Get your blaze orange ready: Firearms deer season opens Saturday, Nov. 5 and runs through Nov. 13 in the Detroit Lakes area and throughout the 200 series permit area.

The DNR reminds hunters to register deer before processing, before antlers are removed and within 48 hours after taking the animal.

WDAY logo
listen live
watch live

"Every hunter who registers their deer is providing important information and playing a critical role in our ability to scientifically manage deer populations," said Adam Murkowski, DNR big game program leader. "Deer can be registered with a phone call, online or in person, with the exception of southeastern Minnesota during the firearms seasons, where in-person registration will be required."

Before registering a deer, hunters must validate their site tag. The validated tag must be attached to the deer when the deer is placed on a motor vehicle or an ATV, a vehicle or a trailer being towed by an ATV or brought into a camp, yard or other place of habitation.

Register deer via phone by calling 888-706-6367. Directions are printed on each deer hunting license. Have a pen or permanent marker ready. A confirmation number will be given; it must be written on the license and site tag.

Or register deer via internet on the online license sales page. Directions will be similar to phone registration, and a confirmation number must be written on the license and site tag.

When phone or internet registration is not possible, hunters must take their deer to a big-game registration station. The person whose name appears on the license must be present at the registration station with their deer. They will receive a big-game possession tag that must be attached to the hind leg, ear or antler where the site tag was attached. A list of all stations organized by city and county is available at any DNR wildlife office or on the deer hunting season page.

In-person registration will be required in deer permit areas 339 to 349, in southern Minnesota, an area that includes nearly all the 300 series permit areas, during the 3A and 3B firearms deer seasons while the DNR samples deer for chronic wasting disease. More information on CWD sampling and registration locations is on the chronic wasting disease management page.

In all areas, hunters are allowed to transport deer out of the permit area where the deer were taken before registering the deer. However, during registration, the hunter must use the permit area number where the deer was harvested; using the wrong deer permit area for registration is illegal. Registration instructions for all methods are available on the mandatory deer registration page.

Through registration, hunters provide important information on deer, an animal that is significant not only ecologically, but also socially and economically in Minnesota. Hunting and wildlife watching generate more than $1.3 billion in annual economic impact in the state.

Although deer populations vary in density from place to place and year to year and are influenced by the severity of winter weather, the DNR strives to manage deer for the benefit of everyone through habitat management, regulated hunting seasons, research and planning. Deer registration is one of many ways that citizens help.