Antlerless Deer Permit
Extra antlerless deer permits are available for purchase in WMD 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, and 29. Click here for a WMD map.
On this page:
- About Antlerless Deer Permits
- How to Apply to the Antlerless Deer Permit Lottery
- Claim and Purchase your Lottery Permit
- Purchase an Extra Permit Online
- When an Antlerless Deer Permit is Required
- Permit Allocations and Areas Allowing Antlerless Harvest without a Permit
- Frequently Asked Questions
About Antlerless Deer Permits
A licensed hunter with an antlerless deer permit can harvest an antlerless deer in the designated district and an antlered deer statewide. Antlerless deer permits may be acquired through the lottery, and any remaining permits will be available for purchase on the MDIFW website.
There is no fee to apply to the antlerless deer permit lottery. After the lottery drawing, successful applicants must claim and purchase the permit for $12 (plus $2 agent fee).
Proceeds from the antlerless deer permit fee will help fund the purchase and management of deer wintering areas (DWAs), primarily in northern Maine. Deer wintering areas are a critical habitat for white-tailed deer living at the northern end of their range.
How to Apply to the Antlerless Deer Permit Lottery
Apply to the annual Antlerless Deer Permit Lottery
Antlerless deer applications were available online only June 27 – August 1, 2023 at 11:59 PM.
If you do not have access to a computer or the Internet at home, we would suggest:
- Using a computer at your local library
- Using a computer at work during lunch or a break
- Asking a friend or relative with a computer for help in applying
There is no fee to apply for an antlerless deer permit. If you receive a permit you must pay the $12 permit fee and $2 agent fee to claim the permit.
To apply for an antlerless deer permit, you must possess a valid Maine license to hunt big game.
You may enter up to two (2) WMD or deer management subunit choices for your permit in order of preference.
Applicants with a legal residence outside the United States or Canada cannot apply online. Those wishing to apply will need to contact the Department at (207) 287-8000 for help in applying.
Claim and Purchase your Lottery Permit
Claiming your Permit through the Lottery
Antlerless deer permit recipients were posted on the MDIFW website on August 15 and the deadline to claim and purchase a lottery permit was 11:59pm on September 12, 2023.
Permit recipients will receive their permit number upon payment to claim their permit. The permit number is required when registering deer.
Permit recipients will be notified by email but will not receive a permit or transportation tags via mail. Permit numbers can also be found using the Purchased Permit Lookup.
Super pack license holders still need to claim their permit but will not be charged the permit fee if the permit was awarded during the super pack drawing. Learn more about super pack antlerless deer permits.
Purchase an Extra Permit Online
Extra antlerless deer permits are available to purchase online only beginning Tuesday, September 19 at 9:30 AM. All hunters, including those who did not apply to the lottery, those who received a permit through the lottery, and those that applied to the lottery but did not receive a permit through the lottery, may purchase an extra antlerless deer permit online on a first come, first served basis.
When an Antlerless Deer Permit is Required
Regular Firearms Season and Muzzleloader Seasons: During these seasons, only those hunters possessing an antlerless deer permit may hunt antlerless deer and bucks with antlers less than three inches in length; other hunters are restricted to hunting bucks with antlers three inches or more in length.
Regular Archery and Crossbow Season: During the regular archery and crossbow season on deer (does not include expanded archery), bucks may be taken statewide. Antlerless deer may be taken without a permit in designated Wildlife Management Districts (WMDs)/subunits.
Antlerless deer taken without a permit during the regular archery and crossbow season are not additional to the buck that is granted by the archery hunting license.
Hunters who possess an antlerless deer permit may take an additional deer, which must be antlerless, in the WMD/subunit designated on their permit.
Youth Deer Hunt (October 20 - October 21, 2023): During the Youth Hunt, junior hunters may take one antlered deer OR one antlerless deer statewide (without a permit).
- If a junior hunter takes an antlered deer on Youth Deer Hunting Day, they are prohibited from taking additional deer unless they have antlerless deer permits or participate in the expanded archery season (designated areas only) with appropriate expanded archery permits.
- If a junior hunter takes an antlerless deer without an antlerless deer permit on Youth Deer Hunting Day, they are prohibited from taking an antlered deer or additional antlerless deer unless they have antlerless deer permits or participate in the expanded archery season (designated areas only) with appropriate expanded archery permits.
Expanded Archery Season: Those seeking expanded archery antlerless permits do not need to apply to the lottery. Expanded archery hunters must use expanded archery permits. Learn more about expanded archery season on deer.
Permit Allocations and Areas Allowing Antlerless Harvest without a Permit
Antlerless Deer Permit Allocations by Wildlife Management District (WMD)/subunit for 2023 and Antlerless Harvest without a Permit During the Youth Hunt and Regular Archery and Crossbow Deer Hunting Seasons
The number of antlerless deer permits to be allocated for each WMD or deer management subunit will not exceed the numbers listed below. The WMDs or deer management subunits in which antlerless harvest without a permit is allowed during the Youth Hunt and regular archery and crossbow deer hunting seasons are designated below in the “Youth Hunt- Antlerless w/out Permit” and “Reg. Archery- Antlerless w/out Permit” columns.
