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Commission approves 2024 big game hunting recommendations

Updated 4/30/24 to correct the date of the muzzleloader antelope season.

The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission approved recommendations for 2024 deer, antelope and elk hunting seasons at its meeting April 25 at Ponca State Park.

Commissioners approved staff recommendations that will help the agency meet management goals for big game populations. Management goals take into consideration population and harvest data, as well as input from hunters, landowners, and the public, with the goal of maintaining long-term opportunities and access for hunters.

Adopted changes to Commission orders pertaining to big game hunting include:

  • removing 219 either-sex and 184 doe/fawn antelope permits,
  • removing 11 bull and 38 antlerless elk permits,
  • reducing available November Firearm permits by 13% and Antlerless Only Season Choice permits by 37%,
  • creating new Private Land Only Pine Ridge and Private Land Only Sandhills deer permits,
  • converting the Statewide Buck and Restricted Statewide Buck deer permits to the Season Choice format, which makes the permit valid for all deer seasons with the legal method of take during each open season,
  • Calamus West, Loup West, Plains, Sandhills and Upper Platte join the units where an individual may have only one unit permit that allows the harvest of a mule deer. Hunters can hold a second mule deer unit permit in a different unit.

The approved 2024 big game season dates are:


Archery – Sept. 1-Dec. 31; November Firearm – Nov. 16-24 (nine consecutive days starting on the Saturday closest to Nov. 13); Muzzleloader – Dec. 1-31; Late Antlerless Only Firearm – Jan. 1-15, 2025; October River Antlerless Firearm – Oct. 1-15


Archery – Aug. 20-Dec. 31; Muzzleloader – Sept. 21-Oct. 6; Firearm – Oct. 12-27; Late doe/fawn – Nov. 1-Jan. 31, 2025


Archery bull – Sept. 1-Oct. 31; Firearm bull – Sept. 21-Oct. 31; Antlerless – Aug. 1-Jan. 31, 2025; Antlerless, Private Land Only – Aug. 1-Sept. 20; Early General Antlerless – Aug. 1-Oct. 31; Late General Antlerless – Nov. 1-Jan. 31, 2025

In other business, commissioners approved the rental fees for the new horse pens at Fort Robinson State Park’s Mare Barn Campground. The fee will be $25 per horse per night for each of the 30 pens, which are 20 by 24 feet and can accommodate up to four horses.

The commissioners heard a report about the Missouri River Outdoor Expo’s 20th anniversary in 2025.

They also heard a summary of spring and summer education and outreach events to be held at state parks and partner locations. Those events, which will introduce people of all ages to outdoor recreation and conservation and grow outdoor skills, include turkey hunting workshops, the Cornhusker Trap Shoot, the Fort Kearny Expo and Outdoor Discovery School Programs, Community Fishing Nights and Bird Month activities in May.

Jeff Schuckman, Game and Parks’ northeast fisheries supervisor, received a 40-year service award.

About Jerry Kane

Jerry Kane is the news manager with the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission. He can be contacted at or 402-471-5008.

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