Michigan Coyote Hunting Laws & Regulations

Website: Michigan DNR
Contact Phone Number: 517-284-WILD
Address: P.O. Box 30028 – Lansing, MI 48909
Email: [email protected]
Michigan Hunting Licenses: Purchase Here

Michigan Coyote Hunting Laws & Regulations

Coyotes are defined as a furbearer in Michigan.

Do you need a license to hunt coyotes in Michigan? Residents possessing a valid small game license may hunt coyote during the established season. (applies to Michigan residents only) Residents possessing a valid base license may hunt coyote during the established season.

Fur Harvester License – All those who hunt and trap furbearing animals, including those who trap or hunt on their own enclosed farmland or private property, must have a valid fur harvester license. This license allows you to hunt fox, bobcat, coyote or raccoon, and trap badger, bobcat, fisher, marten, fox, coyote, weasel, mink, raccoon, muskrat, beaver, otter, skunk or opossum.

All fur harvesters using a .22 or smaller caliber rimfire to take a furbearing animal, day or night, from Nov. 10 to 14, must have a fur harvester license.

Can a non-resident hunt coyotes in Michigan? Non-residents must have a furharvester license to hunt or trap coyotes.

Nonresident Fur Harvester License – Nonresidents may hunt and trap furbearing animals only from Nov. 15 through the regular season closing dates (except for beaver and otter; see map on pg. 51 for nonresident season dates). A nonresident cannot purchase a license before Nov. 15. Residents of Wisconsin, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota and the province of Ontario cannot purchase a Michigan nonresident fur harvester license. Immediately after taking a bobcat, otter, fisher or marten, you must validate your kill tag and fasten it in such a manner that the tag remains securely attached to the animal. For details on furbearer kill tags and proper placement, see below. Make sure the kill tag is completely legible and visible for inspection. It is unlawful to tag an animal you did not legally kill.

Is there a specific season for coyotes in Michigan? Year round.

Raccoon and Coyote may be taken on private property by a property owner or designee all year if they are doing or about to do damage on private property. A license or written permit is not needed.

A base hunting license entitles you to hunt rabbit, hare, squirrel (fox and gray), pheasant, ruffed grouse, sharp-tailed grouse, woodcock (HIP endorsement required, see below), quail, crow, coyote (applies to Michigan residents only) and waterfowl (with a federal waterfowl stamp and Michigan waterfowl hunting license, if 16 years of age or older) during the open season for each species. New: Beginning in 2014, a base license is required for persons to hunt small game on their own enclosed farmlands where they live.

Is there a bag limit for coyotes in Michigan? No

What are the legal hunting hours in Michigan? All hours during night season.

Are electronic game calls legal in Michigan? Yes, electronic calls, mouth calls, or other types of game calls or predator calls may be used. Yes, during the open season for fox hunting. They are the only legal method of take for coyotes (no hunting with dogs).

Are electronic decoys legal for coyotes hunting in Michigan? Yes, mechanical/electronic decoys may be used.

What firearms are approved/disapproved for coyotes in Michigan? You may use a center fire rifle to hunt coyotes during regular daytime hunting hours statewide. Center-fire rifles MAY NOT be used at night.

Special restriction in shotgun zone: No rifles or handguns from November 15 – November 30.

Centerfire or rimfire rifles may be used Dec. 1 – Nov. 9 in the limited firearm deer zone during the seasons for all species open to take with firearm.

At night, a licensed individual may travel afoot with only a bow and arrow, crossbow, a rimfire firearm .22 caliber or smaller, or shotgun with loads other than buckshot, slug, or cut shell.

Note: All hunters using a .22 or smaller caliber rimfire to take a furbearing animal day or night from November 10 – November  14 must have a fur harvester license.

It is unlawful to hunt with a semi-automatic shotgun or semi-automatic ri e that can hold more than six shells in the barrel and magazine combined, unless it is a .22 caliber or smaller rim re. Fully automatic  rearms are unlawful. All shotguns used for migratory game birds (including woodcock) must be plugged so the total capacity of the shotgun does not exceed three shells.

Are suppressors allowed in Michigan? No

Legal ammunition or restrictions for hunting coyotes in Michigan? You may use a centerfire rifle during daytime hunting hours in the shotgun zone.

At night, a licensed individual may travel afoot with only a bow and arrow, crossbow, a rimfire firearm .22 caliber or smaller, or shotgun with loads other than buckshot, slug, or cut shell.

