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Firearms deer hunting season opens Saturday in Georgia
Motorists should beware as deer will be most active in early November in Newton County
Deer hunting season
Cole Dobbs shows an 11-point buck he brought down in Morgan County in 2019. - photo by Courtesy of Georgia Department of Natural Resources Wildlife Resources Division

SOCIAL CIRCLE, Ga. — The wait is almost over for eager hunters because the Georgia deer firearms season opens Saturday, Oct. 16, and continues through Jan. 9, 2022, statewide.

And motorists locally should watch out for deer, especially from Nov. 3 to Nov. 9 when breeding season will be at its peak in Newton County, according to the state Wildlife Resources Division.

Charlie Killmaster, state deer biologist for the Wildlife Resources Division, said, “With some awesome bucks already taken in archery season, I think we are in for an excellent firearms season.” 

“The 2020 deer season had one of the highest ratings for hunter satisfaction on record and I expect 2021 to be no different,” Kilmaster said.

During firearms deer season last year, about 187,000 hunters harvested more than 190,000 deer in the state. 

“Regulated deer hunting ensures that Georgia’s deer population continues to be healthy and strong,” a news release stated.

The basics of deer hunting in Georgia:

• State law allows hunters to harvest up to 10 antlerless deer, and no more than two antlered deer (with one of the two antlered deer having a minimum of four points, one inch or longer, on one side of the antlers) or a minimum 15-inch outside antler spread. 

• To pursue deer in Georgia, hunters must have a valid hunting license, a big game license and a current deer harvest record. Licenses can be purchased online at, by phone at 1-800-366-2661 or at a license agent (list of agents available online).

• All deer hunters must report their harvest using Georgia Game Check within 24 hours of harvest. Deer can be reported on the Outdoors GA app (which works regardless of cell service), at, or by calling 1-800-366-2661.

More than 1 million acres of public hunting land is available to hunters in Georgia, including more than 100 state-operated wildlife management areas. Many areas offer special hunts throughout the season, including primitive weapons and modern firearms hunts. 

Dates and locations for hunts available in the 2021-2022 Georgia Hunting Seasons and Regulations guide can be found at

In addition, peak deer breeding season in Newton County is Nov. 3 through Nov. 9, according to the Wildlife Resources Division.

Timing of the rut, or breeding season, for white-tailed deer varies locally, especially in southern climates like Georgia’s. 

During the rut, the desire to breed causes deer to become more active compared to the rest of the year. Bucks move more and become less secretive, making them easier to hunt and more susceptible to being hit by motor vehicles.

UGA Deer Lab LogoResearchers at the University of Georgia and biologists with the Wildlife Resources Division found a strong correlation between peak deer-vehicle collision timeframes, deer conception dates and the hourly movement rates of deer tracked by GPS. 

Based on that information, deer-vehicle collision data provided by the Georgia Department of Transportation was used to map the timing of peak deer movement in Georgia.

Dates and locations for hunts available in the 2021-2022 Georgia Hunting Seasons and Regulations guide can be found at

For more on Georgia deer hunting, including finding a game processor, reviewing regulations, viewing maps (either sex day or the rut map), visit