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Pennsylvania Hunting

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Written by:  Admin SERP 

May, 10 2021

Large games and small games are available in Pennsylvania. There are many hunting seasons for various types of hunters in the state to take games, as defined by the Pennsylvania game commission.

Pennsylvania Hunting Regulation

Hunting is well regulated in Pennsylvania. The state has strict laws to protect the harvesting of games and wildlife. If you want to hunt in Pennsylvania, it is important that you understand all requirements and restrictions provided by the Pennsylvania game commission.

Some of Pennsylvania hunting regulations include the following:

General Hunting Regulations

Pennsylvania Sunday hunting is not allowed. Exceptions are made for commercial red fox shooting during the fox season. Also, undecided legislation permits deer hunting on Sundays during deer seasons. But it is good to confirm this with the wildlife division first.

  • It is a prohibition to hunt in Pennsylvania without a valid state license. The state also prohibits taking games more than the specific bag limits, or possession of games taken unlawfully.
  • It is illegal to hunt within a distance of 100 yards away from an occupied building in Pennsylvania. An exception is made to this regulation if the hunter owns the building or has gotten permission from the property owner to hunt within the premises. Also for bow and arrow deer hunting, the required distance a hunter must be from an occupied building is 50 years.
  • It is unlawful to discharge a hunting firearm anywhere less than a 15-yard distance from public roads. It is also a prohibition to shoot a firearm across a public road.
  • It is a prohibition to trespass on private lands and properties with a firearm or a trap without obtaining permission from the landowner. It does not matter if the land has a post prohibiting the use of firearms or not.
  • It is a prohibition to destroy any lair, den, or nest for wildlife or game animals and birds.
  • It is illegal to make use of artificial light in wildlife for hunting games. This prohibition also covers light from vehicles.
  • You are not allowed to make use of devices that allow vision at night or infrared devices during Pennsylvania hunting.

Firearms and Archery Regulations

You may not possess a loaded firearm or cocked crossbow in or on a motor vehicle while hunting in Pennsylvania.

  • It is a prohibition to transport muzzleloader firearms when there is a charge in its barrel. An exception to this regulation is made if the firearm primer or cap has been removed or if the firearm is in an enclosed case.
  • It is unlawful to hunt at night, and the night period for this regulation is defined by 30 minutes after sunset and 30 minutes prior to sunrise. Exceptions to this regulation are made for the hunting of games like opossum, frigs, and raccoons, with the aid of a handheld light source.
  • It is a prohibition to hunt games with a shotgun that has more than 10 gauge, an automatic firearm that shoots more than once upon pulling the trigger, or a centerfire rifle. Exceptions are made for the hunting of predators like foxes and coyotes with a centerfire rifle.
  • It is a prohibition to make use of a shotgun that contains more than 3 shells for hunting in Pennsylvania. Exceptions are made for the hunting of snow geese.
  • It is a prohibition to take or attempt to take games and wildlife in Pennsylvania with arrows coated with poisons or arrows that have explosive tips.
  • It is a prohibition to make use of a swivel firearm or a punt that cannot be discharged from the shoulder.

Furbearer Hunting Regulations

  • It is a prohibition to use a bait, pen, trap, cage, deadfall, pen, chemical., poison, pitfall, and drug for the taking of games in Pennsylvania. However, exceptions are made for wildlife and games like raccoons, rabbits, foxes, coyotes, etc.
  • It is unlawful to hunt or take muskrats with a dog in Pennsylvania.
  • It is a prohibition to shoot or take muskrats in the state. An exception to this regulation is made for muskrats trapping.

Other Pennsylvania Hunting Regulations include the following:

  • It is a prohibition to sell or trade wildlife and games or parts of their bodies. Exceptions are allowed for those who gain permission from the Pennsylvania Division of Fish and Wildlife. If you are a hunter that wants to ship games lawfully taken in the state, you must first obtain a notarized affidavit to prove that the game was taken lawfully. The affidavit also has to include the details of the sender and the number of games that are packed.
  • It is a prohibition to shoot wild birds like owls and hawks. Pennsylvania only approves permitted bird game hunting in the state like sparrows and starlings.
  • It is a prohibition to have live wildlife and game animals in your possession.
  • It is a prohibition to bring live rabbits into Pennsylvania from other states without providing a health certificate.
  • It is a prohibition to allow hunting dogs to run at large. Exceptions are made for private landowners to allow the dog to run from the 1st of October to the 18th of February. The dogs must run only on the owner’s land.
  • It is a prohibition to allow hunting dogs to run at large between the period of sunset and sunrise in any period of the year. Also, hunting dogs in Pennsylvania are required to be registered.
  • It is unlawful to hunt games with baits. The only exception to this is the hunting of deer on lands that are privately owned in the state.
  • It is a prohibition to release swine animals into the wild, charge an amount for hunting swine, or shoot at swine without the required license from the state hunting division.
  • It is a prohibition to obtain deer antlers with traps or any equipment that will remove antlers from the game. You can open carry during hunting in Pennsylvania with either a handgun or a shotgun. However, you cannot open carry during bow hunting in the state.

