General Hunting Laws

Hunting on a national wildlife refuge national wildlife refuge
A national wildlife refuge is typically a contiguous area of land and water managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service  for the conservation and, where appropriate, restoration of fish, wildlife and plant resources and their habitats for the benefit of present and future generations of Americans.

Learn more about national wildlife refuge
is subject to current federal and state regulations. Consult those regulations before hunting. All hunters must possess a valid state hunting license. All hunters 16 years or older must possess a Migratory Bird Hunting Stamp while hunting migratory waterfowl. All hunters must comply with current Federal Migratory Bird Regulations. All hunters must comply with the terms and conditions authorizing access or use of refuges, including the terms and conditions under which hunting permits are issued. All hunters must comply with refuge-specific regulations governing hunting. Regulations, special conditions and maps of hunting areas are available at the refuge's headquarters. In addition, refuge-specific hunting regulations for migratory game bird, upland game and big game hunting appear in CFR 50 32.20 through 32.72. Use of any drug on any arrow for bow hunting is prohibited. Archers may not have arrows with such drugs in their possession. Unauthorized distribution of bait and hunting over bait is prohibited. (Baiting is authorized in Alaska, in accordance with state regulations on refuges.) Use of nails, wire, screws or bolts to attach a stand to a tree, or hunting from a tree into which a metal object has been driven to support a hunter, is prohibited. Use or possession of alcoholic beverages while hunting is prohibited. Hunters may possess only approved nontoxic shot — as identified in 50 CFR 20.21(j) — while in the field. The field is defined as Waterfowl Production Areas or certain other areas of the National Wildlife Refuge System as delineated on maps, leaflets and/or signs available at each refuge headquarters or posted at each refuge, or as stated in refuge-specific regulations. Where turkey and deer hunting are permitted, use of slugs and shot containing lead to hunt these species is permitted, unless prohibited by refuge-specific regulations and/or state law.

50 CFR 32.2(a-l)
Related Programs
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The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service manages an unparalleled network of public lands and waters called the National Wildlife Refuge System. With more than 570 refuges spanning the country, this system protects iconic species and provides some of the best wildlife viewing opportunities on Earth.
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