Hunting Seasons Begin in Delaware

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The 2019/2020 hunting season opens Sunday with the archery and crossbow deer seasons.  Mourning Dover and resident Canada goose seasons open Monday.  Later in September is the start of a special September teal season and then gray squirrel season will open.  A Delaware hunting license or License Exempt Number is required to hunt – waterfowl hunters also require a waterfowl/duck stamp. 

The following hunting seasons open in September, with season dates and hunting hours as listed:

·       Archery and Crossbow Deer: Sept. 1-Feb. 2, 2020, including Sundays (½ hour before sunrise to ½ hour after sunset)

·       Dove: Sept. 2-Oct. 7 for first season split (½ hour before sunrise to sunset)*

·       Resident Canada geese: Sept. 2-25 (½ hour before sunrise to sunset)

·       Teal: Sept. 12-30 (½ hour before sunrise to sunset in the designated teal zone south of the C&D Canal to Lewes, and east of Routes 13, 113/113A, and 1)

·       Gray squirrel: Sept. 14-Feb. 1, 2020 (½ hour before sunrise to ½ hour after sunset, except closed during November shotgun deer season)

*Reminder: Non-toxic shot (no lead) must be used for dove hunting on state wildlife areas during the month of September and hunting hours might differ at specific dove fields on certain state wildlife areas.

DNREC’s Division of Fish & Wildlife offers many early-season hunting opportunities on state wildlife areas. Wildlife area maps and rules are available at Wildlife Area Hunting Maps. Additional information on September hunting opportunities at Division of Fish & Wildlife public wildlife areas is available at Delaware’s September hunting seasons.

A Delaware hunting license or License Exempt Number (LEN) is required to hunt, and most waterfowl hunters require a Delaware waterfowl (duck) stamp. More information on hunting license and Delaware waterfowl stamp requirements is available at Delaware Licenses. Teal, dove, and goose hunters also need a Federal Harvest Information Program (HIP) number. To register for a LEN number or HIP number, hunters can go to Delaware Hunter and Trapper Registration or call toll free 1-855-335-4868. For hunters age 16 and older, a federal migratory bird stamp is also required to hunt geese or teal.

Registered motor vehicles used to access designated wildlife areas owned or managed by the Division of Fish & Wildlife are required to display a Conservation Access Pass (CAP). Hunters can opt to receive one free annual CAP with the purchase of any Delaware hunting license. To obtain a CAP, hunters will need the registration card for the vehicle to which the pass will be assigned.

Delaware hunting licenses, Delaware waterfowl stamps, and Conservation Access Passes can be purchased online at Delaware Licenses, at the license desk in DNREC’s Dover office at 89 Kings Highway, Dover, DE 19901, or from hunting license agents statewide. Federal migratory bird stamps are available for purchase at U.S. Post Offices,Bombay Hook and Prime Hook national wildlife refuges, and online at Federal duck stamps.

For more information on hunting, click 2019-2020 Delaware Hunting & Trapping Guide. Hard copies of the hunting guide and newly-updated hunting maps are also available at the license desk in DNREC’s Dover office. More information on hunting licenses, season details, and the Conservation Access Pass is also available by calling the Wildlife Section office at 302-739-9912.