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Wildlife Management Areas

Hunting Regulations Icon New Jersey Hunting

Regulations in red are new this year.

The following are prohibited: alcoholic beverages, camping, geocaching, cutting or damaging vegetation, removing timber or firewood, dumping, fires, metal detecting, swimming, picnicking and the use of unmanned aerial vehicles known as drones.

Wildlife management area (WMA) regulations are established by the Division of Fish and Wildlife with penalties of not less than $50 nor more than $1,500. A second violation of any WMA regulation will result in a five-year loss of all sporting licenses and privileges.

For information on WMA regulations and permit applications, write to New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife, MC 501-03, P.O. Box 420, Trenton, NJ 08625-0420, or

Fish and Wildlife may revoke any permit (or other authorization) for violation or due cause.

Boat Ramp Maintenance Permit

Any vehicle used to transport or launch a vessel or water conveyance on the following WMAs must have affixed to the lower corner of the driver’s side rear window a boat ramp maintenance permit (for the waterbodies listed below), or a photocopy of a valid hunting, fishing or trapping license. Your Conservation ID number is clearly displayed; for privacy all other personal information may be blacked out. The boat ramp maintenance permit fee is $15, available from license agents or at Fish and Wildlife’s Internet sales site. For more information see:

Persons 70 years and older do not need a boat ramp maintenance permit or a license, but must affix to their window proof of age, such as a former license displaying your date of birth.

  1. Round Valley Angler Access
  2. Assunpink
  3. Dennis Creek
  4. Tuckahoe
  5. Mad Horse Creek
  6. Union Lake
  7. Menantico Ponds
  8. Prospertown Lake

Dog Training, Exercising and Hunting

A person may exercise or train dogs only in designated dog training areas from May 1 to Aug. 31, inclusive, and only on the following select WMAs:

  1. Assunpink
  2. Black River
  3. Clinton
  4. Colliers Mills
  5. Glassboro
  6. Hainesville
  7. Manasquan
  8. Millville
  9. Pequest
  10. Salem River
  11. Stafford Forge
  12. Tuckahoe
  13. Whittingham
  14. Winslow

All dogs must be properly licensed. Dogs may be exercised or trained on any WMA from Sept. 1 to April 30.

Additional regulations involve the release of game birds for training, the use of pigeons, the use of firearms, frozen game birds, the use of call back pens and the release of fox, raccoon, rabbit and hare. For more information call (609) 984-0547.

Field Trials

A permit to conduct a field trial on a wildlife management area may be obtained by contacting Fish and Wildlife at (609) 259-2132.

Higbee Beach

Higbee Beach WMA is closed to hunting from Sept. 1 until 12:01 a.m. on Dec. 11, 2017.

Horseback Riding

Horseback riding is allowed on designated WMAs only by permit from the Division of Fish and Wildlife. Apply online at Horseback riding permits should be displayed on outer clothing while riding. For more information on horseback riding permits, call (609) 259-2132.

Hunting Regulations

Firearm hunting on wildlife management areas on the day prior to the opening of the regular small game season for pheasants and quail is allowed. Pheasants are stocked after dark, precluding interaction between Fish and Wildlife personnel and hunters or the chance of prematurely harvesting a pheasant before the season opens.

The quail season is closed statewide with the exception of the Peaslee and Greenwood WMAs. See Quail Season Closed.

It is legal to use a .22 caliber rifle and .22 caliber rimfire short cartridges for hunting raccoon and opossum and for dispatching trapped animals other than muskrat on WMAs.

For coyote and fox hunting: the use of .177 and .22 caliber rimfire or .177 through .25 caliber centerfire rifle ammo is allowed on WMAs. See Coyote/Fox ammo chart for additional restrictions.

The use of air guns to hunt rabbit and squirrel is allowed on WMAs.

Rifles, including muzzleloading rifles, may not be used to hunt woodchucks on WMAs.

Motor Vehicles and Other Forms of Conveyance

No person shall operate an unregistered vehicle on any state WMA. All motor vehicles are restricted to established public roads and parking areas.

All motor boats must be properly registered and have all the required safety equipment. (See Outboard Motors, below.)

The use of dog sleds and dog carts, off road vehicles, ATVs, trail bikes, or snowmobiles is prohibited on all WMAs unless authorized by Fish and Wildlife.

Outboard Motors

Only electric motors are allowed on freshwater lakes and ponds owned by NJ Division of Fish and Wildlife areas with the exception of Union Lake where an outboard motor, not exceeding 9.9 hp, may be used. On Prospertown Lake, only manually operated boats and canoes are allowed.

All titled boats must also be registered. Any boat mechanically propelled, regardless of length, must be registered. All boats greater than 12 feet, regardless of propulsion means, must be titled and registered. A boat license and New Jersey boat safety certificate are required to operate a power vessel on non-tidal waters of New Jersey. A boat license is not required for non-powered vessels.

Restricted Hours

Wildlife management areas are closed from 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. unless engaged in lawful hunting, fishing or trapping activities. Special permission may be granted for Fish and Wildlife-approved activities.

Target Practice

Only archery, shotgun, muzzleloading shotgun, muzzleloading rifle, .177 and .22 caliber rimfire rifle shooting is allowed in designated hunter training ranges according to regulations posted at the training area.

