Additional Hunting Opportunities in State Parks, Forests Now Available through Deer Management Assistance Program

Posted: June 19, 2013

Deer hunters now can apply for permits affording more hunting opportunities in state forestlands and state parks through the Game Commission’s Deer Management Assistance Program, or DMAP.

DMAP allows landowners to request and offer permits to encourage antlerless harvests on their property, enabling DCNR and private landowners to more effectively manage white-tailed deer populations and curtail damage to forests and crops.

New this year, DCNR, the Pennsylvania Game Commission, Pennsylvania State University, and the U.S. Geological Survey’s Pennsylvania Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit will be studying DMAP locations in Bald Eagle, Rothrock and Susquehannock state forests.

In addition to monitoring hunter experiences, the study will also look at the amount of deer in the area, vegetation impacts and other factors that could adversely affect forest tree regeneration and plant species composition. As a result, changes in enrollment status and number of DMAP permits will occur within these areas.

"The goal of this study is to increase our knowledge to ensure we are making the best and most responsible management decisions for Pennsylvania’s forests and wildlife," State Bureau of Forestry Director Dan Devlin said.

Within the territory of the study, some deer have been marked with radio collars and ear tags. All marked deer are legal for hunters to harvest, provided they have the appropriate license or permit. If a hunter harvests one of the marked deer, they are asked to call the toll-free number on the collar or tag.

Habitat conditions continue to guide DCNR’s DMAP applications. Tuscarora State Forest District, for instance, was added to the program after withdrawing last year because of improved forest regeneration, previously impacted by deer. Not participating are Moshannon, Weiser, Cornplanter and William Penn state forest districts.

Hunters no longer apply at forest district or park offices, or on the DCNR website. Instead, permits can be obtained directly from license issuing agents or the Game Commission website.

DCNR tract locations and maps, availability numbers, past hunter success rates, and other information for DMAP permit applicants is available on the DNCR site.

For more details, contact DCNR’s Bureau of Forestry at 717-787-3444; or email