Skip to Main Content Skip to Main Navigation
Join the Griffin's Guide HUNTING newsletter

Get weekly news, tips and photos from the world of hunting.
[contact-form-7 id="35884" title="GG Email"]
No Thanks!

Furbearer Hunting & Trapping

Brought to you by:

Furbearing Animals

13VTAB-eRegs-SmallGame.jpgThe following are classified as furbearing animals: beaver, otter, marten, mink, raccoon, fisher, fox, skunk, muskrat, bobcat, coyote, weasel, opossum, lynx, and wolf.

Trapping License Requirements

An applicant for a trapping license must have either:

  • A previous or current trapping license from any state or Canadian province; or
  • A certificate showing satisfactory completion of a trapper education course, in any state or Canadian province; or
  • A signed affidavit attesting to having a prior trapping license.

Fur Buyer’s License

Anyone dealing in pelts must have a valid Fur Buyer’s License. The Fur Buyer’s License is available from Fish & Wildlife in Montpelier (phone 802-241-3695).

Seasons

Furbearer Hunting

Bobcat

Jan. 10 – Feb. 7

Red & Gray Fox

Oct. 27, 2012 – Feb. 10, 2013 & Oct. 26, 2013 – Feb. 9, 2014

Raccoon

Oct. 12 – Dec. 31

Muskrat

March 20 – April 19

Coyote, Opossum, Skunk, Weasel

No Closed Season

Marten, Lynx, Wolf, Eastern Mountain Lion

No Open Season

 

Furbearer Trapping

Mink, Skunk, Red & Gray Fox, Raccoon, Coyote, Opossum, Weasel

Oct. 26 – Dec. 31

Otter

Oct. 27, 2012 – Feb. 28, 2013 & Oct. 26, 2013 – Feb. 28, 2014

Muskrat

Oct. 27, 2012 – March 31, 2013 & Oct. 26, 2013 – March 31, 2014

Fisher

Dec. 1 – 31

Bobcat

Dec. 1 – 16

Beaver

Oct. 26 – March 31

Marten, Lynx, Wolf, Eastern Mountain Lion

No Open Season

 

Restrictions

  • A person trapping fur-bearing animals shall visit his/her traps at least once every calendar day, except as provided below, and dispatch or release any animal caught therein.
  • A person who sets body gripping traps in the water or under the ice, or foothold or cage traps under the shall visit his/her traps at least once every three calendar days and remove any animal caught.
  • A person shall not set a trap on lands other than his/her own which does not have his/her name and address permanently and legibly stamped or engraved thereon, or on a tag of rustless material securely attached thereto.
  • All traps under ice will be marked with a tag visible above the ice.
  • A person shall not set a body gripping trap with a jaw spread over eight inches measured inside the jaws unless the trap is set five feet or more above the ground, or in the water.
  • A person shall not use toothed foothold traps or snares when trapping.
  • A person shall not set a trap between December 31 and the following fourth Saturday in October unless the trap is in the water, under the ice, or on a float in the water.
  • A person shall not possess a living fur-bearing animal, except as provided by rules of the board or part 4 of Title 10.
  • A person shall not possess a fur-bearing animal trapped outside of its legal season without the written authorization of the department, not to include animals taken pursuant to 10 V.S.A. § 4828.
  • A person shall not possess fur or skin of a fur-bearing animal unlawfully taken.
  • A person shall not take a fur-bearing animal by use of any poisonous mixture.
  • A person shall not take a fur-bearing animal from its den by cutting, digging, smoking, by the use of chemicals, or by the use of mechanical devices.

Beaver; Muskrat

  • When trapping muskrat between March 1 and March 31, body gripping traps are restricted to 5 inches or less.
  • A person shall not disturb or destroy a beaver or muskrat house or den or place a trap therein, thereon, or in the entrance thereof.
  • A person may set a trap within 10 feet of the nearest point, above the water, of a beaver house or dam only from the 4th Saturday in October through the last day of February, all dates inclusive.
  • Except for the setting of traps as provided under 4.13b and 4.13c, a person shall not interfere in any manner with dams, dens, or houses of beaver except upon prior written approval from the Commissioner.
  • When trapping beaver between March 1 and March 31, body gripping traps shall:
  1. 1. Have a parallel trigger and trigger stop. Acceptable trigger stops include twisted wire, cable ties, wire wrap, or welded bead. The trigger should be offset at least 8 inches from one side of the trap and be no longer than 6 1/2 inches. Trigger wires must be joined together.
  2. 2. Include tension adjustable, square-notch trigger brackets. Four-way and/or V-notch triggers are illegal to use.
    Diagrams on the next page illustrate these requirements.

Bobcat; Otter; Fisher

  • From December 17 to December 31, both dates inclusive, in order to minimize incidental bobcat harvest during the remainder of the fisher season, a person shall not set a body gripping trap with a jaw spread over 6 inches measured inside the jaws unless the trap is set 5 or more feet above the ground, or in the water.
  • The skins of bobcat, otter, and fisher legally taken may be possessed, transported, bought and sold only when tagged and marked as hereinafter provided.
  • A person who takes bobcats, otter, or fisher during these seasons shall notify authorized department staff within 48 hours of the close of the season. Pelts shall be presented to authorized department staff for tagging. Such tags shall remain affixed to the pelts until tanned. Carcasses shall be surrendered to authorized department staff at the time of tagging.
  • No bobcat, otter, or fisher pelts or carcasses taken during these seasons shall be transported out of the state of Vermont prior to being tagged by authorized department staff.
  • A person who takes bobcat, fisher, and otter pursuant to 10 V.S.A. § 4828 and who desires to keep the pelt shall notify authorized department staff within 84 hours of the taking Pelts shall be presented to authorized department staff for tagging. Such tags shall remain affixed to the pelts until tanned. Carcasses shall be surrendered to authorized department staff at the time of tagging.

Raccoons

  • A person shooting raccoons during the raccoon hunting season shall use a 0.22 caliber rimfire firearm or a shotgun with #2 shot or smaller.
  • A light may be used to illuminate and shoot raccoon once treed by a dog, or dogs, during the raccoon hunting season. A light may also be used to illuminate a raccoon once treed by a dog, or dogs, during the training season.

BODY-GRIPPING TRAP DIAGRAMS

 

13VTAB-eRegs-TrapDiagrams.jpg

 

Regulations in red are new this year.

Purple text indicates an important note.

Return to the eregulations.com home page
Brought to you by:
Conservation Partner Advertisements: The Department of Fish and Wildlife allows appropriate advertising in its annual regulation guides in print and online, in order to defray or eliminate expenses to the state, and support enhanced communications with Department of Fish and Wildlife Constituents. Through a unique partnership with J.F.Griffin Publishing, LLC & eRegulations.com, ‘Conservation Partners’ have been established that pay for advertising in support of the regulations both in print and online. The Department of Fish and Wildlife neither endorses products or services listed or claims made; nor accepts any liability arising from the use of products or services listed. Advertisers interested in the Conservation Partners program should contact J.F.Griffin/eRegulations.com directly at 413-884-1001,
JF Griffin Media
J.F. Griffin Media reaches 9,000,000 sportsmen every year through our print and digital publications. We produce 30 hunting and fishing regulation guides for 15 state agencies. For advertising information, please visit: www.jfgriffin.com