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Hunting Seasons and Application Dates

With a broad diversity of species and seasons, all hunters in Nebraska can have a busy year. Following is a comprehensive list of season dates and applications periods by species. Season dates are tentative, pending Commission approval. For detailed information about each season check out the annual hunting guides. Complete regulations and Commission orders can be found on the regulations page.

Big game seasons

Deer

Season dates

Archery: Sept. 1, 2019 – Dec. 31, 2019
November firearm: Nov. 16, 2019 – Nov. 24, 2019
Muzzleloader: Dec. 1, 2019 – Dec. 31, 2019
Antlerless Only Season Choice: Sept. 1, 2019 – Jan. 15, 2020

Permit requirements

Deer hunters in Nebraska are required to have a Statewide or Unit Deer Permit and a Habitat stamp. (view big game guide for exceptions)

Deer permits are issued as Draw units or Buy units. Draw units are determined by overall demand and may be applied for during the draw unit application period. The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission provides information on the previous year’s draw results. Buy units (over-the-counter permits) are issued on a first-come, first served basis. Additionally, youth permits are available to youth under the age of 16.  (See the Big Game Guide for more on permits, unit names, species of deer and bag limits.)

Permit application dates

June 10, 2019  after 1:00 pm CST – June 28, 2019

Resident and nonresident application period for draw units. Submit applications online or via mail.

Download 2019 big game application
Download 2019 big game landowner application
Landowner additional land form

Gifford Point WMA access permit application period July 1-31
Download Gifford WMA application form

Permit sale dates

Aug. 5, 2019 after 1:00 pm CST – close of season

Residents and nonresidents can purchase remaining permits on sale. (all units)

Buy/apply online

Download step-by-step instructions on the big game draw application and payment process:
How to apply for a big game draw permit PDF
How to pay for an awarded big game draw permit PDF

Deer regulations and restrictions:

Download 2019 summary deer regulations and check stations
Download 2019 mule deer conservation area restrictions
Download 2019 refuge and public land restrictions for statewide deer permits
2019 DeSoto Bend NWR Deer Hunting Information
2019 Boyer Chute NWR Deer Hunting Information

Firearm unit maps

 

Big Game Check-In (Telecheck)

The Nebraska Telecheck Program allows hunters to check deer or antelope by telephone or online, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Learn more and access Telecheck

Antelope

Season dates
Archery: Aug. 20, 2019 – Dec. 31, 2019
Muzzleloader: Sept. 21, 2019 – Oct. 6, 2019
Firearm: Oct. 12, 2019 – Oct. 27, 2019
November late doe/fawn: Nov. 1, 2019 – Jan. 31, 2020
Download 2019 summary antelope regulations

Permit application dates

June 10, 2019  after 1:00 pm CST – June 28, 2019

Resident and nonresident application period for draw units. Submit applications online or via mail. The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission provides information on the previous year’s draw results.

Download 2019 big game application
Download 2019 big game landowner application

Permit sale dates

Aug. 5, 2019 after 1:00 pm CST – close of season

Residents and nonresidents can purchase remaining permits on sale. (all units)

Buy/apply online

Download step-by-step instructions on the big game draw application and payment process:
How-to apply for a big game draw permit PDF
How-to pay for an awarded big game draw permit PDF

Unit maps


Big Game Check-In (Telecheck)
The Nebraska Telecheck Program allows hunters to check deer or antelope by telephone or online, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Learn more and access Telecheck

Elk

Season dates

Archery bull: Sept. 1, 2019 – Oct. 31, 2019
Firearm bull: Sept. 21, 2019 – Oct. 31, 2019
Antlerless Sept. 21, 2019 – Oct. 31, 2019; Dec. 1, 2019 – Jan. 15, 2020
Antlerless – Private Land Only Aug. 15, 2019 – Sept. 20, 2019
Download 2019 summary elk regulations

Permit application dates

May 20, 2019  after 1:00 pm CST – June 7, 2019

Landowners application period for draw units. Submit Application
Download 2019 elk landowner application zones

June 10, 2019  after 1:00 pm CST – June 28, 2019

Residents application period for draw units. Application and application fee to be delivered to specific Commission district offices depending on unit. See Big Game Guide for additional information.

