November Deer Season Starts the 15th

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November 15 has been on the minds of Vermont hunters for some time. It marks the opening of Vermont’s sixteen-day rifle deer hunting season, which continues through November 30.

“Vermont’s November deer hunting season is traditionally a time of year for friends and relatives to get together,” said Vermont Fish & Wildlife Commissioner Wayne Laroche. “Many may have hunted with each other for years and others may be just starting out. But whether you hunt the softwood swamps or hardwood ridges alone or with a partner or two, Fall is a time to celebrate Vermont’s hunting tradition and create memories that will last a lifetime.”

Last year, 78,163 residents and 12,546 nonresidents bought Vermont hunting licenses with buck tags. They took 8,726 bucks with three-inch or longer antlers during the sixteen-day season.

Wearing fluorescent orange clothing is highly recommended while hunting, according to the Fish & Wildlife Department.

"A fluorescent orange hat and vest will provide basic coverage in most situations," said Mark Scott, education manager for Fish & Wildlife. "We highly recommend hunters wear orange in order to prevent being mistaken for game."

"The greatest number of deer tend to be found in the southwest, southeast, east-central and northwestern regions of the state," says Wildlife Biologist John Buck. "The biggest bucks hang out in the Northeast Kingdom and in the Green Mountain Range."

Vermont’s deer population is estimated at 130,000 to 140,000 deer this year.

A hunting license costs $16.00 for residents and $85.00 for nonresidents. Licenses are available from close to 500 locations statewide.

Planning for your hunt is a great way to ensure it is enjoyable, and it boosts your chances of seeing more deer. To help in planning a successful Vermont deer hunt, be sure to obtain copies of the 2003 Digest of Hunting, Fishing & Trapping Laws, the Hunting Guide Map and last year’s report on deer hunting season – all available from the Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department, 103 South Main Street, Waterbury, VT 05671-0501. Tel 802-241-3700. Email: ( The 2002 report on deer hunting, which includes the number of deer taken in each town, also is available on the department’s website.