Alabama Deer Hunting FAQs

Last Updated on November 30, 2023 by Brian Grossman

If you have questions about Alabama deer hunting, you’ve come to the right place! In this article, we cover some of the most frequently asked questions in detail. These cover when you can deer hunt in Alabama, what you can deer hunt with, what licenses and permits you’ll need, how many deer you can kill, and much more.

We hope this helps you have a successful Alabama deer season this fall!

When can you deer hunt in Alabama?

Deer can be hunted during Alabama’s deer season by licensed deer hunters. In Zones A, B, and C, Alabama’s deer season begins October 15 and runs through February 10. Zones D and E start October 1 and run until January 27. Specific dates can be found at the link below.

See Alabama’s 2021-2022 deer season dates.

Is deer hunting good in Alabama?

As a whole, deer hunting in Alabama is excellent. Alabama hunters killed almost 160,000 antlerless deer during the 2020-2021 deer season and over 115,000 antlered bucks. Both of those figures were above Alabama’s five-year harvest average.

Hunter success is excellent in Alabama with a harvest of 70 does per 100 deer hunters (fourth most in the nation) and 51 bucks per 100 deer hunters. Only 12% of the antlered buck harvest were yearling bucks, and 59% were 3.5 years old or older. That’s a great buck harvest age structure for a southern state!

Does Alabama have big deer?

Compared to Florida, yes! Body-wise, deer are generally larger the further north you go. So as far as white-tailed deer go, Alabama deer are on the smaller end of the spectrum compared to deer in the midwest and northeast.

Antlers are a little different story. Antler size is tightly correlated to age, nutrition, and to a lesser extent, genetics. When comparing same-aged deer, it’s typically nutrition that separates big buck states like Iowa, Kansas and Illinois from states like Alabama.

That’s not to say some great bucks with large antlers aren’t killed every year in Alabama, because they are. Alabama produces some very respectable bucks, just not as frequently as the big buck states of the Midwest.

Do I need a hunting license to hunt my own land in Alabama?

If you’re an Alabama resident with a valid Alabama driver’s license, the answer is no, you do not need a hunting license to hunt your own property. However, all deer taken on your property must still be checked in using the Alabama’s game check system.

Keep in mind you must still adhere to Alabama’s bag limit of one antlerless deer and one antlered buck per day, with a three buck limit for the season. One of those three bucks must have at least four points (1 inch or longer) on one antler.

What weapons are legal for deer hunting in Alabama?

Archery — any longbow, recurve or compound bow with at least 30 pounds of pull. Crossbows must have at least 85 pounds of pull and a working safety. Arrows and bolts must be equipped with broadheads that have a minimum 7/8-inch cutting diameter and two sharpened edges.

Muzzleloader and Air Rifle — muzzleloaders and black powder handguns .40 caliber or larger; pre-charged pneumatic air powered guns, .30 caliber or larger; and pre-charged pneumatic arrow shooting rifles using an arrow equipped with a broadhead which has a minimum cutting diameter of 7/8 inch and 2 sharpened edges.

Gun — rifles, handguns or pistols using centerfire, mushrooming ammunition.

What licenses do I need to deer hunt in Alabama?

All hunters pursuing deer in Alabama must have an All Game Hunting License (unless exempt) and a Harvest Record in paper form or on the Outdoor Alabama app.

What do I need to deer hunt Alabama public land?

In addition to an all game hunting license and harvest record, WMA hunters must possess a Wildlife Management Area License and map permit.

Where is the best place to deer hunt in Alabama?

That depends on your deer hunting goals. If you’re after a great buck, then the Blackbelt Region of Alabama will give you your best odds of success. That extends across the state, east to west, from around 40 miles north of I-80 to around 40 miles south of I-80. If you’re just after meat for the freezer, then you will have a good chance of success just about anywhere in the state.

Is CWD in Alabama?

Unforunately, yes. At the time of this writing — July 2022 — there have been two confirmed cases of chronic wasting disease, or CWD, in the state of Alabama. Both were in Lauderdale County in the northwest corner of the state. That resulted in Lauderdale and Colbert counties being designated as a CWD management zone (CMZ) where feeding/baiting deer is now prohibited.

How many deer can I kill in a day in Alabama?

Alabama deer hunters can kill one antlered buck and one antlerless deer per day.

How many deer tags can you get in Alabama?

The season bag limit for antlered bucks in Alabama is three. One of the three antlered deer must have at least four points (one inch or longer) on one side. There is no season bag limit for antlerless deer.

Can you bait deer in Alabama?

In short, yes. Baiting for deer is legal in Alabama on privately owned or leased lands if you purchase an annual bait privilege license issued by the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (ADCNR). The exception to this rule is in the CWD management zone (Lauderdale and Colbert counties) where baiting is prohibited.

Can you deer hunt with an AR 15 in Alabama?

Yes. You can deer hunt with any centerfire rifle or handgun in Alabama, so the AR15 would be perfectly legal.

Can you hunt deer year-round on your own property in Alabama?

No. Even on your own property, you still have to abide by Alabama’s deer season dates, bag limits and regulations. The only perk is that you won’t need to purchase an all game license to do so.

Are there any other questions you’d like us to answer about Alabama deer hunting? If so, drop them in the comments section below, and we may add them to this article.

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