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NH License Requirements

General Information: A general hunting, fishing or archery license is not required for minors under 16 years of age. Minors are, however, required to purchase the following special licenses: Special Archery Deer, Turkey Permit, Bear License and Unit M special Deer tag. Non-resident minors under the age of 16 are also required to purchase a muzzleloader license. Minors are not required to pay a Wildlife Habitat Fee or file a Harvest Information Survey (HIP).


Residency Requirement: A New Hampshire resident is someone who holds a valid NH Driver’s license or Non Driver Photo Identification issued by the State of NH Division of Motor Vehicles and does not claim a residence in any other state for any purpose


Hunter Safety Education Requirements: By state law, anyone planning to buy a hunting, archery or trapping license must complete the respective hunter, bowhunter, or trapper education course, or show a previously issued license of the same type. Learn more.


Freshwater Fishing Licenses: Allow the taking of all species in the freshwaters of the state. Temporary 1-, 3-, and 7-day Fishing Licenses are available to non-residents, dates for use intended will be requested at the time of purchase and the dates must be consecutive. One-day licenses are also available for NH residents.


Senior Licenses - NH Residents Only:

  • Discounted licenses are available for resident seniors whose date of birth is January 1, 1948, or later, and have reached age 68. License types available include: Senior Fishing, Senior Combination Hunting & Fishing, Senior Muzzleloader, and Senior Archery. Must be purchased annually, online or at an agent. Learn more.

  • Special Resident Milestone Licenses are available free to residents of New Hampshire who were born on or before December 31, 1947 (not valid if the license holder moves out of state). Obtain at Fish and Game headquarters in Concord or regional offices 1 (Lancaster), 2 (New Hampton) or at limited license agents. Permanent license holders must create their own deer tags, or they may use the generic tag in the back of the hunting digest. License types available: Fishing, Combination Hunting & Fishing, Muzzleloader, Archery, and Clam/Oyster.

  • A permanent clam/oyster license is available at no charge to all New Hampshire residents age 68 or older (at Fish and Game headquarters or Regional Offices 1 and 2 only).

Senior license applicants must present a valid New Hampshire driver's license or state-issued non-driver's photo identification card. To qualify for the hunting or archery licenses, one of the following must be presented: a previously held hunting license or Hunter Education card; or a previously held archery license or Bowhunter Education card issued from any U.S. state or Canadian province. All other license types must be purchased annually, including Saltwater Recreational Fishing.


Clam and Oyster Licenses: Available to New Hampshire residents only. Season is restricted. See Saltwater Fishing Digest for more information. Clam license is required for ages 6 and above. Oyster licenses are required for all ages. A permanent clam/oyster license is available at no charge to all New Hampshire residents age 68 or older (at Fish and Game headquarters or Regional Offices 1 and 2 only).


Saltwater Fishing: A NH Recreational Saltwater Fishing License is required, with a fee of $11, for individual anglers age 16 and older participating in recreational saltwater fishing for finfish from coastal and estuarine waters of New Hampshire (both residents and non-residents need a license).


Wildlife Habitat Fee: All persons wishing to take wildlife in New Hampshire must pay this fee each year. The $2.50 Fee must be paid ONCE annually by those purchasing a Combination Hunting & Fishing License, Hunting License, Archery License, Small Game License or 3-Day Small Game License. EXCEPTIONS: Minors, Permanent License Holders, and Lifetime License Holders.


Hunting: This license entitles a person to take wildlife (including small game) during the open season; a deer tag is issued with this license.


Combination Hunting and Fishing License: Includes the privileges in Hunting and Freshwater Fishing. Does not include saltwater fishing privileges.


Small Game Hunting: Available to non-residents to hunt small game only; if you purchase a non-resident hunting or non-resident combination hunting and fishing license, small game is included This license is for those who do not wish to hunt large game, no deer tags are issued. Turkey is not considered small game. Small game is defined as: snowshoe hare, cottontail rabbits, gray squirrel, pheasant, quail, ruffed grouse, chuckar, European partridge & migratory birds. Migratory game birds require a HIP survey permit. Waterfowl require HIP permit, state and federal waterfowl stamps. An additional license is required for pheasant hunting. There is a 3-day small game license available; dates and time for use will be requested at the time of purchase. The dates must be consecutive.


Archery: This license allows a person to hunt deer during the archery season, and wildlife during the open season, using a bow as your weapon. An archery deer tag is issued with this license. You may not purchase a Special Archery Deer permit without an Archery license.


  • Effective 2017: Persons 68 years or older, holding an archery license under RSA 208:5 may use a crossbow as an alternative to a traditional bow during the archery deer season without obtaining an additional permit. Not valid for any other species or seasons.


Special Deer Archery: This permit allows a person to take a second deer during the archery season. This permit must be purchased at the same time the archery license is purchased. It may not be purchased later. A second archery deer tag is issued with this license.


Pheasant: This license allows a person to hunt pheasant during the pheasant season. A current NH hunting, combination hunting and fishing license, small game, or archery license is also required.


Bear: This license allows a person to hunt bear during the bear season. A current NH hunting, archery or combination license is also required. A separate bear tag will be issued.


Wild Turkey: This permit allows a person to hunt turkey during the open seasons. A current NH Hunting, archery or combination license is also required. There is a spring and fall season for Turkey with separate weapon requirements (see the NH Hunting Digest for details.) Two tags are issued with this permit for the spring and/or fall seasons.


Muzzleloader: This license allows a person to hunt deer during the special muzzleloader deer season. A current NH hunting or combination license is also required. No deer tag is issued with this license.


Migratory Waterfowl: This license must be purchased by anyone wishing to hunt migratory waterfowl (ducks and geese). A current NH hunting, combination license or small game license; a Federal Waterfowl Stamp (available at the Post Office) and Harvest Information Survey permit number are also required.


Duplicate License: A duplicate of a lost or destroyed current year license must be purchased at the license agent where the original license was purchased or at Fish and Game in Concord


Wildlife Legacy Donation: This is a program to benefit fisheries and/or wildlife management efforts in the state, such as Fish and Game's landowner relations program, which works to preserve access to private lands for hunters and anglers. Contributions may be used to purchase equipment like as fish transport tanks used for stocking trout and salmon, or a brush hog and tractor for creating and maintaining early successional habitat for a variety of game and nongame species. This option replaced the former "Super Sport" donation.


Nongame Donation Contributions: This program allows you to donate money to the Fish and Game Department for use on priority fish and wildlife management conservation programs.


Harvest Summaries: Summaries of the most recently completed hunting season statistics for Deer, Bear, Moose, Turkey and Furbearers is available from the annual Wildlife Harvest Summary, and for small game from the Small Game Summary Report.


Moose hunting: Moose hunting is by special permit only.


Unit M Special Deer Permits: Learn about applying for a permit to take an additional antlerless deer in Wildlife Management Unit M.