North Carolina offers some excellent hunting opportunities. If you are a resident or visitor to the state, please review the links below to ensure that you understand the rules, regulations and other guidelines.
Hunting regulations including Manner of Taking, Hunting on Federal Lands, big game, small game and migratory birds.
Why is big game harvest reporting important? Information and recent harvest totals listed by county for bear, deer and wild turkey.
The new Landowner Protection Act provides two ways for landholders to post their lands to allow only hunters, trappers and anglers with written permission to legally enter their property:
Sportsmen need written permission, dated within the past 12 months, signed by the land owner or lessee, to hunt, fish, or trap on lands posted with signs or purple paint. You must carry written permission on your person. If a hunting club has leased the land, hunters must have a copy of their hunting club membership and a copy of the landowner permission given to that club. Wildlife officers will enforce the Landowner Protection Act.
The Landowner Protection Act does not change general trespass laws nor have any effect on lands which are not posted. It does not repeal any local acts currently in effect that require written permission to hunt, fish or trap.
North Carolina law encourages owners of land to make property available for recreational use. The law states that a landowner who allows someone, without charge, onto their land for recreational purposes owes them the same duty of care they would owe a trespasser.
In North Carolina, it is unlawful for a person to interfere intentionally with the lawful taking of wildlife resources or to drive, harass, or intentionally disturb any wildlife resources for the purpose of disrupting the lawful taking of wildlife resources on public or private property. NOTE: This law does not apply to activity by a person on land he owns or leases or to a person who incidentally interferes with the taking of wildlife resources while using the land for other lawful activity such as agriculture, mining, or recreation.
Violation of this subsection is a misdemeanor punishable for a first conviction by a fine not to exceed $1,000.00, by imprisonment not to exceed 30 days, or by both and punishable for a second or subsequent conviction by a fine left to the discretion of the court. (North Carolina General Statute 295)
WHAT SHOULD I DO?
If you experience unlawful harassment, immediately notify your nearest wildlife enforcement officer, county sheriff's office or local police department. Advise the authorities of this law and that you wish to hunt peacefully.
WHAT NOT TO DO
Do not provoke a fight, threaten reprisals or use profanity. Remember these anti-hunting activists are seeking confrontation and may be accompanied by the news media.
It is unlawful to:
Every trap must be visited daily and any animal caught therein removed, except for completely submerged Conibear-type traps, which must be visited at least once every 72 hours and any animal caught therein removed.
Legal Trap Types (PDF)
County Fox Harvest Seasons Legislated by the N.C. General Assembly (PDF)
North Carolina offers some great fishing opportunities. If you are a resident or visitor to the state, please review the links below to ensure that you understand the rules, regulations and other guidelines.
Inland Fishing Regulations (PDF)
Regulatory authority between the Wildlife Resources Commission and Division of Marine Fisheries. Inland game fish regulations include Manner of Taking, Seasons and Using Trotlines and Set-hooks.
Possession and Collection
Rules about possession, collection, taking and transporting nongame wildlife.
NC's State and Federally Listed Wildlife Species (pdf)
List of protected species in North Carolina
Possession and Collection
Facts about possession of wildlife.
Sale of Wildlife Regulations
Rules for buying and selling wildlife.
Regulations applying to wildlife that cause property damage.
If you require more specific information about a situation, you may contact the Wildlife Enforcement Division. For a legal opinion concerning a specific question, you may wish to consult a private attorney.
Firearms and Concealed Carry
Evaluating Proposed Changes in Deer Hunting Regulations November 2010 (PDF)
Sunday Hunting Frequently Asked Questions (PDF)
Crossbow Frequently Asked Questions (PDF)
From Proposal to Regulation The N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission’s Rulemaking Process (PDF)