What are the regulations for coyote hunting in New Hampshire? Can you use bait or suppressors? Is there a season for coyotes? This article will give you an excellent place to start–but you are responsible for checking out the law yourself. Laws change; stay updated!
In New Hampshire, there is no closed hunting season on coyotes. A hunting license is required. Artificial light can be used for coyote night hunting from January 1–March 31. Baiting may require a permit. Suppressors and electronic callers are permitted.
Purchase a New Hampshire here.
Visit this website for updated coyote hunting regulations in New Hampshire.
Related: You can also read the laws for hunting fox in New Hampshire.
Laws for coyote hunting in New Hampshire.
Using electronic callers when coyote hunting in New Hampshire.
Using callers is legal in New Hampshire.
Related: Remember, you are hunting eastern coyotes—learn how to here.
Related: Read this article on what are the best calls for coyote hunting.
The use of suppressors when hunting in New Hampshire is now legal—check for other restrictions.
Check on Amazon for electronic predator caller prices.
Using bait when coyote hunting in New Hampshire.
Baiting for Wildlife:
(a) In addition to the requirements specified in RSA 207:3-d, a person engaged in the act of baiting furbearing animals or game animals with the exception of gray squirrel shall be in compliance with Fis 307.
(b) No person shall engage in the act of baiting furbearing animals or game animals with the exception of a gray squirrel from April 15 to August 31.
(c) Pursuant to RSA 207:3-dII., “no person shall engage in the act of baiting on the property of another unless he has secured from the owner or occupant of the property upon which the bait is to be deposited a permit in writing signed by the owner or occupant” and complied with the other requirements specified in RSA 207:3-d.
(d) The permit to be used for baiting on the property of another shall be a “Permit to Bait Wildlife” form provided by the department as described in Fis 1102.04, and signed by the owner or occupant in (c).
(e) Permit applications to bait wildlife on lands other than state owned or managed lands shall not be considered unless received by the department or are postmarked on or before the first Monday in August if baiting for bear, or received by the department or are postmarked on or before the first Monday in October for all other species, except:
(1) Applicants may apply beginning December 1 for permits to bait coyote for the year following; and
(2) Permits to bait bear shall be issued by the executive director or his designated agents after the application deadlines as necessary to assist in addressing nuisance bear issues.
(f) Two copies of the completed and signed permit to bait on lands other than state owned or managed lands shall be submitted in hand or by mail to the N. H. Fish and Game Department, Wildlife Division, 11 Hazen Drive, Concord, NH 03301 and shall include a topographic map or copy thereof showing the specific location of said bait site.
(g) The permittee shall also distribute copies of the completed and signed permit as follows:
(1) One copy shall be retained by the permittee; and
(2) One copy shall be left with the landowner.
(h) No bait shall be placed unless the permit with map have been submitted to the Wildlife Division or until 3 days have elapsed after the date of postmark if mailed.
(i) A person with a current hunting license shall be allowed a maximum of 2 active bait sites for private use and a licensed N.H. hunting guide shall in addition be allowed a maximum of 6 active bait sites for commercial use. A bait site shall be considered active if the baiting season for the species allowed on the permit to bait wildlife is open or if no specific expiration date is noted on the permit form.
(j) No person other than the permittee listed on a permit to bait wildlife shall place bait or add any material to bait previously placed, under said permit.
(k) All permits to bait wildlife shall expire no later than December 31 following the date of issuance unless an earlier date has been specified on the permit form except as provided by (e)(1).
(l) A permit to bait wildlife shall be valid for a single permittee only and shall have only that permittee’s name entered on the permit.
(m) A person placing bait shall post a sign bearing his or her name and address at each bait site, in a clearly visible manner not higher than 6 feet off the ground, on an identification sign made of durable material at least 3 inches by 6 inches in size.
(n) The sign specified in (m) above may bear the names of not more than 2 other persons permitted to take furbearing animals or game animals by aid and use of bait.
(o) No identification sign placed in compliance with this section shall be altered by the substitution or changing of the names listed thereon.
(p) No person other than the permittee authorized to place bait at a site shall remove, alter, or destroy any identification sign posted in compliance with (m) above.
(q) A licensed hunting guide authorized under the provisions of Fis 1106.03 and Fis 1300 shall not be required to post the names of paying clients attempting to take coyote, furbearing animals or game animals over lawful commercial baits placed by him.
(r) No person shall place bait in public waters or on ice covered public waters.
(s) No person, except licensed hunting guides in accordance with (q) above, shall take furbearing animals or game animals by the aid or use of bait unless they are identified on the sign identified in (m) and (n).
