Coyote Hunting Wisconsin, Laws & Regulations

Website: Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources
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Address: 101 S Webster Street PO Box 7921 Madison WI 53707-7921
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Coyote Hunting Wisconsin Laws & Regulations

Are coyotes defined as furbearer, game animal, or other in Wisconsin? Furbearing animal means raccoon, fox, coyote, bobcat, skunk, opossum and weasel.

Do you need a license to hunt coyotes in Wisconsin? Residents are required to have a small game hunting license and non-residents are required to have a furbearer license.

A landowner is required to have a license to hunt deer, bear, turkey, game birds, migratory game birds and bobcat, or to trap otter, muskrat, mink, bobcat or fishers. The owner or occupant of any land and members of their family* may, without a license and subject to all other restrictions except seasons, hunt or trap on their own property for beaver, fox, coyote, raccoon, woodchuck, rabbit and squirrel year-round, and unprotected species causing damage or a nuisance, and may sell the skins of these species (except for woodchucks.)

Can a non-resident hunt coyotes in Wisconsin? Yes, Residents are required to have a small game hunting license and non-residents are required to have a furbearer license.

Is there a specific season for coyotes in Wisconsin? Year-round open hunting season.

Is there a bag limit for coyotes in Wisconsin? Unlimited, statewide.

What are the legal hunting hours in Wisconsin? Normal hunting hours apply except for those species that are legal to hunt at night (i.e., raccoon, fox, coyote and unprotected species). On any state park or state trail property, hunting hours for species that do not have hour restrictions begin one hour before sunrise and run until 11 P.M. except when the 9-day November gun deer season is open, during which normal 23 hunting hour restrictions apply to hunting for all species. The hunting hours are listed on pages 31–32.

Are electronic game calls legal in Wisconsin? Yes, with some limitations.

It is illegal to use or possess any electronic or electronically-amplified calls▲ while hunting migratory game birds or wild turkey**

  • (▲ Note: It is legal to use any type of call or amplified sound for attracting foxes, raccoon, crows, coyotes, and unprotected species during the open season.)
  • (**Exceptions: A person with a Class A or B Disabled Hunting Permit issued for more than one year and which authorizes hunting from a stationary vehicle may use electronic calls for hunting wild turkeys.)

Are decoys legal in Wisconsin? Yes.

What firearms are approved/disapproved for coyotes in Wisconsin? It is illegal to use any device other than legal firearms, airguns, bows or crossbows to kill or catch wild animals, except that traps and falconry birds may be used under the appropriate license or permit and seasons;

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It is illegal to hunt with a fully automatic firearm.

It is illegal to hunt with any means other than a gun discharged from the shoulder, a legal handgun, bow and arrow or crossbow

Are suppressors allowed for hunting in Wisconsin? It is illegal to possess or use a firearm suppressor/silencer unless you hold a federal license to possess the device.

Legal ammunition or restrictions for hunting coyotes in Wisconsin? It is illegal to possess or use while hunting any tracer or incendiary shells, cartridges or ammunition.

It is illegal to possess or control shotshells loaded with a single slug or ball while hunting any game bird or wild turkey except during open gun deer or bear seasons. Shotshells loaded with a single slug or ball are legal during any season for hunting small game species, including coyote, fox and bobcat, but not for hunting game birds or wild turkey;

Hunt while in possession of shot or shotshells loaded with shot larger than no. BB (including buckshot) from: June 1–Dec. 13 while hunting except:

  • Non-toxic shot size BBB and T may be used for hunting waterfowl;
  • Shot larger than BB may be possessed and used for the purpose of hunting bobcat.

Are there regulations for possessing, transporting dead coyotes, or pelts across state lines in Wisconsin? Lawfully harvested carcasses and pelts may be sold at any time. After their skin is removed, bobcat carcasses may be retained by the DNR for research purposes. It is illegal to possess the green skin of a bobcat which has not been registered beginning on the 6th day after the season closes.

Is night hunting allowed in Wisconsin? Coyote, fox, raccoon, and unprotected species may be hunted without hunting hour restrictions except:

  1. If hunting with a bow or crossbow, the hours listed on pages 31–32 apply for hunting all species during the bear and archery deer seasons;
  2. 2. If hunting with a gun, the hours listed on pages 31–32 apply for hunting all species during the regular 9-day November gun deer season. (*Note: Coyote, fox and raccoon may be hunted at night during the muzzleloader season, youth hunt or the 4-day antlerless only deer season.) This does not apply in the southern Farmland Deer deer management zone.

Use of Lights: A flashlight may be used to find your way and at the point of kill while hunting raccoon, fox and coyotes. Lights may not be used to shine or search for these animals. A “flashlight” means a battery-operated light designed to be carried and held by hand.

