Primitive Weapons Deer Season Nears in Georgia

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Primitive Weapons Deer Season Nears in GeorgiaThe weeklong primitive weapons deer-hunting season begins Saturday, Oct. 11. During the primitive weapons season, hunters may use archery equipment (including crossbows), muzzleloading shotguns (20 gauge or larger) and muzzleloading firearms (.44 caliber or larger).

Last year, more than 61,000 muzzleloader hunters harvested approximately 16,133 deer, increasing both the number of hunters and the number of harvested deer from the previous year.

The Department of Natural Resources’ John Bowers says, “Our primitive weapons deer season provides hunters the opportunity to hunt with traditional or inline black powder firearms or to continue hunting with archery gear. Hunters are allowed to hunt either-sex deer during this weeklong opportunity. Primitive weapons hunters have a wide variety of options depending on their personal choices and needs without being burdened by complex regulations.”

Participating hunters may harvest deer in counties open for firearms deer hunting. The season bag limit remains at 10 antlerless deer and two antlered bucks. One of the two antlered bucks must have at least four points (one inch or longer) on one side of the antlers.

All of Georgia’s public lands open to hunting are mapped out as a line map, topographical map and a color infrared map (with many larger areas divided up by tract for easier viewing) and now are easily accessible online at . Search for maps by their geographic location or alphabetically by the name of the Wildlife Management Area, Natural Area or Heritage Preserve. These newly updated maps should serve as an excellent resource for hunters looking to plan their trips.

All hunters, including archers, must wear at least 500 square inches of daylight fluorescent orange above the waist during the primitive weapons season. Scopes and other optical sighting devices are considered legal for muzzleloading firearms and archery equipment. Georgia hunters must possess a primitive weapons license and a big game license to hunt deer during the primitive weapons season. To hunt in a wildlife management area, hunters must possess a WMA License.

Hunters may purchase licenses on the Internet at or at one of the more than 1,000 license agents.

For more information on the primitive weapons deer season, visit, contact the local Game Management Office or call 770-761-3045.