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Ohio Hunting

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Written by:  Devn Schumacher 

May, 10 2021

Hunting in Ohio features games like deer, turkeys, waterfowls, pheasants, and small game animals. The state also practices controlled hunting through lotteries and shared licenses. This will limit the number of hunters eligible for hunting season and preserve games’ lives.

Ohio Hunting Regulations

The Ohio Department of Natural resources provides hunting laws and regulations that all hunters in the state must abide by, regardless of if they are residents or non-residents. Some of the most important laws and regulations are:

Ohio General Hunting Laws and Regulations

These are some of the acceptable and unlawful practices while hunting in Ohio. They include the following:

  • Hunting weapons that are allowed to take games in Ohio are crossbows, longbows, shotguns with at most 10 gauge, handguns, rifles, and air guns. Any other type of firearm is prohibited, as long as the Department of Natural Resources does not make a special exception for it.
  • The use of electronic callers is allowed while hunting except for the taking of turkeys and migratory birds such as rails, waterfowls. The use of electronic calls to hunt crows is also acceptable.
  • It is a prohibition to spotlight wildlife and games from vehicles, as well as the illumination of vehicle headlights. This is regardless of if the vehicle is used for hunting activities or not.
  • If you are hunting, chasing, or pursuing furbearers in the night, you must make use of an unceasing while visible light, and that must be at least a quarter of a mile away. For two or more people hunting or trapping furbearers at night, only one white light is acceptable, and it can be in the possession of any of the hunters. However, for hunting games like raccoons, foxes, and coyotes with an electronic call from a standing position, a single light beam is allowed, and it could be any color.
  • If you are pursuing coyotes with hunting dogs, it is a prohibition to make use of any other hunting weapon or device from sunset to sunrise.
  • It is a prohibition to hunt from motor vehicles, but exceptions are made for boats and any other type of machinery permitted for farm activities. It is a prohibition to hunt small game from boats or any other type of power craft, but some small game, such as muskrat, otters, and minks are exceptions.
  • It is a prohibition to make use of aircraft and drones while hunting in or to assist in any Ohio hunting activity.
  • The use of arrows coated with poisons and explosives is illegal for Ohio hunting. Furthermore, it is a prohibition to attach crossbows or longbows to any kind of electrical or mechanical device that has features capable of illuminating light beams.
  • It is a prohibition to discharge a firearm from across an Ohio highway or public road.
  • It is a prohibition to hunt any game that is not a waterfowl between 30 minutes prior to sunrise and 30 minutes after sunset in deer firearm season, youth deer firearm season, and deer muzzleloader season if you are not putting on the required vest, overall or jacket with either the solid hunter orange color or the camouflage orange color. This regulation applies to both Ohio public hunting lands and private hunting lands.
  • You can make use of crossbows and longbows to hunt only legal games in Ohio. But it is a prohibition to use crossbows for migratory game birds. Hunters that make use of longbows are allowed to use either a normal handheld release device or a mechanical device that has working safety. Hunters are allowed to cock crossbows with a device, as long as the device has a working safety with stock longer than 25 inches.

Concealed Handgun License for Hunting in Ohio

If you have an Ohio concealed handgun license, you may conceal a handgun while trapping or hunting. However, it is a prohibition to use the handgun to kill, shoot or attempt to shoot at wildlife or game animals.

Using Firearm Suppressors to Hunt in Ohio

If you are allowed to make use of firearm suppressors or silencers either according to Ohio or federal laws, then it is not a prohibition to take legal games with the suppressor. In this case, you must possess a valid Ohio license to use the suppressor.

Hunting with Permission in Ohio

Before you can hunt games in Ohio private lands, you need to first obtain written permission for either trapping or hunting from the landowner, regardless of if it is a posted land or not. Exceptions are allowed for landowners hunting on their properties. Private land hunting permissions are available in the various district offices for the wildlife division at the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.