The following types of ranges are available on designated WMAs statewide:

  • Shotgun Range: for use with clay birds and the patterning of fine shot;
  • Archery Range: approved backstops at select ranges, no broadheads allowed;
  • Muzzleloading Rifle and Shotgun Slug Range: for sighting in with shotgun slugs or buckshot, .177 or .22 caliber rimfire rifles and muzzleloaders; no other firearms allowed.

Unmanned Aerial Vehicles or Drones

The use of an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) or drone is prohibited on WMAs. A UAV is computer-controlled for nearly their entire flight either autonomously or by remote control by a pilot and has the capacity for autonomous flight and navigation.

Waterfowl Blinds

No permanent waterfowl blinds, including pit blinds, shall be constructed, hunted from or used in any manner on any of the following WMAs:

  1. Assunpink
  2. Black River
  3. Colliers Mills
  4. Hainesville
  5. Tuckahoe
  6. Manahawkin
  7. Stafford Forge
  8. Whittingham
  9. Beaver Swamp
  10. Sedge Island
  11. Salem River
  12. Prospertown
  13. Paulinskill

Any blind used in these WMAs must be portable and shall be completely removed at the day’s end. Blinds remaining in WMAs are subject to confiscation and disposal by Fish and Wildlife.

Wildlife Management Area (WMA) Ranges

The following information pertains to New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife facilities. Information on privately operated facilities is available at “Where To Shoot,” a site maintained by the National Shooting Sports Foundation at

  • All WMA regulations apply.
  • Ranges are open 8 a.m. to sunset.
  • At least one member of the shooting party must have a current, valid New Jersey hunting license in possession.
  • Shotgun range: fine shot only. No buckshot or rifled slugs.
  • Archery range: target or practice tips only. NO broadheads are allowed on any WMA range, whether practicing at the provided backstop or shooting into your own target brought to the range.
  • Muzzleloading rifle range: muzzleloading firearms, shotguns with rifled slugs or buckshot and ­modern rimfire (both .177 and .22 caliber) rifles and air guns in calibers legal for hunting.
  • No handguns or centerfire rifles permitted.

Northern Region

Hunterdon County

Clinton WMA

Route 173W, Clinton

  • Shotgun, Archery, Muzzleloader (100 yards)
  • All target frames must measure a minimum 30 inches from base to bottom of the paper target held in the frame. Frames must be placed only on top of a target mound located at the 25, 50 and 100 yard lines. This minimum target height requirement eliminates the risk of ricochet to ensure all projectiles are collected in the berm behind the 100 yard target.
  • Spinner type targets for .177 and .22 caliber firearms MUST be placed directly at the base of the 25 yard berm to direct all bullets into the berm. These targets are not to be used at other yardage or target mound placements.

Morris County

Black River WMA

Route 513 (Dover-Chester Rd.), Chester

  • Archery, open year-round.
  • Shotgun: Closed weekends from the third Saturday in May through the Sunday of Labor Day weekend, as well as on Christmas and Easter. Operating hours are 9 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. during this summer period, and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. for the rest of the year. Hunter education classes will continue at the range and are not affected by these new hours.

Sussex County

Flatbrook WMA

Route 615, Layton

  • Shotgun, Archery, Muzzleloader (75 yards)

Warren County

Pequest WMA

Pequest Rd., Oxford

  • Archery

Central Region

Monmouth County

Assunpink WMA

Imlaystown-Hightstown Rd., Upper Freehold Twp.

  • Archery
  • Shotgun range is restricted to the use of non-toxic shot; no lead shot is allowed.

Turkey Swamp Park

Georgia Rd., Freehold Twp.

  • Archery (Special regulations apply;
    call 732-842-4000.)

Ocean County

Colliers Mills WMA

Off Colliers Mills and Hawkins Rds., Jackson Twp.

  • Archery, Muzzleloader (100 yards)
  • Shotgun range is closed.

Stafford Forge WMA

Off Route 539, south of Warren Grove, Little Egg Harbor Twp.

  • Shotgun, Archery, Muzzleloader (100 yards)

Southern Region

Atlantic County

Makepeace Lake WMA

Elmwood-Weymouth Rd., Weymouth

  • Shotgun, Muzzleloader (100 yards)
  • All target frames must measure a minimum 30 inches from base to bottom of the paper target held in the frame. Frames must be placed only on top of a target mound located at the 25, 50 and 100 yard lines. This minimum target height requirement eliminates the risk of ricochet to ensure all projectiles are collected in the berm behind the 100 yard target.
  • Spinner type targets for .177 and .22 caliber firearms MUST be placed directly at the base of the 25 yard berm to direct all bullets into the berm. These targets are not to be used at other yardage or target mound placements.

Gloucester County

Winslow WMA

Piney Hollow Rd., Monroe Twp.

  • Archery
  • Shotgun and muzzleloader ranges are closed.

Cape May County

Tuckahoe WMA

Off Tuckahoe Rd. (Rt. 631), Tuckahoe

  • Archery
  • Shotgun range is closed.

Cumberland County

Millville WMA

Ackley Rd. (Rt. 718), Millville

  • Shotgun, Archery, Muzzleloader (100 yards)