Hunting in Massachusetts state parks and forests

You might not realize it, but most state parks and state forests are open to hunting and fishing. Learn about your options and where to find more information.

Hunting is allowed in many state forests and parks, as well as Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) watershed properties. It is good practice to contact the individual park or forest to learn about special regulations before you arrive.

Hunting regulations

Hunters must comply with all relevant hunting laws and regulations. Additional hunting regulations specific to DCR properties include:

  • You can't hunt, trap, or discharge a firearm within 500 feet of the border of a DCR-designated campsite or camping structure, including those along the Appalachian Trail.
  • You can't hunt within 500 feet of any DCR-designated picnic area, camping area, residence, service building, parking lot, camping structure, or designated swimming area.
  • You can't install a permanent tree stand on DCR property. A permanent tree stand is a hunting platform or structure attached to a tree by nails, bolts, wire, or other fasteners that go through the bark into the wood. The tree stand may not be in place for longer than 30 days.

Hunting hours

Hunting hours are generally 30 minutes before sunrise to 30 minutes after sunset, with the following exceptions:

  • Waterfowl hunting hours end at sunset.
  • Pheasant hunting hours for properties stocked with pheasants are sunrise to sunset.
  • Coyote and fox hunting hours end at midnight.

Hunting waterfowl on the coast is permitted on DCR property in the “intertidal zone.” This is the land between the high- and low-water marks. 

Huntable DCR properties

View a list of DCR properties that are open to hunting.

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