Shining | It is illegal to:

  • Use or possess with intent to use a light, including vehicle headlights or laser sights* on firearms, bows and crossbows, for shining any wild animal while hunting or in possession of a firearm, bow or crossbow;
    • (*Note: Visually handicapped hunters with a Class C Disabled Permit may use a laser sight for hunting.)
  • Use or possess with intent to use a light, including vehicle headlights, for shining wild animals between the hours of 10 P.M. and 7 A.M. from Sept. 15 through Dec. 31 whether or not in 7 possession of a firearm, bow or crossbow.
    • Exceptions: A flashlight may be used 1) while shooting coyote, raccoon, fox or unprotected species at the point of kill while hunting on foot, or 2) to find your way. A flashlight means a battery operated light designed to be carried and held by hand.
      • (Note: Some areas may prohibit shining by local ordinance. Check with the local sheriff’s department or township officials for local shining restrictions.)

Coyote, fox, raccoon and unprotected species may be hunted without hunting hour restrictions except:

  1. If hunting with a bow or crossbow, the hours listed on pages 31–32 apply for hunting all species during the bear and bow deer seasons.
  2. If hunting with a gun in the Forest or Central Farmland deer management zones, the hours listed on pages 31–32 apply for hunting all species during the regular 9-day November gun deer season.*

(*Note: Coyote, fox, raccoon and unprotected species may be hunted at night during the following deer seasons, but only in the Southern Farmland deer management zone: youth hunt, traditional 9-day November firearm in the southern, muzzleloader and 4-day antlerless-only.)

Can you hunt coyotes from a vehicle in Wisconsin? It is illegal to hunt any animal with the aid of any aircraft, including unmanned aircraft and drones.

Can baiting be used to hunt coyotes in Wisconsin? It is illegal to use bait to hunt small game mammals, migratory birds, game birds, wild turkey and furbearing animals. However, hunting over agricultural crops and wildlife food plots planted and left standing is legal. Also, hunting over seeds dispersed from naturally occurring vegetation, grain, or feed scattered solely by normal agricultural operations which include harvesting, post-harvest manipulations or other agricultural practices is not considered baiting. Manipulation of agricultural crops or natural vegetation prior to harvest by mowing, shredding, discing, rolling, chopping, trampling, flattening, burning or herbicide treatment is legal for hunting doves, but is not legal for hunting other species.

Can dogs be used to hunt coyotes in Wisconsin? Dogs are legal to use for hunting small game mammals, game birds, furbearing animals, migratory game birds and unprotected species, except dogs may be used for hunting wild turkeys ONLY during the fall season. Dogs must be leashed at all times on Waterfowl Production Areas (WPAs) unless engaged in legal hunting activity.

Is there a coyote bounty program in Wisconsin? It appears a resolution was passed in 2012: Wisconsin Wildlife Federation

Blaze Orange: During any gun or muzzleloader deer season, no person may hunt any game unless at least 50% of the person’s outer clothing above the waist is colored blaze orange. A hat, if worn, must be at least 50% blaze orange. Camo-blaze is legal if 50% of the material is blaze orange, but is not as visible as solid blaze clothing*.

  • (*Exceptions: The blaze orange requirement does not apply to waterfowl hunters or during legal night hunting activities from ½ hour after sunset to ½ hour before sunrise while hunting coyote, fox, raccoon and unprotected species.)

This information is for informational purposes only. This website has no affiliation with any department of the above mentioned state. For your own safety please contact your local office to verify the information presented. is not responsible for your own stupidity.

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  1. John Freeman

    Can you carry more than one firearm?

    • Boomer

      If all carried weapons are legaly possessed and are within restrictions (barrel length etc.), yes. It may not apply to people using the mentor program, restrictions on one weapon between hunter and mentor. [per 2017 reg]

  2. Nathan

    So I can use a spotlight mounted on the top of my scope to kill a coyote?

  3. s

    you did not answer the question can a person hunt coyote from a vehicle—on the road and then procede to get out of truck to actually kill it??

    • Dan

      You must be 50′ off the roadway, and have permission to hunt the property you just stepped onto.

  4. Becky Henke

    I’m trying to get an accurate answer to whether my husband, who lives in Nebraska can hunt coyotes on my Mother’s property in Wisconsin without any permits

    • Mark Dantinne

      According to DNR regulation on page 20, your husband would need a permit to hunt coyotes on your mother’s property. Only siblings of property owner can hunt without permit

  5. Sean

    This did not answer the question I have, is there a bounty on coyotes in Wisconsin?what is it? How do you collect it?

