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Wyoming Antelope Hunting 2024

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Wyoming is still the go-to state for antelope hunting in the western U.S. The populations of antelope have been declining statewide over the last decade, due mainly to drought and then the harsh winter of 2022/23 that devastated many units in the southwest region of Wyoming. WGFD cut over 10,000 antelope licenses for the 2023 season to try and help with the recovery efforts. Even with all this bad news, there were still over 30,000 antelope licenses issued for the 2023 hunting season, with over 6,500 of them going to non-residents. Early indications show there will be an increase in antelope licenses for the 2024 season. Many units that had license reductions last year were done as a precaution in April before winter survival numbers were actually known. Several of the central units in the state were not significantly affected by winter conditions and retained populations of or near objectives. Proposals from WGFD are to add type 1 tags in these units as well as doe/fawn tags in units where antelope populations are doing well. Expect draw odds to still remain tough as fewer tags are issued and more applicants are applying every year which will not help with point creep. Many units actually became easier to draw last year as hunters were nervous about antelope numbers and quality in certain regions. On the flip side, other units that had traditionally been drawn with 0-1 point jumped up to 2-4 points. Expect draw odds in the better units to be low for 2024 as more hunters will likely be applying. With the wet summer and fall of 2023 and a mild winter, horn growth should be great throughout the state and then add in less hunters in the field and this fall could be a great time to have a tag in your pocket.

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Overall, trophy buck quality is down from its heydays in the early 2000s when big bucks seemed to be behind every sagebrush. This likely runs hand in hand with the lower antelope numbers throughout the state now. Antelope populations hit their peak around 2010 through the mid-teens when WGFD was issuing a boatload of type 1 tags as well as thousands of additional doe/fawn licenses. These high license quotas were not the only reason, but they were definitely a factor in antelope numbers plummeting in this time period. Everything runs in a cycle of ups and downs, and Wyoming antelope are experiencing a downswing right now. In reality, antelope are a lot more resilient than mule deer, and as such, populations should recover in a few years if WYFG maintains low to no doe/fawn licenses and we see some mild to normal winters with good spring and summer moisture. Fawn/doe antelope ratios typically run higher than mule deer fawn/doe ratios with average numbers running in the 70-80/100 fawn ratio with some areas being even higher, which lends itself well to a rapid recovery. Proposals for 2024 are to keep tag numbers low in the western and southwestern parts of the state with a few tag increases in the central to eastern side of the state depending on specific unit objectives.

Even with all the negative news about Wyoming antelope numbers, it is still home to the largest antelope population and has plenty of hunting opportunities with good quality. The number of points required to put a license in your pocket is still going to be the biggest challenge for hunters, with more applicants applying and fewer tags allocated each year. The tough pill that most of us have to swallow now is that the same unit that could have been drawn four years ago with 3 points now requires 6-8 points or more to draw, and there is a good chance that there are fewer mature bucks on the landscape. Second choice licenses are becoming a thing of the past, and those that still remain are terrible hunts for the self-guided hunters with little to no public land access.

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On a positive note, antelope in Wyoming have bounced back relatively quickly in the past from large die-offs. Wyoming has some of the best antelope habitat there is, and with a few mild to average winters, numbers should increase rapidly. Wyoming has been producing some great quality bucks for hunters over the last several years, with 2023 being the exception. The genetics are still there even though the numbers may be down. If you are one of those guys sitting on a bunch of points and are looking at areas to burn them, you should still be looking at the Red Desert area and surrounding units around Rock Springs north to Riverton and Casper. These areas may not have the number of antelope they had a few years ago, but with the mild winter and early spring, horn growth should be excellent for the remaining bucks. However, if you are still nervous about the conditions of the antelope and in no hurry to burn your points, waiting another year or two might even produce a hunt like we saw in the good old days.


Overall, a good antelope hunt can still be had in any unit across the state. As a matter of fact, the hunting might be better than normal this year with a lot less hunters in the field in many units to deal with. Judging antelope can still be the hardest part, especially when the majority of the bucks are the same at 12-13" and look like clones. Hunters wanting bigger bucks need to be patient and look over plenty of animals to find that trophy buck they are longing for. If you are ready to draw a tag and have 8-18 points, read through the comments on some of the different units we have listed and decide if one of them has the right terrain and trophy potential to fit what you are looking for. If you are like a lot of us and don’t have enough points to draw the unit you would like, look over the random draw odds and see if you can increase your odds of drawing a tag. Applying in the special draw this year with the price increase may significantly increase a hunter’s odds of drawing in the random draw. The most important thing to remember if you have a few points is to not overthink it and apply for a unit with enough public land to hunt and cross your fingers. The margin of quality that separates most of these units is relatively small and most likely will not be noticeable.

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Since it is Wyoming and they have the largest antelope population in the nation and endless amounts of public land hunting opportunities, we recommend you at least build points every year for future antelope hunting possibilities. If you are looking at hiring an outfitter for a guided antelope hunt, remember that in most cases you do not need many or in some units any points and can book a hunt with one of our Endorsed Outfitters that has access to private land.

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WY Antelope Application Deadline

The application deadline to apply for Wyoming antelope is 11:59 p.m. MDT on May 31, 2024.

Our magazine, which is available in print and online, has everything in one location - application info, draw details and odds, fees, hunter requirements, point structure, age restrictions, youth information, weapon restrictions, other tag opportunities, hunt planning, and much more. If you would like access to all of our research, join today!


((License fees include $15 non-refundable application fees but do not account for the 2.5% processing fee.)
  Youth Regular Special Youth Regular
Deer $125 $389 $1,215 $10 $41
Antelope $125 $341 $1,215 $10 $31
*The application dates to apply online for points are July 1-October 31.
**The archery license is $72 for non-residents, $16 for residents, $16 for non-resident youth, and $6 for resident youth.


WY Antelope Hunting Articles from Huntin' Fool Magazine