MEDFORD — Nearly 34,000 Oregon hunters face a $25 penalty for failing to tell the state how they did in their 2012 deer and elk hunts.
The state has been trying since 2007 to get the hunter reports to build better statistics on hunting success and harvest rates, which are used to set the numbers of deer and elk tags.
Fewer than 40 percent of hunters reported results when there were no penalties or when incentives were offered. That’s not enough for sound data.
In October 2012, the state adopted the $25 penalty, and the reporting rate skyrocketed to 85 percent.
That still leaves a lot of hunters facing the extra charge when they buy their 2014 licenses.
The holders of about 29,000 deer tags and 17,000 elk tags didn’t report, out of 298,000 deer and elk tags sold.