Written by: Philem Withlead
May, 10 2021
Colorado offers a diverse opportunity to hunt big and small games in the state. The state comprises unsettled space and a picturesque landscape. It is also well known for multiple outdoor recreational attractions. Colorado is perfect for hunters that fancy big games.
Before you start hunting in Colorado, you must be aware of the state hunting laws, requirements and regulations:
Some of the most important Colorado hunting regulations and requirement include the following:
A hunter education certificate obtained in Colorado is evidence that you have the important knowledge to take games and wildlife in the state. The state requires that anyone born on or after 1949 must obtain a Hunter Education Certificate before hunting in the state. Also, there is no age requirement, mandated for the purchase of Hunter Education Certificate in Colorado.
In Colorado, hunting licenses are not the same as the Hunter Education Certificate. Before you can hunt games and wildlife in the state, you must own a valid Colorado hunting license. There are various types of licenses available for residents and non-residents. Hunting Licenses in Colorado are usually categorized based on details like the type of game to be hunted, the age of the hunter and if the hunter is a resident of the state or not.
Colorado hunting regulations require that it is compulsory to tag specific game animals after hunting them. Some of these animals are deer, turkey, bears, and elks. Before you can hunt in Colorado, you must understand the state tagging requirement for the type of animals you are taking. To avoid violations of this regulation. Ensure that the animal is tagged properly.
Some of the tagging requirements for hunting in Colorado include the following:
Before you hunt in certain game seasons in Colorado, you are required to wear at least 500 square inches of either a pink or orange hunting overall. Some of the games and wildlife that this dressing is mandated for include pronghorn, beat, moose, elks and deer.
The pink or orange dress should be worn as an outer cloth and must be above the waist level. It should also be worn with a head cover of the same cloth color. The head cover could either be a cap or hat. Hunter dressing regulations also cover hunters that are talking games in muzzle loading, rifle and archery seasons.
Although there is an exception for archery hunters that are hunting on lands privately owned in Colorado, it is still recommended for them to do so. If you are hunting from either a pop up blind or ground blip, it is compulsory to wear either an orange or pink clothing whenever you are not within the blind. The clothing color must be obvious, so it is a violation to wear camouflage pink or orange colors.
There are also bag limit regulations in Colorado to limit the quantity of game that a hunter can take. Colorado bag limit can be based on either seasonal or daily hunting, depending on the game animal. If there is a daily bag limit for a game, it will restrict the number of that game specie you can hunt in a day. Seasonal bag limit will limit the number of games you can take during the specific game hunting season.
Most land areas in Colorado are privately owned. You are free to hunt without restriction in privately owned lands, and if you do not personally own the land, you can get the landowner’s permission to do so. However, privately owned lands are still under the Colorado hunting regulations, requirements and laws. Hunters on private lands must also adhere to any landowner regulation or requirement. Furthermore, hunters are required to respect all landowner property and rights.
Public lands in Colorado exceed 23 million acres, and the state provides many public hunting prospects with these forested areas, parks and conservation areas. Aside from hunting, public lands in Colorado provide opportunities for activities like hiking, trapping, fishing and wildlife viewing. Some of the public lands managed by states will also have their own regulations and requirements that must be adhered to. Before hunting in these areas, it is your duty to know the regulations peculiar to that hunting area.
Colorado wildlife areas are public lands owned by the state and under the management of the state park and wildlife. Wildlife areas in Colorado are more than 300, and this amounts to millions of land areas in mountain regions, wetlands, forests, grassland, etc.
All these parts of the state will allow hunting and every other type of outdoor recreational activity.
Aside from the state hunting regulations, there may be additional restrictions to hunt in Colorado wildlife areas or use them for recreation. Most of these wildlife management areas will post the regulations for hunters to see before hunting. Regulations will not be the same for all areas. Some common wildlife area regulations include the following:
Before hunting any game or wildlife in Colorado, you need a valid hunting license. There are various Colorado hunting licenses, and they are available based on the age, residency, and type of game animal to hunt.
Colorado hunting licenses include the following:
Colorado big game licenses are available based on the type of animal big game species to be hunted. Residents and nonresidents can purchase these licenses, but the price will vary. You must own a big game license for the animal you want to take.
For a big game license issued based on draws in the state, an application fee will be required. For residents of Colorado, the cost for a big game license draw permit is $7 while non-residents’ cost is $9. This money is non-refundable too.
Other types of big game licenses in Colorado include the following:
This is the valid license issued in Colorado for the hunting of bear species. It costs $39.75 for residents and $101.75 for non-residents.
This is the only valid license required for bighorn sheep in Colorado. It costs $305.61 for residents and $2,240.20 for non-residents. There are separate licenses for Desert and Rocky Mountain permits in the state, but they cost the same price for residents and non-residents.
This is a valid license issued for deer hunting in Colorado. The license allows a hunter to take both does and bucks deer. It costs $40.24 for residents and $401.83 for non-residents.
This is a valid license for Elk hunting in Colorado. The license can be used for the taking of both bull and cow elks in the state. It costs $55.43 for residents and $670.25 for non-residents.
This is a valid license for Moose hunting in Colorado. It costs $305.61 for residents and $2240 for non-residents.
This is a valid license for Mountain goat hunting in Colorado. It costs $305.61 for residents and $2240 for non-residents.