|WMD or Subunit||# of Permits||Youth Hunt- Antlerless w/out Permit||Reg. Archery- Antlerless w/out Permit||WMD or Subunit||# of Permits||Youth Hunt- Antlerless w/out Permit||Reg. Archery- Antlerless w/out Permit|
|1||0||Fri. + Sat.||Yes||17||11,350||Fri. + Sat.||Yes|
|2||0||Fri. + Sat.||Yes||18||300||Fri. + Sat.||Yes|
|3||25||Fri. + Sat.||Yes||19||25||Fri. + Sat.||Yes|
|4||0||Fri. + Sat.||Yes||20||6,095||Fri. + Sat.||Yes|
|5||0||Fri. + Sat.||Yes||21||12,895||Fri. + Sat.||Yes|
|6||130||Fri. + Sat.||Yes||22||12,730||Fri. + Sat.||Yes|
|7||780||Fri. + Sat.||Yes||23||16,460||Fri. + Sat.||Yes|
|8||375||Fri. + Sat.||Yes||24||9,400||Fri. + Sat.||Yes|
|9||115||Fri. + Sat.||Yes||25||16,065||Fri. + Sat.||Yes|
|10||40||Fri. + Sat.||Yes||26||2,660||Fri. + Sat.||Yes|
|11||85||Fri. + Sat.||Yes||27||180||Fri. + Sat.||Yes|
|12||490||Fri. + Sat.||Yes||28||25||Fri. + Sat.||Yes|
|13||765||Fri. + Sat.||Yes||29||2,285||Fri. + Sat.||Yes|
|14||385||Fri. + Sat.||Yes||25a||230||Fri. + Sat.||Yes|
|15||7,480||Fri. + Sat.||Yes||26a||250||Fri. + Sat.||Yes|
|16||6,450||Fri. + Sat.||Yes||Total Permits: 108,070|
Frequently Asked Questions
If you have additional questions about antlerless deer permits, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
I purchased a permit, but do not know my permit number. Where can I find it?
How will proceeds from the antlerless deer permit fee be used?
$12 from each permit will be deposited into the Maine Deer Management Fund, the $2 agent fee will cover administrative costs. Proceeds from this permit will help fund the acquisition and management of deer wintering areas (DWAs), primarily in northern Maine. Deer wintering areas are a critical habitat for white-tailed deer living at the northern end of their range. A DWA is the habitat where deer go year after year to avoid harsh winter winds and deep snow. Any acquired lands will also be managed as public Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs) open to public recreation.
The charge will appear on your credit card statement as "ME IFW ATV SNOW REG", which is how the funds are coded into the system. All funds from antlerless deer permits go to the Maine Deer Management Fund.
When can I purchase a permit online?
Antlerless deer permits issued through the lottery were available for purchase online only August 15-September 12, 2023 at 11:59 pm.
Extra antlerless deer permits will be available for purchase online only starting September 19, 2023 at 9:30 AM. All hunters, including those who did not apply to the lottery, those who received a permit through the lottery, and those that applied to the lottery but did not receive a permit through the lottery, may purchase an antlerless deer permit online on a first come, first served basis.
Hunters who were issued a permit through the lottery and claimed their permit by the deadline can purchase two antlerless deer permits total (one through the lottery, and one online).
Antlerless deer permits will be sold online only.
Are hunters that are over 70, junior hunters, landowners, or those with a qualifying complimentary hunting license required to purchase their antlerless deer permit?
Yes, hunters over 70, junior hunters, and landowners are still required to purchase their antlerless deer permit.
Complimentary Paraplegic Hunting License Holders: Those who have a complimentary paraplegic hunting license do not need to apply for an antlerless deer permit as their license grants the right to an antlerless deer from any wildlife management district (WMD) where antlerless deer permits are allocated. Beyond this first granted antlerless deer, additional permits must be purchased.
Do I need to use my antlerless deer permit before I can purchase another through the website?
No. You are not required to use your antlerless deer permit before you purchase another; you may hold multiple antlerless deer permits at one time.
If I harvest an antlerless deer during the October Archery/Crossbow season without an antlerless deer permit, can I still harvest an antlered deer during the firearm season on deer?
No, if you harvest an antlerless deer without a permit during the October Archery/Crossbow season you would be tagged out. The only time your bag limit would exceed one deer is if you hunt Expanded Archery under the Expanded Archery permits or have an antlerless deer permit(s).
Are bonus permits still available?
MDIFW is no longer issuing “bonus permits.” Antlerless deer permits that have been allotted that are not issued during the one-round lottery will become available for purchase by any hunter, for the same fee.
Can I swap or transfer my antlerless deer permit?
Antlerless deer permits may not be swapped or transferred.
My name is spelled wrong on my permit, what do I do?
If your name was spelled incorrectly, you will need to enter it incorrectly to purchase your permit. After you purchase your permit, email us at email@example.com and the Department will correct it.
Do I need to enter the lottery and pay for the permit if I have a super pack hunting license?
Super pack license holders must apply to the antlerless deer permit lottery.
If super pack license holders are awarded a super pack antlerless deer permit through the lottery, they must claim the permit but will not need to pay the fee. If the permit recipient does not claim their permit by the deadline, that permit will be forfeited. If the permit was acquired during the regular lottery drawing and not the super pack drawing, the recipient must pay the fee.
How do I know if I received a regular lottery antlerless deer permit or a super pack antlerless deer permit? Look in the far right "Superpack" column of the lottery results. If there is a “Yes”, you received a super pack permit and do NOT need to pay (you still must claim the permit). If there is a “No” in the Superpack column, you received an antlerless permit during the regular lottery permit drawing and MUST pay for the permit.
What is considered an antlered vs. an antlerless deer?
An antlered deer is considered a deer with antlers three inches or longer.
An antlerless deer is any deer which does not have antlers or any deer which has antlers less than three inches in length measured from the skull.
Why am I only able to choose 2 districts on my application?
With the new lottery system, the Department’s goal is to make sure people are receiving a permit in the district that you want to hunt in. Adding more district selections increases the likelihood of someone getting a permit that will not be used.