Permits for alligator hunting are by Special
Permit only. The application and drawing process is no longer in
See below details for more information.
All public water permitting process is in the process of
evaluation for changes for 2017.
Stay tuned here for updates during March and April,
(REQUIRED: permit holders must have a valid MS
hunting license to apply).
- To be eligible to purchase an alligator hunting permit
you must be at least 16 years of age and possess one of the
following valid resident licenses prior to the application process
to be eligible: Sportsman License, All-Game Hunting/Fishing
License, Small Game Hunting/Fishing License, Apprentice Sportsman
License, Apprentice All Game License, Apprentice Small Game
License, Senior Exempt License, Disabled Exempt License, or a
PERMIT AVAILABILITY FOR 2017 PUBLIC WATER HUNTING
Northwest - 50 permits
Northeast - 150 permits
West Central - 170 permits
Pearl River/Ross Barnett - 80
Southwest - 170 permits
South Central - 150 permits
Southeast - 150 Permits
Season - Harvest Summary
2015 Season - Harvest Summary
2014 Season - Harvest
Season - Harvest Summary
2012 Season - Harvest Summary
2016 Alligator Hunting Guide (Click Here)
Each permit is limited to a specific hunting zone.
There are 7 geographical public water alligator hunting
- NORTHEAST (excluding all portions of the Pearl River/Ross
- WEST CENTRAL
- SOUTH CENTRAL
- PEARL RIVER/ROSS BARNETT (see Regulations for
LEGAL WATERWAYS CLARIFICATION
For those permitted in the following MS Pubic Water Zones:
- West Central
- South Central
Clarification of Open Waterways:
- Legal public water for public water alligator hunters include
any public waterway, as designated by MDEQ, and all associated
portions of each drainage that are not privately owned and have
navigable access from the designated waterway.
- For those who hunt on or near state borderline waters, such as
the Mississippi River, lower Pearl River (in Pearl River and
Hancock Counties), Eagle Lake, Chotard Lake, Albermarle Lake,
Tennessee Lake, Lake Ferguson, Lake Whittington, and Lake Beulah,
BE ADVISED, to cross the state border while pursuing
alligators into any water that is not part of Mississippi will be
considered illegal alligator hunting by the adjoining state (i.e.
AR & LA). It shall be the hunter's responsibility
to be aware of state borders.
NOTICE Public waterways VS. Public Water - Do
not confuse the two terms, in regards to the Public Waters
Alligator Season. ONLY the public waters of the state designated as
"Public Waterways" by the MS Dept. of Environmental Quality are
open to alligator hunting. The only exceptions are the lakes
listed above. Hunters must become familiar with the rivers
designated on the MDEQ website (see link above). Not all
"public waters" are considered as "public waterways."
NOTE: State Boundary Line Waters: There
are NO reciprocal license agreements with adjacent states (AR &
LA) for alligator hunting. Therefore, anyone licensed to legally
hunt alligators in MS may only hunt in MS waters. It is the
hunters responsibility to know his/her location in regards to state
boundaries. Reciprocal license agreements allow
hunters/fishermen to legally hunt/fish in adjacent stateline waters
with either state's license when both states have concurrent
seasons or creel limits. THIS IS NOT APPLICABLE WITH ALLIGATOR
- The Northeast Zone will have 150 permits available to
applicants, the Pearl River/Ross Barnett Zone will have 80 permits,
the West Central and Southwest Zones will have 170 each, and the
Northwest Zone 50 permits available. A total of 920 alligator
harvest permits will be available in 2016.
- All zones open from August 26 - Sept 5, 2016
- Each permit has a 2 alligator bag limit. Must be 4 feet long or
longer, only 1 may exceed 7 feet long.
- Each hunter issued physical tags for each alligator.
- Harvest Reporting is Mandatory (via on-line harvest report and
NOTIFICATIONS for HUNTING ZONES:
West Central Zone
Hunters: Be aware that alligator hunting access is
allowed to permitted hunters at the Panther Swamp NWR boatramp
located at Lake George on Callihan Road. Federal agents will
enforce a no alligator hunting restriction north of the Callihan
Road bridge. Be certain that all ammunition is stored
Northeast Zone Hunters: Be aware to
consult U.S. Army Corps of Engineer (USACOE) regulations regarding
hunting activities and boatramp use prior to hunting USACOE
regulated waterways. Special permits from the USACOE may be
required. Some USACOE refuge areas are closed to all hunting.
