South Carolina Hunting Seasons, 2016-2017


Explore the vast hunting opportunities that the South Carolina hunting season offers. From a fantastic Deer season to some of the most fun small game hunts in the US, South Carolina offers some memorable hunting.

Hunting licenses and permits are required for particular game. Legal hunting time for deer is between 1 hour before sunrise and 1 hour after sunset. Also, it’s unlawful to hunt or shoot at deer from any water conveyance or shoot at deer while any part of the deer is in water.

South Carolina hunting licences can be purchased over the phone by calling the South Carolina DNR, online at their website, or at any of the 500 licensing agents in the state. For Nonresidents, licenses can be purchased through the same methods, but expect to pay nonresident fees.

South Carolina is divided up into four distinct hunting zones (in the past, the state was divided into six areas). The hunting seasons for each zone are detailed out to the right. Seasons in each zone may overlap and details for each can be found below.

South Carolina is a hidden gem of hunting ground. The southern hospitality, scenery around the foothills of the mountains, and fantastic views of the Atlantic ocean make this state a great destination for any hunter.

Deer Seasons

Zone 1

Primitive Weapons Oct. 1-10
Archery Oct. 17-29
Gun Hunts Oct. 11-15
Oct. 31-Dec. 31

Zone 2

Primitive Weapons Oct. 1-10
Archery Sept. 15-30
Gun Hunts Oct. 11-Dec. 31

Zone 3

Archery Sept. 15-30
Gun Hunts Oct. 1-Dec. 31

Zone 4

Archery Sept. 15-Oct. 10
Gun Hunts Oct. 11-Dec. 31

Statewide Youth Deer Hunt Day is held Jan. 7 in every WMA. Hunting dates may further differ in specific wildlife management areas (WMAs) within a zone. Visit the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources website for more information.


Bear Season

Still Hunt (Zone 1) Oct. 17-22
Party Dog Hunt (Zone 1) Oct. 24-29
Permit Drawing Only (Zone 4) Oct. 24-Nov. 5

Turkey Seasons

Spring Turkey, Private Lands Mar. 20-May 5
Spring Turkey, Public Lands Apr. 1-May 5
Youth Turkey Hunt (Private Land) March 18-19
(Public Land) March 25

Small Game Seasons – Private Land Seasons

Crow Nov. 1-Mar. 1
Quail (Dogs Only) Mar. 2-Nov. 20
(Guns & Dogs) Nov. 21-Mar. 1
Rabbit (Dogs Only) Mar. 2-Nov. 23
(Guns & Dogs) Nov. 23-Mar. 1
Squirrel (Dogs Only) Mar. 2-Sept. 20
(Guns & Dogs) Oct. 1-Mar. 1
Fox (Dogs Only) Mar. 2-Nov. 23
(Guns & Dogs) Nov. 24-Mar. 1
Beaver Year-round
Grouse Nov. 24-Mar. 1
Raccoon & Opossum (Dogs Only) Mar. 16-Sept. 14
(Guns & Dogs) Sept. 15-Mar. 15

Small Game Seasons – Public (WMA) Land Seasons

Crow Nov. 1-Mar. 1
Quail (Dogs Only) Sept. 1-14
(Guns & Dogs) Nov. 21-Mar. 1
Rabbit (Dogs Only)Sept. 1-14
(Guns & Dogs) Nov. 24-Mar. 1
Squirrel No Fox Squirrels
(Dogs Only) Sept. 1-14
(Guns & Dogs) Oct. 1-Mar. 1
Fox (Dogs Only, Night Hunts Only )
Sept. 1-Nov. 23
(Guns & Dogs, Night Hunts Only)
Nov. 24-Mar. 1
Beaver Sept. 1-Mar. 1
Grouse Nov. 24-Mar. 1
Raccoon & Opossum (Dogs Only, Night Hunts Only)
Sept. 1-14
(Guns & Dogs,Night Hunts Only)
Sept. 15-Mar. 1

Bag limits, special seasons and hunting regulations for South Carolina hunting seasons vary based on animal and seasons. For more information on obtaining licenses, permits and regulations, visit the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources website.