Georgia hunting rules: does off-limits to firearms hunters through Christmas

Whitetail doe
Whitetail doe
Whitetail doe

Hunting does with firearms is currently off-limits in Georgia, according to recently adopted hunting regulations.

Beginning in 2013, the number of firearms either-sex days was reduced in most Georgia counties. For those counties, Dec. 1-25 will be buck-only. (Archery hunters can still bag either bucks or does.)

Why are there fewer days in the hunting season for firearms hunters to bag does? The Georgia Wildlife Resources Division explains:


Why Reduce Either-Sex Days? Fawn recruitment rates — the number of fawns that survive into fall — have declined in all five of Georgia’s physiographic regions and about 26 percent statewide. Also, doe harvest rates have increased 13 percent over several years, while the percentage of does in the harvest has remained near 65 percent. Echoing these trends, comments during recent public meetings indicated strong support for reducing the doe harvest.

Why Not Reduce the Bag Limit? Harvest data indicate that most deer hunters (93 percent) kill two or fewer does. Thus, any change in bag limit would have to be drastic (e.g., from 10 to two) to affect a population-level change in the deer herd. This would reduce the doe harvest far beyond what is needed to stabilize the population. This would also unduly restrict management flexibility on some properties and areas where a higher doe harvest may be needed to meet desired management objectives.

The Wildlife Resources Division says the limitations on doe hunting will be revisited again for the 2015-2017 regulations, which are currently being drafted.

Read more about the Wildlife Resources Division’s explanations for the fewer either-sex days, as well as answers related to how coyotes affect deer populations

Georgia Deer Hunting Fast Facts

  • Archery, either sex  – Sept. 13-Oct. 10, Statewide
  • Primitive weapons, either sex – Oct. 11-17, Statewide
  • Firearms, northern zone: Oct. 18–Jan. 1
  • Firearms, southern zone: Oct. 18–Jan. 15
  • Harvest limit of 12 deer per season, statewide.
  • No more than 10 may be antlerless and no more than 2 may be antlered. One of the 2 antlered deer must have at least 4 points, one inch or longer, on one side of the antlers.


Southern Georgia Hunting Season Map
Southern Georgia Hunting Season Map
Georgia Dog Hunting Seasons


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