Every November, Michigan welcomes thousands of hunters from across the country to hunt in some of the best hunting lands in the US. Hunters understand the differences between northeast and mid-west hunting and which spots yield the best bucks.

Whether it’s hunting in the upper peninsula or the lower peninsula, Michigan is packed with tons of open hunting grounds that are both publically available and privately for sale. Snagging a piece of this real estate puts you at the forefront of one of the best places to hunt small game in the country.

If you’re interested in exploring the great outdoors of Michigan and finding a place to hunt or fish, we have you covered.


Michigan Hunting Season Dates

Hunting season stays relatively consistent each year in Michigan, beginning with archery season in October and firearm season in mid-November. Michigan hunting seasons are designed to offer the best impact to wildlife in the existing area, promoting sustainable population growth and protecting native ecosystems.

Hunters in Michigan get to enjoy long archery seasons, as well as extended firearm seasons in certain portions of the state. Via the Michigan Department of Natural Resources:

Archery: Oct. 1 – Nov. 14, 2019; Dec. 1, 2019 – Jan. 1, 2020

Extended Archery – Urban Deer Management Zone of Macomb, Oakland and Wayne

Counties: Open through January 31, 2019.

Early Antlerless Firearm: Sept. 21-22, 2019

Regular Firearm: Nov. 15-30, 2019
Zone 1: Dec. 6-15, 2019
Zone 2: Dec. 6-15, 2019
Zone 3: Dec. 6-22, 2019

Late Antlerless Firearm:
Dec. 23, 2019 – Jan.1, 2020
South of M32 in Alpena County, private land only, Jan. 3-6 and Jan. 10-13, 2019

Liberty Hunt: Sept. 21-22, 2019

Independence Hunt: Oct. 17-20, 2019


Purchasing a Michigan Hunting License

To hunt in Michigan you will need to purchase a license from the state. Licenses are available to both residents   out-of-state residents. All hunters are required to purchase a base license plus a deer tag. This can cost out-of-state residents close to $200.

To purchase a license, you’ll need to fill out the Hunter Education Certificate and then purchase a license from the Michigan Department of Natural Resources website. There are multiple licenses available based on age and demographics including:

  • Base license (required)
  • Youth License (ages 10-16)
  • Senior License (over 65 years of age)
  • Veteran License (Must have been an active military member)


Michigan Hunting Rules and Regulations

It’s keen to note that many different units of Michigan hold different rules relating to deer hunting. Antler-point restrictions exist in the following counties and areas for deer with less than 3-points on either side:

  • The Upper Peninsula
  • Antrim
  • Benzie
  • Beaver Island
  • Charlevoix
  • DMU 487
  • Emmet
  • Grand Traverse
  • Lake
  • Leelanau
  • Manistee
  • Mason
  • Missaukee
  • Osceola
  • South Fox Island
  • Wexford

Interestingly enough, Michigan is one of the only states that doesn’t restrict the number of bucks you can take during hunting season. On the other hand, quotas and restriction exist for antlerless deer in many counties and are required to be hunted on a qualifying Deer Management Unit.

In addition, a license must be purchased to hunt migratory waterfowl in Michigan.


Best Places to Hunt in Michigan

Generally, anywhere county you can in Michigan has public hunting land available. The upper Pensiula is almost 40% publically owned and much of the Lower Peninsula is too. Just be aware of the rules and restrictions governing the specific area you choose to hunt on. Of course, game reserves and public land are not always the best places to hunt, especially if you’re a resident of Michigan.

Instead, you can purchase private hunting land from Michigan Whitetail Properties. We sell premium farm and hunting properties that offer plenty of open spaces and untapped forestry. There are always new listings available on our website. Choose by location and where you would like to host your next hunting vacation. Contact us today to view a property and claim your little slice of heaven.