Department of Environmental Conservation

D E C banner

January Firearms Deer Hunting Season in Suffolk County

Season Dates: The January firearms deer season begins on the first Sunday in January and ends on January 31.

Hunting Hours: One half hour before sunrise until one half hour after sunset.

Fluorescent Orange & Fluorescent Pink Clothing Requirements:

*New: Any person hunting deer with a firearm or a person who is accompanying someone hunting deer with a firearm shall wear:

  1. A minimum total of 250 square inches of solid fluorescent orange or fluorescent pink material worn above the waist and visible from all directions; or
  2. A minimum total of 250 square inches of patterned fluorescent orange or fluorescent pink consisting of no less than fifty percent fluorescent orange or fluorescent pink worn above the waist and visible from all directions; or
  3. A hat or cap with no less than 50 percent of the exterior consisting of solid fluorescent orange or fluorescent pink material and visible from all directions.

Manner of Taking: Shotgun, using a single ball or slug, or a muzzleloading rifle or muzzleloading pistol, shooting a single projectile, having a minimum bore of 0.44 inches. Shotgun barrels may be rifled, and telescopic sights may be used. Crossbows are not a legal hunting implement in Suffolk County.

Valid License & Tags: Hunters must have a valid New York State hunting license and carcass tag to participate in the hunt. Valid tags include the Regular Season Deer tag, Deer Management Permits (DMP) for Unit 1C, Archery tags, Muzzleloader tags and Bonus DMPs for Unit 1C.

Archery Hunting: Archery hunting during the January firearms season is allowed pursuant to the regular deer hunting season regulations. Archery hunters are not required to obtain landowner's endorsement or a town permit.

Requirements for Long Island Deer Firearms

While hunting, an individual must carry on their person:

  • Hunting License
  • Valid tags
  • Landowner's Endorsement
  • Town Permit (where required)

All successful hunters must follow the deer tagging and check station procedures. Any person who has violated any provision of the Environmental Conservation Law or the regulation governing this special season while hunting with the special permit, shall, upon apprehension, surrender his or her permit; upon conviction or settlement, the permit may be canceled. Any application for a permit obtained by fraud, or by a person not entitled to a permit, shall be void. No permit will be replaced if it is lost, stolen, or destroyed.

Firearms Deer Hunting on Private Lands

Step 1: Get a Landowner's Endorsement form (PDF) signed by the person owning or leasing the land you wish to hunt. This is required for all firearm deer hunting on Long Island.

The Landowner's Endorsement form must be signed by a person owning or leasing ten or more acres of land in an area open to hunting during this special season. If a landowner or lessee owning or controlling ten or more acres wishes to hunt on his or her own property, he or she must endorse his or her own application.

Step 2: Get a Town Permit. Bring the completed Landowner's Endorsement form, your Hunting License (including carcass tags), and a completed Application for a Town Permit (PDF) to the town clerk's office in the town you wish to hunt. A Town Permit is required when hunting in any town of Long Island listed in the table below. If the town that you wish to hunt is not listed below, no town permit is required.

Permits are issued starting in early December by town clerks for their respective towns. Permits will be issued in the order applicants appear. There may be a $1 fee for the permits. The permit authorizes you to hunt ONLY within the town specified and ONLY on land for which you have obtained a signed Landowner's Endorsement. The permits are non transferrable.

Towns that Require Permits
Town Address Quota
Babylon 200 E. Sunrise Highway, Lindenhurst 200
Huntington 100 Main Street, Huntington 500
Islip 655 Main Street, Islip 200
Smithtown 99 W. Main Street, Smithtown 1,000
Southampton 116 Hampton Road, Southampton 2,500

The Towns of Brookhaven, East Hampton, Riverhead, Shelter Island, and Southold have waived the Town Permit requirement.

Firearms Deer Hunting on DEC-Managed Lands

The demand for deer hunting makes it necessary for hunters to follow specific procedures to ensure an equal hunting opportunity for all.

Step 1: Enter drawing for DEC-managed lands.

