Hunting

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Hunting and Fishing Permits:
A printable version of the Waccamaw National Wildlife Refuge Hunting Permit and Hunting and Fishing Regulations is available and can be used as a valid hunting permit. You can also pick one up from our Visitor Center or have one mailed to you.

Refuge Hunting Sessions
Waccamaw National Wildlife Refuge allows hunting for big game, small game, and migratory birds during various times throughout the year. The Refuge requires all hunters have in their possession at all times, a signed Refuge hunting brochure, a state hunting license, and abide by all state hunting and harvest regulations. Hunting brochures and maps are available at our Visitor Center free of charge or can be downloaded above and serve as a hunting permit itself. Hunting on dedicated public use areas such as the Cox Ferry Lake Recreation Area is prohibited. If you are unsure about an area, contact the Refuge staff for assistance.

Special Hunts:
Waccamaw National Wildlife Refuge conducts special lottery hunts throughout the year for small game, big game, and migratory birds. These hunts include youth-only, mobility-impaired, and invasive species management hunts. For more information on this year’s special hunts, please call the Headquarters at 843-527-8069.

Youth Deer and Hog Hunt:
The Waccamaw National Wildlife Refuge hosts special lottery deer and hog hunts on the Normandy Unit. These hunts are designed to encourage adults to share an outdoor experience with kids by bringing a child hunting with them. Hunts take place in the afternoon only, and up to 10 applicants are randomly selected for each hunt date. To be eligible, each hunting party includes a youth, age 7 to 17, and an adult at least 21 years old with a valid South Carolina hunting license. Fixed, two-person stands are provided for hunters and both the youth and accompanying adult hunt from the same stand. Travel to and from designated deer stands is provided by Refuge staff and all parties stay in their respective stands until Refuge staff arrives to pick them up at the end of the hunt. Legal weapons for these hunts include archery, muzzle loading rifles (black powder rifles), shotguns with slugs, and centerfire rifles. 

The following rules apply for the youth hunt:
Eligible hunting parties must include one adult 21 years of age or older who is licensed to hunt in South Carolina and one youth age 7 to 17.
Adults must have their hunting license in their possession while hunting. 
Youth ages 16 or 17 also must have a hunting license in their possession.
Bucks and does are allowed to be harvested. 
There are no antler restrictions on bucks and the Refuge will provide doe tags free of charge.
Hunters are permitted to take feral hogs. 
No restrictions on hogs.

Youth Turkey Hunt:
Waccamaw National Wildlife Refuge also hosts a lottery turkey hunt for youth 17 years of age and under. Each youth drawn is paired with an experienced hunting guide. One adult is allowed to accompany the youth but will not be allowed to carry a weapon or do any calling. The youth MUST possess a set of their own turkey tags! Contact South Carolina Department of Natural Resources for info on obtaining turkey tags.

Youth Turkey Hunt Enhanced Sized

Sandy Island Preserve Archery Hunt:
The 9,165-acre Sandy Island Preserve is part of the largest protected freshwater island on the east coast. Owned by The Nature Conservancy and managed by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, it is comprised of tidal freshwater marsh & wetland forests (3,600 acres) as well as interior upland habitat (5,565 acres). Surrounded by the Waccamaw & Pee Dee Rivers and only accessible by boat, the Preserve is home to the federally endangered red-cockaded woodpecker and longleaf pine forests, among other rare plants and animals. Each fall, hunters 18 years of age and older may apply for a special permit which will allow those selected to hunt deer and hogs on the upland interior portions of the Preserve from October 1st through November 30th. Hunters must provide their own hunting stands as well as their own transportation to and from the island. Hunting will be by archery only and no crossbows will be allowed. Each permit allows the harvest of three deer, only one of which can be a buck, which must have 6 points or more. There is no limit on feral hogs. Hunters under the age of 18 are allowed to hunt with an adult 21 years of age or older who is selected for a permit. See the Sandy Island Hunt Map here.

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