Vermont Hunting Seasons, 2017-2018

Hunting in the Northeast may not have the exotic wildlife of other western states, but that doesn’t mean you should count Vermont out. The Green Mountain State blends a beautiful, rugged outdoors with ample hunting seasons sure to draw in any hunter. The state’s dedication to its hunting history lead Vermont to be the first state to develop constitutional rights to hunting.

Vermont’s hunting seasons include a variety of large, northern game, including deer, black bear and moose. The state also offers up turkey seasons and a handful of small game hunting opportunities.

Deer Seasons


Oct. 7-Nov. 3
Dec. 2-10

Youth Weekend

Nov. 4-5
Rifle  Nov. 11-26
 Muzzleloader Dec. 2-10

Vermont hunters are limited to three deer per year, and only two may be legal bucks. Antler restrictions do not apply to young hunters bagging game during Youth Deer Weekend.

Black Bear Seasons

Early Season

Sept. 1-Nov. 10

Late Season

Nov. 11-19

Vermont has ample black bear populations — approximately one bear for every three square miles of the state — allowing for an intriguing and likely successful hunt. Vermont requires a separate Early Bear Season tag to hunt during the early season. Hunters may take one bear per year and are prohibited from using bait. Hunting with dogs is legal so long as the hunter has a bear-dog permit and uses no more than six dogs.

Moose Seasons


Oct. 1-7

General Season

Oct. 21-26

Moose hunting is only possible through a permit lottery. Residents and nonresidents are able to apply, though fees vary by resident status. For nonresidents, permits are more difficult to obtain as the state only awards up to 10% of its moose hunting permits to out of state residents.

Turkey Seasons

Spring Season

May 1-31

Youth Hunt

Weekend prior to spring season opening day
Fall Archery Only Season Oct. 7-20
 Fall Firearms/Archery Season Oct. 21-Nov. 5*

Vermont boasts huge turkey populations, sometimes with flocks of more than 100 turkeys in one location. Dates may vary by region.

Small Game Seasons

Cottontail Rabbit

Last Saturday in September through the Second Sunday in March

Snowshoe Hare

Last Saturday in September through the Second Sunday in March

Gray Squirrel

Sept. 1-Dec. 31

Ruffed Grouse

Last Saturday in September through December 31

Vermont bagging totals and available licenses vary by region and lottery. For information on how to obtain season licenses for harvest, visit the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department website.