The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission provides information on the previous year’s draw results.

Download 2019 big game application

Permit sale dates

Aug. 5, 2019 after 1:00 pm CST – close of season

Residents and nonresidents can purchase remaining permits on sale. (all units)

Buy/apply online

Unit maps


.

Bighorn sheep

Bighorn sheep lottery
This once-in-a-lifetime hunt includes up to four days of guide service from Nebraska Game and Parks staff and up to four nights of meal and lodging at Fort Robinson State Park. Proceeds from the lottery provide support for the management of this historic species in five areas of Nebraska’s panhandle region.
View 2019 bighorn sheep brochure

Season dates

Bighorn sheep: Dec. 3-22, 2019

Permit application dates (after 1:00pm CST)

April 15, 2019 after 1:00 pm CST – Aug. 2, 2019

Residents can apply for the bighorn sheep lottery during this period.

Buy/apply online

Turkey

Season dates

  Spring youth archery: March 25, 2019 – May 31, 2019
  Spring archery: March 25, 2019 – May 31, 2019
  Spring youth shotgun: April 6, 2019 – May 31, 2019
  Spring shotgun: April 13, 2019 – May 31, 2019
  Fall youth archery and shotgun: Sept. 15, 2019 – Jan. 31, 2020
  Fall archery and shotgun: Sept. 15, 2019 – Jan. 31, 2020

Download fall 2019 turkey regulations

Permit application & sale dates

SPRING: Jan. 14, 2019 – May 31, 2019

Hunters may purchase as many as three spring permits.

FALL: Aug. 12, 2019 after 1:00 pm CST – Jan. 31, 2020

Hunters may purchase as many as two fall permits.

Download turkey application
Download turkey landowner application

Buy/apply online

Mountain lion

Season dates

The 2020 mountain lion season in the Pine Ridge will take place Jan. 2-Feb. 29, 2020, with an application period from Sept. 4-Sept. 27, 2019.

Mountain lions have recently recolonized three areas in Nebraska: the Pine Ridge, Niobrara River Valley and Wildcat Hills. Dispersing mountain lions have been documented throughout the state including agricultural areas where suitable habitat may be limited. In order to provide hunting opportunities for this species the Commission approved Nebraska’s inaugural mountain lion harvest season during 2014. A third season will be held in 2020.  Click here to learn more about mountain lion hunting.
View mountain lion regulations
View Pine Ridge North Sub-unit map
View Pine Ridge South Sub-unit map

The application period for the 2020 season will take place from Sept. 4-Sept. 27, 2019.

Only Nebraska residents are eligible to apply. The $15.00 nonrefundable application fee will not be applied to other units for unsuccessful applicants.
Download application

Buy a permit

Multispecies lottery permits

Nebraska offers two big game multi species lotteries for resident and nonresident hunters. One permit in each lottery is awarded annually. The application period for the lotteries generally starts in January and ends in early July.
Learn more

Permit sale dates (after 1:00pm CST)
Super tag and combo applications: Jan. 2, 2019 – July 5, 2019

Buy/apply online


Upland game seasons

Small game seasons

Squirrel
Aug. 1, 2019 – Jan. 31, 2020

Cottontail and jackrabbit
Sept. 1, 2019 – Feb. 29, 2020

Webless migratory bird seasons

Snipe
Sept. 1, 2019 – Dec. 15, 2019

Virginia and sora rail
Sept. 1, 2019 – Nov. 9, 2019

Woodcock
Oct. 5, 2019 – Nov. 18, 2019

Crow
Oct. 15, 2019 – Dec. 15, 2019; Jan. 13, 2019 – March 14, 2020

Mourning, white-winged, and Eurasian Collared doves (in aggregate)
Sept. 1, 2019 – Oct. 30, 2019

