Regulations in red are new this year.
Deer Permits are valid for the 2015–16 hunting season. New Jersey sporting licenses are valid for the calendar year and expire on Dec. 31. Beaver and river otter trapping permits are valid for the 2015–16 trapping season. For permit and license fees, see License Fees & Info.
All persons hunting or trapping must be properly licensed. It is unlawful for any person age 10 or older to hunt without a hunting license. (See Farmer License Exemption, below.) It is unlawful for any person age 12 or older to trap without a trapping license. Hunting licenses are valid for the calendar year and expire on Dec. 31 regardless the purchase date. See License Fees & Info for license and permit fees. See below for youth license information. To acquire your first New Jersey hunting license (firearm, bow and arrow), present to a license agent (see list, Permit & License Agents) either an appropriate hunter education course completion card or a resident (firearm or bow and arrow) license from this or any other state. The automated license system will allow subsequent hunting license purchases for that sporting arm to be purchased by phone or online or at any license agent. All hunters and trappers must openly display their license in the middle of the back on their outer clothing and must show their license to any law enforcement officer or any person requesting to see it. Farmers hunting their own land must also display any deer season permit.
Licenses, permits and stamps may be purchased using Fish and Wildlife’s Internet sales site (www.NJ.WildlifeLicense.com), via your smartphone or other mobile device, from approved license agents listed on Permit & License Agents, or by calling (888) 773-8450. Permits with a designated zone or hunting season must be purchased at a license agent. See also Non-resident and Resident Licenses, below.
Do NOT heat laminate the durable license or permit. High temperature will destroy these waterproof, heat-sensitive documents.
The “Child Support Program Improvement Act” requires Fish and Wildlife to collect and maintain Social Security numbers and a child support obligation certification from license applicants and to make the collection of this information part of the license application. To comply, Fish and Wildlife, working with the Division of Law in the Office of the Attorney General, created the Supplemental License Application available on the Fish and Wildlife website at NJFishandWildlife.com/child_support_info.htm or at license agents.
The online child support application allows an individual to be certified from the privacy of their home. Once completed—either over the Internet or at a license agent—the certification remains valid for the calendar year in which the certification was completed.
Farmer License Exemption
A farmer and members of the immediate family (see definition under Farmer Regulations, Farmer Hunting & Permit Information) who also reside on the farm may hunt, trap and fish on the farm without being licensed or possessing a valid rifle permit. For details, see Farmer Hunting & Permit Information.
All farmers must have a Conservation Identification number (CID#). Register online now for a free CID# at www.NJ.WildlifeLicense.com. No purchase is required.
New Jersey requires that everyone, age 10 and above, applying to hunt with a firearm or bow must show a previous resident license of the appropriate type from this or any state, or a course completion card from the appropriate hunter education course. Anyone, age 12 and above, applying to trap furbearing animals must show a previous resident trapping license from this or any state, or a trapper education course completion card. See also Youth Licenses, below.
The New Jersey Hunter Education Program is offered as a home study, video-based course. Students may obtain course materials at most license agents and Fish and Wildlife field offices or download from our website. After completing an extensive homework assignment, the student will choose from a list of testing facilities and dates to complete their hunter education course. For more Hunter Education Program details, including course material availability, facility locations, dates and course registration, go to Fish and Wildlife’s website at NJFishandWildlife.com/hunted.htm or call (877) 2HUNTNJ (248-6865).
Trapper education courses are offered four times throughout the state in the months of September and October. To enroll in a trapper education course, go to the Fish and Wildlife website or call (877) 2HUNTNJ to register.
Note: Devices accessing the mobile version of our website must click on “full site” to register for a Hunter Education course.
A license, permit or stamp can be replaced at any license agent, at Fish and Wildlife’s Internet license sales site, www.NJ.WildlifeLicense.com, via your mobile device or by calling (888) 773-8450. Licenses and permits which contain Harvest Report stubs can be duplicated at license agents or on the Internet sales site only twice. All subsequent duplicates of these license and permit types must be handled in person at Fish and Wildlife regional offices or the Pequest Natural Resource Education Center. The Trenton office is no longer open to the public for license and permit sales. A $2 fee is charged for each duplicate license/permit.
