For the second consecutive Georgia hunting season, more than half the state will experience periods of buck-only hunting during firearms deer season. Make sure to always check the date and the regulations prior to pulling the trigger on an antlerless deer. The change to buck-only days was brought on by hunters complaining of seeing fewer deer in the woods. Complaints centered around a liberal bag limit—which hasn’t changed—while biologists say reducing either-sex days is the most effective way to reduce harvest.
This year’s deer season will close statewide on Jan. 8. The only exception is the suburban Atlanta archery-only counties that are open to bowhunting until Jan. 31.
The map attached to this article breaks down the days when hunters can shoot antlerless deer with a firearm during firearms season on private lands. Antlerless deer maybe taken statewide with archery equipment Sept. 10-Jan. 8 and with muzzleloaders Oct. 15-21.
Below we’ve included upcoming dates and daily bag limits for those of you interested in bears, dove, waterfowl and small-game hunting.
The complete 2016-17 hunting seasons and regs booklet will soon be available at license vendors and online at www.georgiawildlife.com/hunting/regulations. Be sure to consult the official 2016-2017 Georgia Hunting Season Dates and Bag Limits booklet, or view it online before heading afield.
Statewide: March 25 – May 15; limit 3 gobblers per season.
Special Opportunity Season: March 18-19; only for youth 16 years of age and younger and mobility impaired persons (i.e. confined to wheelchair, hemiplegia, monoplegia, paraplegia, or single-leg amputation above the knee). Such hunters must be accompanied by an adult (18 years or older) who may call but may not take or attempt to take a turkey. This season does not apply to public lands unless otherwise specified.
Archery Only: Sept. 10 – Oct. 14
Either-sex deer maybe taken with archery equipment statewide from Sept. 10-Jan. 8.
Extended Archery Counties: Sept. 10 – Jan. 31: Either-sex For Clayton, Cobb, DeKalb,Forsyth, Fulton, Gwinnett and Rockdale counties.
Primitive Weapons Week: Oct. 15-21
Youth Week: Oct. 15-21
Firearms Season: Oct. 22 – Jan. 8
Deer Limit: 12 per season. Ten may antlerless and no more than two may be antlered. One of the antlered bucks must have at least 4 points 1-inch or longer on one side of the rack.
Hunting Over Feed/Bait: It is legal to hunt deer over feed with no restrictions in the Southern Zone and illegal to hunt any game except hogs over feed in the Northern Zone.
Northern Zone: Archery: Sept. 10 – Jan. 8
Primitive Weapons: Oct. 15-Jan. 8
Firearms: Oct. 22-Jan. 8
Central Zone: Firearms: Dec. 10
Southern Zone: Firearms: Sept. 29-Oct. 1; Oct. 6-8; Oct. 13-15.
Bear Limit: 2 per season; however only one may be taken from the Central or Southern Zones.
Statewide: Sept. 3-18; Oct. 8-28; Nov. 24-Jan. 13.
Daily Limit: 15
WATERFOWL SEASONS: Georgia’s waterfowl seasons are set in cooperation with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. For additional waterfowling dates, see www.georgiawildlife.com/Hunting/Waterfowl.
Early Teal: Sept. 10-25
Early Canada Geese: Sept. 3-25, Oct. 8-23
Youth Waterfowl: Nov. 12-13
Ducks/Geese: Nov. 19-27, Dec. 10-Jan. 29
Quail: Nov. 12 – Feb. 28, Daily Limit: 12
Rabbit: Nov. 12 – Feb. 28, Daily Limit: 12
Squirrel: Aug. 15 – Feb. 28, Daily Limit: 12
Raccoon: Oct. 15 – Feb. 28, Daily Limit: 3
Grouse: Oct. 15 – Feb. 28, Daily Limit: 3
Opossum: Oct. 15 – Feb. 28, No limit
Woodcock: Dec. 10 – Jan. 23, Daily Limit: 3
Snipe: Nov. 15 – Feb. 28, Daily Limit: 8
Fox: Dec. 1 – Feb. 28, No bag limit.
Bobcat: Dec. 1 – Feb. 28, No bag limit.
Wild Hogs: No bag limit; no closed season.
Coyotes: No bag limit; no closed season.
Crows: Nov. 5 – Feb. 28, No bag limit.