info in the 2011 Hunting Regulations Summary to apply for an elk tag.


      Jamie Stewart
      MNR Wildlife Policy Advisor – Large Mammals

  7. As I said Jeff, it was a shot at the money making prowess of the OFAH, I guess in this case they figured they couldn’t get away with it.

    Chessy they contributed their good name, but in all fairness, there are some volunteers that worked very hard to bring this introduction along

  8. Talked to a guy tonight who is in the know and applications will be $10.00, seems fair. Then if you are drawn you have to buy the license. This was a big beef for the moose draw, guys had to buy the license before they knew if they were going hunting because if all they got a calf tag, they weren’t going.
    Party hunting in groups of four, but you have to put your application in together, you don’t get a license and then get a bunch of buddies to come with you. Sounds fair and well thought out, so far

  9. All I know is that I’ll be applying I think 🙂

    And then it’s trying to find people who might have information on where these elk are mainly situation 🙂

    ie. I see we can hunt in the nearby Lanark area, but I’ve personally never heard of elk up that way.

    If this was in the Iron Bridge area, where there’s another growing herd, I’d really be excited b/c I know that area very well. Oh, and there’s also a growing group of PO’d farmers b/c the elk are really hitting their crops.

    I see them every year on the way in for moose hunting.

  10. RMEF deserves most of the credit. I know volunteers who say they paved the way for this. They payed for the elk from Alberta, donated their trucks and trailers and payed for all expenses. From what I have heard their was reluctance in MNR circles. OFAH was not very involved and really they have not done a whole lot with the resources they have. The pressure to have an elk season for a handful of tags is rediculous. We should be moving the “extra” elk to other areas so that we have a larger and more diverse herd long term. Ontario’s management of their resources ranks amung the worst of all provinces and states in NA. Bring back the spring bear hunt and stop protecting wolves and coyotes. Bring in PP system for big game.

  11. Mr. Morrison,
    Iggy’s 4th post is correct in stating there where other volunteers that also had a hand in the elk restoration and
    Never got mentioned?, And One of those group’s of volunteers was South Central Ontario Fish And Wildlife Association Inc., Formerly known as ” South Central Ontario Big Game Association Inc. ” this small Club puts on the Big Buck Contest that is held In Little Britain Ontario every year, They are a small group of individuals From Oshawa and surrounding areas through out Ontario that is extremely dedicated to Fish & Wildlife Conservation.

    So lets give credit where credit is due here if it weren’t for all the Hours put in by all the Volunteer’s, groups and all the money invested by these Volunteer groups such as RMEF and others, As well as all the lobbying to the Canadian Government by Hunters for Hunters such my self to get this implemented it very well would have never taken place, So lets quit tooting Mr. Masqinty’s horn cause we all know that the only reason why Mr.Masquinty and his Crone friends like the OFAH it’s all about $$$ & for popularity just to make their selves look Good to their Constituents & Members, So let’s start thanking the ones that really need to be recognized here.

    As well there was allot of volunteer’s & groups such as NWTF & SCOFWA Inc and others, That had a hand in implementing the reintroduction of the Wild Turkey’s to South Central Ontario and other areas such as the Anson Hindon & Minden & Haliburton Highlands Area’s such as WMA 54 through to WMA 56 as well as other areas, But did they get mentioned or any recognition for their efforts in trying to implement the Wild turkeys in those areas NO.

    Did they ever get thanked for all the hours put into all the studying and scientific data and monitoring behavioral patterns of said Turkeys by all the volunteers NO, Right off the hop the OFAH took all the cerdit and patted them selves on the back for implementing the wild Turkeys in those areas As well as the Wild Turkey course it’s self just to build up their Club’s membership as well As their Club’s bank account.

    In my honest opinion and again this is just my opinion here, But I think if it where to be anyone that should teach the Wild Turkey Course? it should be the NWTF after all they know more about Wild turkeys then the OFAH, them Selves, And I don’t see the OFAH getting out and doing any of the reports on the Elk & turkey populations and the Scientific data that is needed that falls in the hands of all the dozens of Volunteers and Volunteer Groups Such as the RMEF & NWTF.

