Highlights of Regulation Changes for 2017
New Jersey Hunting
2017–18 Hunting and Trapping
Changes to deer regulations for the 2017–18 seasons are extensive and involve changes to the bag limits for the deer management zones in Regulation Sets 2, 5 and 6; season date changes for the permit shotgun and permit muzzleloader seasons for zones in Regulation Sets 6, 7 and 8; a small boundary change between zones 26 and 42 and changes to several Special Area zones.
- The Permit Muzzleloader season will close on December 30 in DMZs in Regulation Set 0.
- The Permit Shotgun season in DMZs in Regulation Set 0 is expanded from 1 day to 3 days.
- The bag limit for DMZs in Regulation Set 2 is changed from two deer to one antlered and one antlerless deer.
- The bag limit for DMZs in Regulation Set 5 is changed from one antlered and unlimited antlerless deer to one antlered and five antlerless deer.
- The bag limit for DMZs in Regulation Set 6 is changed from one antlered and unlimited antlerless to one antlered and nine antlerless deer. Also, the six days of antlerless-only Permit Shotgun and Permit Muzzleloader hunting which ran concurrent with the Six-day Firearm season is eliminated.
- The Permit Shotgun and Permit Muzzleloader season antlerless-only days immediately prior to the opening of the Six-day Firearm season are eliminated in DMZs in Regulation Sets 7 and 8.
- DMZ 54 (Picatinny Arsenal) is closed to Permit Muzzleloader hunting on Christmas Day.
Other Game Code amendments for the 2017–18 hunting seasons include the following:
- The Youth Pheasant Hunt is extended from one day to six days.
- The liberation of northern bobwhite quail is banned on certain wildlife management areas.
- The hunting season for gray squirrel is extended one week to coincide with the closure of the rabbit season.
- The opening day of the trapping season for mink, muskrat and nutria on pheasant-stocked WMAs is changed to November 15 from January 1.
- The opening day of the trapping season for raccoon, fox, opossum, skunk, weasel, and coyote is now earlier, changed to Nov. 15 on pheasant-stocked WMAs where ONLY cage traps or encapsulated foothold traps are legal during this early part of the season through Dec. 31.
- The required timeframe to check traps is changed for semi-aquatic species in tidal waters ONLY.
- The waters and shoreline of Barnegat Inlet are closed to waterfowl hunting.
- The holders of an apprentice hunting license (see QR Code, below) are prohibited from hunting during the black bear season and the special nighttime coyote and fox seasons.
- Drones or unmanned aircraft are prohibited for the purposes of hunting.
- “Smart” rifles or guns are prohibited for the purpose of hunting.