Small Game: Hunting: Allowed Methods


Pistols, revolvers, and rifles propelling a single projectile at one discharge

Guns powered by spring, air, or compressed gas

Shotguns not larger than 10 gauge

Crossbows, which are classified as a firearm method

Shotguns with the magazine cut off or plugged to reduce the capacity to not more than 3 shells in the magazine and chamber combined. This restriction does not apply during the Conservation Order for light geese.

Shotguns are the only firearm allowed for hunting game birds (except crow). Pistols, revolvers, rifles, and shotguns may be used to hunt crow.

Bows, which include longbows, compound bows, and recurve bows, illuminated sights, scopes, quickpoint sights and hand-held string releasing mechanisms may be used



Additional Info

In addition to the hunting methods listed above, with a small game hunting permit you may take groundhogs, squirrels, and rabbits with a cage-type trap during that species' open hunting season.

Traps must:

  • be labeled with your full name and address, or Conservation Number;
  • be attended daily; and
  • have an opening of 144 square inches or smaller.

Special Provision During the Firearms Deer Season: During the November portion statewide and the antlerless portion and CWD portion in open counties,  only pistols, revolvers, rifles, or shotguns may be used to take rabbits and squirrels. These firearms must fire .22 caliber or smaller rimfire cartridges or shot no larger than No. 4. This restriction does not apply to landowners hunting on land they own.