    Also if ever there where to be a training course put in place on Elk and Elk Huntin? it should be left in the hands of the RMEF to implement said course NOT The OFAH, As to offset badly needed funds needed by the RMEF Volunteers, And other Volunteer groups in their efforts in researching & monitoring of Elk migratory habits and all the Scientific data that will be badly needed far as…

  12. I personally would sooner see all my hard earned Hunting Dollars being invested in such Wildlife scientific Data & research pertaining to Deer, Moose, Bear, Elk, Turkeys & other projects rather then it going into the hands of Mr. Masquiny’s government pockets or that of the OFAH CEO’s And executives Bank Account’s.

    Sadly enough though with all the cutbacks to the MNR’s funding for wildlife data & research, the Liberal Government And the OFAH have Took it upon it’s self to pat them selves on the back for a job well done.

    And once again all the people involved that pushed to make this all happen, Such as all the Hunters & Volunteer Clubs Like the RMEF and others that lobbied The Canadian Government to implement said projects like the Elk restoration and other projects, And All the man hours that went into it sadly enough get shoved off to the side again.

    I ask you wheres the common seance in that?, It is my honest personal opinion here and only my opinion, That we as Canadians & Hunters alike have to stand together and make Mr. Masquinty’s Liberal Government, As well as groups like the OFAH accountable for their actions, And stop letting them take all the credit for events they surely had no part in implementing.

    But then again who am I trying to kid here?, we’re Canadians we’re not suppose to complain about stuff like this as not to offend any one country, Group or person as if it’s taboo to talk about stuff like this, And we’re forced to take it on the chin again for fear we would be outcast for standing up for our Rights as Canadian Hunters, As Hunters and as Canadians we all have rights, Quit letting Mr. Masquinty and the OFAH take all the credit and stand up and be heard.
    Again this is just my personal opinion

  13. Hi Jeff no mater who is responsible for the re introductions of the Elk i thank them. however it is great to have the importunate to hunt this majestic animal. unknown to most hunters there were some elk left in the long lake area in Apsley, there was a fair size herd in the 50s then the MNR wanted them eradicated.

    for what ever the arguments, as to whom did what i say thank you from the bottom of my hart, i never thought that in my life time, this importunate would come about. John

    1. Hey Oldhunter..its about time you got here…

      Where have been Uncle John?


  14. VERY WELL SAID 15 POINTER ( at least I know I am not the only one who feels this way )
    when one employee of the ofah is payed between 160000 -199999 dollars a year and there total pay out is almost 2millon

    this is the ofah mandate
    Program areas: The three primary areas in which the charity is now carrying on programs to achieve its charitable purposes are listed below. The program areas are ranked according to the percentage of time and resources devoted to each program area.

    Rank Description Field Code % of
    1 Public education, other study programs C10 58%
    2 Research (scientific, medical, environmental, etc) C11 35%
    3 Nature, habitat-conservation groups G1 5%

    if 35 % is deticated to research then why was only”Total expenditure for research grants and scholarships as part of charitable programs
    $ 105,379″

    1. well, if you recall Iggy, we met on your Site a coupld of years ago and discovered we were sort of related….your site was good for bringing people together that way, sort of like here.



  15. oh I know exactly what happened, I didn’t forget, it got so bad I had to delete some of the love in posts

  16. Hey 15 pointer, I was under the understanding that money from outdoor cards and tags etc.. did go to wildlife management and research!

  17. zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

  18. yes i think jeff ate to much turkey and drank to much as he has not posted anything for us to complain about…. mabey he is waiting to get his visa bill in so he can rant……. sure is boring with nothing to complain about or set people straight ……….

  19. Maybe he is trying to gather some info on the coyote lovers who are planning a court case against the coyote contests? See Sun News about the story.

    1. Ok, now you woke me up!!

      For those who havent seen the story yet(Hope you’ve eaten lunch already):

      Wildlife group takes aim at coyote contest
      By SCOTT TAYLOR, Ottawa Sun

      Last Updated: January 12, 2011 9:24am

      OTTAWA – – A contest to kill coyotes might seem like fun to some, but a wily lawyer and three organizations are declaring open season on anyone who goes through with it.

      The Ottawa-Carleton Wildlife Centre (OCWC), Canadian chapter of Born Free USA, and Animal Alliance of Canada recite chapter and verse a section of the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act, which states: ” … it is an offence to hunt for gain or to induce another person to hunt for gain.”

