A bison hunt is being allowed in Alberta for the first time in five years.

The Hay-Zama herd of wood bison in the Wood Buffalo National Park in northern Alberta has grown to over 525 which has allowed the hunt to resume.

Albertans need to apply for a Resident Bison Special Licence draw tag in Bison Hunting Zone 1 before September 26 with the hunt scheduled between December 1, 2023, and February 29, 2024.

Only individuals are allowed to apply as they won't be accepting any group applications.

First Nations and Métis applications for an Aboriginal Resident Bison Licence need to be in by September 22. It will also be determined by a draw/lottery on who gets the tag. 

The limited hunt is needed to sustain a healthy herd which is the largest wood bison herd in the world.

Bovine brucellosis and tuberculosis have been detected in herds near the national park and the hunt is being done to protect the current herd from expanding into areas that are close to the other infected herds. 

The current health of the herd is strong following recent testing of 350 wood bison showing no diseases in the Hay-Zama herd.


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