Pennsylvania Coyote Hunting FAQ

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When can I hunt coyotes?

During most of the year coyotes may be hunted with only a general license, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. However, during any open big game season, you will need to be lawful to hunt the appropriate big game or have a furtaker’s license.

How can I hunt coyotes during big game seasons with my general license?

If you do not have a furtakers license, during big game seasons you may only hunt coyotes if you are lawful to hunt the big game that is season. That includes but is not limited to:

-wearing the appropriate fluorescent orange for the big game season

-using the appropriate arms for the big game season

-having appropriate licenses and unused tags for the big game season

-abiding by the hunting hours listed in the digest for the big game season

May I hunt coyotes on Sundays with my general hunting license during the big game season?

Yes. You do NOT need a furtaker license to hunt coyotes on Sundays because Sundays are not considered open season for big game.

May I hunt coyotes at night during a big game season with my furtaker license?

Yes. Only those with furtaker licenses may hunt coyotes at night during the big game season. However, you should expect to undergo quite a bit of scrutiny from an officer if you are approached while hunting coyotes at night during a big game season. The officers will just be doing their job under the circumstances.

May I use electronic predator calls and decoys while hunting coyotes?

Yes. Electronic calls and decoys are permitted for coyote hunting.

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May I use a dog to hunt furbearers?

Dogs are permitted to hunt furbearers. Electronic devices used for locating dogs while training or hunting, including such devices as e-collars, radio-telemetry dog tracking systems and beeper collars are permitted.

What arms may I use to hunt coyotes?

Firearms legal for hunting furbearers include manually operated rifles or handguns of any caliber, manual or semi-automatic shotguns and, bows and crossbows.

It is UNLAWFUL to take furbearers, including bobcats, with shotguns using shot larger than size number 4 buckshot, or implements that are not lawful firearms, bows or crossbows.

*Big game season coyote hunting firearm regulations apply. Please see second bolded subheader above.

May I use a gun-mounted light while coyote hunting?

Persons hunting for furbearers, including coyotes, foxes, bobcats, raccoons, skunks, opossums and weasels, may use gun-mounted lights that DO NOT project a laser-light beam.

Can I use a semi-automatic rifle to hunt coyotes?

No. Semi-automatic rifles are not lawful hunting devices in Pennsylvania. The prohibition on semi-automatic rifles is in the statue and not the regulations. The Board of Commissioners has no authority to change it. It would require a change from the legislature.

Where can I read more about coyote hunting?

Details about furtaking seasons and bag limits can be found on page 57 of the Hunting & Trapping Digest: http://read.nxtbook.com/pgc/huntingtrapping/20162017/index.html#furtaking

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Ethan Smith is a seasoned marine veteran, professional blogger, witty and edgy writer, and an avid hunter. He spent a great deal of his childhood years around the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest in Arizona. Watching active hunters practise their craft initiated him into the world of hunting and rubrics of outdoor life. He also honed his writing skills by sharing his outdoor experiences with fellow schoolmates through their high school’s magazine. Further along the way, the US Marine Corps got wind of his excellent combination of skills and sought to put them into good use by employing him as a combat correspondent. He now shares his income from this prestigious job with his wife and one kid. Read more >>