Father and young daughter on the family, friends and kids hunt at Santee NWR

2023-2024 Deer Hunt Season

  • Cuddo and Pine Island Units, Archery Only: September 22 - October 7, 2023
  • Cuddo and Pine Island Units, Primitive Weapons Only: October 13 - 15 and November 3 - 5, 2023
  • Bluff Unit, Family, Friends and Kids Hunt: October 7 - 8 (mornings) and October 20 - 21, 2023 (evenings). All interested hunters must complete a Quota Deer Hunt Application to participate. You may call (803) 478-2217 or email Refuge Manager at monica_williams@fws.gov to receive an application. Applications must be completed and returned to the Refuge by September 2, 2023. 
  • A Hunter Education Class will be held at the Refuge on September 23, 2023, 9:00 am - 5:00 pm. See SCDNR website to register: http://www.register-ed.com/programs/42? Registration Link
  • The hunt brochure will be available in Refuge kiosks in September; it will also be posted on the Refuge website.
  • Persons needing reasonable accommodations should contact the Refuge Manager at least two (2) weeks prior to hunting.

Hunting is one of the priority recreational uses on National Wildlife Refuges and compatible with the mission of Santee NWR. Hunting of surplus wildlife species is a means to maintain populations at a level compatible with available habitat. Hunting on the refuge is in accordance with federal and special Refuge regulations and applicable State regulations. 

At Santee NWR, scheduled hunts for deer and feral hogs are allowed on the Pine Island Unit and the Cuddo Unit, including Plantation Islands. During archery hunts, only bows and crossbows are allowed. During the primitive weapons hunts, hunters can only use only bows, crossbows, or black powder muzzleloaders.  Scheduled hunts for raccoon and opossum, occur at the Cuddo Unit. The shotgun, with non-toxic shot, is the only weapon allowed. Dogs may be used during raccoon hunting. 

Family-friendly hunts for adults and children are by lottery and held on the Bluff Unit. Each hunting party must include a youth (17 years of age or younger) and an adult at least 21 years old with a valid hunting license. Hunters may use muzzleloaders (black powder) or shotguns with slugs. Fixed, two-person ladder stands are provided for this hunt. The bag limit is one antlered and one antlerless deer per day. Feral hogs may be harvested as incidental take while hunting for deer. There is no bag limit for hogs.

Please check the annual hunt regulations brochure for specific details on all hunting opportunities.