Immediate Changes to Indiana Urban Deer Zone Hunting

   01.12.12

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The new deer rule changes that the Natural Resources Commission gave final adoption to this fall are now in effect.

This means that the 2011 Urban Deer Zone season has been extended until January 31, 2012.

Here is a summary of additional changes to the Urban Deer Zone:

  • The urban deer zone season now lasts from Sept. 15 through Jan. 31. (Previously, the urban deer zone ended the first Sunday in January).
  • A new urban deer zone license is required and replaces the old requirements of needing an extra archery license, bonus antlerless, or regular archery license. The resident urban deer zone license is $24 and the nonresident urban deer zone license is $150. Resident youth hunt/trap, lifetime comprehensive hunting, or lifetime comprehensive hunting and fishing license or those exempt from needing a license, do not need to purchase urban deer zone licenses.
  • The urban deer zone in Lake and Porter counties now includes the entire county.
  • Hunters that are using an urban deer zone license must harvest at least one antlerless deer before harvesting an antlered deer with an urban deer zone license; a.k.a, “earn-a-buck.” The earn-a-buck program only applies to the urban deer zone season.
  • Crossbows can now be used during the urban deer zone season.

The bag limit for the urban deer zone remains the same at 4 antlerless deer (one per license), or with the new “earn-a-buck,” 3 antlerless deer and 1 antlered deer (one per license). Urban deer zones were established to provide hunters opportunities to harvest deer in specified areas in addition to regular bag limits. Urban deer zones are for archery and crossbow hunting only. This provision does not override any local ordinances restricting bow and arrow or crossbow use.

What does this mean for the remainder of the 2011 Urban Deer Zone Season?

Here are some scenarios that should help hunters determine license requirements and harvest regulations for the remainder of the 2011 Urban Deer Zone season, which ends January 31, 2012.

Scenario 1 – if a hunter has already harvested an antlered deer in an urban deer zone this season (Sept. 15, 2011 – Jan. 31, 2012), all the hunter can harvest thru Jan. 31 would be antlerless deer in an urban deer zone; assuming the hunter has not reached the bag limit for the urban deer zone.

Scenario 2 – if a hunter hasn’t harvested an urban zone antlered deer and has already harvested an urban zone antlerless deer during the 2011 urban zone deer season, the hunter has already met the “earn-a-buck” requirement. The hunter can harvest one urban zone antlered deer thru Jan. 31 in an urban deer zone.

Scenario 3 – if a hunter hasn’t harvested any urban zone deer this season, the hunter must harvest an antlerless deer in an urban deer zone prior to harvesting an antlered deer in an urban deer zone.

Urban Deer Zones are:

  • Lake County
  • Porter County
  • Vanderburgh County
  • Fort Wayne – the portion of Allen County within the bounds of Interstate 69 and Indiana 469.
  • Indianapolis – all of Marion County, Hendricks County east of Indiana 267; southeast portion of Boone County bounded by Indiana 267, Interstate 65, Indiana 32; and the portion of Hamilton County south of Indiana 32.
  • Lafayette – the portion of Tippecanoe County north of Indiana 28.
  • Michigan City – the portion of LaPorte County north of Interstate 94.
  • Warsaw – the portion of Kosciusko County within the corporate limits of Warsaw.
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