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Deer Hunting Seasons

Hunting Regulations Icon Mississippi Hunting & Fishing

 

Hunting Seasons: Northeast, Delta, South Delta, East Central, Southwest Zones

Northeast Zone: Areas east of I-55 and north of U.S. Highway 82. East Central Zone: Areas east of I-55, east of U.S. Highway 49, south of U.S. Highway 82, and north of U.S. Highway 84. Southwest Zone: Areas east of U.S. Highway 61, south of I-20, west of U.S. Highway 49, and west of MS Highway 35. A legal buck is defined as having EITHER a minimum inside spread of 10 inches OR a minimum main beam length of 13 inches. Delta Zone: Private and open public lands west of I-55 and north of I-20 plus areas south of I-20 and west of U.S. Hwy. 61. A legal buck is defined as having EITHER a minimum inside spread of 12 inches OR a minimum main beam length of 15 inches.

Method

Season Dates

Legal Deer

Archery

Oct. 1 – Nov. 20

Either-Sex on private and open public land.

Youth Gun
(15 and under)

Nov. 7 – Nov. 20

Either sex on private and authorized state and federal lands.

Nov. 21 – Jan. 31

Either sex on private lands. On open public lands, youth must follow below legal deer criteria.

Antlerless Primitive Weapons

Nov. 9 – 20

Antlerless Deer Only on private lands.

Gun (with dogs)

Nov. 21 – Dec. 1

Either-Sex on private land and Holly Springs NF. Legal Bucks only on open public land.

Primitive Weapon

Dec. 2 – 15

Either-Sex on private land, open public land, and Holly Springs NF. Weapon of choice may be used on private land with appropriate license.

Gun (without dogs)

Dec. 16 – 23

Either-Sex on private land and Holly Springs NF. Legal Bucks only on open public land.

Gun (with dogs)

Dec. 24 – Jan. 20

Either-Sex on private land and Holly Springs NF. Legal Bucks only on open public land.

Archery/Primitive Weapon

Jan. 21 – 31

Either-Sex on private land and Holly Springs NF. Legal Bucks only on open public land. Weapon of choice may be used on private land with appropriate license.

 

Hunting Seasons: Southeast Zone

Private and open public lands south of U.S. Hwy. 84 and east of MS Hwy. 35. A legal buck is defined as having EITHER a minimum inside spread of 10 inches OR a minimum main beam length of 13 inches.

Method

Season Dates

Legal Deer

Archery

Oct. 15 – Nov. 20

Either-Sex on private and open public land.

Youth Gun
(15 and under)

Nov. 7 – Nov. 20

Either sex on private and authorized state and federal lands.

Nov. 21 – Feb. 15

Either sex on private lands. On open public lands, youth must follow below legal deer criteria.

Gun (with dogs)

Nov. 21 – Dec. 1

Either-Sex on private land. Legal Bucks only on open public land.

Primitive Weapon

Dec. 2 – 15

Either-Sex on private land and open public land. Weapon of choice may be used on private land with appropriate license.

Gun (without dogs)

Dec. 16 – 23

Either-Sex on private land. Legal Bucks only on open public land.

Gun (with dogs)

Dec. 24 – Jan. 20

Either-Sex on private land. Legal Bucks only on open public land.

Archery/Primitive Weapon

Jan. 21 – 31

Either-Sex on private land. Legal bucks only on open public land. Weapon of choice may be used on private land with appropriate license.

Feb. 1 – 15

Legal bucks only on private and open public land. Weapon of choice may be used on private land with appropriate license.

 

Mandatory CWD Sampling

During the 2020-2021 season, all deer harvested in the respective counties and dates listed below must be submitted for CWD sampling by 10 p.m. on the day of harvest. Check station and dropoff locations can be found at www.mdwfp.com/cwd

Dates

Locations

Nov. 21-22

In any county or portion thereof in the North Mississippi and Issaquena CWD Zones.

Jan. 2-3

In the following counties: all portions of Adams, Amite, Franklin, Jefferson, Lawrence, Lincoln, Pike, Walthall, and Wilkinson.

Jan. 16-17

In the following counties: all portions of Covington, Forrest, George, Greene, Hancock, Harrison, Jackson, Jefferson Davis, Jones, Lamar, Marion, Pearl River, Perry, Stone, and Wayne.

Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) was discovered in Mississippi in February 2018. Since then, proactive measures have been enacted for continued surveillance and management. Some measures include:

*Supplemental feeding of wildlife, (including feeders, salt licks, and mineral licks), is banned within any MDWFP-defined CWD Zone.

*Only cut/wrapped meat, deboned meat, hides with no head attached, finished taxidermy products, antlers with no tissue attached, and cleaned skulls or skull plates may be transported outside the CWD Zones or into Mississippi from any other state or country.

*MDWFP urges hunters to submit the heads of harvested deer for CWD sampling, especially if the deer was harvested in a CWD Zone.

*Please visit http://www.mdwfp.com/wildlife-hunting/chronic-wasting-disease/ to learn more about CWD.

 

Legal Weapons

Archery: Longbows, recurves, crossbows and compound bows. There is no minimum or maximum draw weight. There is no minimum arrow length. Fixed or mechanical broadheads may be used.

Primitive Weapons: Weapons legal for use during the Primitive Weapons season are all archery equipment and primitive firearms. “Primitive firearms,” for the purpose of hunting deer, are defined as single- or double-barreled, muzzle-loading rifles of at least .38 caliber; OR single-shot, breech-loading, metallic-cartridge rifles (.35 caliber or larger) and replicas, reproductions, or reintroductions of those type rifles with an exposed hammer; OR single- or double-barreled, muzzle-loading shotguns, with single ball or slug. All muzzle-loading primitive firearms must use black powder or a black powder substitute with percussion caps, #209 shotgun primers, or flintlock ignition.

“Blackpowder substitute” is defined as a substance designed, manufactured, and specifically intended to be used as a propellant in muzzleloading or other black powder firearms, excluding modern smokeless powder. Metallic cartridges may be loaded with either black powder or modern smokeless powder (cartridges purchased at sporting goods stores).

During any open season on deer with primitive weapons after November 30, a person may use any legal weapon of choice on private lands only, if the person is the title owner of the land; the lessee of the hunting rights on the land; a member of a hunting club leasing the hunting rights on the land; or a guest of a person specified above. If the person is required to have a hunting license, the person must have a primitive weapon license, Sportsman’s License or a Lifetime Sportsman’s License.

Gun: There are no caliber or magazine capacity restrictions on firearms. Air guns may be used on private lands during open gun seasons. Archery and primitive firearms may be used during Gun seasons.

Open Public Lands include U.S. National Forests, Corps of Engineers lands, etc., that have statewide seasons without special regulations. Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs) are not considered Open Public Land. For seasons and bag limits on MDWFP Wildlife Management Areas visit www.mdwfp.com/wma