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East River and West River Deer Hunting Seasons Set

PIERRE, S.D. - The South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks (GFP) Commission adopted their proposal which will offer approximately 10,500 fewer licenses for the 2017 East River deer hunting season; with a majority of this reduction to antlerless whitetail licenses.

There will be 3,580 more one-tag licenses, 4,925 less two-tag licenses (10,150 tags), and 1,400 less 3-tag licenses (4,200 tags) compared to 2016, and a total of 21,075 one-tag and 5,250 two-tag licenses available.

The Commission modified the proposed Unit 13L to include those portions of the Brule Bottom Game Production Area and Corp of Engineer area lands north of 240th Street including the Pease Game Production Area in southwest Buffalo County; and the Boyer Game Production Area and Corp of Engineer area lands west of 342nd Avenue, south of 255th Street and Canyon Road, and south of a line extending from 256th Street west to the Missouri River (see map below).  This unit would consist of all public land and landowner preference will not apply.  With the creation of this limited access unit; archery, muzzleloader and youth deer hunters will be required to obtain a free, unlimited access permit from the department prior to hunting in this area.

Dates for the 2017 and 2018 East River deer hunting seasons are:

  • Nov. 18 - Dec. 3, 2017 Dec. 30, 2017 - Jan. 7, 2018 for antlerless deer tags only
  • Nov. 17 - Dec. 2, 2018 Dec. 29, 2018 - Jan. 6, 2019 for antlerless deer tags only

The Commission slightly reduced the total number of licenses available for the 2017 and 2018 West River deer hunting seasons compared to 2016. The total number of licenses will be 15,340 one-tag and 3,320 two-tag resident licenses and 1,231 one-tag and 266 two-tag licenses for nonresidents.

The Commission modified the proposal and eliminated the split seasons for Mellette County to have them align with the West River deer hunting season beginning in the 2018 hunting season. The split season dates for Gregory County will remain unchanged. The season dates for Unit 24B (Little Moreau) were modified to 16 consecutive days beginning on the Saturday 12 days before Thanksgiving.

Season dates for the 2017 and 2018 West River deer hunting seasons are:

  • Nov. 11-26, 2017
  • Nov. 10-25, 2018