National Guard Licenses
Eligible National Guard personnel are entitled to free sporting licenses, permits and stamps. These privileges are not available using Fish and Wildlife’s website. However, the NJ Dept. of Military and Veterans Affairs can issue fishing licenses through their DMAVA website at www.nj.gov/military/fishing_application.html. For all other free sporting licenses, call (609) 530-6866, e-mail or write to: MSG (Ret.) Robert Greco, NJ DMAVA, 101 Eggert Crossing Rd., Lawrenceville, NJ 08648.
Non-residents must show either a resident license from their state or proof of successfully completing an appropriate hunter education course in order to obtain a license to hunt or trap in New Jersey. (See License Information and Fees for license types and also Youth Licenses, Resident and Non-resident, this page.) Non-immigrant aliens who temporarily import firearms to the United States must first obtain an application for the permit from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF). For importation of firearms, use both forms ATF F 5330.3A and .3B. The approval may take up to 12 weeks. Contact ATF’s New Jersey field office at (609) 989-2142 or download forms from their website at http://www.atf.gov/content/firearms/firearms-industry/guides/conditional-importation.
Military Licenses, Active Duty
Any person on active duty in the armed services, regardless of their current residency, may buy a New Jersey resident hunting license. Present a previous resident license (from this or any other state) of the appropriate type or show proof to the license agent of successful completion of the appropriate hunter education course along with proof of your current active duty status in the armed services.
A one-day license may be issued for hunting on a licensed commercial shooting preserve. This license may be obtained at the shooting preserve and is valid only on the day issued for the species covered by the preserve’s license. Hunter education requirements still apply.
A resident license may be purchased if one currently resides in—and has resided in—the state for at least six months immediately prior to application.
Revocation of Licenses
Anyone convicted of a second fish and game violation within a period of five years will have their New Jersey hunting and fishing privileges revoked for two years. Certain violations carry greater periods of revocation, ranging from three years to lifetime revocation. Two convictions of any wildlife management area regulation will result in a five-year revocation of all sporting privileges. Two convictions of the following will result in lifetime revocation: safety zone violation, causing damage to real or personal property and negligent use of a firearm or bow. Fish and Wildlife may revoke any permit or other authorization issued for violation or due cause.
A Youth Firearm or Youth Bow and Arrow License is valid from 10 years of age (or the time of issuance) until the end of the year when the youth turns 16. Note that properly licensed youth hunters age 10–13 may hunt only when under the direct supervision of a properly licensed adult hunter age 21 or older. See also Youth Hunting, below. Youth licenses are available free to youths who have completed the hunter (ages 10–16) or trapper (ages 12–16) education course; see below for course information. See also Take a Kid Hunting.
Lottery Permit Application Process
For permit and license fees, see License Fees & Information.
A lottery is conducted to allocate spring turkey, black bear, beaver and otter hunting or trapping permits. There is no lottery for deer permits. To receive certain permits you must first apply for the lottery. The application period is listed below with each permit type. Apply at license agents or via the Internet. Be sure to have your Conservation ID number (CID#) on hand. A non-refundable $2 application fee is charged for each lottery application.
Hunters or trappers will have three choices in each lottery. If you will accept a permit only for one particular zone (and/or period), complete only a first choice selection. There is no obligation to select a second or third choice; these are optional. When an applicant’s first choice cannot be filled, the computer will check for the second choice listed. If this selection is also sold out, the computer will check for your third choice. Each lottery is completely random and awards only ONE permit — not three. Your chance of winning a permit in the lottery depends on the number of applicants and the number of permits allocated (permit quota.)
Application via the Internet—Before You Start
Application at License Agent Locations—Know Before You Go
Notification of Lottery Results (Did you win a permit?)