Possession of Games in Ohio

Regulations concerning the possession of games and wildlife in Ohio include the following:

  • It is a prohibition to capture or sell live games that are furbearers, reptiles, birds, and amphibians. An exception is allowed for those with propagation permits.
  • Sales of furbearer hides that are taken during the open season must not exceed the open season, if not, they must be held for sale after the close of the season.
  • It is a prohibition to take furbearers alive when it is open hunting and trapping seasons.
  • To purchase dry fur or green fur in Ohio, you must own the state valid fur dealer's permit.
  • It is illegal to purchase, possess or trade birds that are nongame and their body parts, regardless of if they are alive or dead.

Open Carry While Hunting in Ohio.

Open carry while hunting in Ohio is legal except during archery hunting, where only concealed carry is lawful.

However, even with concealed carry while bow hunting, you must not use the firearm to take down a game.

Ohio has hunter harassment laws in the state.

Nobody shall deliberately prevent a legal hunting activity, and this includes trapping and fishing, in any of the following ways:

  • Putting his or herself in a place where he or she knows that the presence can have an impact on the behavior of games or wildlife, making it difficult for the hunter to capture them.
  • Create any form of stimuli that will affect the games and the possibility of capturing them.
  • Have an impact on the property or location used for hunting, fishing, or trapping animals.
  • These hunter harassment laws apply to only land or water areas licensed for hunting activities to take place in Ohio.

Ohio Hunting Licenses, Permits, and Tags.

Ohio hunting licenses are issued based on residency, and the age of the applicant. Permits, tangs, and stamps, on the other hand, are issued for only specific games in the state.

Ohio hunting licenses, permits, and tags include the following:

Hunting Licenses

Licenses under this category are:

  • Residents Annual License

This is an annual hunting license available for residents of Ohio that are between the ages of 18 and 65. The license is valid for one year and It costs $19.

  • Youth Annual License

This is an annual hunting license available for residents and non-residents. The age requirement to apply for the license is 17 years old and younger. The license is valid for one year and it costs $10 for both residents and non-residents.

  • Non Residents Annual License

This is an annual hunting license available for non-residents of Ohio that are between 18 years or older. The license is valid for one year and It costs $125.

  • Residents Reduced-Cost Senior License

This is an annual hunting license available for senior residents of Ohio that are 66 years and older or those born after the 1st of January 1938. It costs $10.

  • Resident Senior License

This is an annual hunting license available for senior residents of Ohio that are born on the 31st of December 1937 or before them. It is free of charge.

  • Non-residents 3 Days Hunting License

This is an annual hunting license available for non-residents of Ohio that are between 18 years or older. The license is valid for 3 days, and it does not allow the hunting of deer, furbearers, and turkeys. It costs $40.

Ohio Apprentice License

The licenses under this category are only valid for residents and non-residents that are yet to complete the required hunter’s education course. Hence, they can only hunt under the supervision of a licensed Ohio hunter.

They include the following:

  • Resident Apprentice Annual Licenses

This is an annual hunting license available for residents of Ohio that are apprentices. The age requirement to apply is between 18 years and 65 years old. The license is valid for one year and It costs $19.

  • Youth Apprentice Annual License

This is an annual hunting license available for residents and non-residents that are apprentices. The age requirement to apply for the license is 17 years old and younger. The license is valid for one year and it costs $10 for both residents and non-residents.

  • Non-resident Apprentice Annual Licenses

This is an annual hunting license available for non-residents that are apprentices. The age requirement to apply is between 18 years and older. The license is valid for one year and It costs $125.

Ohio Waterfowl Stamps

To hunt waterfowls, you need to purchase a valid Ohio waterfowl stamp. They include the following:

  • Residents and Non-residents Wetland Habitat Stamp

This stamp is available for residents and non-residents. The age requirement to apply is 18 years and older. The stamp costs $15.

  • Residents Reduced Cost Senior Wetland Habitat Stamp

This stamp is available for senior residents of Ohio that are 66 years and older or those born after the 1st of January 1938. It costs $15.

