Youth Hunting and Trapping in New York
Permission Requirements for Youth
Mentored Youth Permission Form
A mandatory form for junior trappers (12 or younger), junior hunters (15 or younger), or first-time big game hunters (16-17 years old) when accompanied by a non-parental, licensed adult.
Junior Big Game Hunting
Hunting with Bow (Ages 12+)
Youths aged 12 and above are allowed to hunt big game with a bow under supervision.
Hunting with Firearm (Ages 14+)
Youths aged 14 and over can hunt big game with a firearm, provided they have the necessary license and adult supervision.
County-Specific Rules for Ages 12-13
In certain counties, 12- and 13-year-olds may hunt deer with a firearm under specific regulations and adult supervision.
Junior Small Game Hunting
General Participation Rules
Youths can partake in all general small game seasons upon completing a Hunter Education course and obtaining a Hunting license.
Age-Specific Supervision Requirements
- Ages 12-13: Must be accompanied by an adult (21+) with a small game license.
- Ages 14-15: Required to be accompanied by an adult (18+) with a small game license.
Junior Trapping Program
Under-12 Trapping Mentorship
Youths under 12 can accompany and assist a licensed trapper with at least 3 years of experience.
Special Seasons for Junior Hunters
Youth Firearms Big Game Hunt
A special hunting opportunity over Columbus Day weekend for deer and bear.
Youth Wild Turkey Hunt
Initiated in spring 2004, allowing junior hunters to hunt turkeys with adult companions.
Youth Pheasant Hunt
Held on the last full weekend prior to the regular fall season, promoting traditional hunting practices.
Youth Waterfowl Hunt
A two-day hunt before the regular season, enabling young hunters to pursue waterfowl under adult guidance.