      Offering prizes in upcoming contests Ñ including a first prize of a Mossberg 535 shotgun Ñ is illegal, they say, and they have a lawyer loaded for bear on the payroll.

      “There is a clear admission on the part of the mInistry of natural resources that these coyote killing contests are illegal,” said OCWC president Donna Debreuil.

      Animal Alliance director Liz White said the cold shoulder forced the organization to bring a hired gun of its own on board.

      Lawyer Peter Copeland wrote to Natural Resources Minister Linda Jeffrey recommending the contests, and not the coyotes, be killed.

      This is the second year the Osgoode Township Fish, Game and Conservation Club has held the contest. A shotgun was awarded after a draw last year as well. Contestants’ names were entered in a draw every time they came through the door of The Old Co-Op in North Gower with a coyote carcass. The ministry has deemed the contest legal.

  20. jeff i posted this last week on your other blog topic ….. it is going to be intresting

    Ontario government can break its own laws – Winter 2011

    In October 2010, Peaceful Parks discovered the Legislation Act. … e.htm#BK83

    It outlines the proper procedure and requirements when writing new legislation. It came into force in 2006 under the McGuinty government and was last amended in 2009.

    Hidden deep within its pages in section 71, is a short clause entitled “Crown not bound, exception”.

    It reads as follows:

    “71. No Act or regulation binds Her Majesty or affects Her Majesty’s rights or prerogatives unless it expressly states an intention to do so. 2006, c. 21, Sched. F, s. 71.”

    At first reading, the meaning of the clause was difficult to comprehend. It seemed impossible that a government would exempt itself, and all federal agencies, from its own laws. But that is exactly the purpose of section 71.

    We made a simple enquiry to Minister of Natural Resources Linda Jeffery asking whether the minister had given authorization to the Hamilton Port Authority to destroy Double-crested Cormorant eggs and nests in Hamilton Harbour.

    It is illegal under the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act – section 7. (1) to (3) – to destroy nests and eggs of a wild bird, including cormorants, without prior ministerial authorization.

    Minister Jeffery confirmed that she issued no such authorization but provided no explanation. Upon further questioning, the minister’s office quoted section 71 of the Legislation Act as the rationale for issuing no authorization to the Hamilton Port Authority.

    We attempted to confirm our interpretation of section 71 of the ‘Act” with the minister’s office but they provided no comment.

    Section 71 was applied to override the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act. It is unknown how section 71 of the Legislation Act is applied in other areas of the law or civil society.

    Coyote Killing Contests

    Last winter several sport hunting outfitters organized coyote killing contests across Ontario. These hunting contests were defacto coyote bounties and are illegal under Ontario’s Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act.

    Section 11 (1) of the Act reads:

    11. (1) Except with the authorization of the Minister, a person shall not,

    (a) hunt for hire, gain or the expectation of gain;

    (b) hire, employ or induce another person to hunt for gain;

    (c) trap for hire, gain or the expectation of gain;

    (d) hire, employ or induce another person to trap for gain; or

    (e) pay or accept a bounty.

    Despite the public rhetoric by the McGuinty government defending coyotes and standing firm against a formal coyote bounty, it quietly approved coyote killing contests by choosing not to enforce section 11(1) of the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act. No charges were laid against organizers even though the killing contests were well advertised.

    1. Sorry Chessy, I just started a new Post on this…could you copy your comment over there?


  21. mcdan,

    As for ur comment about the Money for research, Yes ur correct but it’s a very small percentage that comes out of the outdoors card & Tag sales, And most of the $$ comes from the privet sector such as groups like RMEF and others.

    Think about it if they can’t even afford gas for their MNR Vehicle’s let alone train staff for the jobs needed to accomplish the research, How can they possibly afford any type of research & Management specialy with all
    The staff cutbacks?.

  22. @15 pointer those numbers are ofah head office numbers . the reasearch money is what they declaired to revenue canada.

  23. Lets not forget Safari Club International Ontario Chapter contributed a major percentage of elk reintroduction costs.

  24. Hey Oldhunter

    I remember my grandparents talking of the elk at Long Lake. They bought our land in 1953, just off Long Lake Road.

    There’s moose back in the area now oo — one young bull has been having a grand time tearing up the marsh.

    I wasn’t old enough to hunt until the middle 70’s, so the elk were long gone by then.

Comments are closed.