  • Residents Senior Wetland Habitat Stamp

This stamp is available for senior residents of Ohio that are born on the 31st of December 1937 or before them. It is free of charge.

  • Federal Duck Stamp

This stamp is available for anyone that is 16 years or older and it costs $25.

Ohio Turkey Permits.

Turkey permits available for games in Ohio include the following:

  • Adult Turkey Permit for Residents and Non-residents

This permit is available for adult residents and non-residents. There are 2 types based on the spring and fall season, and they both cost $24.

  • Youth Turkey Permit for Residents and Non-residents

This permit is available for youth residents and non-residents that are 17 years and younger. There are 2 types based on the spring and fall season, and they both cost $12.

  • Reduced Cost Senior Turkey Permit

This permit is available for only senior residents of Ohio that are 66 years and older or those born after the 1st of January 1938. There are 2 types based on the spring and fall season, and they both cost $12.

  • Residents Senior Turkey Permit

This permit is available for senior residents of Ohio that are born on the 31st of December 1937 or before them. There are 2 types based on the spring and fall season, and they are both free.

Ohio Deer Permits

Permits Required to hunt deer in Ohio include the following:

  • Adult Deer Permit for Residents and Non-residents

This permit is available for adult residents and non-residents. There are 2 types of antlerless deer or either-sex deer and they cost $15 and $24 respectively.

  • Youth Deer Permit for Residents and Non-residents

This permit is available for youth residents and non-residents that are 17 years and younger. There are 2 types for antlerless deer or either-sex deer and they cost $15 and $12 respectively.

  • Reduced Cost Senior Deer Permit

This permit is available for only senior residents of Ohio that are 66 years and older or those born after the 1st of January 1938. There are 2 types of antlerless deer or either-sex deer and they cost $15 and $12 respectively.

  • Residents Senior Deer Permit

This permit is available for senior residents of Ohio that are born on the 31st of December 1937 or before them. There are 2 types of antlerless deer or either-sex deer and they cost $15 and $12 respectively, and they are both free.

Ohio Fishing Licenses, Permits, and Tags.

Fishing licenses, permits, and tags in Ohio include the following:

Residents Fishing License

This license is available for residents of Ohio that are between the ages of 16 and 65. It costs $19.

Resident Reduced Cost Senior Fishing License

This fishing license is available for senior residents that are 66 years and older or those born after the 1st of January 1938. It costs $10.

One Day Fishing License

This license is available for residents and non-residents and it is valid for one day. It costs $11.

Annual Non-residents Fishing License

This fishing license is available for non-residents that are 18 years old or more. It is valid for a year and costs $40.

3 Days Nonresident Tourist Fishing License

This fishing license is available for non-residents that are 18 years old or more. It is valid for 3 days and costs $19.

Duplicate License

Duplicate licenses to replace missing, stolen, or destroyed licenses in Ohio cost $4.

Ohio Hunting Season 2020/21

Hunting season in Ohio varies from one game to another. It is important for hunters in the state to know the hunting season for the game they want to take.

The 2020/21 hunting season for various wildlife in Ohio includes the following:

Ohio deer hunting Seasons

  • General Hunting Season (10th of October to 1st of December)
  • Ohio Turkey Hunting Season
  • General fall Hunting Season (30th of August to 31st of January)
  • Spring Youth Hunting Season (8th of April to 14th of April)
  • Spring General Hunting Season (15th of April to 25th of May)

Ohio Small Games Hunting Seasons

  • Cottontail and Hare Hunting Seasons (30th of August to 31st of March)
  • Quail Hunting Seasons (18th of September to 31st of January)
  • Chukar and Partridge Hunting Seasons (19th of September to 31st of January)
  • Male Pheasants Hunting Seasons (9th of October to 31st of December)
  • Squirrel Hunting Season (30th of August to 31st of March)

Dates for the start and end of a game hunting season will vary based on the different hunting Zones in the state.

Also, most big games in Ohio have controlled hunting to curb their overpopulation. To hunt these games, you will need permits.