Once the lottery is complete, applicants will be notified of their results. When applying at a license agent, applicants may or may not be asked to choose a notification mode. Some license issuing machines must use the default method of mailing a postcard notification. Those who select email notification are reminded to set your junk/spam folder to accept this notification. IMPORTANT: the notification email may fail to arrive due to issues with account providers such as email filters or data storage capacity. The applicant is responsible to know the notification dates and claim period deadlines. Do not wait until the award claim period has ended to check your profile for your permit award status. (See Application Status Check, above.)
Claiming Your Permit
Lottery permit winners may claim their permit(s) by going to any license agent or via the Internet. See the corresponding lottery permit claim dates listed in this Digest for beaver/otter, black bear and spring turkey permits. Recall that at the time of application, you paid only the non-refundable $2 application fee; the actual permit fee must still be paid. Be sure to bring your CID# to the license agent; tell the agent you’re there to claim your Fish and Wildlife-awarded lottery permit. Permits claimed via the Internet are subject to an additional convenience fee and will arrive via mail in 7–10 business days.
Purchasing Non-lottery and Unclaimed Lottery Permits
Leftover (unclaimed) lottery permits and non-lottery permits are available at license agents and online. Internet permit purchases CANNOT be printed at home. Plan ahead, as it may take 7–10 business days for your permit(s) to arrive. During every transaction there are several opportunities to review your information for accuracy. A complete review at each step will allow you to make corrections, if necessary. Note: Once a purchase transaction is complete there will be NO refunds or exchanges. When purchasing permits at a license agent, speed your transaction by presenting to the agent a written note with your CID# and DOB, plus the season and zone of your permit choices.
Beaver and Otter Permits
A total of 11,000 black bear hunting permits, allocated by black bear hunting areas, will be available to properly licensed hunters and farmer hunters. There will be two lotteries this year. Black bear hunters are limited to two permits, however only one bear may be taken, regardless of the number of permits one possesses. Only two applications may be submitted per individual—one application for an initial permit lottery and one application for a secondary/leftover permit for a different bear management zone.
Permits can be purchased at any license agent or online on our Internet sales site. Hunters are limited to two black bear hunting permits, however they must be for different zones. Application fee: $2 per lottery. Application period: Sept 15–Oct 15.
Award notifications and permit claim period begins on October 20. Permits awarded in the lottery must be claimed prior to 11:59 P.M. on TUESDAY, November 10.
Any leftover and unclaimed permits will be sold on a first-come, first-served basis beginning at 10 a.m. on MONDAY, November 16, 2015. Permits will be available for sale at all license agents and on our Internet sales site. Leftover permit availability will be posted on our website by the end of the day on THURSDAY, November 12, 2015.
Special Coyote, Red and Gray Fox Hunting Permits
Deer Hunting Permits
Permits are required to hunt during the Permit Bow, Permit Muzzleloader and Permit Shotgun deer seasons. There is no lottery for deer permits. See Special Areas Information for specific deer permit requirements on those properties.
Permits may be purchased either at a license agent or at Fish and Wildlife’s Internet license sales site www.NJ.WildlifeLicense.com. For details, see Deer Season Permits. See License Fees & Information for fees.
Hunting with raptors (birds of prey) is allowed only with both a falconry permit and a hunting license. For hunting regulations see Falconry, General Hunting Regulations.
All persons in possession of a rifle (modern or muzzleloading rifle including a smoothbore muzzleloader firing a single projectile) while hunting or trapping must have a valid rifle permit. See the specific regulations for each game or furbearing animal for the permissible use of rifles. A rifle permit is not required for hunting with an air gun. Initial rifle permit applicants must be at least 10 years old and have successfully completed a rifle Hunter Education Course. New hunters taking the Firearms Hunter Education courses offered this year will automatically be certified for rifle education. See License Fees & Information for rifle permit fees.
