Squirrel hunting in Mississippi is a popular outdoor activity, offering plenty of hunting opportunities for both novices and experienced hunters. Whether you’re an expert or a beginner, we will answer all your questions about the Mississippi squirrel hunting season so you know everything you need to know before heading out to the woods.
Mississippi Squirrel Hunting Regulations
The Mississippi Wildlife and Fisheries & Parks Department has established a set of laws for squirrel hunters. The first is that licensed hunters can legally hunt the Eastern fox squirrel and the eastern gray squirrel during the regular hunting season. Squirrel hunting season runs twice a year, in the fall and spring.
Hunting black or melanistic squirrels is legal, as these are either gray or fox squirrels with a faulty pigment that makes their fur darker. You can take Fido with you, but hunting dogs are prohibited on public lands such as national forests, National Wildlife Refuges, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers lands, etc.
There’s a lot to know about squirrel hunting in Mississippi, so let’s take a closer look.
Mississippi Squirrel Hunting Season
As mentioned, there are two times during the year you can legally hunt, trap and kill gray, fox, and black squirrels. Below is a table with the seasons, species, and bag limits.
|Daily Bag Limits
|October 1 – February 28 (Fall)
|Black, Fox, and Gray
|8 any species
|May 15 – June 1 (Spring)
|Black, Fox, and Gray
|4 any species
Mississippi Small Game Animals
Whether you enjoy hunting squirrels or not, Mississippi has several small game animals you can hunt.
Below is a table of the small game animals and dates for Mississippi residents and non-residents.
|Daily Bag Limits
|April 1 – September 30
|25 per night
|October 15 – February 28
|July 1 – September 30
|1 per night
|Bobcat, Racoon, Opossum
|October 1 – October 31
Do You Need A License To Hunt Squirrels In Mississippi
Anyone 16 to 64 must possess a valid license to hunt in Mississippi legally. Those 65 and older are exempt from obtaining a hunting license but must always have the proper documentation on them while hunting.
You can learn more about exemptions by reading “License Exemptions” MS. Code 49-7-5. All hunters (including those exempt from a license) must comply with all hunting regulations.
Shooting hours for squirrel hunting are from one-half hour before sunrise to one-half hour after sunset.
Legal hunting methods for hunting squirrels in Mississippi include archery equipment, slingshots, etc.
Additionally, cage-type traps are allowed as a hunting method. In addition, it is legal for homeowners to trap nuisance squirrels out of season without a permit.
Can You Use A Dog To Hunt Squirrels In Mississippi?
You can take Fido with you, but hunting dogs are prohibited on public lands such as national forests, National Wildlife Refuges, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers lands, etc.
Can You Hunt From A Motorized Vehicle In Mississippi?
In Mississippi, hunting or killing game animals (including squirrels) from any motorized vehicle or boat is illegal. However, you can hunt game birds and squirrels from a boat if the motor is off and it is not moving.
Best Squirrel Hunting Locations in Mississippi
Mississippi offers numerous locations with prime squirrel hunting opportunities.
When scouting for locations, aim to find areas with mature, hardwood forest cover, as these are ideal habitats for squirrels.
In addition, many of Mississippi’s public lands and Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs) provide excellent squirrel hunting opportunities.
Here are a few of the top squirrel hunting locations in Mississippi:
- Pascagoula River and Ward Bayou
- Mahannah, Twin Oaks, and Sunflower
- Sandy Creek in the Homochitto
Each location offers unique hunting experiences and challenges, ensuring an unforgettable squirrel hunting adventure. Anyone using a WMA (Wildlife Manage Area) must possess a user permit which can be purchased anywhere hunting licenses are sold.
Experiment with different locations to see where you get the most squirrels and which areas you enjoy the best.
Do You Have To Wear Orange Or Camouflage To Hunt Squirrels?
No, there are no specific laws regarding the type of clothing you must wear while squirrel hunting. However, you must wear 500 square inches of solid unbroken fluorescent orange when hunting deer or hogs.
Wearing hunter orange while squirrel hunting is a good safety precaution to make you more visible to other hunters.
In states with mandatory hunter orange requirements, a hunter must wear orange while hunting small game.
Camo or neutral clothing can improve your ability to blend into the environment and get closer to squirrels without being noticed.
Regardless of whether you choose hunter orange or camouflage, it’s essential to be aware that some hunting locations may have specific clothing requirements.
Always check the regulations of the area you plan to hunt to ensure you are following any safety guidelines.
Equipment and Gear
Equipping yourself with the right gear can make all the difference in your hunting experience. Here is some essential hunting gear:
- Hunting License and Permit: A valid hunting license and a small game permit is required to hunt squirrels.
- Boots: Sturdy and comfortable boots are essential for walking and hiking in the woods.
- Game Bag: A bag or backpack to carry hunting gear and harvested squirrels.
- Binoculars: for scouting squirrel activity from a distance.
- Knife: A sharp knife is necessary for field dressing and skinning squirrels.
- Hunting Clothing: Camouflage clothing that matches the environment can be helpful for blending in and staying hidden from squirrels.
- Ammunition: Depending on your weapon of choice or bow used, appropriate ammunition or bolts are necessary for hunting squirrels.
- Map and Compass: A map and compass can help you navigate in the woods and find your way back to camp or your vehicle.
Safety Tips and Considerations
Following safe hunting practices and being aware of squirrel conservation efforts is essential when hunting in Mississippi.
Since some squirrel species in the state are protected, understanding local regulations and conservation initiatives is crucial.
Frequently Asked Questions
What types of squirrels can you hunt in Mississippi?
Two game species of squirrels are found in Mississippi: the eastern gray squirrel and the eastern fox squirrel. Both species live throughout the state, but gray squirrels are more abundant.
Where should I look for squirrels when hunting in Mississippi?
Both species can be found throughout the state, but the fox squirrel, also known as “Hill Country” or The Bachman, is primarily limited to the Delta region. The Delta region consists of the state’s northwest section, bounded west by the Mississippi River and east by the Loess Bluffs that separate the area from the hills and prairies that characterize much of Mississippi.
Gray squirrels are more abundant, and you won’t have any issues finding them. That said, the MDWFP does not have a squirrel stocking program, so the number of squirrels will vary yearly.
Only the fox and gray squirrels are classified as small game animals in Mississippi. Therefore, licensed hunters can legally hunt them during this time if they abide by the rules and regulations set forth by the Mississippi Wildlife and Fisheries & Parks Department.
Squirrel hunting is extremely popular in the state. You won’t have any issue finding public and private spots to hunt the rodent.
Don’t forget to take advantage of the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks resources, such as their squirrel ecology and management guides, to learn more about the species and how to have a successful hunting experience.
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