Ohio Wildlife, Games, and Fish

There are various games and wildlife available in Ohio, and they include the following:

Ohio Deer Hunting

Deer hunting in Ohio is common statewide. The species common to the northern part of the salmon river is the whitetail deer. They are hunted in the fall period, even more, than the mule deer. However, mule deer are more occurring in the southern part of Ohio.

Ohio Turkey Hunting

Turkey hunting in Ohio is common around rivers in the state. But they are more established in Weiser Payette and Snake Rivers. . You can find turkeys in federal and state hunting lands.

Ohio Fox Hunting

There are various types of fox species available for hunting in Ohio. The red fox is common in almost all regions of the state. There are the kit foxes that are usually rare but inhabit the southern part of Ohio. Kit foxes are miniature and only weigh around 3 to 6 pounds with lengths between 18 to 21 inches. The largest fox species in Ohio is the gray fox.

Ohio Quail Hunting

The most common quail in Ohio is the California quail found in the south-central part of the state. They can be found along water bodies like streams and rivers.

Ohio Pheasants Hunting

Pheasants hunting in Ohio takes place in clearwater areas. However, their populations have reduced in recent years due to new farming methods and increased urbanization in the state. But there are still a lot of wild pheasants available in Ohio.

Ohio Duck Hunting

There are various species of ducks in Ohio, and because they are waterfowls, the best places you can locate them are in wetland regions away from human settlements. Duck hunting in Ohio also takes place in wildlife refuges. Ducks inhabit water bodies like ponds and lakes, and they can be found in the shallow parts of the water.

Ohio Public Shooting Ranges for Hunting Practices

Shooting ranges accessible for the public in Ohio include the following:

  • Blaine County Gun Club
  • Boise Gun Club
  • Coeur D'Alene Skeet & Trap Club
  • Ee Da How Long Rifles
  • Fernan Rod & Gun Club
  • Lewis-Clark Wildlife Club Range
  • Oregon Trail Shooting Range
  • Pocatello Trap Club
  • Skyline Gun Club
  • Unified Sportsmen's Club
  • Wood River Gun Club
  • Twin Falls Rifle and Pistol Club
  • Mountain Home Air Force Base Idaho
  • Martin Canyon Range
  • Leo Hadley Range - Bonner County Sportsmen
  • Ohio Hunting Lands for Sale and Lease
  • Garden Valley Rifle Range

Ohio Hunting Lands for Sale and Lease

Hunting lands for sale in Ohio include the following:

  • Hidden Cabin in the Woods, State Route 139, Oak Hill, Ohio (Jackson County) 17.7 acres.
  • Bidwell, Ohio (Gallia County) 73.12 acres.
  • Ohio hunting land and cabins for sale in Londonderry, Ohio (Vinton County) 26 acres.
  • Lower Salem, Ohio (Monroe County) 19 acres.
  • Dennison, Ohio (Tuscarawas County) 35.08 acres.

Hunting lands for lease in Ohio include the following:

  • Guided Deer hunt for Bow Season in Lucasville, OH Hunting, Scioto County Includes 3 meals/day, lodging, and stands/blinds, food plots 2000 acres along Scioto River.
  • 210 acres Lease for White-tailed deer hunting is Available near Athens Ohio.
  • Space for two ethical hunters to fill a hunting camp for the 2021 deer hunting season. Hunting land is 600+ acres for over 40 years in Noble county.
  • Space on 120 acres in southeast Ohio for deer and turkey hunting available for turkey and deer in Franklin County.
  • Bass & Buck is a family-oriented private bow hunting and fishing club in Geauga county, 250 acres.
  • Southeast Ohio deer and turkey hunts in Meigs county and a rustic cabin included 139 acres.
  • 120-Acre Historic Homestead - Mix of Wooded Area and Open Field in Coshocton county.
  • 23 Acres of Forest with Deer, Turkeys, and More in Brown County.
  • Fantastic Deer and Turkey Hunting in New Statesville, Perry County, 1,800 acres.
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