To hunt for deer on DEC-managed lands, you must enter a drawing. This drawing is always held on the first Tuesday of December. All entries must be received by 4:45 p.m. the day before the drawing.

To enter the drawing, hunters must now complete a Long Island State Lands January Firearms Drawing Registration Form (2023 link available on October 1, leaves DEC's website).

In order to complete the survey and enter the drawing, hunters must fill out their name, email address, DEC customer ID, and county of residence. Once the survey is completed and submitted, you have been entered into the drawing. Your drawing number will be returned via email after the drawing date.

For general questions, or for those unable to access the survey online, please call DEC's Region 1 Wildlife office at (631) 444-0310. Callers may need to leave a message; all messages will be returned as soon as possible. If you have already submitted an entry by mail, please call the Region 1 Wildlife office for further instruction.

Online applications will be accepted through 4:45 p.m. December 4, 2023. Anyone unable to complete the online survey should contact the office at (631) 444-0310 before December 4.

You may only send one entry. Any individual who sends more than one entry will have all of his or her entries removed from the drawing. Each member of a two-hunter party may send one entry.

Step 2: Receive a drawing number.

Within one week of the drawing date you will receive a drawing number via email. This drawing number will indicate the day in which you are to make a reservation to hunt. The drawing number that you receive via email should be printed as you must bring it with you when you make your reservation. You must make your reservation at the Ridge Hunter Check Station during the last full week (Monday-Friday) before December 25.

The email you receive contains your drawing number. You must bring the printed sheet with you in order to make a reservation.

Step 3: Make a hunting reservation.

When making a reservation, you must have each of the following items with you:

  1. Drawing Number & Instructions sheet with completed Application for Town Permit (PDF), Southampton only.
  2. Hunting License
  3. Valid Carcass Tag

Reservations must be made in person at the Ridge Hunter Check Station at the time indicated by your drawing number or anytime thereafter. You may send another person to represent you but your representative must know your preferred area and date.

Drawing numbers are not transferable and may be used to make one reservation. A hunter who makes a reservation with a partner also holding a number will no longer be required to forfeit his or her own number. Two hunters each holding a drawing numbers may sign up as each other's partner to hunt on different days. Upon making a reservation, you will be issued a Landowner's Endorsement and a Town Permit for the property and town that you have made a reservation for.

The Ridge Hunter Check Station is located north of Route 25 on Randall Road (½ mile west of the William Floyd Parkway, L.I.E. Exit 68 North) in the hamlet of Ridge, Suffolk County.

Step 4: Appear to hunt on reservation day.

On the morning which you are to hunt, you must first report to the appropriate hunter check station to receive an access permit for the property.

The East Hampton check station will open one hour before sunrise. The Ridge check station will open one hour and 30 minutes before sunrise for those hunting Southampton properties and one hour 15 minutes for all other properties.

You must arrive at the check station by 8 a.m. to claim your reservation unless you notify us at (631) 924-3156 that you will be arriving late. At 8 a.m., unclaimed reservations will become available to others who have the proper paperwork. After hunting, you must return to the check station no later than 60 minutes after sunset.

DEC-Managed Properties Open to Firearms Deer Hunting

Hunting on all state-managed lands during the January shotgun season still requires advanced reservations and daily permits.

The following state-managed properties will be open for shotgun deer hunting from the first Sunday of January to January 31, 7-days a week:

  • Rocky Point Natural Resources Management Area
    • Parking Spots: 1-6, 9-15, 17, 19-22, 25, 26(2), 27-30, 32, 34, 36-38, 40, 42-45, 50
  • Westhampton Dwarf Pine Plains Preserve
    • Parking spots: 1(2)
  • Henry's Hollow Pine Barrens State Forest
    • Parking spot: 1
  • Barcelona Neck Cooperative Hunting Area
    • Parking spots: 1, 2, 3
  • David Sarnoff Cooperative Hunting Area
    • Parking spots: 3, 5(2), 7, 8, 9, 10(2), 11-20
  • Otis Pike Preserve
    • Parking spots (Brookhaven): 20, 22, 25, 26, 28-33, 34(2), 35(2), 41-45, 47, 55, 59, 63
    • Parking spots (Riverhead): 2, 4-7, 9, 10, 14, 39, 40, 48-50, 52

