Massachusetts Deer Season 2023-2024:Latest Dates & Laws!


In Massachusetts, white-tailed deer are a common large game species that hunters seek. Here is an overview of the 2023-2024 deer hunting seasons, regulations, and information on how to legally hunt deer in Massachusetts.

Massachusetts Deer Hunting Season Dates

Massachusetts Deer Season 2023-2024

SeasonMethodHunting Start DateHunting End Date ArcheryZones 10-14Oct. 2, 2023Nov. 25, 2023 ArcheryZones 1-9Oct. 16, 2023Nov. 25, 2023 ParaplegicShotgunNov. 2, 2023Nov. 4, 2023 ShotgunPrimitive FirearmsNov. 27, 2023Dec. 9, 2023 Primitive FirearmsDec. 11, 2023Dec. 30, 2023

Youth Deer Hunt Day

SeasonMethodHunting Start Date Youth Deer Hunt DayArcherySept. 30, 2023

MA Deer Bag Limits

The yearly deer bag limitations in Massachusetts are as follows:

  • 2 deer with antlers that are at least 3 inches long;
  • Unlimited antlerless deer with valid permits
  • On Youth Deer Hunt Day, 1 buck

Two deer may be taken per day in Zones 1 through 12, and four deer may be taken per day in Zones 13 through 14. A hunter may continue hunting the same day after checking in a deer.

Massachusetts Deer Hunting Regulations

Key Massachusetts deer hunting rules and restrictions are explained in detail below:

License and Permits Required

A valid Massachusetts hunting license or non-resident large game permit is required for all hunters. Additionally, specific seasons call for stamps and permits for antlerless deer:

  • During the archery deer season, a stamp for archery is necessary.
  • During the primitive guns season, a primitive firearms stamp is necessary.
  • Permits are needed to hunt deer without or with antlers under 3 inches.

If a legally licensed adult is present, youth hunters aged 12 to 14 are permitted to shoot deer on the Youth Deer shoot Day without a license, but they must first get a free Youth Deer Hunt Day permit.

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License costs

  • Sporting or hunting license (between $27.50 and $41.50) – Comes with two antlered deer tags.
  • Archery Stamp ($5.10) for archery season
  • Primitive Firearms Stamp ($5.10) for primitive firearms season
  • Antlerless Deer Permit ($5.10) – Necessary to hunt deer without antlers

For non-residents:

  • Big Game License for Non-Residents ($90.50) includes two antlerless deer tags;
  • $5.10 Archery Stamp
  • Stamp for Primitive Firearms ($5.10)
  • Permit for Antlerless Deer ($5.10)

Youth ages 12-17 need:

Free Youth Deer Hunt Day Permit, Resident Minor Hunting License, Non-Resident Big Game License, Season Stamps, Antlerless Deer Permit

  • Antlerless Deer Permit
  • Season stamps required
  • Free Youth Deer Hunt Day Permit

Legal Hunting Gear

  • Archery: 40+ lb draw weight crossbows, longbows, recurve bows, compound bows, and authorized recurve bows are allowed.
  • Shotguns with rifled barrels that are 10 gauge or less and loaded with slugs are allowed.
  • Primitive Firearms: Single-projectile muzzleloaders in the.44 to.775 caliber range.

Tagging, Transporting, and Reporting

Hunting license or permit tags must be promptly attached to deer that have been harvested. Within 48 hours, deer must be reported online or at a check point. During shipping and processing, the confirmation number or check seal must be kept in place.

Hunting Hours

Deer hunting is permitted from half an hour before dawn to half an hour after sunset every day. For precise legal timings, hunters should reference sunrise/sunset tables.

Blaze Orange Requirements

When shooting deer during certain seasons, hunters are required to wear 500 inches of blaze orange on their head, chest, and back:

  • Youth Deer Hunt Day
  • Shotgun Season
  • Primitive Firearms Season
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When hunting WMAs that have been stocked with pheasants or quail, archers must use a blazing orange cap.

Other MA Deer Hunting Guidelines

  • Certain deer components cannot be imported from other states with Chronic Wasting Disease.
  • Driving deer is authorized but the use of rifles, pistols, dogs, baiting, and electronic calls is forbidden.
  • Dogs, baiting deer, rifles, pistols, and electronic calls are banned.
  • Antler rattling and odors are permissible.
  • It’s permitted to drive deer.
  • Wanton waste of game animals is prohibited.
  • Deer must be tagged immediately after harvest and reported within 48 hours.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are a few distinct, thorough FAQs about the 2023-2024 deer hunting season in Massachusetts: