Resident means any person who has been domiciled within the State of Georgia (declared Georgia their only state of legal residence) for a period of at least three months. A valid Georgia driver’s license or Georgia ID is required to show residency. Nonresident full time Georgia college students with a valid college ID living in Georgia, and active duty military personnel with a valid U.S. DOD Common Access Card with Uniformed Services affiliation and the dependents of such military personnel may obtain resident hunting and fishing licenses other than resident lifetime, disability and honorary licenses. Nonresident landowners must purchase a nonresident license.
All hunters born on or after Jan. 1, 1961 must successfully complete a hunter education course before purchasing a hunting license. All hunter education courses certified or mandated by any state wildlife agency or Canadian province are accepted. Residents may sign up for online or classroom courses at GoHuntGeorgia.com or by calling 1-800-366-2661.
Reliable identification and a Social Security Number (SSN) are required to purchase a license (OCGA § 19-11-9.1). Game Wardens may require positive identification when checking licenses. All required hunting licenses and stamps must be in possession while hunting or while assisting another hunter (electronic copies are acceptable). It is unlawful to obtain, possess, or use multiple licenses for the purpose of circumventing season bag limits.
Hunter education is not required to purchase an Apprentice Hunting License or short-term license. Persons purchasing a Lifetime License must have hunter education before hunting, unless exempt by age or supervision. Hunter education is not required to hunt on one’s own land or land of a parent or guardian (blood or dependent relationship) residing in the same household, or to hunt pen raised game birds on licensed shooting preserves that provide specified hunter education instruction (see Hunting Licenses).
To obtain a replacement hunter education card visit GoOutdoorsGeorgia.com or call 1-800-366-2661 Monday–Friday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Hunters Under Age 16 are not required to complete a hunter education course. A child under age 16 must be under “direct supervision” or “directly supervised,” which means uninterrupted, unaided visual contact and auditory communication with the child by a licensed adult. It is unlawful for an adult to permit their child or ward (under age 16) to hunt without adult supervision.
Exception: Hunters 12–15 years old may hunt unsupervised after successfully completing a hunter education course. Special restrictions may apply on WMAs and Federal Areas.
Hunters Age 16–25 are required to have a hunter education card when purchasing a season hunting license and must be in possession while hunting.
Hunters Over Age 25 and born after Jan. 1, 1961 must successfully complete a hunter education course but are not required to present their Hunter Education Card when buying a season hunting license or possess it while hunting.
Apprentice Hunter is any person who has not successfully completed a hunter education course or does not possess a hunter education certificate. Apprentice hunters may purchase a short-term Apprentice Hunting License to hunt and fish in Georgia.
Any person age 16 and older, entering any WMA or PFA must have a valid Georgia license that allows hunting or fishing on state land or a Lands Pass (exclusions apply, visit georgiawildlife.com/LandAccess). WMAs and PFAs that require a license to hunt or fish or a Lands Pass are marked with a sign at the site or area entrance. See Public Hunting Opportunities for more information.
Senior Citizens: Georgia residents born on or before June 30, 1952 may obtain a Lifetime Sportsman’s License free of charge. An optional Lifetime Sportsman’s Plastic Card may be purchased for $10. Reduced cost senior annual and lifetime licenses are available to residents age 65+ born July 1, 1952 and after.
Returning Georgia Veterans (One Time Only): Georgia resident military veterans who were on active duty for 90 or more consecutive days and were honorably discharged on or after July 1, 2005 may obtain one annual Honorary License free of charge. Such veterans may obtain this license by providing a copy of their DD Form 214 and a completed DNR application.
Types of Licenses
Resident Hunting, Combo or Sportsman’s License is required for all resident hunters 16 years of age or older, except when hunting or fishing on one’s own land or land owned by immediate family (blood or dependent relationship) residing in the same household.
Nonresident Hunting, Combo or Sportsman’s License is required for all nonresident hunters, except nonresident small game hunters that are under 16. All nonresident big game hunters must obtain a Harvest Record and those 16 and older must possess a big game license (included in Sportsman’s License).
Harvest Record is required for any person who hunts alligator, bear (Northern Zone only), deer or turkey, regardless of age. The Harvest Record is only valid for a single year and may be obtained on or after March 1 for the upcoming season. Harvest must be recorded before moving the animal from the site of the kill, and reported online or by telephone within 24 hours. See Hunting Information.
Resident Hunters Under Age 16 must possess a Harvest Record to hunt alligator, bear (Northern Zone only), deer and turkey. They are not required to possess any of the following: Hunting, Big Game or Georgia Migratory Bird License.