Pennsylvania also has hunter harassment laws. The law states that no one shall deliberately disturb or disrupt a legal hunting activity in the state, and this applies to the taking of aquatic animals such as fishes, frogs, crabs, oysters, etc., and the hunting of games such as birds or wildlife animals.

Open Carry While Hunting In Pennsylvania.

Pennsylvania permits the open carry of a firearm while hunting in the state. However, during bow hunting, you cannot make use of firearms to shoot an animal.

Pennsylvania also has hunter harassment laws in the state to protect the activity.

It is illegal for a person to interfere with hunting in a location licensed for such an activity. You can violate this law in the following ways:

  • Interfere with a legal hunting activity in the state by disturbing wildlife or game animals.
  • Intercepts or harasses a hunter taking part in a licensed hunting or any related activity in the state.
  • Uses any form of stimuli to disturb wildlife such that it makes hunting activities more difficult, or completely prevents the practice.
  • Builds a barrier to prevent access into areas of the state, licensed for the lawful taking of animals.
  • Puts him or herself in the line of live-fire while hunting in the state.
  • Affects the condition of a property used for licensed hunting activity such that it becomes more challenging to hunt games successfully.
  • Trespass on a public or privately owned property without the permission of the owner or the right authority, before hunting.
  • Disregards orders given by a peace officer enforcing any of these laws in a licensed hunting property.

Pennsylvania Hunting License Permits and Tags

Pennsylvania issues hunting licenses based on residency in the state. There are various types of resident and non-resident licenses in the state. To obtain any of Pennsylvania’s resident licenses, you must have lived in the state for at least a period of 6 months. Also, you must not be a resident of any other state or region of the USA.

Although you may own homes in other states, you must claim residency in only Pennsylvania, and it must be the state for your federal income taxation.

Residents licenses permits and tags issued in Pennsylvania include the following:

  • Residents Adult Hunting License

This is a hunting license available to residents of Pennsylvania that are within the age of 16 and 64 years old. It costs $39.5.

  • Resident Junior Hunting License

This license is issued to teenage residents within the age of 13 and 15 that want to hunt in the state. It costs $5.

  • Resident Guide Hunting License

This license is available for residents of Pennsylvania that are 18 and above and would like to act as hunting guides. It costs $159.50.

  • Resident Trapping License

Residents of Pennsylvania that want to trap games in the state must buy a trapping license upon completing a Pennsylvania trapping education cost. The age range for this license is between 13 to 64, and it costs $10.

  • Residents Fur Dealer License

For residents of Pennsylvania that want to deal with furs and pelts on a commercial scale, they will require this license. However, there is an exception with Muskrat furs and pets. It costs $50.

  • Residents Waterfowl Stamp

This stamp is available for residents of the state that are within the age of 16 and 65 years old. Only those with this stamp will be allowed to hunt waterfowls in the state. It costs $15.

  • Pennsylvania WMA Waterfowl and Deer Stand Permit

Residents can obtain a combination of Pennsylvania waterfowl and deer hunting permits in Wildlife areas of the state. The permit costs $20.

  • Resident Hunter’s Choice and Quality Buck Tag

This tag is available for resident hunters and it costs $20.

  • Antlerless Deer Tags

This tag will allow antlerless deer hunting in Pennsylvania, and it costs $20.

Nonresidents license, permits, and tags issued in the state include the following:

  • Non-Residents Adult Hunting License

This is an out-of-state Pennsylvania hunting license issued to nonresidents that are 16 years old or more. It costs $199.5.

  • Non-Residents Junior Hunting License

This license is available for nonresidents that are within the age of 13 and 15. It costs $50.

  • Non Resident Guide Hunting License

This license is available for nonresidents that want to act as guides in the state. The age requirement for the license is 18 years old or more. It costs $475.

  • Pennsylvania Wildlife Area Waterfowl Blind and Deer Stand Permit

This permit will allow nonresidents holders to hunt both waterfowls and deer in Wildlife management areas of Pennsylvania. It costs $20.

