Ohio’s Deer-Gun Hunting Seasons Begin Saturday

COLUMBUS, Ohio ­­­­­– Ohio’s hunters are eagerly anticipating the chance to take to the woods and fields in November when gun seasons begin for white-tailed deer.

Youth hunters younger than 18 years old have their own weekend to hunt Ohio’s favorite big-game animal on Nov. 21-22, 2020. All hunters have the chance to hunt the traditional gun season from Monday, Nov. 30 to Sunday, Dec. 6, 2020, and again during the bonus weekend on Dec. 19-20.

“Ohio’s gun seasons add another level of excitement for our deer hunters,” said Division of Wildlife Chief Kendra Wecker. “This is a time to celebrate the tradition that has provided so much enjoyment for so many throughout the years. Good luck in the field, wear hunter orange, and have a safe and enjoyable deer season!”

The Buckeye State’s deer-gun hunting seasons have spanned generations of Ohioans and are a time many friends and families gather to celebrate the moment. In 2019, Ohio hunters harvested 63,567 deer during the weeklong deer-gun season, as well as an additional 13,703 deer during the two-day bonus weekend. Young hunters harvested 6,249 deer during the two-day youth weekend.

Check the 2020-2021 Ohio Hunting Regulations handbook for county-specific bag limits, updates on permits, hunting on public lands, and precautions to take if you hunt out of state. Youth hunters are required to be accompanied by a nonhunting adult. Legal hunting equipment for all deer-gun seasons includes specific shotguns, muzzleloaders, handguns, straight-walled cartridge rifles, and archery equipment. More information is available at www.wildohio.gov.

2020 Deer-Gun Season Dates

  • Youth weekend: Saturday, Nov. 21 and Sunday, Nov. 22. This weekend is open to hunters with a youth hunting license and deer permit.
  • Deer-gun week: Monday, Nov. 30 to Sunday, Dec. 6.
  • Bonus weekend: Saturday, Dec. 19 and Sunday, Dec. 20.

HuntFish OH Mobile App
The free HuntFish OH mobile app provides outdoor enthusiasts with convenient resources while out in the field. HuntFish OH is available for Android and iOS users and can be found in the app store. Deer hunters can use the app to check in their harvest, even without a WiFi connection. When a hunter checks game without a clear signal, harvest information is recorded and stored until the hunter moves to a location with better reception. Users can also purchase licenses and permits and view wildlife area maps through the app. Tech-savvy hunters are encouraged to help others use the app to check game and access other areas of content.

Wildlife Hotline
Hunters have the option of contacting the Division of Wildlife’s toll-free hotline at 800-WILDLIFE (945-3543) with questions about hunting. In addition to normal business hours, special call center hours include:

8 a.m. – 6 p.m., Monday, Nov. 30 to Friday, Dec. 4, for deer-gun season.

Hunter Challenge
Ask a new hunter to join you this season! While hunting remains a popular pastime for many, the number of hunters in Ohio and nationwide is declining. Hunting provides an excellent opportunity better appreciate Ohio’s natural resources and remains one of the best ways to manage the state’s deer population. Seasoned hunters are encouraged to pass down their hunting knowledge and expertise to someone new this season. Special hunting opportunities for mentors and those new to hunting are available at the Wild Ohio Harvest Community Page.

Poacher Hotline
Help protect Ohio’s wildlife resources. Report any violations to the division’s Turn-In-a-Poacher (TIP) hotline by calling 800-POACHER (762-2437). All reports remain anonymous and tipsters may be eligible for a cash reward.

The mission of the Division of Wildlife is to conserve and improve fish and wildlife resources and their habitats for sustainable use and appreciation by all. Visit wildohio.gov to find out more.

ODNR ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR website at ohiodnr.gov.

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