Alligator Harvest Permit is required to harvest an alligator (permittee must also be selected through the alligator quota hunt process). All persons accompanying or assisting an alligator permit holder need a valid hunting license. A free permit is available for Lifetime Sportsman’s License, Disability Sportsman’s License, Disability Hunting License, Honorary License, and Resident Optional Youth Sportsman’s License holders selected for an Alligator Quota Hunt.
Big Game License is required, in addition to a valid Hunting License, for hunting bear, deer, or turkey. The Big Game License is not required by resident hunters hunting one’s own land or land owned by immediate family (blood or dependent relationship) residing in the same household, resident or nonresident persons under the age of 16, or anyone who possesses an Honorary, Sportsman’s, or Lifetime Sportsman’s License. A Harvest Record is also required to hunt bear (Northern Zone only), deer or turkey.
Georgia Migratory Bird License is required for any person who hunts migratory birds (doves, ducks, geese, woodcock, snipe, coots, rails, or gallinules) and is required by age to have a hunting license to hunt. A free Georgia Migratory Bird License is available for all resident Landowners hunting their own land and hunters with a valid Sportsman’s License, Youth Sportsman’s License, Disability Sportsman’s License, Disability Hunting License, Honorary License or Lifetime Sportsman’s License.
Federal Duck Stamp is required for all waterfowl hunters 16 years of age or older including resident landowners and their immediate family. The stamp is valid from July 1–June 30 and must be signed in ink across the face. The Federal Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp is available at US Post Offices, 1-800-STAMP24, www.GoOutdoorsGeorgia.com, or usps.com.
Sportsman’s License includes Hunting, Big Game, Fishing and Trout Licenses. Duck hunters must obtain a Federal Duck Stamp. Migratory Bird hunters must obtain a Free Georgia Migratory Bird License. Saltwater anglers must obtain a Free SIP license. Alligator, bear (Northern Zone only), deer and turkey hunters must obtain a Free Harvest Record.
Resident Optional Youth Sportsman’s License: this optional multi-year license can be purchased by resident youth through age 15 and does not expire until the sportsman’s 17th birthday. The license includes privileges for all hunting and fishing including big game and trout. A Harvest Record, Migratory Bird License (16+), Quota Alligator Harvest Permit if selected, and SIP (16+) are free but must be obtained each year. Hunter education is required at age 16.
Nonresident Youth Sportsman’s License: this annual license can be purchased by nonresident youth through age 15. The license includes privileges for all hunting and fishing including big game and trout (except for the Quota Alligator Harvest Permit). A harvest record, Migratory Bird License (16+), and SIP (16+) are free but must be obtained. Hunter education is required at age 16.
Disability Hunting License: Georgia residents who are permanently and totally disabled may obtain a Disability License. A qualifying disability is an impairment of a permanent and total nature and is certified as such by the Department of Veterans Affairs, Social Security Administration, Medicaid, Medicare, or Railroad Retirement System.
Lifetime Sportsman’s Licenses: cover all state paid hunting and fishing privileges (free required state licenses and the Federal Duck stamp are not included) and are valid for the life of the license holder. These privileges specifically include Hunting, Big Game, Fishing, and Trout Licenses. Lifetime License applications may be obtained at GoHuntGeorgia.com, by calling 1-800-366-2661, or by visiting any WRD office. For identification and proof of residency requirements see information on Hunting Licenses.
Excluded from Lifetime Sportsman’s License: Free Georgia Migratory Bird License, Federal Duck Stamp, Free SIP permit, and a Free Alligator Harvest Permit, Bear (Northern Zone only), Deer, and Turkey Harvest Record. Lifetime license holders will need to obtain these annually.
Resident / Nonresident Shooting Preserve License: Persons with an active Georgia hunting license do not additionally need a shooting preserve license. A 2-year ($12) or lifetime ($75) shooting preserve license is available to residents and nonresidents. This license covers hunting pen-raised game birds and fishing in any private or state waters located within the boundaries of licensed private or commercial shooting preserves. Hunter safety requirements for hunting pen-raised game birds on properly licensed shooting preserves may be met by hunter education instruction that, at minimum, demonstrates techniques for proper firearm handling, unloading, and safety. Appropriate licenses, hunter safety certification requirements, and state seasons and regulations apply when hunting wild game birds or other wildlife on shooting preserves. Exception: it shall be lawful to hunt bobwhite quail between October 1 and March 31 of the following year on licensed shooting preserves.