Deer Hunting in New York

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  • B
  • 1,000,000

    Est. Whitetail Population

  • 750,000

    No. Licenses Sold Annually

  • $47

    $22 license; $10 deer permit; $15 bowhunting permit; $15 muzzleloading permit

    Resident hunting license and deer permit

  • $140 and up

    $100 license, $10 deer permit, $30 bowhunting permit, $30 muzzleloading permit

    Non-resident hunting license and deer permit

  • 198 3/8"

    Taken by Roosevelt Luckey in Allegany County in 1939, ranked No. 30 of all time.

    Record B&C Typical Stat

  • 90

    Total B&C Typical Entries

  • 244 2/8"

    Taken by Homer Boylan in Allegany County in 1939, ranked No. 164 of all time.

    Record B&C Non-Typical Stat

  • 31

    Record B&C Non-Typical Entries

New York has a strong deer hunting tradition. (Ray Hennessy photo)

Season Dates (2019):

New York's season dates are broken up by zone. These are the dates for 2019:

Northern Zone

  • Archery season runs September 27 to October 25 and December 9 to 15 (certain areas only)
  • Muzzleloader is October 19 to 25 and December 9 to 15 (additional dates and regulations apply to certain areas)
  • Firearm season runs October 26 to December 8

Southern Zone

  • Archery spans October 1 to November 15 and December 9 to 17
  • Muzzleloader is December 9 to 17 (additional dates and regulations apply to certain areas)
  • Firearm is November 16 to December 8

Additional season dates apply to certain WMUs, as well as Westchester and Suffolk Counties. These are the dates set when published, please check the state DNR's website to confirm.

The Grade: B

With an estimated 1 million whitetail deer, it is hard not to include New York as a top deer destination. Add in the varied habitats, from urban sprawl, to rolling farmland, to true wilderness timber up north, and there is an area for just about any preferred hunting method. If you are looking strictly for numbers, look to the east central part of the state where areas hold as many as 100 deer per square mile, nearly 10 times what biologists would like to see.

Tags are easy to come by and relatively inexpensive, and public land is plentiful, particularly in the northern timber. Hunters across the state reported healthy deer populations after the mild winter of 2015. It's been decent since then, too, so the numbers should be particularly good this fall. 

Antler Nation Knowledge:

The past few years have seen a major push among New York hunters for antler restrictions to protect younger bucks. While the DEC has yet to implement antler restrictions on a statewide level (they have them in place for 11 wildlife management units in the southeastern portion of the state), they have actively encouraged New York hunters to pass up young bucks for a few years now. It seems to be working. Over 30 percent of both typical and non-typical entries into the B&C record book for the state have been entered in the past 10 years. And they haven’t all been from one area of the state. These latest entries have been submitted from just about every area of New York. If you are looking for public hunting around the really high deer density areas around Ithica, look at Buttermilk Falls State Park and Robert H. Treman State Park for archery hunting opportunities. 

New York Harvests

  • Mike Nordberg

    Chenango County, New York

  • Mike Nordberg

    Chenango County, New York

From the Realtree Trophy Den