The fall turkey permit lottery has been eliminated. A turkey hunting permit is still required and may be purchased at license agents or online at Fish and Wildlife’s Internet license sales site www.NJ.WildlifeLicense.com.
Fall Turkey Permits will be available on a first-come, first-served basis beginning at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, September 8, 2015. Permits will be available until the permit quota is reached or the season ends.
A permit to use alternative methods/equipment for taking game during the prescribed seasons for certain physically challenged persons may be issued. The application period is Jan. 1 to Aug. 31 of each year.
Permits to Shoot from a Standing Vehicle
A permit to hunt or shoot from a standing vehicle that is parked off the road may be issued to licensed hunters who:
Individuals hunting with a permit to hunt or shoot from a motor vehicle must mark the vehicle being used for the purpose of hunting either with handicapped license plates issued by the Motor Vehicle Commission or by displaying a sign provided by Fish and Wildlife in the rear window of the vehicle being used.
Additional information about permits for hunters with disabling conditions is available by calling (609) 292-1473 or by writing: NJ Division of Fish and Wildlife, Handicapped Permits, MC501-03, P.O. Box 420, Trenton, NJ 08625-0420 or downloaded directly from our website: NJFishandWildlife.com/disinfo.htm.
Captive Wildlife Permits
The possession, ownership and release of wildlife is strictly regulated and allowed only for limited purposes. Information and permit applications may be obtained online or by calling:
Deer Road-kill Permits
Deer accidentally killed by motor vehicles may be possessed only for private consumption by obtaining a free permit from the local police department or from a Fish and Wildlife regional law enforcement office. The permit authorizes only possession of the meat for consumption and is valid only for 90 days. The possession of all other parts such as antlers, under terms of this permit, are expressly prohibited. Wrapped venison packages must be labeled with the permit number.
Stamps (such as federal migratory bird stamps) are not transferable to another person and are not valid unless signed across the face in ink. Stamps need not be affixed to the license. State waterfowl “stamps” and Pheasant and Quail stamps now print either directly on your hunting license or as a separate stub, replacing the former paper stamp for these privileges. Waterfowl stamps may be purchased ONLY for a specific individual; hunters can no longer purchase multiple stamps on behalf of a fellow hunter.
Anyone aged 16 and over (except 16 year olds whose youth license remains valid through the end of the year in which they turn 16 and which includes a free youth pheasant and quail stamp) hunting or possessing pheasant (or quail only on Greenwood Forest or Peaslee WMAs) on the following designated wildlife management areas must have in possession a current Pheasant and Quail Stamp:
New Jersey Waterfowl Stamp
Anyone 16 or older who hunts waterfowl must possess a New Jersey Waterfowl Stamp (now printed directly on your license at the time of purchase) in addition to the Federal Migratory Bird Stamp. Both stamps are valid for the fiscal year, July 1–June 30. A Harvest Information Program (HIP) certification is also required. For HIP details, see Migratory Bird Regulations.
Changing Your Lottery Application
Regardless of where or how you applied for a lottery, applicants may review their information at any time from any computer, smartphone or tablet with Internet access. Check your application status or edit your application if you discover a correction is necessary. With your CID# and DOB, visit www.NJ.WildlifeLicense.com to access your profile and follow the prompts. Applications may be edited only during the actual application period. Once the application period is closed, it is impossible to change your application. License agents and Fish and Wildlife offices DO NOT have the ability to change your application once submitted. Only you can make changes, so take care during the application process.
Application Status Check
Hunters and trappers may check their application status at any time from a computer, smartphone or tablet. Go to the licensing website (www.NJ.WildlifeLicense.com) to access your profile using your CID# and DOB, then follow the prompts. The license system indicates if the lottery has been run and if you won a permit. When the system shows ‘pending,’ the lottery has not been completed. During the application period the system displays your application as ‘pending.’
Access Your Lottery Application Online
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Wood duck drake.
Regulations in red are new this year.
Purple text indicates an important note.