BHA raffle raises record amount for mule deer conservation in Montana

Montana BHA’s statewide mule deer raffle raised a record amount for mule deer conservation, and the lucky winner has been drawn!⁣

Last summer, we successfully argued in front of the Fish and Wildlife Commission that there was a better, more equitable way than auctions to raise funds for conservation efforts: a raffle.⁣

Not only did we prove this is a viable option, but hunters helped raise the most money for mule-deer conservation this Montana tag has ever generated: $56,620!⁣

This exceeded the previous Montana mule deer auction record ($41,000) by 38 percent.⁣

At $20 per ticket, $43 was the mean purchase, meaning just a few tickets were bought on average.⁣

So, even with the ability to buy an unlimited number of tickets, the raffle - unlike an auction - wasn’t driven by high rollers; average, blue-collar hunters had a realistic shot. The randomly selected winner purchased just $100 in tickets.⁣

Hunters helped us prove the raffle model can work; so now what?⁣

First, we must again thank Commissioners Burrows and Brooke and Chair Robinson for being willing to try something new, and for recognizing the unpopularity of awarding opportunities to hunt public wildlife to the highest bidders.⁣

Second, we encourage other organizations to consider this approach.⁣

Finally, let’s change the laws on the other tags. Currently, only the statewide deer and elk tags have the option of being raffled or auctioned. But moose, sheep and goat statewide tags are available only to those with the deepest pockets; they’re auction-only.⁣

It’s time we change this and at least allow the option of a raffle for these other statewide tags too, so if some other organization wanted to make a convincing pitch for a raffle, they could.⁣

Because, at least in this case, we found that a raffle is not only more equitable, it can also raise more money. And who can argue with that?⁣

In addition to our friends at Mystery Ranch, First Lite, and Weatherby, thanks again to everyone who entered, supported mule deer, and helped us prove this could work.⁣

And a huge congrats to the lucky winner, Matt E!⁣

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