  • Non-Resident Trapping License

Nonresidents that wish to trap games in Pennsylvania must first pass a trapping education course and purchase this license. It costs $75.

  • Non-Resident Fur Dealer License

This is an annual license available for nonresidents that want to venture into commercial fur and pelt business in Pennsylvania. However, there is an exception for muskrat furs and pelts. It costs $475.

  • Non-Residents Waterfowl Stamp

This stamp is available to nonresidents that want to hunt waterfowl games in the state. The age requirement for this license is 16 years old or more. It costs $15.

  • Non Residents 3 Days Hunting License

This is a nonresident license valid for just 3 days. It will allow the hunting of small game species and provide a license to hunt waterfowls. It costs $75.

  • Non-Residents Antlered Deer Dag

Nonresidents that want to capture antlered deer in Pennsylvania need this license. It cost $50.

  • Non-Residents Additional Antlerless Deer Tag

This tag will allow nonresidents antlerless deer hunting in Pennsylvania, and it costs $20.

Pennsylvania Fishing Licenses Tags and Permits

Fishing license tags and permits available in Pennsylvania include the following:

Pennsylvania General Fishing License

This is the most common fishing license available to residents and non-residents in Pennsylvania. It costs $8.5 for residents and $20 for non-residents.

7 Days Tourists Fishing License

This fishing license is available for only nonresidents in Pennsylvania and tourists in the state. It is available for one week and costs $12.5

Boat Fishing License for

This Pennsylvania fishing license is available for residents and non-residents of the state. It costs $40 for 20ft and $50 for more than 20ft for both residents and non-residents of the state.

Head Boat Fishing License

This license will allow the holder to fish from a head boat. It costs $300 for residents and $600 for non-residents.

Charter Boat Fishing License

This license allows holders to fish from a chartered boat. It costs $150 for residents and $300 for non-residents.

Guide Fishing License

A guide fishing license will allow a holder to be in control and act as a guide during a fishing session. It costs $100 for residents and $300 for non-residents.

Young Angler Trout Stamp

This stamp allows teenagers between the age of 12 and 15 years old to mount a trout while fishing. It costs $2.1 for residents and $6.2 for non-residents.

Adult Trout Stamp

This stamp allows adults between the age of 16 and 64 years old to mount a trout while fishing. It costs $4.8 for residents and $6.2 for non-residents.

Some of the things you should know about fishing in Pennsylvania include the following: You can only fish in Pennsylvania if you have a fishing license issued in the state. Pennsylvania does not have fishing license reciprocity with any other state or region in the United States.

Pennsylvania Hunting Season

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

Pennsylvania Deer Hunting Season

  • Archery and Crossbow Hunting Season (19th of September to 27th of November and 26th of December to 23rd of January)
  • Regular Firearm Hunting Season (28th of November to 4th of December and 5th of December to 12th of December)
  • Muzzleloading Firearm Season (17th of October to 24th of October)

Hunting seasons in Pennsylvania are regulated based on the various regions of the state. Apart from the normal hunting dates, some parts of the state can have separate dates. Hunters are advised to visit the state game commission website for more information concerning the game they want to hunt in Pennsylvania.

Pennsylvania Elk Hunting Season

  • Archery Hunting Season (12th of September to 26th of September)
  • Archery Hunting Season (2nd of November to 7th of November and 2nd of January to 9th of January)
  • Deer hunting season dates vary based on Pennsylvania hunting zones and the taking of antlerless or antler deer.

Pennsylvania Black Bear Hunting Season

  • Archery Hunting Season (19th of September to 27th of November)
  • Regular Firearms Season (22nd of October to 24th of October and 21st of November to 24th of November)
  • Muzzleloader Hunting Season (17th of October to 24th of October)
  • Bear hunting in Pennsylvania varies for various zones in the state.

