Elk Hunting Regulations Overview
Hunting Methods and Seasons
Hunting methods permitted for elk vary by the specific portion of the hunting season. Always review current season information alongside General Hunting Regulations.
Hunter Orange Requirement
During the firearms portion of elk season, the wearing of hunter orange is compulsory. Review all specific requirements before taking to the field.
- Using bait, such as grain or feed, to attract elk is illegal.
- An area is classified as baited for 10 days post-bait removal.
- Violations occur if a hunter uses bait knowingly or should have reasonably known of its presence.
- Placing bait that causes others to violate the law is illegal.
- Mineral and salt blocks are banned on conservation areas.
- Use of elk urine and non-food-based scents (apple, acorn, persimmon) to lure elk is allowed.
- Pure mineral blocks and salt are not considered bait, but those containing grain additives are not permitted.
- Hunting over a harvested crop field is legal, yet adding grain or other food afterward is not.
- Crop manipulation like mowing isn't classified as baiting.
Elk Hunting Limits and Areas
Elk permits are allotted through a random draw, awarding successful applicants the chance to harvest one elk with a minimum 6-inch antler. Elk hunting is confined to Carter, Reynolds, and Shannon counties, excluding the Peck Ranch Conservation Area's refuge.
Assisting Other Hunters
Adults mentoring youth (11-15 years) are not required to hold an elk permit. However, during the elk hunting season, assisting with calling or taking elk necessitates a filled or unfilled elk permit unless only accompanying without involvement in the actual hunt.
Tree Stand Regulations on Conservation Areas
Portable tree stands are allowed from September 1 to January 31, provided they are labeled with the user's details and do not damage the trees. They must be removed by February 1.
Missouri Outdoor Recreational Access Program (MRAP) Rules
Different rules apply in MRAP areas, including the daily removal of tree stands. Familiarize yourself with the posted regulations.
Retrieval and Use of Dogs
Retrieve any killed or injured elk and include it in your seasonal limit without trespassing. Never abandon edible game parts. Dogs may assist in tracking wounded elk but must be leashed and under control. Trackers don't need a hunting permit if not armed.
Immediately after harvesting an elk, notch the permit indicating the month and date, and attach it to the animal if left unattended. Telecheck the elk by 10:00 p.m. on the harvest day, keeping the carcass intact or properly quartered with evidence of sex until reported.
Disposal of Elk Carcasses
It is not permitted to dispose of elk carcasses or parts in any bodies of water, including wells, streams, and lakes.
Possession and Sale of Elk
Properly checked elk can be possessed and labeled with the taker’s details and Telecheck confirmation number. A bill of sale is necessary for the sale of elk parts. Report any found dead elk with attached antlers to a conservation agent within 24 hours. Shed antlers detached from the skull may be possessed or sold without specific authorization.
Review all regulations pertinent to wildlife handling, from gifting to selling, to ensure compliance with legal and ethical standards.
For more information, explore related content on elk hunting practices, ethics, and regulations.