Mississippi Hunting & Fishing
Fishing License (Saltwater and Freshwater)
Resident – Each resident of Mississippi ages sixteen (16) through sixty-four (64), fishing in the fresh or marine waters of Mississippi, including lakes and reservoirs but NOT to include privately owned ponds and streams, shall be required to buy a fishing license. A saltwater license is required South of U. S. Highway 90 and a freshwater or a saltwater license is valid between I-10 and U. S. Highway 90. Saltwater license is not valid North of I-10. If exempt from purchasing a license see “License Exemptions” below.
Non-Resident – All non-resident anglers, except for minors under the age of sixteen (16), are required to obtain a fishing license while fishing in the fresh or marine waters of Mississippi. Louisiana residents must purchase both freshwater and saltwater licenses to fish in the marine waters of Mississippi. Any non-resident sixty-five (65) years of age or older shall not be required to pay any fee over and above the processing fees associated
with the issuance of said license if the non-resident’s state provides the same exemption for Mississippi residents [MS Code 49-7-3].
Resident – Each resident of Mississippi ages sixteen (16) through sixty-four (64), must obtain a hunting license, except while hunting on lands titled in his/her name. Any person sixty-five (65) or older, or any person otherwise exempt from obtaining a hunting license, must have documentation with him/her at all times while hunting as described in “License Exemptions” below [MS. Code 49-7-5].
Non-Resident – All non-resident hunters, except for minors under the age of sixteen (16), are required to obtain a hunting license while hunting in the State of Mississippi.
Hunter Education Requirements
All persons born on or after January 1, 1972, must satisfactorily complete a hunter education course approved by the Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks before purchasing a Mississippi hunting license. A child at least twelve (12) years of age and under sixteen (16) years of age must have a certificate of satisfactory completion of a hunter education course approved by the department before hunting alone in the state. A child at least twelve (12) years of age and under sixteen (16) years of age may hunt without having a certificate of hunter education if the child is in the presence and under the direct supervision of a Mississippi licensed or exempt hunter at least twenty-one (21) years of age when the child is hunting. A child under the age of twelve (12) must be in the presence and under the direct supervision of a licensed or exempt hunter at least twenty-one (21) years of age when the child is hunting. A resident apprentice hunting license may be issued to a resident over the age of fifteen (15) who does not have the required certificate of hunter education. An apprentice license may be issued only one (1) time to a resident and the apprentice hunting licensee must be accompanied by a licensed or exempt resident hunter at least twenty-one (21) years of age when hunting. If it is determined that the holder was not entitled to issuance or obtained the license or hunter education certificate by fraudulent means, the license will be revoked or canceled. It is unlawful to issue a hunting license to any person without proof of completion of the hunter education course, except those born before Jan. 1, 1972, or residents purchasing a one-time apprentice license. [MS. Code 49-7-01].
Duplicate Hunter/Boater Education Card
If you have lost your hunter/boater education card, please go to www.mdwfp.com/education-outreach/hunter-education/ to download a temporary card or to purchase a duplicate card for a $3.00 fee.
A state and federal waterfowl stamp is required for any person 16 or older when hunting any waterfowl species. Lifetime license holders are not exempt from the waterfowl stamp requirement. Physical or electronic proof of purchase is sufficient. However, if a physical stamp is in possession, it must be signed by the hunter across the face of the stamp.
Hunter Safety Recommendation
Many hunters travel to and from their tree stand or blind before dawn and after dusk. It is recommended that hunters use a flashlight or red light while traveling to and from their stands or hunting area. Use of a small light will help with the identity of the hunters during low light conditions. This recommendation does not legalize the use of lights to hunt game animals.
Small Game/Fishing License
Any resident purchasing the combination small game hunting/freshwater fishing license for the use of freshwater fishing will not be required to provide a hunter education number. Any resident purchasing the combination small game hunting/freshwater fishing license for the use of hunting small game will be required to provide a hunter education number. If purchasing small game/freshwater fishing license for fishing purposes only, Hunter Education is optional.
Disabled License Exemptions
Residents who are blind, paraplegic, a multiple-amputee, adjudged 100% disabled by the Social Security Administration, or 100% service-connected disabled by the Veterans Administration or Railroad Retirement Board are NOT required to purchase a hunting or fishing license [MS. Code 49-7-5 and 49-7-9]. Residents exempt based on these criteria are required to have proof of residency, disability status or other physical impairment in their possession while engaged in hunting and fishing activities unless an exempt license is purchased. The Disabled Exempt license is an annual privilege. Applications are available online at www.mdwfp.com.
Resident Senior License Exemptions
Residents age sixty-five (65) and older are exempt from purchasing a hunting or freshwater fishing license. Residents exempt based on these criteria are required to have proof of age and Mississippi residency in their possession while engaged in hunting and freshwater fishing activities unless a voluntary Resident Senior Exempt license is purchased. The Resident Senior Exempt license is a valid lifetime privilege as long as you are a Mississippi resident. The Resident Senior Exempt license may be purchased from any vendor that sells hunting and fishing license.
Senior Saltwater License
Effective July 1, 2010, residents sixty-five (65) years of age or older are required to purchase a saltwater fishing license if fishing South of U.S. Highway 90. The Senior Saltwater License is a valid lifetime privilege as long as you are a Mississippi resident.
Youth License Exemptions
Residents under the age of sixteen (16) are exempt from purchasing a hunting or fishing license. Individuals exempt based on these criteria may purchase a voluntary Youth Exempt license by providing their social security number along with a copy of their parent/legal guardian’s driver’s license to establish residency. Youth Exempt license may be purchased from any vendor that sells hunting and fishing license.
