Deer Seasons

2016-17 White-Tailed Deer Hunting Units, Seasons & Bag Limits


a deer in a fieldThe statewide bag limit for antlered deer is two (2).

No more than one (1) antlered deer may be taken per day.

The only way the bag limit of two (2) antlered deer may be exceeded is: if antlered deer are taken on TWRA or NWR managed hunts where antlered deer are noted as bonus deer (see WMA listings) pdf . Check with specific public lands for more information.

See the hunting guide for specific regulations.

Legal Antlered Deer, Antlerless Deer, & Albino Deer

Legal Antlered Deer

Antlered deer are defined as male or female deer with antlers protruding above the hairline. Velvet antlered deer are also considered antlered.

Antlerless Deer

Antlerless deer are defined as male or female deer with no antler protruding above the hairline.

Albino Deer

Hunting, trapping, or possession of albino deer is prohibited as set forth in TCA Chapter 70-4-130. An albino deer is a deer with a lack, or significant deficiency, of pigment in the skin and hair, and has pink eyes.

Antlerless Hunts

Antlerless deer can be taken during “doe days” in their respective county by anyone holding a Sportsman License, Lifetime Sportsman, Sr. Citizen with Type 166 & 167 license, and landowners hunting on their own land. Regular license holders (Type 001) will need to purchase a Special Season permit (Type 094) to take advantage of the antlerless opportunities.

Once securing the proper licenses or permits, to participate in the antlerless gun hunts,  simply consult the map below to find which unit the county you intend to hunt is located and then find the table with the dates and bag limits prescribed. Unit L hunters are allowed three does per day throughout the gun season (antlerless license requirements still apply). 

2016 WMA Big Game Quota Hunts

The application period for the 2016 WMA Big Game Quota & Elk Hunts ended on July 27, 2016. 

The application period for Tennessee’s 2015 elk hunt will be June 15 - July 27. This year’s application period, which also includes the youth hunt application period, will again be held concurrently with the Wildlife Management Area (WMA) and WMA Youth quota period.

Customers who are interested in applying for both the WMA quota hunt and elk quota hunt will have to submit two applications, one for each. The computer drawings will be handled separately. Quota Hunt applications can be conveniently submitted via Internet, TWRA Licensed Agent locations, or TWRA Regional Offices, via the TWRA Mobile App. Applications cannot be accepted by mail.

Hunting Units, Season Dates & Bag Limits

Unit A includes the following counties: Bradley, Carter, Hamilton, Hawkins, Johnson, Knox, Loudon, Marion, McMinn, Meigs, Rhea, Roane and Sullivan.

Unit B includes the following counties: Anderson, Bledsoe, Campbell, Claiborne, Clay, Cumberland, Dekalb, Fentress, Grundy, Hancock, Jackson, Morgan, Overton, Pickett, Putnam, Scott, Sequatchie, Van Buren, Warren, and White.

Unit C includes the following counties: Cocke, Grainger, Greene, Hamblen, Jefferson ,Unicoi, Union and Washington. 

Unit D includes the following counties: Blount, Monroe, Polk and Sevier. 

Unit L includes the following counties: Bedford, Benton, Cannon, Carroll, Cheatham, Chester, Coffee, Crockett, Davidson, Decatur, Dickson, Dyer, Fayette, Franklin, Gibson, Giles, Hardeman, Hardin, Haywood, Henderson, Henry, Hickman, Houston, Humphreys, Lake, Lauderdale, Lawrence, Lewis, Lincoln, Macon, Madison, Marshall, Maury, McNairy, Montgomery, Moore, Obion, Perry, Robertson, Rutherford, Shelby, Smith, Stewart, Sumner, Tipton, Trousdale, Wayne, Weakley, Williamson, and Wilson.

A map of the deer hunting units
Season Type Season Dates Antlerless
Bag Limit
Antlered
Bag Limit
    Unit  L Unit  A Unit  B Unit  C Unit  D Statewide
Young Sportsman  (G/M/A)** Oct. 29- 30, 2016
Jan. 14– 15, 2017
3/day 2 2 2 2 2
(one antlered deer
per day not to exceed
2 for the license year)
Archery
(includes crossbows)
Sep. 24– Oct. 28, 2016
Oct. 31– Nov. 4, 2016
3/day 4 4 4 4
Muzzleloader and Archery Nov. 5–18, 2016 3/day 2 2 1 1
Gun, Muzzleloader and Archery* Nov. 19, 2016–
Jan. 8, 2017
3/day 2 1 1
(Nov. 19-
Dec. 4 only)
1
(Nov. 19-
Nov. 25 only)
Unit L: Private Lands Only
Antlerless Deer Only***
Jan. 9- 13 3/day CLOSED

 

* A Type 094 permit is required to hunt antlerless deer during this season except for landowners hunting under the landowner exemption (as described in T.C.A. 70-2-204), Sportsman and Lifetime Sportsman license holders, and hunters who possess a Type 167 permit.

** Youths 6-16 years of age only. Each young sportsman must be accompanied by a non-hunting adult, 21 years of age or older, who must remain in a position to take immediate control of the hunting device and who must also comply with fluorescent orange regulations, as specified for legal hunters. Multiple youths may be accompanied by a single qualifying adult. Youths 10 years of age or older must meet Hunter Education requirements.

***Hunting is allowed on all privately owned lands in Unit L (including leased land and land owned by individuals). It is the responsibility of all hunters to obtain verbal or written permission to hunt on privately owned lands. No public lands or WMAs are open during this period. No antlered deer may be taken during this period.