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As the nine-day gun deer hunting season approaches, it important to know the changes in laws and regulations that have gone into effect for this season.

In addition to the information provided below, more details on the new rules can be found on the DNR's main deer hunting or hunting regulations page. Answers to frequently asked questions are also available here: Deer Tags 2017 FAQ.

Deer Tagging Rule Updates

New Deer Tag Rules

  • No longer required to validate the tag in any way to indicate that it has been used
  • No longer required to attach the tag to the deer
  • No longer required to keep the tag with the meat until consumed

Other Deer Tag Rules

  • You must still carry proof of a tag and deer license while hunting, these can include:
    • An original or reprinted paper tag
    • A Go Wild conservation card
    • A Go Wild-authenticated Wisconsin driver’s license
    • A Go Wild digital PDF file displayed on a mobile device
  • No changes have been made to group hunting rules. At least one member of the hunting party must have proof of an unfilled deer tag in the area where the hunt is taking place, and be willing to use that tag number to register a deer bagged by another member of the group

Harvest Registration

  • Registration is mandatory. Hunters must register their deer by 5p.m. the day after harvest and will need to provide a tag number. Additional registration information available at

New Hunting Legislation for 2017

Governor Walker recently signed the following sportsman acts into law. 

Assembly Bill 323

  • This bill changes the classification of woodcocks from a protected animal to “game animals” and “fur-bearing animals”
  • This change allows a person to hunt them under the authority of a small game hunting license or trap them under a trapping license
  • Under the new law, the DNR will also establish a year-round open season on the animal

Assembly Bill 455

  • This bill eliminates the requirement that a person be at least ten years of age to hunt under the hunting mentorship program
  • Under the bill, it is prohibited for a person who is serving as a mentor in a group hunting party from killing a deer for the person being mentored or using the deer carcass tag issued to the person being mentored
  • The current limit of one hunting device that a mentor and the person hunting with the mentor may have in their possession while hunting is eliminated

Assembly Bill 528

  • This bill re-establishes the 2015 Act 100 prohibition which forbids the harvesting of antlerless deer using a youth antlerless carcass tag under group hunting allowances in the statute