Eurasian collared-dove (only)
Year-Round

Upland bird seasons

Grouse
Sept. 1, 2019 – Jan. 31, 2020

Pheasant, quail, and partridge
Oct. 26, 2019 – Jan. 31, 2020

Youth pheasant, quail and partridge
Oct. 19 – 20, 2019


Waterfowl seasons

Waterfowl seasons

Nebraska Waterfowl Zones

Dark goose
East unit: Oct. 28, 2019 – Feb. 9, 2020
North central unit: Oct. 5, 2019 – Jan. 18, 2020
Platte River unit: Oct. 28, 2019 – Feb. 9, 2020
Panhandle unit: Oct. 28, 2019 – Feb. 9, 2020
Niobrara unit: Oct. 28, 2019 – Feb. 9, 2020
Download dark goose units map

Light goose
Statewide: Oct. 5, 2019 – Dec. 25, 2019; Jan. 18, 2020 – Feb. 9, 2020
Download light goose conservation order zones map

Light goose conservation order*
East zone: Feb. 10, 2020 – April 15, 2020
Rainwater basin zone: Feb. 10, 2020 – April 5, 2020
West zone: Feb. 10, 2020 – April 5, 2020
Download light goose conservation order rainwater basin zone map

*For special regulations see the Waterfowl Guide on our guides page.

White-fronted goose
Statewide: Oct. 5, 2019 – Dec. 8, 2019; Jan. 18, 2020 – Feb. 9, 2020

Early teal
Low plains: Sept. 7, 2019 – Sept. 22, 2019
High plains: Sept. 7, 2019 – Sept. 15, 2019
Download teal zones map

Duck and coot
Zone 1: Oct. 12, 2019 – Dec. 24, 2019
Zone 2:
____Low plains: Oct. 5, 2019 – Dec. 17, 2019
____High plains: Oct. 5, 2019 – Dec. 17, 2019, Jan. 6 – Jan. 27, 2020
Zone 3:
____Low plains: Oct. 24, 2019 – Jan. 5, 2020
____High plains: Oct. 24, 2019 – Jan. 5, 2020; Jan. 6 – Jan. 27, 2020
Zone 4: Oct. 5, 2019 – Dec. 17, 2019
Download duck zones – low plains detailed map
Download duck zones – high plains detailed map
Download duck – statewide zones map

Youth
Zone 1: Oct. 5, 2019 – Oct 6, 2019
Zone 2: Sept. 28, 2019 – Sept. 29, 2019
Zone 3: Oct. 19, 2019 – Oct. 20, 2019
Zone 4: Sept. 28, 2019 – Sept. 29, 2019


Furbearer seasons

Furbearer seasons

Muskrat, beaver
Trap only: Nov. 1– March 31

Badger
Hunt and trap: Nov. 1 – end of Feb.

Mink
Hunt and trap: Nov. 1 – end of Feb.

Bobcat
Hunt and trap: Dec. 1 – end of Feb.
Running, no harvest: March 1 – Nov. 30

Raccoon
Hunt only: Sept. 1, 2019 – Oct. 31, 2019
Hunt and trap: Nov. 1, 2019 – end of Feb., 2020
Running, no harvest: March 1, 2019 – Aug. 17, 2019

Virginia opossum
Hunt only: Sept. 1, 2019 – Oct. 31, 2019
Hunt and trap: Nov. 1, 2019 – end of Feb., 2020
Running, no harvest: March 1, 2019 – Aug. 17, 2019

Striped skunk
Hunt and trap: year-round

Long-tailed weasel
Hunt and trap: Nov. 1, 2019– end of Feb., 2020

Red fox
Hunt and trap: Nov. 1, 2019 – end of Feb., 2020
Running, no harvest: March 1, 2019 – Oct. 31, 2019

Gray fox
Hunt and trap: Nov. 1, 2019 – end of Feb., 2020

Permits are valid only for species-specific season, weapon and unit/area for which was issued.
Permits are not transferable, refundable and cannot be exchanged for another.