Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, U.S. Armed Forces Service Member Benefits: Wisconsin law extends many privileges for hunting, fishing and trapping for resident and nonresident active and reserve component Service members. A short description of these benefits is below. For information on military privileges, contact:
Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Contact Webpage
Free Licenses for Service Members on Leave: Wisconsin resident Service members serving on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces are eligible for free small game hunting and fishing licenses when on leave. Service members must show their military ID and leave papers when they apply.
Service members on leave are also eligible for the following benefits:
- One bonus antlerless deer harvest authorization for any one unit with a quota, even if the unit is sold out
- Use Gun Buck Deer harvest authorization and one Farmland (Zone 2) Antlerless Deer harvest authorization statewide on public access or private land
- Use Gun Buck Deer harvest authorization during any firearm deer season to harvest a buck including during antlerless-only deer seasons
- Spring turkey harvest authorization for any zone and time period
- Sturgeon spearing license after the October 31 deadline, through the end of the open season for spearing sturgeon.
Nonresident License Rates: Eligible nonresident Service members can purchase Wisconsin hunting, fishing and trapping licenses for resident prices. Service members must be serving in one of the following:
- Wisconsin National Guard
- Active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces stationed in Wisconsin
- In a U.S. Armed Forces Reserve unit located in Wisconsin
- Active or reserve component on active duty stationed out of state who was a resident at the time they entered active duty.
Hunter Safety Requirements: Service members that completed basic training may purchase a hunting license without being required to complete a hunter safety course.
Wisconsin Bear Hunting Benefit for Service Members: Residents and nonresident active duty Service members are eligible to receive a one-time transfer of a Class A Bear license. Service members must show proof of active duty service when they apply.
Wisconsin Elk Hunting Benefit for Nonresident Service Members: Nonresident Service members may be eligible for an elk hunting permit if they meet the following requirements:
- Service member in the Wisconsin National Guard
- Active duty Service member in the U.S. Armed Forces stationed in Wisconsin
- Service member in a U.S. Armed Forces Reserves unit located in Wisconsin
- Service member serving on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces that is stationed out of state who was a Wisconsin resident at the time they entered active duty.
Wisconsin Service Member Hunting Permit, Harvest Authorization or License Deferral: Service members who are unable to fish, hunt or trap due to their military service may defer a permit, harvest authorization or license issued under a random or preference selection system until they are able to use them.
Learn more about Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, U.S. Armed Forces Service Member Benefits
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