NRC approves year-round coyote hunting season

Hunters, take note of these new coyote and nighttime furbearer regulations.
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Statewide DNR News

April 26, 2016

Contact: Adam Bump, 517-284-9453

Natural Resources Commission approves year-round coyote hunting season in Michigan

The Natural Resources Commission, at its monthly meeting in Lansing, Michigan, earlier this month, approved new coyote and nighttime furbearer hunting regulations.

Effective immediately, coyote hunting season is open year-round in Michigan. Please note that dogs may not be used to hunt coyotes April 16 through July 7.

Nighttime hunting season dates now match the daytime hunting season dates by species. Coyote and opossum hunting are open year-round. Raccoon hunting is Oct. 1 through Jan. 31, and fox hunting runs Oct. 15 through March 1.

Raccoons, opossums, foxes and coyotes now may be taken at night with 3 and 4 buckshot. Nighttime furbearers can be taken with a bow and arrow, crossbow, a rimfire firearm .22 caliber or smaller, or a shotgun with loads other than buckshot larger than number 3, slug or cut shell. Centerfire rifles may not be used to take furbearers at night.

Portable artificial lights may be used throughout the open nighttime season of the target species. Examples include flashlights, portable battery-powered spotlights and headlamps.

Nighttime hunters must use the aid of a game or predator call and/or dogs while hunting at night. Dogs may not be used from April 16 through July 7. While hunting with dogs at night, a firearm, crossbow or bow and arrow may be loaded at the point of kill only.

To hunt coyotes, Michigan residents must have a valid base license, and nonresidents must have a valid base license and a valid fur harvester license. Residents hunting other furbearing species will need a base license and a fur harvester license.

Raccoons and coyotes may be taken all year on private property by a property owner or designee when the raccoons or coyotes are doing or about to do damage to private property. A license or written permit is not needed.

These changes are for coyote and nighttime furbearer hunting only. Trapping season dates and regulations are not affected by these changes.

The Wildlife Conservation Order, containing complete listings of regulations and legal descriptions, can be found at

Department of Natural Resources hunting digests are available for download at

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources is committed to the conservation, protection, management, use and enjoyment of the state’s natural and cultural resources for current and future generations. For more information, go to

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