(t) Upon the request of any conservation officer, a permittee or an applicant to bait shall be required to accompany the conservation officer to the proposed or existing bait site for purposes such as, but not limited to, determining the actual location of the bait site and compliance with the provisions of RSA 207:3-d and Fis 307.
(u) The refusal of a permittee or an applicant to comply with the provisions of paragraph (s) shall be grounds for the denial of the application, if pending, and/or the revocation of the permit if previously issued.
(v) A baited area as defined in RSA 207:1, II-b shall not be considered an active bait site when all containers used to hold bait such as barrels, plastic bags, pails and boxes, and any bait material are completely removed.
(w) From the close of the season to take bear with the aid and use of bait as specified in Fis 307.02 through December 15, baiting for coyote shall be restricted to the use of meat, animal parts, carrion, or fish.
Related: Learn how to make the perfect coyote bait pile here.
Discharging firearms when coyote hunting in New Hampshire.
Discharging of firearms
- It is illegal to discharge a firearm or shoot with a bow and arrow or crossbow and bolt or a .22 caliber or larger air rifle when used for hunting purposes within 300 feet of a permanently occupied dwelling without permission of the owner or occupant, or from the owner of the land on which the person shooting the firearm, air rifle, bow and arrow, or crossbow and bolt is situated. A firearm may not be discharged within 300 feet of any commercial, educational or medical building, or outdoor public gathering place.
- Firearms may not be discharged within the compact area of any town or city (any contiguous area containing 6 or more buildings used as part time or permanent dwellings where each is within 300 feet of one of the other buildings, plus a 300 foot wide perimeter around all of the buildings).
Vehicle regulations for hunting coyotes in New Hampshire.
Use of OHRVs (ATV, trail bike, UTV) requires written landowner permission unless on a sanctioned ATV trail and must be registered when operating off your own property. No person shall carry on a moving OHRV, or a trailer towed by the same, a firearm unless it is unloaded. This does not apply to pistols or revolvers.
Using a tree stand to hunt coyotes in New Hampshire.
Written landowner permission is required for any tree stand, ladder, or observation blind which damages or destroys a tree by inserting into the tree any metallic, ceramic, or other object. Written landowner permission is also required if any tree is cut in conjunction with the use of any stand or blind or to construct a pit blind. These permits can be found at huntnh.com/licensing/forms.html under “Miscellaneous Permits.”
On State-owned and State-managed lands, permanent stands are illegal. Portable stands or blinds may only be erected between August 1 and January 31, and must be removed by January 31.
Special laws for hunting coyotes in New Hampshire.
Remote Control or Internet Hunting Prohibited. –
I. No person shall offer for sale, take, or assist in the taking of wildlife by use of remote control or Internet hunting. Any person who violates this section shall be guilty of a class A misdemeanor if a natural person and guilty of a felony if any other person. In addition, the executive director may impose a civil penalty of not less than $10,000 for each violation of this section, with the moneys received from imposition of such civil penalty to be deposited in the fish and game fund.
II. For the purpose of this section “remote control or Internet hunting” shall mean the use of a computer or other electronic device, equipment, or software, to remotely control the aiming or discharge of a firearm or other weapon, that allows a person, not physically present, to take wildlife.
Lawful Methods of Taking. –
I. Wildlife shall be taken in the daytime between 1/2 hour before sunrise and 1/2 hour after sunset with a gun, firearm, muzzleloader, or air rifle, fired at arm’s length, bow and arrow or crossbow, or a lever-action carbine chambered in .357, .44 Magnum, or .45 Colt in any area where hunting is restricted to handgun or pistol, unless otherwise specifically permitted. An air rifle may be used to take small game but shall not be used to take moose, bear, turkey, or deer. The executive director shall specify the method and manner of taking small game with an air rifle in rules adopted pursuant to RSA 541-A.
II. A full automatic rifle shall not be used at any time nor shall a semi-automatic rifle be used to which is attached a magazine or clip holding more than 6 cartridges, nor shall a full jacketed metal case bullet be used, either in its original form or any alteration thereof.
III. Paragraph II shall not apply to the use of .22 or smaller caliber rimfire firearms.
IV. A person may take wildlife during the open season therefor with the aid of a dog, unless otherwise specifically prohibited.
Hunting from Motor Vehicle, OHRV, Snowmobile, Boat, or Aircraft. –
I. No person shall take or attempt to take wild birds or wild animals from a motor vehicle, OHRV, snowmobile as defined in RSA 215-C:1, boat, aircraft or other craft propelled by mechanical power.
