Iowa Deer Season 2024: Your Comprehensive Guide!

Iowa deer hunters may use our thorough guide. To guarantee a successful hunt, this page includes hunting dates, laws, bag limits, licenses, and more.

Iowa Deer Hunting Season Dates

Youth16-Sep – 1-Oct
Disabled Hunter16-Sep – 1-Oct
Archery Early Split1-Oct – 1-Dec
Archery Late Split18-Dec – 10-Jan
Early Muzzleloader14-Oct – 22-Oct
Late Muzzleloader18-Dec – 10-Jan
Shotgun 12-Dec – 6-Dec
Shotgun 29-Dec – 17-Dec
Nonresident Holiday24-Dec – 2-Jan
Population Mgmt January Antlerless11-Jan – 21-Jan
Excess Tag January Antlerless11-Jan – 21-Jan

Be careful to check the official Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) website for any updates or changes since certain seasons have unique criteria and limits.

Tagging Requirements

Hunters must leave the deer’s head and antlers on the carcass until it is prepared for food. Seasons for kids, the handicapped, bow, early muzzleloader, and late muzzleloader all have different laws that must be followed. During shotgun season, hunters are permitted to kill deer for one another, but all tagging rules must be observed.


License TypeIowa Resident PriceNon-Resident Price
General Deer License$33.00 Varies
Antlerless-only, First License$28.50 Varies
Antlerless-only Second & All Others$15.00 Varies

A distinct pricing schedule is used for non-residents, and licenses are distributed on a first-come, first-served basis.

Bag & Possession Limit

Season TypeDaily Bag LimitAnnual Possession Limit
Shotgun Season 1 & Shotgun Season 2One deer per unfilled transportation tag in the partyN/A (No specific annual limit, follows daily limits)
All Other Deer SeasonsOne deer per license and transportation tag issued to the hunter for that seasonOne deer per license and transportation tag obtained by the hunter for all seasons


A safe and legal hunting experience in Iowa depends on your knowledge of the laws. The following are some essential laws you should be aware of:

  • Assisting Other Hunters: Both resident and nonresident hunters may aid one another, however party hunting is only permitted at certain times of the year. Understanding the regulations governing group hunting is crucial.
  • Using a Dog to Blood Track a Wounded Deer: A hunter may use a dog to track and recover a wounded deer, but there are particular regulations involving dog management and weapon ownership that must be followed. If you want to utilize a tracking dog, be sure to acquaint yourself with these rules.
  • Blaze Orange Requirement: In Iowa, wearing blaze orange apparel is a requirement while using a rifle to hunt. By increasing hunters’ visibility to other people, this rule helps to guarantee safety in the field.
  • Tree Stands: In public hunting sites in Iowa, permanent tree stands are not allowed. Attaching items to trees is also subject to certain limitations. It’s important to confirm the exact regulations for the hunting region.
  • Restricted Equipment & Activities: It is restricted from using a number of equipment and activities. These include dog hunting, baiting, shooting from moving vehicles, and employing certain weaponry. To prevent any legal complications, familiarize yourself with these requirements.
  • Legal Method of Take: It is permitted using a variety of firearms, including pistols, rifles, shotguns, muzzleloaders, and archery gear. To maintain humane and moral hunting methods, regulations on ammunition, draw weights, and muzzle energies are in place.
  • Hunting Outside of Iowa: There are rules that must be followed if you want to hunt outside of Iowa and bring back wildlife to Iowa, particularly in regions where Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) has been found. These rules are in place to stop the state from being infected with CWD.
  • Mandatory Harvest Reporting: In Iowa, hunters are required to use a variety of reporting techniques to submit their harvest within a certain period. For the deer population to be efficiently managed and conserved, compliance with these reporting criteria is crucial.
  • Tagging Requirements (Transportation & Harvest Report Tags): Tags come in two pieces and must be fastened to the animal in accordance with strict guidelines. It’s essential to comprehend these standards in order to prevent infractions.
  • Game Carcass Disposal: Iowa law permits, subject to municipal regulations, the disposal of game carcasses and waste from home meat processing with residential garbage. When disposing of game carcasses, it’s important to obey local regulations and exercise appropriate disposal.
  • Iowa Deer Exchange & HUSH Program: Programs like the IDEH (Help Us Stop Hunger) Program, which make it possible to donate venison to those in need, are available in Iowa. Hunting enthusiasts who are interested in taking part should examine the particular qualifications and procedures for these programs.
  • Caring for Deer Properly: Hunters are responsible for handling and cooling corpses, particularly if they want to donate them to organizations like HUSH or the Deer Exchange. Both for safety and moral reasons, it is crucial to make sure the meat is properly stored.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the different deer hunting seasons in Iowa?

The archery, youth, disabled hunter, early and late muzzleloader, shotgun seasons 1 and 2, nonresident holiday, population management January antlerless, and excess tag January antlerless. The rules provide certain dates for each season.

When does the Iowa Deer Season start and end?

The seasons for youth and disabled hunters go from September 16 to October 1. October 1 – December 1 and December 18 – January 10 are the dates for the archery season. Both the Early and Late Muzzleloader Seasons are from October 14 through January 10, 2024. Season 1 of Shotgun airs from December 2 through December 6 and Season 2 from December 9 through December 17 respectively. Holiday season for non-residents in 2024 lasts from December 24 to January 2. The Population Control The Excess Tag season runs from January 11 until the conclusion of the hunting year in 2024, while the January Antlerless season is open from January 11 through January 21.

What are the bag and possession limits for Iowa Deer Season?

The day bag limit for Shotgun Seasons 1 and 2 is one deer per unfilled transportation tag given to a hunter who is in the party. The daily bag limit for all other seasons is one deer per license and transportation tag that the hunter has been given for that particular season. For each license and transportation tag a hunter obtains for any season, they are only allowed to keep one deer in their possession year.

What methods can be used to hunt deer in Iowa?

Seasonally specific, legal deer hunting techniques include crossbows, compound bows, single-slug shotguns, muzzleloading rifles, pistols, revolvers, and centerfire rifles of allowed calibers. Depending on the season, there may be certain limits on the kind of firearm.

What options exist for donating venison from harvested deer in Iowa?

Important standards include those pertaining to the use of blazing orange, driving restrictions, tagging processes, methods of take for each season, reporting requirements, and corpse transportation guidelines. To guarantee compliance, hunters must go through the whole set of rules.

Can non-residents hunt during the Iowa Deer Season?

Yes, non-residents are welcome to take part in the 2024 Iowa Deer Season. However, non-resident hunting permits are offered on a first-come, first-served basis and have a distinct cost structure. Depending on the kind of license and the exact hunting season desired, the costs for non-residents may change. The Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) website should be checked for the most recent information on fees and availability.

James Ellis

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