Archery hunting will not be permitted on the above listed properties during the January Firearms Season except at select spots on Rocky Point (7A and 33A) and Otis Pike (13A, 16A, 38A, 56A, 57A, 65A and 66A). All other uses of the properties are not permitted during the firearms deer season, including waterfowl hunting, small game hunting and trapping with the exception of Otis Pike Preserve parking areas 17, 18, 51W, and 61W. These areas will be closed to shotgun deer hunting to accommodate waterfowl hunters wishing to hunt the Peconic River.

The following properties will be open for shotgun deer hunting from the first Sunday in January to January 31, weekdays only:

  • East Hampton Cooperative Area (Montauk State Park will have no hunting on Martin Luther King Day)
    • Hither Hills parking spots: 1-9, 11(2), 12, 13(2), 14(2)
    • Montauk parking spots: 1(2), 2, 3
  • Noyac (part of the Southampton Cooperative Areas)
    • Parking spot: 6(2)

Archery hunting will not be permitted on any of the East Hampton Cooperative Areas or the Southampton Cooperative Areas during January. Small game and waterfowl hunting dates on the East Hampton Cooperative areas will remain the same as in previous years.

See Long Island Public Hunting Areas for maps of DEC-managed hunting areas.

Stand-by Hunting Procedures for Firearms Deer Hunting on DEC-managed Lands

At 8 a.m. each day, all parking spots that have not been filled will be given away to hunters via a drawing at the Ridge Hunter Check Station. There will be one drawing for all available parking areas on all properties. All hunters present for the drawing will be able to enter, you do not need a town permit prior to entering the drawing. Second town permits can be issued to all hunters who are picked for a spot during the stand-by.

Bonus Deer Management Permits

Bonus DMPs are available to hunters who take antlerless deer on any Unit 1C DMPs (original or Bonus DMPs) during the special January Firearms season. Bonus DMP's are valid for antlerless deer only. For more information on how to obtain a bonus DMP in region 1C please visit the Bonus DMP page.

Deer Check Stations

Deer Check stations are open to check deer and to issue Bonus DMPs. All deer harvested on state managed lands, including Barcelona Neck and Noyac, must be presented at a check station. Hunters harvesting deer from private lands are also urged to check their deer. The taker shall personally transport the deer to a check station, except that they may designate another to transport the deer, providing the taker's carcass tag and a tag supplied by him/her, on which is written legibly in ink the name and address of the person to transport the deer, the date and the signature of the taker and transporter, are attached to the carcass. DEC check stations will be located as follows:

Station Location Hours
Ridge Conservation Area 484 Randall Rd. Ridge, NY 11961
Phone: (631) 924-3156
Daily: 8 a.m. - 4:45 p.m.
Hither Hills State Park Maintenance Area 164 Old Montauk Hwy. Montauk, NY 11954
Phone: (631) 444-0310
Weekdays: 8 a.m. - 4:45 p.m.
(Only open during January Firearms Season)
DEC Region 1 Office, Stony Brook 50 Circle Road Stony Brook, NY 11790
Phone: (631)
By appointment only

Archery Deer Hunting on DEC-Managed Lands in January

The following properties will be open for archery deer hunting from the first Sunday of January to January 31. A managed lands access permit is required to hunt on these properties.

  • Brookhaven State Park Cooperative Hunting Area
  • Calverton Pine Barrens State Forest
  • Carmans River Pine Barrens State Forest
  • East Bartlett Conservation Area, Ridge Conservation Area
  • Kings Park Cooperative Hunting Area
  • Ridge Multiple Use Area
  • Wildwood State Park Cooperative Hunting Area
  • DEC tidal wetlands that are currently open to archery hunting
  • Rocky Point spots 7A and 33A, ONLY
  • Otis Pike 13A, 16A, 38A, 56A, 57A and 66A, ONLY