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This is the 2015 Massachusetts Fish & Wildlife Guide

This guide contains regulations effective January 1st, 2015.  For regulations effective today through December 31st, 2014, please refer to the 2014 Massachusetts Fish & Wildlife Guide.

Furbearers

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Open season
(All Dates Inclusive)

Daily BAG limit

possession limit

season limit

FURBEARERS

Bobcat

Zones 1-8

Jan. 1 – Mar. 7
Dec. 21 – Mar. 8, 2016

Coyote

Jan. 1 – Mar. 7
Oct. 17 – Mar. 8, 2016

Fox (red or gray)

Jan. 1 – Feb. 28
Nov. 2 – Feb 29, 2016

Raccoon

Jan. 1 – Jan. 31
Oct. 1 – Jan. 30, 2016

3

Opossum

Jan. 1 – Jan. 31
Oct. 1 – Jan. 30, 2016

Bobcat

Hunting hours ½ hour before sunrise to ½ hour after sunset. Hunting is limited to Zones 1-8. It is illegal to use dogs for bobcat hunting. All bobcats taken or salvaged must be checked within 4 working days of the end of the season (see below) at an official check station. Bobcats cannot be reported online.

Coyote & Fox

Hunting hours begin ½ hour before sunrise and end at midnight, except 1) on WMAs stocked with pheasant or quail during the pheasant and quail season when hunting hours begin at sunrise and end at sunset and, 2) when hunting coyote during the shotgun deer season (see below). Coyote and fox may be hunted with shotguns, muzzleloaders, and archery, as well as rifles and handguns with special nighttime restrictions (see Hunting Prohibitions). Coyotes may be hunted with shotguns using numbered or lettered birdshot (≤ 0.230 inch pellet diameter; up to FF), except during the shotgun deer season (see below). Fox may be hunted with numbered birdshot only (≤ 0.160 inch pellet diameter). It is legal to hunt coyote and fox using bait, decoys, electronic or manual calls, and dogs. Artificial lights are prohibited. Coyote and fox pelts/carcasses must be checked/reported within 4 working days of the end of the season by either 1) checking them at an official check station (see below), or 2) reporting them online and writing the harvest confirmation number on a tag of your own making, then attaching the tag to the carcass or pelt (see below for details). Confirmation numbers must remain attached to all pelts/carcasses, with the specific confirmation number issued for each particular pelt or carcass, until the carcass is prepared for mounting by a taxidermist, or the pelt is sold or tanned.

During the shotgun deer season it is legal to hunt coyotes, but not fox; however the following additional regulations apply:

  • Hunting hours begin ½ hour before sunrise and end ½ hour after sunset.
  • Use of manual or electronic calls and dogs are prohibited.
  • Rifles and handguns are prohibited.
  • Shotguns and muzzleloaders loaded with slugs, single balls, or buckshot are permitted.
  • Hunters must wear a minimum of 500 square inches of hunter orange on their head, chest, and back.

Raccoon

Limit of 3 raccoons from sunset of
1 day to sunset of the following day by 1 person; limit of 6 by 2 or more persons hunting in the same group. Night hunting on WMAs (except Delaney and Flint Pond WMAs) is permitted from sunset to sunrise except during the pheasant and quail season on areas stocked with pheasant or quail, when raccoon may be hunted only from 9pm to 3am.

Opossum

No bag limit on opossum. Night hunting on WMAs (except Delaney and Flint Pond WMAs) is permitted from sunset to sunrise except during the pheasant and quail season on WMAs stocked with pheasant or quail, when opossum may be hunted only from 9pm to 3am.

Open season
(All Dates Inclusive)

Furbearers – Trapping

Bobcat1,2 Coyote1, Fox1, Weasel

Nov. 1 – Nov. 30

Fisher1

Nov. 1 – Nov. 22

Mink1, River Otter1

Nov. 1 – Dec. 15

Beaver1

Jan. 1 – April 15
Nov. 1 – April 15, 2016

Muskrat, Opossum,
Raccoon, Skunk

Jan. 1 – Feb. 28
Nov. 1 – Feb. 29, 2016

1 – Pelt sealing required; see above.

2 – Bobcats may only be trapped in zones 1-8

Regulations in red are new this year.

Purple text indicates an important note.

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