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Shed hunting

Shed antlers in the Nevada wilderness

Nevada Department of Wildlife

RENO — As of May 1, outdoor enthusiasts may now collect shed antlers on public lands statewide.

Earlier this year, the Nevada Board of Wildlife Commissioners closed shed hunting on public land in Elko, Eureka, Lander, Lincoln, Nye and White Pine counties from Jan. 1 to April 30. The goal of the regulation is to allow deer and elk herds in eastern and central Nevada the use of their critical winter range habitats with minimal disturbance.

As shed hunting becomes more popular each year, mounting pressure from shed hunters has forced animals to move onto sub-par habitat and expend crucial energy reserves during critical winter months.

Shed hunters are being asked to follow a few simple rules to keep from disturbing the animals and to protect critical mule deer winter ranges.

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  • Please keep vehicles on existing two tracks and roads preventing further habitat damage.
  • Don’t get too close to mule deer or elk when hunting for sheds. If your activity causes them to move on, you are too close.
  • Pack out anything that you pack in.
  • Avoid sage grouse leks first thing in the morning.
  • Finally, respect other shed hunters that may be in the field with you.

Shed hunters may want to carry a small backpack with snacks and drinks, as well as a pair of binoculars to help find sheds. Dress in layers as the cold mornings give way to warm spring afternoons. Leave a trip plan with a responsible party letting them know where you are and when plan to return. That way if a vehicle breaks down or gets stuck and you don’t return on time, help can soon be on the way.

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