This is a valid license for Mountain goat hunting in Colorado. It costs $50.37 for residents and $351.75 for non-residents.
This is a valid license for Pronghorn hunting in Colorado. It costs $40.24 for residents and $401.83 for non-residents.
This is a valid license for youths that want to hunt big games in Colorado. It costs $15.1 for residents and $102.78 for non-residents.
Just like with the big game license, there are small game licenses for various species in Colorado. The license will depend on the small game that a hunter wishes to take, and they are available for residents and non-residents.
Some of Colorado small game hunting licenses include the following:
This is an annual license valid for the taking of small game animals in the state, including furbearers. It costs $30.11 for residents and $82.78 for non-residents.
This is an annual license for small game hunting and fishing in Colorado. It is only available for residents of the state, and it costs $50.37.
This license is only issued based on draw. Hunters that get drawn will be allowed to partake in turkey hunting in Colorado. To get drawn hunters will have to pay the required application processing fee which is $7 for residents and $9 for non-residents.
This is a permit required for band-tailed pigeon hunting in Colorado. It costs $5 for residents and nonresidents.
This is a stamp issued for migratory bird hunting in Colorado. It costs $25 for residents and non-residents of the state.
This license is issued only for the hunting of furbearers in Colorado. It costs $30.11 for residents and $82.78 for non-residents.
This permit is required for the capture of peregrine falcons in Colorado. It is only available for residents of the state and it costs $304.1.
This is a Colorado hunting license for the possession of raptors in the state. It is only available for residents, and it is valid for 3 years. It costs $152.18.
This is a Colorado out-of-state hunting license for non-residents of the state. It allows them to capture or possess raptors, and it is valid for a year. It costs $81.28.
This license is required to hunt small games in Colorado for just a day, It costs $13.9 for residents and $16.94 for non-residents.
This license is required to hunt small game animals in Colorado for an extra day. It costs $6.81 for residents and Nonresidents.
There are 2 types of Colorado hunting licenses in the state, issued based on seasons. Turkey hunting in the fall costs $25.05 for residents and $153.68 for non-residents. Turkey hunting in the spring costs $30.11 for residents and $153.68 for non-residents.
This license is required by youths that want to hunt small games in Colorado. It costs $1.26 for residents and nonresidents.
Fishing License Permits and tags issued in Colorado include the following:
This is an annual license for fishing in Colorado and it costs $35.17 for residents and $97.97 for non-residents.
This is an annual fishing license valid for residents that are at least 65 years old. It costs $9.85.
This is a fishing stamp for nuisance species in Colorado. It costs $25 for residents and $50 for non-residents.
This is a fishing license valid for one day. It costs $13.9 for residents and $16.94 for non-residents
This is a fishing license valid for five days. It is valid for only non-residents and costs $32.14.
This license allows an extra day of fishing. It costs $6.81 for residents and nonresidents.
There are 2 types of fish licenses issued in Colorado. The first one is for youths that are either 16 or 7 years old and it is only available for residents of the state. It costs $9.85.
The second youth fishing license is for those that are less than 16 years old. The license is available for residents and non-residents and it is free of charge.
Games have various hunting seasons. It is a hunting violation to take or capture games outside their hunting season, or make use of a weapon outside its hunting season.
The 2020/21 hunting season for various wildlife in Colorado includes the following:
Season dates for each game from one hunting zone to another.
Some of the most common games and wildlife present in Colorado include the following:
Elk hunting in Colorado is well renowned because of the number of elks present in the state. As at the last estimation, about 280,000 are present in the state. Colorado is the state with the largest elk herds in the USA and the world. During Elk seasons, hunters from all over the nation troop into the state to capture elks.
The Moose population in Colorado is fast growing and it continues to be one of the big game species favored by hunters in the state.
The 2 most common species of deer in Colorado are the white-tailed and mule deer. The mule deer is well distributed in Colorado, while white-tailed deer inhabit the eastern region of the state and are also found in small quantities in the west.
Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep are mostly found in the steeped region and the rugged terrain parts of the state. The estimation is almost 7000 and this makes Colorado one of the most favorable states for bighorn hunting in the state. Another species of Bighorn sheep in Colorado is the desert sheep but they are less common and are found in the western part of the state.
Mountain goats are another big dame species common in the steep regions of Colorado. They are very agile game animals and coupled with the mountain regions they inhabit, this makes them very difficult animals to hunt.
Pronghorns are very common in Colorado with a population of almost 90,000. Presently, they are in their most abundant in Colorado. They inhabit flatland areas in the northwest part of the state and some eastern plain regions too. Hunters can find small herds of pronghorns in Northern, Southern, and misled parks of the state.
Mountain lions are another abundant big game species found in the steep regions of Colorado.
Just like Mountain Lions, black bear hunting in Colorado is also common because of the large population of the animal in the state.
Wild turkeys are quite famous among hunters in Colorado. Aside from hunting them, they are quite fascinating animals for recreational viewing, especially during their springtime mating period.
Coyotes are well dispersed in Colorado and residents’ hunters in the state regard them as one of the most difficult predators to hunt. This is a testament to their smartness.
The common species of foxes in Colorado is the red fox. Like most predators, they are difficult to hunt because of their speed. They are also very sensitive games with great vision and smell. They are great swimmers too.
Some of the shooting ranges in Colorado include the following:
Hunting lands for sale in Colorado include the following:
Hunting lands for lease in Colorado include the following: