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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 that period.

Full and detailed information on hunting seasons is found in the Delaware Hunting and Trapping Guide. Deer hunting on Sunday is allowed through Jan. 31, 2021, using those weapons legal for the hunting seasons in effect on each Sunday.

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

Hunting and Trapping Seasons Opening in December 2020

Numerous Delaware hunting and trapping seasons open in December, including the third and final duck hunting season split that opens Friday, Dec. 11 and the special antlerless deer hunting season opening Saturday, Dec. 12.

Hunting Seasons

Beaver: Dec. 1 to March 20, 2021, private land only

Woodcock and common snipe: Dec. 5 to Jan. 19, 2021

Ducks, coots and mergansers: Dec. 11 to Jan. 30, 2021

Brant: Dec. 11 to Jan. 30, 2021

Antlerless deer: Dec. 12 to 20, including Sundays Dec. 13 and 20, 2020 (Notes)

Canada geese (migratory): Dec. 19 to Jan. 18, 2021

Trapping Seasons

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

  • New Castle County: Dec. 1 to March 10, 2021 (March 20 on embanked meadows)
  • Kent and Sussex counties: Dec. 15 to March 15, 2021

Red fox and coyote: Dec. 1 to March 10, 2021

Beaver: Dec. 1 to March 20, 2021, private land only

Continuing Seasons

Bobwhite quail: through Jan. 2, 2021

Mourning dove: through Jan. 30, 2021

Sea ducks in the Special Sea Duck Area: through Jan. 30, 2021

Tundra swan (by special permit ONLY): through Jan. 30, 2021

Snow goose: through Jan. 30, 2021, and Feb. 6, 2021

Archery and crossbow deer: through Jan. 31, 2021, including all Sundays

Gray squirrel: through Feb. 6, 2021

Ring-necked pheasant (male only): through Feb. 6, 2021

Coyote (hunt): through Feb. 27, 2021

Red fox (hunt): through Feb. 27, 2021

Raccoon and opossum (hunt): through Feb. 27, 2021 (Notes)

Cottontail rabbit: through Feb. 27, 2021

Crows: through March 27, 2021, and June 24-26, 2021 (Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays only)

Groundhog: through June 30, 2021

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.