Nebraska Deer Season 2023-2024 [Latest Dates & Regulations]

Many Nebraskans and out-of-state sportsmen like the heritage of deer hunting. This detailed guide will tell you all you need to know about the Nebraska deer season 2023-2024.

Nebraska Deer Hunting Season Dates

Throughout all hunting seasons, Nebraska has plenty of opportunity to pursue deer. The following dates are crucial for the 2023 deer seasons:

Deer Season

NE Deer HuntSeason Dates
ArcherySept 1 – Dec 31, 2023
Special LandownerNov 4 – Nov 6, 2023
November firearmNov 11 – Nov 19, 2023
MuzzleloaderDec 1 – Dec 31, 2023
October River Antlerless FirearmOct 1 – Oct 15, 2023
River Antlerless Late FirearmJan 1 – Jan 31, 2024
Antlerless Only Season ChoiceSept 1, 2023-Jan 15, 2024
Limited LandownerSept 1, 2023-Jan 15, 2024
Late Antlerless Only FirearmJan 1 – Jan 15, 2024

Elk Season

NE Elk SeasonSeason Dates
Archery bullSept 1 – Oct 31, 2023
Firearm bullSept 21 – Oct 31, 2023
Early AntlerlessAug 1 – Oct 31, 2023
Late AntlerlessNov 1, 2023 – Jan 31, 2024

Antelope Season

NE Antelope HuntSeason Dates
ArcheryAug 20 – Dec 31, 2023
MuzzleloaderSept 16 – Oct 1, 2023
FirearmOct 14 – Oct 29, 2023
November late doe/fawnNov 1, 2023 – Jan 31, 2024

Bighorn Sheep

SeasonHunt Dates
Big Horn SheepNov 28 – Dec 22, 2023

Bag Limits

  • Statewide buck bag limit: 2 legal bucks per hunter
  • Antlerless bag limits: Varies by unit and permit

There may be limits on harvesting antlerless mule deer in various regions, so check the rules for the hunting unit you want to hunt.

NE Deer License Fees

Permit/License TypeResident FeeNonresident Fee
Special Landowner Deer$8 $8
Limited Landowner Deer$20 $144
River Antlerless Deer$14 $82
Statewide Archery$37 $285
Statewide Muzzleloader$37 $285
Statewide Whitetail Buck$88 $707
Restricted Statewide Buck$128 $698
Special Landowner Season$8 $8
Youth Deer$8 $8
Limited Landowner Season$20 $144

License and Permit Requirements

Depending on the season and region, you may require a combination of licenses and permits to shoot deer in Nebraska:

  • Habitat stamp if age 16 or older
  • General hunting permit
  • Deer permit for season you plan to hunt
  • Bow permit if hunting archery season
  • Hunter education certification if under age 16
  • Blaze orange clothing required during firearm seasons

Permits for hunting deer must be bought in advance. For draw units, the deadline is June 15; for all other units, there is no deadline.

Deer Drawing and Permits 

Each year, a number of deer licenses are distributed by a random lottery. You must submit an application online or by mail by June 15 to be eligible for the drawing, which takes place in June. If unsuccessful, preference points are awarded, increasing the likelihood of future drawings.

NE Deer Regulations for 2023

The rules currently include an archery season in all Mule Deer Conservation Areas. Rules for the Mule Deer Conservation Area (MDCA): One Republican MD or MDCA permit alone may be acquired. Mule deer in the MDCA are not subject to the state’s muzzleloader or nonresident archery licenses.

  • Night-Vision Scopes Illegal: Night-vision scopes are prohibited when hunting game animals and game birds.
  • Nonresident Quotas and Limits: With few exceptions, nonresidents are limited to 10,000 either-sex or buck-only licenses. Additionally, the percentage of total permits granted to nonresidents in certain localities is capped at 15%.
  • Limited Landowner Permits: Prior to the November firearm deer season, landowners may issue up to eight Special Landowner Deer Permits to themselves or members of their immediate families to shoot deer on their property.
  • River Antlerless Private Land Only: River Antlerless Deer Permits are only good for hunting on private property within established hunting limits.
  • Youth Deer Permits: Young people between the ages of 10 and 15 are permitted to hunt with a juvenile deer permit. If a minor was 15 years old on September 1 of the hunting season, they are eligible to shoot deer at age 16 with a juvenile deer permit.
  • Antlerless Mule Deer Hunting Restrictions: With the exception of a few open fields and lakes, antlerless mule deer hunting is prohibited on public hunting areas.
  • Special Unit limitations: Different special unit limitations are applicable to various management units, indicating the locations where certain licenses are invalid or the locations where specific hunting requirements may be applicable.
  • Method for Drawing Deer Permits: The deer drawing method is based on preference points. Once a permission is granted during the drawing, all points are forfeited.
  • Statewide Deer Regulations: A variety of licenses are offered, each with its own quota, bag limit, and season dates. Each sort of permission has its own restrictions and costs.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some FAQs about the 2023–2024 Nebraska deer season:

What are the license requirements for nonresidents to hunt deer in Nebraska?

In order to shoot deer in Nebraska, non-residents require a combination of permits. You will need a nonresident hunting license, a habitat stamp, a general deer license for the hunting season you choose, and any necessary bow/muzzleloader licenses. Apply early since nonresidents are also subject to certain permission quotas. Some licenses are given out through a random lottery.

When is the deadline to apply for limited draw deer permits in Nebraska for the 2023 season?

All Nebraska restricted draw deer licenses, including Frenchman, Pine Ridge, and Platte mule deer permits, have a June 15, 2023, application deadline. To be eligible for the drawing, which takes place in late June, all applications must be filed online by this date or postmarked by that date.

How many mule deer bucks can I legally harvest in Nebraska during the 2023 season?

The mule deer buck bag limit in the whole state is two per hunter and a maximum of one per hunting unit. There is a two-buck maximum for all seasons and unit permits. Check unit-specific rules before playing since certain drawings are for bucks only.

Is baiting or feeding deer legal in Nebraska?

No, using bait, salt, minerals, or any other ingestible attractant to hunt deer is prohibited in Nebraska. Additionally, the practice of baiting deer may aid in the spread of illnesses like chronic wasting disease (CWD).

If I draw a Frenchman mule deer permit, can I also hunt whitetail deer?

Yes, you are able to take one antlerless deer of any type as well as one mule deer buck with the Frenchman mule deer ticket. Check the permit information carefully since certain Frenchman antlerless tags only authorize whitetail harvest.

What is considered a legal buck deer in Nebraska?

A buck deer in Nebraska is one that has at least one antler that is above 6 inches long. The antler requirements are not met by buck fawns or button bucks. Statewide bans on antlers are in effect. Make sure your target is correctly identified.

How soon after harvest do I need to register my deer in Nebraska?

Within 48 hours after the kill, you must register any deer that you have harvested. On the Game and Parks website or mobile app, this is possible. Citations may be issued for failing to properly notch, tag, and register deer.

Can I use both my bow and a rifle to hunt deer during archery season in Nebraska?

No, only during Nebraska’s archery deer season must you utilize legal archery equipment. It is forbidden to use any weapon with a rifle stock. During the regular firearm seasons, you may choose between the two.

James Ellis

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