Pennsylvania Wild Turkey Hunting Season

  • General Fall Hunting Season (31st of October to 27th of November)
  • Spring Hunting Season (1st of May to 31st of May)
  • Spring Hunting Season for Youths (24th of April)

Pennsylvania Small Hunting Season

  • Squirrel Hunting Season (12th of September to 27th of November, 14th of December to 24th of December, and 26th of December to 27th of December)
  • Rabbits Hunting Season (3rd of October to 17th of October, 14th of December to 24th of December, and 26th of December to 26th of February)
  • Pheasant Hunting Season (10th of October to 17th of October, 24th of October to 17th of November, and 14th of December to 24th of December)
  • Bobwhite Quail Hunting Season (10th of October to 17th of October, 14th of December to 24th of December, and 26th of December to 27th of February)
  • Grouse Hunting Season (17th of October to 27th of November and 14th of December to 24th of December)
  • Groundhogs Hunting Season (Open hunting season except for normal firearm deer hunting seasons and Sundays)

Pennsylvania Wildlife Games and Fish

Games and Wildlife in Pennsylvania include the following:

Pennsylvania Deer Hunting

Deer Hunting in Pennsylvania is quite revered. The game is well-loved by hunters, and deer are one of the most abundant games in the state.

Pennsylvania Turkey Hunting

Turkey hunting in Pennsylvania is becoming more popular. They are valuable to hunters in the state and can be found in various parts of the state.

Pennsylvania Elk Hunting

Elk hunting in Pennsylvania is common in some of the WMAs where elk herds are present. Hunters with permits will be allowed to take herds.

Pennsylvania Waterfowl Hunting

Waterfowls hunting in Pennsylvania is common because of the presence of water bodies in the state. Waterfowls are also fond of agricultural lands where they can hunt for feed, and they inhabit these areas. Some of the most common waterfowls hunting in the state are Pennsylvania Duck Hunting and Pennsylvania Goose Hunting.

Pennsylvania Fox Hunting

The red fox is the most common fox species in Pennsylvania. They are difficult to hunt because they are very alert and will most likely spot a hunter before being spotted. They can be hunted, handguns, muzzleloading firearms, shotguns, centerfire rifles, longbows, and crossbows.

Pennsylvania Dove Hunting

Dove hunting in Pennsylvania is a popular shooting sport. Doves are evenly dispersed in the state and are quite accessible for hunters.

Pennsylvania Black Bears Hunting

Bears can be found in every county in Pennsylvania, and presently they occupy about ¾ of the state. Black bears hunting in Pennsylvania takes place in thickly forested regions of the state.

Pennsylvania Rabbit Hunting

Rabbit Hunting in Pennsylvania allows the use of shotguns, recurve, and longbows. Hunters are also required to adhere to the dress code for firearm hunting seasons.

Pennsylvania Groundhog Hunting

You do not need any license, permits, and tags to hunt groundhogs in the state. They are unprotected game species, and you can make use of firearms and archeries to hunt them.

Pennsylvania Quail Hunting

The species of quail available for hunting in Pennsylvania is the bobwhite quail. The game can be hunted with only shotguns and longbows.

Pennsylvania Shooting Ranges

Some of the shooting ranges in Pennsylvania that are open to the general public include the following:

  • Wicen's Shooting Range.
  • Western Pennsylvania Sportsmen's Club.
  • Black Ash Sportsmen.
  • Blair County Game.
  • Bradford Gun Club.
  • Bull Creek Rod & Gun Club.
  • Cacoosing Gun Club
  • West Branch Sportsman's Association.
  • Warrington Sporting Clays.
  • Valley Gun and Country Club.
  • St. Marys Sportsmans Range.
  • Tyrone Sportsmen's Range.
  • Pennsylvania Hunting Land for Sale and Lease

Hunting lands for sale in Pennsylvania include the following:

  • Morris, Pennsylvania (Tioga County) 600 acres.
  • Jamestown, Pennsylvania (Mercer County) 48 acres.
  • Meyersdale, Pennsylvania (Somerset County) 86.96 acres.
  • Greensburg, Pennsylvania (Westmoreland County) 204 acres.
  • Corry, Pennsylvania (Warren County) 75.4 acres.
  • Albion, Pennsylvania (Erie County) 52 acres.

Hunting lands for lease in Pennsylvania include the following:

  • Glaciated-Rich Soil of 210 Acres of Northwestern Pennsylvania Property, Erie County.
  • Circle S Farm Semi-Guided Hunts for Deer and Turkey, Armstrong County, 70 acres.
  • 60 Acre + Farm - River Bottom White Tail & Waterfowl Paradise in Private Greenway Wildlife Corridor, Lair County.
  • 820 well-managed acres in Warren County Pennsylvania.
  • Ohio Trophy Whitetail Hunts on private properties, Athens County, 1,500 acres.
  • 70 acres Whitetail Deer hunting in Indiana County, PA
  • 600 acres Deer hunting in Huntingdon County, PA.
The information provided on the Website is for general information purposes only and is not an alternative to legal advice from your lawyer. We may receive commissions from our partners when you click on some of the links. Learn More
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