II. No person shall have or carry, in or on a motor vehicle, OHRV, snowmobile, or aircraft, when moving, a cocked crossbow, a loaded rifle or loaded shotgun, muzzleloader, or air rifle, except a person or a person’s agent while in the act of protecting his or her interest in their livestock or crops. Except when crossing or traveling on a public way, such person or the person’s agent may carry a loaded rifle or shotgun, muzzleloader, or air rifle while traveling through or between farming or agricultural areas while in the course of protecting his or her interest in their livestock or crops.
III. No person shall have in or on a boat or other craft while being propelled by mechanical power, or in a boat or other craft being towed by a boat or other craft propelled by mechanical power, a cocked crossbow, a loaded rifle or loaded shotgun, muzzleloader, or air rifle.
IV. The provisions of this section shall not apply to law enforcement officers carrying guns or firearms in the line of duty.
Safety while hunting coyotes in New Hampshire.
Shooting Human Beings While Hunting. –
I. Any person, while on a hunting trip, or in pursuit of wild animals or wild birds, or while target practicing, who negligently shoots and wounds any human being, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.
II. Any person, while on a hunting trip, or in pursuit of wild animals or wild birds, or while target practicing, who shoots and causes the death of any human being, may be charged pursuant to the appropriate criminal code statute.
III. The provisions of this section shall apply to any person hunting or target practicing with a firearm, bow and arrow, or crossbow and bolt.
IV. In addition to the penalties provided in this section, the person shall be subject to license revocation under RSA 207:37-b.
Abandoning a Wounded or Killed Human Being. – Any person who shall have shot and wounded or killed a human being shall forthwith render necessary assistance to the injured person and report immediately to the nearest conservation officer or law enforcement officer. Any person who knowingly fails to render such assistance shall be guilty of a class B felony and his license to hunt shall be revoked for life. The penalty for conviction under this section shall be in addition to any other penalty imposed by law.
Shooting Domestic Animals; Liability. – Any person, while actually engaged in hunting or in the pursuit of wild animals or wild birds, who causes death, injury, or damage to domestic animals, ducks, or fowl shall be liable for damages to the owner of the animals.
Killing by Land Owner of Bird or Animal Inflicting Damage. – A person may pursue, wound or kill, on land owned or occupied by such person, any unprotected bird or wild animal which the person finds in the act of doing actual and substantial damage to poultry, crops, domestic animals, or the person’s property, and may authorize a family member, employee, or other person requested to do so under the provision of a depredation permit issued by the executive director pursuant to RSA 207:22-c, III.
Property seizures for violations while hunting coyotes in New Hampshire.
Seizures and Acquisitions. –
I. All fish and wildlife protected by this title, found in the possession of any person and not legally taken or possessed, shall be seized and forfeited. All such fish and wildlife so forfeited shall be disposed of by a conservation officer upon instructions from the executive director.
II. The proceeds from the sale of seized and road-killed furbearers and coyotes acquired by the department of fish and game shall be deposited in the fish and game fund.
Other Property upon Conviction. –
I. When a defendant is convicted of violating any of the provisions of this title, all fishing tackle, guns, shooting or hunting paraphernalia, traps, dogs, boats, decoys, bob houses or other appliances and vehicles except motor vehicles designed for use on the highway and required to be registered under the provisions of RSA 261 used in such violation may be seized and held until the fine and costs for the violation have been paid in full.
II. One year after conviction under paragraph I, if the defendant has not paid the fine and costs imposed in full or when the seized or confiscated property is not claimed by the defendant, the executive director is authorized to sell at public auction any of the seized or confiscated property of said defendant. All receipts from said sale shall be credited to the fish and game fund.
III. If the seized or confiscated property is of no monetary value, and cannot be sold pursuant to paragraph II, said property may be destroyed under the instructions of the executive director.
IV. In the event that the owner of any confiscated or abandoned property is not known or cannot be located, said confiscated or abandoned property may be sold at public auction by the executive director after one year from the date said property came into the possession of the fish and game department.
Minors hunting coyotes in New Hampshire.
I. No person shall knowingly permit any minor, including a nonresident minor, less than 16 years of age to hunt using a firearm, bow and arrow, air rifle, or crossbow and bolt, except when accompanied by a person at least 18 years of age who is properly licensed for said activity. In accordance with RSA 626:8, II(b), such person shall be held criminally liable and fully accountable for any damage incurred or for any violations which may be committed by the minor under the age of 16 while hunting using a firearm, bow and arrow, air rifle, or crossbow and bolt.
II. No minor, including a nonresident minor, under the age of 16 shall hunt using a firearm, bow and arrow, air rifle, or crossbow and bolt, except when accompanied by a person at least 18 years of age who is properly licensed for said activity.
Night hunting coyotes in New Hampshire—illegal acts.