Any Mississippi resident who is a member of the U.S. Armed Forces, including the Reserves and National Guard, and on active duty outside the state of Mississippi is not required to purchase or have in his/her possession a hunting or fishing license while engaged in such activities while on leave from active duty. Such resident shall have in his/her possession an official military leave form. Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks Hunter Education requirements apply to residents who meet the military exemption status.
A trapping license is required of anyone sixteen (16) years of age or older who traps furbearers (bobcat, mink, muskrat, opossum, otter, raccoon, and weasel) and/or nuisance animals (beaver, coyote, fox, skunk, nutria and wild hogs). An All Game Hunting License is also an acceptable license when trapping wild hogs. A trapping license is not required for persons trapping on lands titled in their name. This license shall be required of each assistant or helper sixteen (16) years of age or older employed or used by a trapper. A trapping license is required to sell skins or carcasses of any fur-bearing animal. (see additional information in General Hunting Regulations and Information-Trapping). Trapping license may be purchased at www.mdwfp.com, 1-800-5GO-HUNT (546-4868), or anywhere licenses are sold.
Persons who possess a valid Freshwater Commercial Fishing License are allowed to fish gill nets, trammel nets, hoop nets, trotlines, slat baskets (with slat basket license), crawfish traps and shrimp traps, and/or sell non-game gross fish, minnows and non-native fish taken from the freshwaters of Mississippi. See the Commercial Fishing brochure for information or go to www.mdwfp.com/fishing-boating/freshwater-commercial/. A commercial Fishing License, Slat Basket License, or Fur Dealer License may be purchased at www.mdwfp.com, at 1-800-5GO HUNT (546-4868), or anywhere licenses are sold.
Any person using a slat basket in Mississippi waters must have a valid slat basket license for each slat basket. You cannot purchase a slat-basket license unless you have a Freshwater Commercial Fishing License. Slat basket licenses may be purchased at www.mdwfp.com or at 1-800-5GO-HUNT (546-4868) , or anywhere licenses are sold.
Deer and Turkey Permits
Non-Residents are required to have a deer or turkey permit for hunting during all deer or turkey seasons, unless individuals possess a Native Son Lifetime License. These permits must be purchased in addition to All Game, 7-Day All Game, 3-Day All Game Hunting, Youth All Game Hunting, or Youth 7-Day All Game Hunting.
Area User Permit
Residents and Non-Residents using any state-operated Wildlife Management Area must purchase a Wildlife Management Area (WMA) User Permit in addition to any other required hunting/fishing license. However, WMA User permits are required only for hunting, fishing, and trapping on U.S. Forest Service WMAs.
Only persons domiciled within the state of Mississippi as defined in section 49-7-3 of the Mississippi Code, as amended, are entitled to obtain a resident hunting/fishing license.
Under this section, a person’s domicile is that person’s principal or primary home or place of abode. A “principal or primary home or place of abode” is that home or place in which a person’s habitation is fixed and to which he/she, whenever absent, has the present intention of returning after a departure of absence regardless of the duration of absence. The burden of proving the domicile shall be on the person claiming such status.
A current and valid Mississippi driver’s license shall be proof of domicile/residency for the purpose of obtaining a Mississippi resident hunting or fishing license. The Department may prescribe and consider other means of proving domicile/residency. Please contact the License Bureau at
601-432-2055 for further information or at mdwfp.com. In the case of minors, domicile of the parents shall be used as evidence of the minor’s domicile. Any person with a valid driver’s license from another state will not be considered for a resident hunting and/or fishing license (see exceptions below). A person who obtains a license under an assumed name or makes a materially false statement to obtain a license is guilty of a felony and shall be subject to a fine of two thousand dollars ($2,000) or may be imprisoned for a term of one (1) year or both. You may be denied a resident hunting license if you fail to provide adequate proof.
If using a Mississippi driver’s license as proof of residency, please make sure license has not expired prior to purchasing a hunting/fishing license.
Exceptions: Even if you are domiciled in another state, you may purchase a resident hunting/fishing license if you provide either (1) a current identification card from a Mississippi college or university (in which you are enrolled as a student in good standing); or (2) a current military ID card showing that you are an active member of the Armed Forces (excluding Reserves and the National Guard) and a copy of the orders assigning you to a Mississippi military base.
Armed Forces 14-Day Hunting/Fishing License
Non-Residents who are active members of the United States Armed Forces (excluding Reserves and the National Guard) may purchase a special Armed Forces 14-Day Hunting/Fishing license for $34.29. Only two Armed Forces 14-Day Hunting/Fishing licenses may be purchased per license year. Proof of active military status is required. This license is processed at the Jackson Office only. Applications are available online at www.mdwfp.com. Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks Hunter Education requirements apply to all non-residents who purchase the Armed Forces 14-day Hunting/Fishing License.
Mississippi Lifetime License
Resident Lifetime license applicants must provide proof (i.e. Mississippi driver’s license number) that they have been domiciled in the state of Mississippi for a minimum of eighteen (18) consecutive months prior to issuance of such license. All resident applicants through age twelve (12) must include a certified copy of their birth certificate. All non-resident Mississippi native applicants must include a certified copy of their birth certificate showing the applicant was born in Mississippi and their parent(s) address was in Mississippi at the time of birth. Birth certificates will not be returned. Lifetime applications are processed only at the Jackson Office. Applications are available online at www.mdwfp.com. Any address change by license holders should be reported to the License Department. Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks Hunter Education requirements apply to all Lifetime License holders.