    • Dan

      There is no bounty on coyote.

  6. John

    What exactly is the rules on using a light? Can I use a red light to scan for eyes?

  7. John Nollenberg


    • Charles Nichols

      On page 10, Use of Lights: A flashlight or firearm – mounted light may be used at the point of kill while hunting on foot for coyote… 2018 Small Game Hunting Regs.

  8. Ed tomaszewski

    What is the definition of point of kill in wisconsin. I hunt coyotes and would like to use a red light mounted on my scope.the regulations says I can use it at point of kill only. What is the exact definition of point of kill. How long can the light be on before I pull the trigger on a coyote.

  9. AMY

    So is this saying that anyone within legal city limits can pull out a gun and shoot a coyote if it happens to be on their property as long as they say it was being a nuisance? Then sell the fur? I thought there were laws about discharging a weapon within city limits? Maybe I am misunderstanding.

  10. Lois

    Did Wis. ever have a bounty on coyotes? If so when? Why was it used? When was it discontinued? Can you recommend a source on the history of bounty hunting?

  11. WillIam h schultz

    Can hounds be used year around to hunt coyote?

  12. Eric

    Can a light be mounted on a gun during deer and turkey hunting. With no intention for use while hunting but navigation during the mornings and evenings.

  13. Jay

    So how exactly are you supposed to hunt coyotes at night if you’re not allowed to use any light source? Let me guess we’re all supposed to buy flir scopes that cost $5000-$10000?

  14. John

    I guess just wait for a full moon.

  15. Garrett

    The WI DNR needs to fix their laws made by politicians and written clearly by people who actually do the the sport. Im this case night hunting coyotes. Theres too much gray area. Coyotes are everywhere and hunters like me just want to help reduce their population and reduce damages that they cause to wildlife and especially to farmers livestock and poultry. Which i have. Its pitch black out at night but can’t legally scan for fox or coyote eyes at night on my own property with a spotlight or spotlight. Very few hunters ever shoot coyotes if we need to buy night vision or thermal spotting scopes or rifle scopes. Its unrealistic to spend thousands on thermal scopes.
    The only way to spot a coyote at night is on a full moon night on snow. Or by scanning with a scope light. The whole shining
    only at the point of kill and navigation part is what creates the gray area of legality. Shining for coyotes should be legal with scope mounted lights, its up to the hunter to correctly id there target before shooting.if they shoot at just eyes thats the hunters fault bc it could be a deer. Shining constantly gives the hunter time to positively
    ID the animal species and make sure its 100% a coyote , fox, possum, whatever is legal and in season. Shining Only at point of kill seems ridiculous . People want to shoot coyotes at night but most Don’t bc of the risk of getting called in by their neighbors bc they thought they were gonna shoot deer. Nobody wants to spend a fortune on thermal to kill yotes at night. And daytime calling success is very limited. 99% of hunters are responsible and would never shine a deer to kill one. Its just the 1% of bad hunters who ruin a sport for everyone. And politicians making laws for a sport they Don’t know how it is done and have never tried in their lives. Politics shape too many of our regulations. They should be based on common sense and knowledge and proper hunter education and basic gun safety. Its not just the night shining law for night hunting legal species like yotes and foxes and coons. It needs to be reformed in the regulation book

  16. Michael L Lequire

    What are they talikng about point of fill and can i use a light mount on my gun to nite hunt yotes trying to fig this out just moved here from nc and dont wont to spend or can byea 50000 dollar nite scope

  17. Meng

    I have 160 acres of land in northern Wisconsin, we are trying to manage our deer. Coyotes have been seen as much as deer on our trail cameras. I know you can hunt at night, but can you hunt them with a gun, like shoot them at night. This is on our private property. Thanks

  18. Mitch

    I’ve talked to a warden to clarify the night hunting with lights law for coyotes, coons, unprotected species. It is as ridiculous as it sounds in the regs. You can shoot coyotes with a firearm mounted light only at the point of kill, point of kill means you already know it is a coyote and where it is. Illegal to shine a light to search for coyotes, and yes that includes infrared lights meaning it is even illegal to look for coyotes with a night vision scope or monocular/googles. This leaves thermal monoculars and thermal Scopes and the naked eye as the only legal way to look for coyotes. Once you find one, only then you can turn on your IR/red/white/green light to shoot it. In other states most people who can afford the equipment will scan with thermal to find them, then use infrared night vision scopes to positively id. Honestly you can’t use thermals or a naked eye to tell the difference between a fox from a coyote from a wolf from a german shepherd. Wisconsin laws are a catch 22, “you can kill coyotes at night, but you can’t look for them first”. It’s ridiculous.


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