It is unlawful to hunt with a semi-automatic shotgun or semi-automatic rifle that can hold more than six shells in the barrel and magazine combined, unless it is a .22 caliber rimfire. Fully automatic firearms are unlawful. All shotguns used for migratory game birds (including woodcock) must be plugged so the total capacity of the shotgun does not exceed three shells.

Are there regulations for transporting dead coyotes or pelts across state lines in Michigan? None

Is night hunting allowed in Michigan? Yes, the season is now year-round and there is no bag limit throughout the state.

Can I use night vision, thermal, infrared optics to take coyotes at night in Michigan? Coyotes may be taken at night with thermal, infrared, or other night vision systems. Laser sights may also be used.

Artificial lights: Yes; with the aid of a game or predator call and during the season for fox hunting, and yes; when training dogs.

Only the use of artificial lights, similar to the type ordinarily held in the hand or on the person, such as flashlights, portable battery-powered spotlights, and headlamps, may be used.

Artificial Lights and Shining It is illegal to use an artificial light (including vehicle headlights) to locate wild animals at any time during November and all other days of the year between 11 p.m. and 6 a.m. It is illegal to use an artificial light on a highway or in a field, wetland, woodland, or forest while having in your possession or control a bow and arrow, firearm or other device capable of shooting a projectile. Exception: This prohibition does not apply to pistols carried under the authority of a concealed pistol license or properly carried under authority of a specific exemption from the requirement of a concealed pistol license. This does not authorize the individual to use the pistol to take game except as provided by law.

An artificial light may be used from Nov. 1-30 on property you own or property owned by a member of your immediate family if you do not have in your possession or control a bow and arrow, firearm, or other device capable of shooting a projectile. It is a violation of federal law to shine at any time on any national wildlife refuge. Deer hunters may use an artificial light one hour before and one hour after shooting hours while carrying an unloaded firearm or bow and arrow when traveling on foot to or from their hunting location. See Nighttime Furbearer Regulations pgs. 48-49, for artificial light regulations when hunting raccoon, opossum, fox and coyote at night. Those not possessing a firearm or bow and arrow while traveling on foot may use lights during dog training or field trials to follow dogs chasing raccoon, opossum or fox. A lighted pin sight on a bow or a scope with illuminated crosshairs may be used to hunt game during legal hunting hours. Note: If you are using an artificial light to locate game, you must immediately stop your vehicle when signaled by a uniformed officer or marked patrol vehicle.

Are there specific weapons restricted for night hunting in Michigan? A licensed individual may travel afoot with only a bow and arrow, crossbow, a rimfire firearm .22 caliber or smaller, or shotgun with loads other than buckshot, slug, or cut shell.

Can you hunt from a vehicle in Michigan? No, keep all firearms unloaded while in any type of vehicle.

Can baiting be used to hunt coyotes in Michigan? The regulations are not clear on this, but it would be advised not to hunt over bait.

Use of Wild Game as Bait when Trapping: Trappers may use the parts of game animals as bait if:

  • The game used as bait was lawfully trapped or hunted and if it is the open season for the game being used as bait; or
  • Some game killed as the result of a motor vehicle collision may be used as bait. Visit www.michigan.gov/dnr click Hunting and Trapping then “Road-kill Salvage Instructions” for complete information.

Also note that leaving animal parts behind is considered littering: Do not leave litter or refuse behind. You are responsible for the sanitary disposal of all body parts from fish and game that you harvest.

Can dogs be used to hunt coyotes in Michigan? At night for training only; no harvest.

Is there a bounty program for coyotes in Michigan? No

Raised Platforms and Tree Stands: The following persons may hunt from a raised platform or tree stand:

• All bow and crossbow hunters.
• Bear, deer, and elk hunters when using a firearm.
• Fox and coyote hunters from one-half hour before sunrise to one-half hour after sunset.

Hunter Orange Clothing Requirements in Michigan: A person shall not take game during the established daylight shooting hours from August 15 through April 30 unless the person wears a cap, hat, vest, jacket, or rain gear of hunter orange. Hunter orange includes camouflage that is not less than 50% hunter orange. The garments that are hunter orange shall be the hunter’s outermost garment and shall be visible from all sides of the hunter.

Exception: This does not apply to a person engaged in the taking of deer with a bow or crossbow during archery deer season, a person taking bear with a bow or crossbow, a person engaged in the taking of turkey or migratory birds other than woodcock, a person engaged in the sport of falconry, or a person who is stationary and in the act of hunting bobcat, coyote, or fox.

Updated 7/25/2016

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