NH License Requirements

Information on License Requirements in New Hampshire

General Information

A general firearm hunting, fishing or archery license is not required for minors under 16 years of age. Minors are, however, required to purchase the following special licenses: Special Archery Deer, Turkey Permit, Bear License and Unit M and Unit L special Deer tags. Non-resident minors under the age of 16 are also required to purchase a muzzleloader license. Minors are not required to pay a Wildlife Habitat Fee or file a Harvest Information Survey (HIP).


Lost License (Duplicate/Reprint)

A reprint of a lost or destroyed current year license must be obtained at the license agent where purchased or at Fish and Game Headquarters in Concord.  If it has been at least one week since purchased, or if purchased online the license may be reprinted form the online license sales site.  There is no charge for reprints, however there is a limit on the number of reprints allowed.  Miscellaneous licenses issued from Fish and Game Headquarters can be reprinted at Fish and Game Headquarters in Concord only.


Residency Requirement

A New Hampshire resident is someone who holds a valid NH Driver’s license or Non Driver Photo Identification issued by the State of NH Division of Motor Vehicles and does not claim a residence in any other state for any purpose.


Hunter Safety Education Requirements

By state law, anyone purchasing a hunting, archery or trapping license must present from any year, any state:  a previously held license of the same type, or a certificate of completion from an approved state hunter, bow hunter or trapper education course.  NH requires an in-person field day for the course to be valid.  Note, when purchasing your hunting or archery license for the first time in NH, it  must be in person at a traditional license agent – not online or at a Walmart. Learn more.


Senior Licenses - NH Residents Only

  • Discounted licenses are available for resident seniors born in 1948 or later, and have reached age 68. License types available include: Senior Freshwater Fishing, Senior Combination Hunting & Fishing, Senior Muzzleloader, and Senior Archery. Must be purchased annually, online or at an agent.  All other license types are purchased at regular rates. 
  • Special Resident Permanent Milestone Licenses are free to residents of New Hampshire who were born in or before 1947 (not valid if the license holder moves out of state). Must obtain at Fish and Game headquarters in Concord or regional offices 1 (Lancaster), 2 (New Hampton), 4 (Keene) or at limited license agents. Permanent license holders must create their own deer tags, or they may use the generic tag in the back of the hunting digest. License types available: Freshwater Fishing, Combination Hunting & Fishing, Muzzleloader, Archery, and Clam/Oyster.  All other license types including Saltwater Recreational Fishing must be purchased annually, at any license agent or online.
  • A permanent clam/oyster license is available at no charge to all New Hampshire residents age 68 or older (at Fish and Game headquarters or Regional Offices 1, 2 and 4 only).

    Learn more  

Freshwater Fishing Licenses

Allow the taking of all species in the freshwaters of the state. Temporary 1-, 3-, and 7-day Fishing Licenses are available to non-residents, dates for use intended will be requested at the time of purchase and the dates must be consecutive. One-day licenses are also available for NH residents. Learn more.


Clam and Oyster Licenses

Available to New Hampshire residents only. Season is restricted. See Saltwater Fishing Digest for more information. Clam license is required for ages 6 and above. Oyster licenses are required for all ages. A permanent clam/oyster license is available at no charge to all New Hampshire residents age 68 or older (at Fish and Game headquarters or Regional Offices 1, 2, and 4 only). Learn more. 


Saltwater Fishing

A NH Recreational Saltwater Fishing License is required for individual anglers age 16 and older participating in recreational saltwater fishing for finfish from coastal and estuarine waters of New Hampshire (both residents and non-residents need a license). Exemptions: If you are a Maine or Massachusetts resident holding a Recreational Saltwater license from Maine or Mass; or are fishing on a licensed charter boat. Learn more. 



This license entitles a person to take wildlife (including small game) during the open season; a deer tag is issued with this license. Learn more. 


Combination Hunting and Fishing License

Includes the privileges in Hunting and Freshwater Fishing. Does not include saltwater fishing privileges. Learn more. 


Small Game Hunting

Available to non-residents to hunt small game only. If you purchase a non-resident hunting or non-resident combination hunting and fishing license, small game is included. This license is for those who do not wish to hunt large game, no deer tags are issued. Turkey is not considered small game. Small game is defined as: snowshoe hare, cottontail rabbits, gray squirrel, pheasant, quail, ruffed grouse, chuckar, European partridge & migratory birds. Migratory game birds require a HIP survey permit. Waterfowl require HIP permit, state and federal waterfowl stamps. An additional license is required for pheasant hunting. There is a 3-day small game license available; dates and time for use will be requested at the time of purchase. The dates must be consecutive. Learn more. 



This license allows a person to hunt deer during the archery season, and wildlife during the open season, using a bow as your weapon. An archery deer tag is issued with this license. You may not purchase a Special Archery Deer permit without an Archery license. Learn more. 

  • Effective 2017: Persons 68 years or older holding a NH archery license under RSA 208:5, may use a crossbow as an alternative to a traditional bow during the archery deer season without obtaining an additional permit. 


Special Deer Archery

This permit allows a person to take a second deer during the archery season. This permit must be purchased at the same time the archery license is purchased.It may not be purchased later. A second archery deer tag is issued with this license. Learn more. 



This license allows a person to hunt pheasant during the pheasant season. A current NH hunting, combination hunting and fishing license, small game, or archery license is also required. Learn more. 



This license allows a person to hunt bear during the bear season. A current NH hunting, archery or combination license is also required. A separate bear tag will be issued. Learn more. 


Wild Turkey

This permit allows a person to hunt turkey during the open seasons. A current NH Hunting, archery or combination license is also required. There is a spring and fall season for Turkey with separate weapon requirements (see the NH Hunting Digest for details.) Two tags are issued with this permit for the spring and/or fall seasons. Learn more. 



This license allows a person to hunt deer during the special muzzleloader deer season. A current NH firearm hunting or combination license is also required. No deer tag is issued with this license. Learn more.


Migratory Waterfowl

This license must be purchased by anyone wishing to hunt migratory waterfowl (ducks and geese). A current NH hunting, combination license or small game license; a Federal Waterfowl Stamp (available at the Post Office) and Harvest Information Survey permit number are also required. Learn more.


Wildlife Habitat Fee

All persons wishing to take wildlife in New Hampshire must pay this fee each year. The $2.50 Fee must be paid ONCE annually by those purchasing a Combination Hunting & Fishing License, Hunting License, Archery License, Small Game License or 3-Day Small Game License. EXCEPTIONS: Minors, Permanent License Holders, and Lifetime License Holders. Learn more. 


Unit M and Unit L Special Deer Permits

Learn about applying for a permit to take an additional antlerless deer in Wildlife Management Unit M and Unit L. Learn more. 


Wildlife Legacy Donation

This is a program to benefit fisheries and/or wildlife management efforts in the state with the landowner relations program, which works to preserve access to private lands for hunters and anglers.


Nongame Donation Contributions

This program allows you to donate money to the Fish and Game Department for use on priority fish and wildlife management conservation programs. Learn more. 


Harvest Summaries

Summaries of the most recently completed hunting season statistics for Deer, Bear, Moose, Turkey and Furbearers is available from the annual Wildlife Harvest Summary, and for small game from the Small Game Summary Report. Learn more.


Moose hunting

Moose hunting is by special permit only. Learn more.