SALT LAKE CITY — Winter is when male deer, elk and moose shed their antlers. The animals will be without antlers until spring, when they'll start to grow a new set.
Gathering antlers that drop off the heads of deer, elk and moose has grown in popularity in Utah. The challenge with shed-antler gathering is that it happens during the worst time of the year for the animals and the habitat the animals rely on in the winter.
"By the time winter ends, the animals are stressed," says Mike Fowlks, law enforcement section chief for the Division of Wildlife Resources.
Fowlks says Utahns must complete the DWR's Antler Gathering Ethics course if they want to learn to gather shed antlers without stressing or harming animals in Utah through April 15.
The free course is available at wildlife.utah.gov/shedantler. People who wait until April 15 or later to gather antlers don't need to complete the course.
For more information, call the nearest Division of Wildlife Resources office or the DWR's Salt Lake City office at 801-538-4700.