Illegal Night Hunting
I. A person is guilty of a misdemeanor if the person: (a) Knowingly takes wild birds or wild animals between 1/2 hour after sunset and 1/2 hour before sunrise.(b) Knowingly uses an artificial light between 1/2 hour after sunset and 1/2 hour before sunrise to illuminate, locate, or attempt to locate wild birds or wild animals while possessing on the person or in a motor vehicle, OHRV, snowmobile, boat, aircraft, or other craft propelled by mechanical power, a bow and arrow, crossbow and bolt, rifle, pistol, revolver, shotgun, or muzzle-loading firearm with live ammunition to fit the weapon, whether loaded or unloaded.
II. Any person convicted of illegal night hunting shall forfeit such firearms, lights, or any other equipment used or usable in the illegal night hunting at the time of such offense.
III. The knowledge or belief required for paragraph I is presumed in the case of a person who: (a) Uses or is found in the possession of a bow and arrow, crossbow and bolt, a muzzle-loading firearm with live ammunition components to fit, or a rifle, revolver, or pistol larger than .22 caliber long rifle; or(b) Uses shotgun shells carrying shot larger than number 4 birdshot.
IV. Nothing contained in this section shall be construed to prohibit the use of lights for checking traps as permitted in RSA 210:13.
Baiting permit for hunting coyotes in New Hampshire.
Baiting: The act of placing meat, carrion, honey, or any other food or ingestible substance capable of luring or attracting coyote, fur-bearing animals, or game animals with the exception of gray squirrel.
No person may bait wildlife on the property of another unless he has secured from the owner or occupant of the property upon which the bait is to be deposited a permit (Permit To Bait Wildlife) in writing, signed by the owner or occupant, and until he has filed a copy of the permit with the NH Fish and Game Department as specified below, together with a USGS map or copy thereof showing the specific location of the bait site (207:3-d).
On state-owned or state-managed lands (National Forest) permit applications will be accepted at any time, except applications for baiting bear and deer shall not be considered unless received by the Dept. or postmarked between the first Monday in June and the first Monday in August. Note: Special rules apply for the Connecticut Lakes Headwaters Forest baiting permit lottery (see Fis 307.05(k)).
• If baiting on state-owned or state-managed land: One copy with map attached shall be submitted by hand or mailed to the Law Enforcement Division, NH Fish and Game Department, 11 Hazen Drive, Concord, NH 03301. Once it has been approved, our office will send you the signed permit.
On lands other than state-owned or state-managed, permit applications shall not be considered unless received by the Dept. or are postmarked on or before the first Monday in August if baiting for bear, or received by the Fish and Game Department or postmarked on or before the first Monday in October for all other species, except applicants may apply beginning December 1 for permits to bait coyote for the following year.
Prior to the placement of any bait, copies of this permit shall be distributed as follows: • Original to be retained by permittee.
• One copy to be left with the landowner.
• If not baiting on state-owned or state-managed land: Two copies with map attached shall be submitted by hand to or mailed to the Wildlife Division, NH Fish and Game Department, 11 Hazen Drive, Concord, NH 03301. Other than for deer or bear, the permittee shall not place any bait until 3 days after the date of postmark during the open season.
General rules for baiting while hunting coyotes in New Hampshire.
A permit to bait wildlife shall be valid for a single permittee only and shall have only that permittee’s name entered on the permit. No person other than the permittee is authorized to place bait. At each bait site, an identification sign at least 3 x 6 inches in size shall bear the name and address of the person placing said bait, and shall bear the names of not more than 2 other persons permitted to hunt over the bait (excluding guides).
No identification sign at a bait site shall be altered by substitution or by changing of the names listed thereon during the open season for taking bear.
A person with a current hunting license may be allowed a maximum of 2 active bait sites, depending on the species and WMU. A bait site shall be considered active if the baiting season for the species allowed on the permit to bait wildlife is open or if no specific expiration date is noted on the permit form.
No person shall engage in the act of baiting for fur-bearing animals, including coyote or game animals, with the exception of gray squirrel from April 15 to August 31. No person shall place bait less than 300 feet from a dwelling or public roadway, path, or trail.
From the close of the season to take bear with the aid and use of bait thru December 15, baiting for coyote shall be restricted to the use of meat, animal parts, carrion, or fish.
No person shall use the aid of bait to take wild turkeys.
This permit does not convey any rights other than permission to bait the wildlife species indicated according to the laws of the State of New Hampshire, subject to whatever stipulations the landowner may prescribe.
This summary of the baiting regulations is intended only as a guide. The complete Fish and Game Laws may be viewed at www.wildlife.state.nh.us