For complete information, go to their website at http://www.sam.usace.army.mil
Then click on "Wildlife", then click on "Hunting Permit Program".
You may also call (662) 327-2142. Additionally, the
Pearl River/Ross Barnett Zone IS NOT open for Northeast Zone Permit
holders. No portion of Ross Barnett Reservoir or Pelahatchie Bay is
open for Northeast Zone Permit holders.
Pearl River/Ross Barnett Zone Hunters: The only
area open for hunting is as follows: The public waters of the Pearl
River Valley Water Supply District only within the area north of a
line from Fannin Landing to Channel Marker "A" to the Natchez Trace
Overlook on the main lake of Ross Barnett Reservoir, and south of
Lowhead Dam on the Pearl River (excluding all areas of the main
lake that are west of the Natchez Trace, i.e. North Bay and Twin
Harbors). The area south of a line from Fannin Landing to
Channel Marker "A" to the Natchez Trace Overlook on the main lake
of Ross Barnett Reservoir and Pelahatchie Bay is closed to
ALL ZONES: Only lakes that are described
specifically within each Zone are open to alligator hunting.
NO other lakes are open. See pages 45-46.
Search MS Public Boat Ramps
(click on below link):
The MS Alligator Hunting Training Courseis offered to each
person who is issued a Public Waters Permit or Private Lands
Voucher. The training course has limited attendance,
therefore, limited to permitted hunters for that year only.
However, each permitted hunter is allowed to bring one (1) guest to
the training course. Registration for the classes is an electronic
process that is available after permits have been issued. There is
no charge for attendance to the training courses. The training
courses provide information on alligator history, biology, MDWFP
Alligator Program, all alligator hunting regulations, capture
methods, capture gear, harvest methods, processing meat and hides,
harvest reporting and documentation, how/where to purchase
licenses and possession permits, and much more.
The only course offered for 2016 will be at Roosevelt
State Park on August 13, 2016.
A morning and an afternoon course will be offered.
Obtaining CITES Tags
after the harvest
A federal CITES tag is required to be attached to the hide near
the end of the tail if being sold to a licensed alligator parts
dealer/processor or prior to transportation across state lines. A
CITES tag(s) will be mailed to you upon receipt of your harvest
report. CITES tags may also be obtained from Regional Offices
in person, Monday-Friday, 8am-5pm.
- The wildlife agencies of Arkansas and Louisiana have
specifically approved that properly licensed hunters with legally
harvested alligators with properly attached
temporary possession tags are legal to transport through their
- A federal CITES Tag must be attached to the head/hide/carcass,
if left in the possession of a person, processor, or buyer in any
other state than Mississippi.
- Never sell a hide or carcass to anyone who does not require a
- Jackson Main Office, Wildlife Bureau - (601) 432-2217
- North Region Office, Enid - (662) 563-6224
- Central Region Office, Canton - (601) 859-3421
- South Region Office, Magnolia - (601) 783-2911
Record Alligator Certification Procedures
Hunters who wish to certify an alligator as a potential state
record of harvest should contact the MDWFP at 601-432-2217 or
(after business hours) 601-432-2170. Hunters should be
prepared to provide the following information at the time of your
- Total length (feet - inches)
- Belly girth (inches)
- Tail girth (inches)
- Weight (lbs) (only needed if a potential weight record, plus
length and girth measurements)
The Alligator Program Coordinator will return the call ASAP,
usually within 24 hours. If deemed a potential record by the
program coordinator, arrangements will be made to meet with MDWFP
personnel to obtain an official weight or length measurement.
Regarding Weight Records: Since weights are so difficult to
estimate and vary greatly, hunters must pre-weigh their alligator
before contacting the MDWFP. If certified scales are not available,
then efforts should be made by the hunter to obtain a weight from a
reputable source of scales. Weight certification must be on
certified scales or other MDWFP approved scales and witnessed
by a MDWFP officer or biologist.
- Lay the alligator on a flat surface with the carcass
laying completly flat and straight. Using a cloth measuring
tape, measure along the dorsal side (top) of the alligator
from the tip of the snout to the tip of the tail following the
dorsal contour of the alligator.
- Measure to the nearest 1/8 inch.
- For weight, be sure the alligator is completely suspended from
- For weight, be sure to "zero tare" the scales when
chains or straps are used to hoist the alligator before
hoisting the alligator for measureing the weight. Chains and
straps should not be included into the weight