Ollin Magnetic Digiscoping System

TakeBackYourElk - New Mexico Elk Report and Initiative


Active member
Dec 21, 2015
New Mexican hunters, including me, hit the end of our patience with our state’s highly privatized Elk tag allocation system. The New Mexico Wildlife Federation, the New Mexico Chapter of Backcountry Hunters and Anglers, and to a lesser extent, I complied elk tag sales data for the 2021 season. The report we prepared is mostly a tally of license sales by private landowner authorizations converted to licenses (so called Elk Private Land Utilization System (EPLUS) tags), outfitter draw set-aside, unguided draw. All by residency. Of course we do provide opinion that is shared by a majority of New Mexican hunters.

Of course because this is New Mexico there is significant focus on the nonresident portion of the elk permits. Perhaps lost in this is New Mexican hunter’s willingness to share a healthy portion of our big game hunting opportunity with nonresidents. But we do not want to share the portion size that is shared today and we especially do not want the vast majority of the nonresident share to exist because of the enormous number of private elk permits in New Mexico. By far our chief dissatisfaction with New Mexico’s tag allocation system is that it is based on wealth. Pay-to-Pay puts hunting opportunity into the hands of the wealthy. There are 327 million non-New Mexicans and only 2 million New Mexicans. It’s a wonder that more than the 75% to 90% range of private tags that are consumed by nonresidents is not higher.

What we demand is simple. Distribution of very nearly all elk permits by a public process that does not involve payment to or contract with a private individual or entity.

The report can be found at: