Delaware Hunting Seasons

Delaware hunting seasons generally begin in September and run through early February of the following year. Specific seasons, based on species and method of take, begin and end on different dates throughout the year.

Full and detailed information on hunting seasons is found in the Delaware Hunting and Trapping Guide.

Wildlife area maps and rules are available online and for download.

Hunting Opportunities Opening in February 2021

Additional waterfowl hunting opportunities are available in February with the opening of the Snow Goose Conservation Order Monday, Feb. 1 and a second special youth waterfowl hunting day Saturday, Feb. 6.

Snow Goose Conservation Order

The Snow Goose Conservation Order is open Monday, Feb. 1 through Friday, Feb. 5, closing for the youth waterfowl hunting day on Saturday, Feb. 6, and reopening on Monday, Feb. 8 through Friday, April 9, excluding Sundays.

Note: the printed 2020/2021 Delaware Hunting & Trapping Guide incorrectly indicates the Snow Goose Conservation Order is open Saturday, Feb 6. The Conservation Order is closed Saturday, Feb. 6, with the regular snow goose hunting season reopening for one day when regular snow goose season bag limits and hunting regulations apply.

A Hunter and His Dog

Continuing Hunting Seasons

Gray squirrel: through Feb. 6

Ring-necked pheasant (male only): through Feb. 6

Coyote (hunt): through Feb. 27

Red fox (hunt): through Feb. 27

Raccoon and opossum (hunt): through Feb. 27

Cottontail rabbit: through Feb. 27

Beaver: through March 20, private land only

Crows: through March 27, and June 24 to 26 (Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays only)

Groundhog: through June 30

Continuing Trapping Seasons

Muskrat, mink, otter, raccoon, opossum and nutria:

  • New Castle County: through March 10 (March 20 on embanked meadows)
  • Kent and Sussex counties: through March 15

Red fox and coyote: through March 10

Beaver: through March 20, private land only

Licensing and Other Requirements

A Delaware hunting license or License Exempt Number (LEN) is required to hunt. Most waterfowl hunters require a Delaware waterfowl (duck) stamp and a federal migratory bird (duck) stamp.

All migratory game bird hunters except crow hunters, including duck and goose hunters, also need a Federal Harvest Information Program (HIP) number, which can be obtained through the DNREC ePermitting system or by calling toll free 1-855-335-4868.

Hunters using the ePermitting system should either create a profile or use the “Quick Hunting Registration” option.

Anyone born after January 1, 1967, must satisfactorily complete a basic hunter education course before obtaining a Delaware Hunting license.

Registered motor vehicles used to access designated wildlife areas owned or managed by the Division of Fish and Wildlife are required to display a Conservation Access Pass.