Skip to main content

New Jersey


Take a Kid Hunting

Deer, Waterfowl and Turkey Youth Hunt Days

Take this great opportunity to introduce youth hunters to hunting!

All youth hunters must have a valid youth hunting license. See Youth Licenses, Licenses, Permits, & Stamps.

  • Supervision: The youth hunter MUST be under the direct supervision of a person who is at least 21 years old and who has a valid firearm or bow and arrow license corresponding to the season hunted. Direct supervision is defined as both the youth hunter and the adult mentoring hunter set up together at the same location, hunting as a unit, not hunting independently. The adult does not need a zone or area permit to supervise, only their valid license, CANNOT hunt on any youth days but may call for the youth. Youth hunters do not need a harvest number during youth hunts or non-permit deer seasons.

For additional harvest reporting requirements, see Deer Hunting Regulations.

Youth Deer Hunting

See table below.

Erich Geiger

After passing on a doe, then readying to shoot a spike, this beautiful 9-pointer stepped into range. Hunter Geiger, 12, of Byram, on a father-son hunt from a ground blind in DMZ 7, made a clean shot, downing the buck in 30 yards. High-fives, hugs and tears of pride and joy followed. His dad Erich said, "When you watch your kids catch their first fish or take their first deer, it's even better than doing it yourself."

Youth Waterfowl Hunting

See below.

Edward Thurman

Natalie Raines proudly displaying a hooded merganser after an enjoyable hunt in the Coastal Zone.

Youth Turkey Hunting

See below.

Mike Amico

With great patience and straight shooting, Ryan Wright, 16 of Ocean County, used a 12-gauge shotgun to harvest his first gobbler called in by Christina Krajscovics.

Take a Kid Hunting!

Who can hunt?

Youth hunters aged 10 to 16, accompanied by an adult at least 21 years of age with valid license appropriate to weapon used. Properly licensed adult MUST be set up together with Youth Hunter (same tree, blind, etc). Direct supervision only. See Youth Licenses, Licenses, Permits, & Stamps. ADULTS MAY NOT HUNT ON THIS DAY

What do I need?

  • A valid Rifle Permif if using a muzzleloader (adult also)
  • A HIP Number if hunting waterfowl
  • A Youth Turkey Permit if hunting Youth Turkey Day
Seasons are open Statewide unless otherwise noted.


Bag Limits

Report Your Harvest


September 26, 2020 1 deer, either sex
Antler Point Restrictions and Earn-A-Buck regulations do not apply. Fill in Harvest Report Card, Deer Harvest Report Cards (PDF), or hand-made card with same info prior to using Automated Harvest Report System.
November 21, 2020 1 deer, either sex


NORTH Zone — Youth ONLY, Oct. 3 Bag limits: same as during regular season except 2 scaup. See Migratory Bird Seasons for details. See Migratory Bird Regulations for all waterfowl hunting requirements. For FAQs on youth hunts, go to
SOUTH Zone — Youth ONLY, Oct. 10
COASTAL Zone — Youth ONLY, Nov. 7
Statewide — Youth Feb. 6.


April 24, 2021 1 male turkey Fill out Turkey Report Card on Permit prior to using Automated Harvest Report System to check-in bird. If no bird is taken this day, Youth Permit may be used during Hunting Period Y.

WMA Youth Pheasant Hunt Days

All youth hunters must have a valid youth hunting license. See Youth Licenses, Licenses, Permits, & Stamps.

  • Oct. 31 and Nov. 2–6, 2020 Rain or Shine!

This year's Take a Kid Hunting Pheasant Hunt will allow properly licensed and supervised youth hunters (see table, below) to hunt any of the 10 stocked Wildlife Management Areas (WMA) on Saturday, Oct. 31 and Monday–Friday, Nov. 2–6.

In a cooperative effort between the Division of Fish and Wildlife and the New Jersey State Federation of Sportsmen’s Clubs, volunteer hunting mentors with trained bird dogs will guide youth hunters on a Saturday, Oct. 31 pheasant hunt. This experience will increase the young hunters’ opportunity for harvesting a pheasant in a setting which encourages responsible and safe hunting practices.

All guided morning hunt participants must pre-register and be accompanied to the check-in by a parent or guardian who are welcomed and encouraged to follow the hunters through the fields. All pre-registered hunters will receive an information packet. One session will be offered, starting at 7 a.m.

A limited number of youth hunters will be allowed on each WMA during the guided morning hunts. To register, go to and select the wildlife management area where you wish to hunt. For each WMA, when registration reaches capacity, that area disappears from the online registration options. Select one of the remaining locations. Priority will be given to first time participants. Register early; spaces fill quickly!

Online registration for the Oct. 31 guided youth hunt opens Sept. 8 and closes Oct. 16. No late registrations will be accepted. Pheasant hunt information packets will be mailed to registered youth hunters on or around Oct. 19.

Youth Pheasant Hunting

See table, above.

Keith Griglak/NJ Div. Fish and Wildlife

Proud father and son enjoying the Take a Kid Pheasant Hunting program at Black River WMA.

Selected Wildlife Management Areas for Youth Pheasant Hunting


Guided AM Oct. 31 only

Open 1 PM Oct. 31

Open All Day Oct. 31

Open All Day Nov. 2–6


Black River




Colliers Mills





Guided Morning—pre-registration required.

Open—afternoon: Any properly licensed and supervised youth hunter (see Who can hunt? top of table, above) will be permitted to hunt on the listed wildlife management areas on October 31 from 1 p.m. until sunset. No registration required.

Open—all day: Any properly licensed and supervised youth hunter (see Who can hunt? top of table, above) will be permitted to hunt on the listed wildlife management areas on Oct. 31 and Nov. 2 – 6 from 8 a.m. until sunset. No registration required.

Semi-wild Preserves Upland Bird Youth Hunt Day

All youth hunters must have a valid youth hunting license. See Youth Licenses, Licenses, Permits, & Stamps.

  • Saturday, October 31, 2020

Properly licensed and supervised youth hunters (see Who can hunt? top of table, above) are permitted to hunt on licensed semi-wild hunting preserves for pheasant, quail and/or partridge on Saturday, October 31 from 8 a.m. to sunset. Take advantage of this great opportunity for hunters belonging to semi-wild preserves to ­introduce youth hunters to upland bird hunting without competition from adult hunters who may not hunt on this day.

Instructors NEEDED!

Become an instructor with Fish and Wildlife’s Hunter Education Program.

Our Hunter Education Unit is looking for New Jersey’s best ­sportsmen and sportswomen to become ­instructors at locations where students take the test and field course after first having completed the home study portion.

Call (856) 629-0552

Leave your name and address to receive an application.

Or complete the application form at:


Veteran / Active Military Waterfowl Hunts

Veterans and Active Military are welcome during two statewide, Veterans/Active Military Hunting Days on Feb. 6 and 13.

New Jersey