As temperatures cool and the days shorten, excitement is growing in New Hampshire’s hunting community for the opening of the fall archery deer season on September 15. This year hunters should be aware of several changes affecting deer registration. For the first time in the Granite State, deer hunters will have the option of registering their deer online this fall. To register your deer online or to learn more about what to do following a successful harvest visit www.wildlife.nh.gov/hunting-nh/check-stations-registration.
Physical registration stations will also remain a choice for those who prefer the experience of in-person registration. To allow for the collection of biological data, online registration will be unavailable on the first two days of muzzleloader season, October 28 and 29, and the first three days of firearms season, November 8, 9, and 10. Hunters must check in their deer in person on these days because online registration will be unavailable.
To accommodate the new online registration system and streamline the tracking of deer registrations, New Hampshire Fish and Game will no longer issue metal deer seals. Instead, hunters will be issued a confirmation number that will serve as their proof of registration. Some deer registration stations have chosen to purchase replica metal deer seals to issue to successful hunters to maintain a sense of tradition and nostalgia. Hunters should be aware that these are not official deer seals and cannot be used as proof of registration. Fish and Game understands that some hunters may be disappointed that a department-issued metal seal will no longer be attached to their harvest, however, the Department does not condone the issuance of these unofficial seals for the following reasons:
- Fish and Game is unable to track information associated with these seals.
- A replica metal seal no longer serves as proof of registration. Hunters must retain their official registration confirmation number.
- Hunters registering their deer in person must do so at the first open registration station on their route and should not seek an alternate registration station that is issuing replica seals.
- Hunters who initially register their deer online should not then go to a registration station and re-register their deer to obtain a seal; only register your deer once.
- If you bring your deer to a butcher for processing, do not provide an unofficial seal number to identify your harvest; only provide your official confirmation number. Fish and Game collects samples from butchers to test for chronic wasting disease (CWD) and biologists must be able to identify the animal correctly.
Online registration will provide a modern and convenient way for hunters to register their deer harvest going forward. Those hunters who appreciate the tradition of in-person registration can continue to frequent one of the many registration stations around the state.
To learn more about deer hunting in New Hampshire, visit www.wildlife.nh.gov/hunting-nh/deer-hunting-new-hampshire. For a list of in-person deer registration locations, visit www.wildlife.nh.gov/hunting-nh/check-stations-registration.