A Beginner’s Guide to Hunting in Mississippi

Mississippi has one of the best hunting grounds in the United States. Out of fifty-three wildlife management areas and nine national wildlife refuges, Mississippi provides over 1,000 square miles of public hunting lands. Add to that the 80% privately owned property, on which you can hunt with the right permit, and commercial outfitters who offer great guided hunting tours. You’ll get a good idea of what is possible, hunting wise in Mississippi. Compared to other States, the hunting seasons and bag limits are not as restrictive, and the game is plentiful. Ducks, eastern wild turkey, and White-tailed deer can be found in abundance, but you can also hunt doves, raccoons, rabbits, squirrels, and bobwhite quails.  Here is an excellent guide on what you need to know when hunting in Mississippi the first time.

First Things First

Like in any other state, you need the appropriate license. You can conveniently apply online for one, and there is a significant number of them to choose from. Depending on the following factors you can find the most fitting permit for your ideal hunting endeavour –

  • Which game animal/bird you want to hunt
  • Where you want to hunt
  • When and how long you are going to hunt
  • With which weapon you choose to hunt
  • Are you are a resident of Mississippi or not

And also like in any other state you need to adhere to hunting seasons. If it is your first hunt, it is recommended that you to take a guided hunting party with the experienced commercial outfitters Mississippi has to offer.

General Hunting Regulations & Requirements

The Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks only issues hunting licenses if you completed their Hunter Education Course. You are exempt from this rule if your birthdate is before January 1, 1972. Using bait is forbidden, but liquid scents can be applied. With the exemption of turkey, it is allowed to use hunting dogs. The only restriction being on deer while still hunting-, primitive weapons, and archery season. You can apply for a dog field trial at the MDWFP. The general shooting hours are half an hour before sunrise to half an hour after sunset.

If you want to hunt turkey, you will need with you at all times a harvest reporting record. The record keeping can be done either with an app of the MDWFP, a paper copy of the report or a report you made yourself. You are also obligated to report the harvest of your hunt the same day you hunted them, by submitting your report into the Game Check system of the MDWFP. This can you can do online or by calling the Game Check reporting phone.  For any other game, you don’t have to do the harvesting report. The bag limits for turkey are, 1 per day and 3 per season in the spring season and 2 in total for the autumn season.

With an estimated total deer population of 1.75 million, Mississippi has plenty of opportunities for you when hunting deer. Deer hunters in Mississippi harvest about 280.000 deer per year. The bag limits for Deer are one per day with a maximum of three games per season. But pay attention to the legal deer sizes you are allowed to hunt. The bag limits for ducks are six games daily. Mallards are restricted to four body bags, of which only two can be female.