Trapping Regulations

Species, Season Dates, & Bag Limits

The trapping season for furbearers is December 1–February 28. There is no closed season for the trapping of beaver, coyote, raccoon, or opossum on private lands. The term “fur bearing animal” refers to the following species: mink, otter, raccoon, fox, opossum, muskrat, skunk, bobcat, and weasel.

License Requirements

A trapping license is required for trapping and selling fur, hides and pelts, either a commercial trapping license or a no-cost landowner trapping permit.
License application must be completed and then mailed or brought to:

License & Boating Registration Unit
2065 US Highway 278 SE
Social Circle, GA 30025

Tagging and Reporting Requirements

Within 10 days after the close of trapping season, all trappers must report in writing the number of furs, hides or pelts which have been taken during the open season and the person to whom sold. By completing and returning the Georgia Trapper Harvest Survey, which is emailed to all licensed trappers, you will fulfill this obligation. Alternatively, such reports can be mailed to:

Department of Natural Resources, Wildlife Resources Division
Game Management, Attn: Emily Rushton
2065 Highway 278 SE
Social Circle, GA 30025

All bobcats and otters trapped in Georgia and exported out of Georgia must be tagged with a Federal Export (CITES) Tag. The tag must be attached by State personnel no later than (10) days after the close of the trapping season. To receive Federal Export tags, visit your local WRD Region Office or the Wildlife Resources Conservation Center.

Restrictions and Trap Requirements

No wildlife except those specified as furbearers may be trapped at any time within this state, except as may be provided in state law.
It is unlawful to trap any wildlife upon the right-of-way of any public road or highway of this state.
It is unlawful to fail to inspect traps at least once each 24-hour period and remove any animals caught in the traps.
It is unlawful to trap wildlife except with traps which are at all times legibly stamped, etched, or tagged with the owner's name or owner's permanent trapper's identification number provided by the department.
It is unlawful to fail to carry a choke stick or similar device while tending traps and to use that device to release domestic animals.
It is unlawful to fail to carry a weapon of .22 cal. rimfire while tending traps and to use that weapon to dispatch any furbearing animal to be taken.
It is unlawful to trap any wildlife upon the lands or in the waters of any other person except with written consent of the owner, which must be on the person setting or using the traps.
Body gripping traps in excess of 9.5 inches square may be used only in water or within 10 feet of water.
It is unlawful to set on land any trap with a jaw opening any larger than 5.75 inches.
Snares may be used for trapping beaver provided that snares are set in water or on land within ten (10) feet of water, including swamps, marshes, and tidal areas. All snares must be marked with the trapper's name or identification number.

Trapping on Wildlife Management Areas

The use of traps on any wildlife management area is restricted to certain areas and species and requires a permit from the appropriate Wildlife Resources Division Region Office. A list of WMAs where trapping is permitted can be found in the Hunting Regulations or you can contact your local WRD Region Office.

Exportation of Furs, Hides & Pelts

At least 3 days prior to shipping, transporting or otherwise conveying any furs, hides or pelts outside this state, a written report of the number and type of furs, hides or pelts to be exported and the name and address of the person to whom such furs, hides or pelts are to be shipped must be filed with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Wildlife Resources Division. Failure to submit a report may result in revocation of license, in addition to criminal proceedings. Any furs, hides or pelts shipped outside of this state contrary to these provisions shall be declared contraband and seized and disposed of as provided by law. Such reports must be mailed to:

Department of Natural Resources, Wildlife Resources Division
Game Management, Attn: Emily Rushton
2065 Highway 278 SE
Social Circle, GA 30025

Possession, Sale or Transportation of Alligator Hides or Parts Allowed only in accordance with provisions found in the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, Title 27, and Rules of the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Chapters 391-4-11, 391-4-12, 391-4-13, only by licensed alligator farmers and agent-trappers.

Fur Dealers Reports

Within 60 days after the close of trapping season, all fur dealers must report in writing the number of each type of hide, fur, skin, or pelt purchased during the preceding year, the date of purchase, the name of the person from whom purchased, and the person's trapping or raccoon fur seller's license number. Such reports must be mailed to:

Department of Natural Resources, Wildlife Resources Division
Game Management, Attn: Emily Rushton
2065 Highway 278 SE
Social Circle, GA 30025

Trapping and Selling of Live Fox

The following conditions must be met to trap and sell live fox:

  1. You must have a commercial trapping license.
  2. Live fox may be taken from the wild only during open trapping season.
  3. Live fox may be sold only to licensed commercial fox preserves or licensed commercial fox breeders. No additional permit beyond a commercial trapping license is needed to trap and sell live fox.
  4. Live fox may be held by licensed trappers for up to five days, but no longer.
  5. No live fox may be possessed five days following the close of trapping season.
  6. Trappers holding live fox must comply with O.C.G.A. 27-5-6 regarding the humane handling, care, confinement, and transportation of wild animals.
  7. Coyotes may be held live in accordance with the same provisions for live fox as provided in O.C.G.A. 27-2-22.1, except coyotes trapped for sale to commercial fox hunting preserves may be held at any time for up to five days until sold.

If you have any questions, contact your local WRD region office or call the Special Permits Unit office at 770-918-6408.

Trapper Education & Best Management Practices

To learn more about Best Management Practices for trapping furbearers, please visit furbearermanagement.com.