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Delaware Department of
Agriculture

State Forest Hunting



Delaware Forest Hunting

 

Delaware’s Statewide Hunting Regulations are updated each year in the Delaware Hunting and Trapping Guide

Delaware Deer Season

Blackbird State Forest Hunting

For more information, call the Blackbird State Forest office at (302) 653-6505.

  1. All Blackbird State Forest lands are open for public hunting for game in season by licensed hunters, unless otherwise posted.
  2. The following regulations apply to all Blackbird State Forest tracts:
    a. No Sunday hunting.
    b. Squirrel hunting with shotgun is permitted. Squirrel hunting with rifle or muzzle loading rifle is not allowed.
    c. Woods roads and trails are closed to motor vehicle traffic.
    d. Parking lots are available at all tracts.
    e. Target shooting is prohibited. Firearms are allowed for legal hunting and are otherwise prohibited within designated safe areas on State Forest lands, except as set forth below.
    • Designated areas include State Forest offices, education centers, and lodges, and identified by appropriate signage.
    • Active duty and qualified retired law enforcement officers may possess firearms within areas administered by the Department, including designated areas, provided that proper and current credentials shall be produced upon request.
    • Delaware residents holding an active current permit to carry a concealed deadly weapon may carry a firearm within areas administered by the Department, including designated areas, provided that the permit shall be produced upon request. Residents of other states holding an equivalent permit or license to carry a concealed firearm may be permitted to carry a concealed weapon at the discretion of the Department.
    • Firearms may be carried within areas administered by the Department, outside of designated areas, by any person not prohibited by 11 Del. C. § 1448.
    • Law enforcement officers may limit the discharge of firearms and the use of other weapons within areas administered by the Department, in order to protect public safety and preserve the peace.
    • Any person possessing a firearm shall display identification upon request, sufficient to enable a law enforcement officer to undertake a background check.
    f. Waterfowl hunting is permitted in designated areas only, please refer to state forest waterfowl maps.
    g. Trapping is prohibited.
    h. No deer driving.
    i. No permanent deer stands, platforms, ladders, or blinds may be constructed. No screw-in steps, tree spikes, screws, or nails are allowed. All parts of temporary (portable) deer stands must be removed on the final day of the January muzzleloader
    season; any stands remaining after this date will be removed and become property of the Delaware Forest Service.
    j. Stands may be placed after August 1 prior to the start of the new year’s hunting season. Owners of deer stands left on State Forest property during the designated time period are required to tag/clearly identify their stand with the owner’s name and phone number. Failure to do so will result in removal of the stand by Delaware Forest Service officials.
    k. Blackbird State Forest is a year-round multiple use area. Hunters MUST share with other public users, such as hikers, campers, horseback riders, firewood cutters, and loggers.
  3. The following hunting restrictions apply to the Tybout, White Road, Dulany Manor, and South Barlow Tracts.
    a.  All deer hunting on these tracts are limited to the State Forest stands numbered 1 thru 51.
    b.  The northern half of Barlow Tract and all of Meadows Tract are archery only, no firearm hunting allowed.
    c.  For firearm hunting seasons there will be a lottery drawing at Blackbird State Forest headquarters shop, located on the Tybout Tract at 502 Blackbird Forest Rd. (Rd. 471), 1.5 hours before legal hunting time (2 hours before sunrise as listed in the Delaware Hunting and Trapping Guide). Stands available after the lottery, or later during the day, will be available in the hunting information booth at the Tybout (headquarters) garage.
    d. For Muzzleloader seasons there will be a daily lottery held at Blackbird State Forest Headquarters, located on the Tybout Tract on Blackbird Forest Rd. (Rd. 471), 1.5 hours before legal hunting time (2 hours before sunrise as listed in the Delaware Hunting and Trapping Guide).
    e. All hunters on these tracts, during shotgun and muzzleloader season, must hunt from the stand only, as walk around hunting is not permitted.
    f. During Archery season, bow hunters must be within 50 yards of their designated stand.
    g. Stands will be available during Archery season on a first come first serve basis. Bow hunters must place a tag (provided), in the hunters’ information box, on the post of the stand they are going to be hunting from.
    h. No more than one hunter may hunt from a stand at any one time.
    i. No small game hunting and QDM protocols are in effect on the Dulany Manor tract.
  4.  These special restrictions apply only to the Tybout Tract of Blackbird State Forest:
    a. Tybout is closed to small game hunting.
    b. Tybout is closed for October antlerless season.
    c. Dog training is prohibited at all times.

    Redden State Forest Hunting

    The following rules & regulations apply ONLY to Redden State Forest Lands:

    1. There is NO Sunday hunting on ANY tract of Redden State Forest.
    2. Headquarters, Jester, Ellendale, and Chesapeake Tracts are Quality Buck only.

    • State Forests are year-round multiple use areas. Hunters share the use of State Forest Lands with other public users such as hikers. Campers, horseback riders, firewood cutters, and loggers.
    • No special permits are required to hunt on State Forest lands, except as specified in the DNREC, Division of Fish and Wildlife annual Delaware Hunting and Trapping Guide. Properly licensed hunters may hunt during any open season except on areas designated, such as those marked with Wildlife Sanctuary, NO HUNTING, or Safety Zone signs.
    • Hunting is only permitted as specified on State Forest maps, which are available free-of-charge from State Forest offices and on-line at http://de.gov/forestmaps.
    • No permanent deer stands, platforms, ladders, or blinds may be constructed. No screw-in steps, tree spikes, screws, or nails are allowed. All parts of temporary (portable) deer stands must be removed on the final day of the January muzzleloader season; any stands remaining after this date will be removed and become property of the Delaware Forest Service.
    • Stands may be placed after August 1 prior to the start of the new year’s hunting season. Owners of deer stands left on State Forest property during the designated time period are required to tag/clearly identify their stand with the owner’s name and phone number. Failure to do so will result in removal of the stand by Delaware Forest Service officials.
    • Deer drives by any person or persons are not permitted on any State Forest land at any time.
    • Portions of some State Forest tracts are only open to archery hunting for deer. Please contact your local State Forest office for more information.
    • Small game hunting is closed on State Forest lands during firearm deer season.
    • The Delaware Forest Service reserves the right to close to hunting specific State Forest tracts during specific hunting seasons. Therefore, it is important to consult the current hunting guide for a listing of these closures.
    • Trapping rights may be leased for State Forest lands. No other trapping is permitted on State Forest lands.
    • Target shooting is prohibited. Firearms are allowed for legal hunting and are otherwise prohibited within designated safe areas on State Forest lands, except as set forth below.
    ❖ Designated areas shall include State Forest offices and education centers and shall be identified by appropriate signage.
    ❖ Active duty and qualified retired law enforcement officers may possess firearms within areas administered by the Department, including designated areas.
    ❖ Delaware residents holding an active current permit to carry a concealed deadly weapon may carry a firearm within areas administered by the Department, including designated areas.
    ❖ Firearms may be carried within areas administered by the Department, outside of designated areas, by any person not prohibited by 11 Del. C. § 1448.
    ❖ Law enforcement officers may limit the discharge of firearms and the use of other weapons within areas administered by the Department, in order to protect public safety and preserve the peace.
    • No dumping or littering.
    • Placing paint, ribbon, flagging, reflectors, etc., is not permitted.
    • No living trees, shrubs or other vegetation may be cut, felled, uprooted, removed or otherwise injured or destroyed.
    • No off-road vehicles registered or unregistered.
    • Camping is available by permit in designated areas only.
    • It is unlawful to use bait for hunting purposes on all State lands.
    • No parking in front of access gates to State Forest lands.


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