Wisconsin hunters are preparing to head out for the nine-day gun deer season opening this Saturday. Nov. 23. The Department of Natural Resources reminds hunters that deer registration is mandatory for all successful hunters and it's easier than ever to do. DNR suggests keeping this guide handy during the season to be sure of a legal harvest.

Know the zone, deer management unit and land type on your deer harvest authorizations.

Each license authorizing the hunting of deer comes with a buck harvest authorization valid for harvesting one buck in any Deer Management Unit (DMU) statewide. If you wish to hunt antlerless deer, you must possess an unused, valid antlerless harvest authorization. Hunters under age 18 are issued one antlerless harvest authorization with their deer license, valid statewide on the land type designated.

One or more antlerless harvest authorizations valid in a Farmland Zone DMU are included with each deer license, but hunters must select the Zone, DMU, and land type (public or private) at the time of purchase or later (before hunting). In addition, bonus antlerless harvest authorizations may be available for sale. Check antlerless harvest authorization availability by visiting dnr.wi.gov and searching "antlerless."

For hunters pursuing deer in the Farmland Zone (Zone 2), be sure to select the proper zone, DMU, and land type in Go Wild before harvesting the deer. If this step was skipped at the time of purchasing the deer license, follow this easy guide. (A picture-guide tutorial is also available on the DNR website.)

  • Go to GoWild.WI.gov and log into the hunter's Go Wild account. Follow the prompts and verify all personal information is current, scroll down to the LICENSE heading.
  • Select BUY LICENSES. Under the PRODUCT CATALOG heading, the option to receive Farmland (Zone 2) antlerless harvest authorizations will appear. Select the FARMLAND (ZONE 2) ANTLERLESS DEER HARVEST AUTHORIZATION link.
  • Then select the county or counties (deer management unit) where Farmland (Zone 2) harvest authorizations will be used and whether it is public or private land. Hunters must complete check-out to properly obtain the Farmland (Zone 2) harvest authorizations. Remember to print the Farmland (Zone 2) harvest authorizations to have the number handy when reporting the harvest.

If a hunter is unable to access their online account, they may visit a local DNR Service Center to obtain harvest authorizations at no cost or visit a license agent, which will require a $2 processing fee.

Available Bonus Antlerless Deer Harvest Authorizations may be purchased by:

Hunters must carry form of proof

Hunters are no longer required to validate or attach a paper harvest authorization to the deer but must still carry proof of their license and harvest authorization. Hunters must carry one or more of the following:

  • A paper copy;
  • A department-approved PDF displayed on a mobile device;
  • An authenticated Wisconsin driver's license; or
  • A Go Wild Conservation Card.

Registering deer harvest

All deer harvested must be registered by 5 p.m. the day after recovery. Go online to gamereg.wi.gov (fastest and easiest option), call 1-844-GAME-REG (1-844-426-3734) or find an in-person registration station that provides one of these methods. A short registration guide is available online.

Hunters must have their deer harvest authorization number to begin the registration process. Those who do not have their authorization number at hand may access it from their online Go Wild account. The "My GameReg" section of the customer homepage provides information on current harvest authorizations. Hunters may view and reprint unused authorizations or click the quick link to report a harvest.

For more information regarding deer hunting in Wisconsin, visit dnr.wi.gov, keyword "deer."

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