Nonresident Turkey Hunting on Public Lands
All nonresidents require special permitting during the season's opening weeks.
Turkey hunters hoping to travel to Mississippi should be aware rules have changed if they intend to hunt on public lands during the spring season’s opening two weeks. Nonresident hunters must obtain a special, no-cost Public Land Endorsement in addition to regularly required licenses when hunting open public lands between March 15 – 28. The new endorsement will be allotted in limited quantities via a drawing conducted in mid-February. Winners will be notified by email.
Prospective hunters can apply for the drawing anytime between 10AM CT January 17– 10AM CT February 15 via the green button at the top of this page.
Frequently Asked Questions
Who does this regulation effect? This requirement is effective for nonresidents hunting any open public land during the first two weeks of Mississippi's regular spring season (March 15-28). Open public lands include National Forests, non-draw hunt Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs), National Wildlife Refuges, Corps of Engineers lands, Department of Defense lands, etc., that have statewide season frameworks without other special regulations.
Why are you requiring this new license endorsement? Mississippi has always been a destination for nonresident turkey hunters. However, its popularity has increased dramatically in recent years; nonresident license sales have doubled since 2019. This new license endorsement was established to maintain hunting quality on Mississippi's limited public lands. MDWFP's goal is to ensure hunter numbers on public lands are realigned closer to historic norms, rather than the skyrocketing demand of recent years.
Do I need the nonresident public land license endorsement if I will only be hunting on private lands? No.
Do I still need the nonresident public land license endorsement even if I have a resident or Native Son Lifetime License? Yes. Your current residency status precedes your Lifetime License in determining the need to acquire the nonresident public land license endorsement.
Do I need the nonresident Public Land License Endorsement if I am drawn to hunt a Wildlife Management Area (WMA) with an existing permit-only season between March 15-28? No. If you are drawn to hunt a WMA though the traditional WMA draw system, you will not be required to have the Public Land Endorsement. Your winning permit notification for the WMA drawing will serve in lieu of the Public Land License Endorsement. However, without additionally acquiring the Public Land Endorsement, you will be limited to only hunting the WMA and timeframe for which you were drawn.
Does the Public Land License Endorsement allow me to hunt on WMAs which are listed as "Permit Only" from March 15-28 in the WMA regulations? No. "Permit Only" status in the WMA regulations refers to MDWFP's traditional draw hunts which are applicable to both residents and nonresidents. The Public Land License Endorsement is not equivalent to being drawn for this set of WMAs. To be eligible to hunt permit only WMAs, a hunter would need to have applied specifically for each individual WMA. Permit only WMA winners would have been notified by email.
Can I apply for both the open public land license endorsement drawing and the traditional drawings for individual permit-only WMAs? Yes.
I am planning to come hunt open public lands in Mississippi after March 28th. Will I still need to acquire the Public Land License Endorsement via the drawing? No. Only hunters planning to hunt open public lands during the season's initial two weeks will need to be drawn and acquire the endorsement.
If I am selected for the nonresident Public Land License Endorsement, will I still need to purchase the $50 Spring Turkey Permit? Yes. The Spring Turkey Permit is a separate license requirement from the nonresident public land license endorsement. All nonresidents, with the exception of those who hold a resident Lifetime License, must purchase the Spring Turkey Permit. Nonresident turkey hunters additionally need a relevant All Game license if they do not currently possess one.