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2020 New Regulations

The following regulations became effective in early 2020. Any new regulations related to hunting and trapping are NOT reflected in the printed version of the 2020 Connecticut Hunting and Trapping Guide. However, they are reflected in the hunting guide information on the DEEP website. The marine fishing regulations will be included in the 2020 Fishing Guide (which will be available soon).

Hunting and Trapping Seasons

Bag Limits for Turkey Hunting:
  • The bag limit for the spring wild turkey hunting season has been changed to 5 bearded birds.
  • The bag limit for the fall firearms turkey season has been changed to 3 turkeys, either sex.

Note: During the spring and fall firearms turkey seasons, bag limits specific to private land and state land no longer exist. Hunters may harvest a total of 5 bearded birds during the spring season and 3 either sex birds during the fall firearms season on private land or state land or a combination of both. The bag limit for the fall archery turkey season remains unchanged.

Hunting Hours:
  • Hunting hours for the spring wild turkey hunting season are now ½-hour before sunrise to sunset.
  • Opening day hunting hours for the small game and upland game bird hunting seasons are now ½-hour before sunrise to ½-hour after sunset.
Deer A and B Seasons:
  • No-lottery A and B Deer Hunting Seasons have been combined. Regardless of the permit (A or B Season) printed on a hunter’s license, he/she can hunt deer from November 18 – December 8, 2020 (3 weeks total).
  • This regulation DOES NOT currently apply to the 2020 Deer Lottery Areas because the lottery has already been conducted. The 2021 Connecticut Hunting and Trapping Guide will contain details regarding the 2021 Deer Lottery.
Deer Hunting Attractants:

All use of natural deer urine products is prohibited, particularly for the purposes of taking or attempting to take or attract deer, or for the surveillance or scouting of deer. Chronic wasting disease (CWD) can spread through exposure to infected deer urine. This new regulation safeguards Connecticut’s native deer population against unnecessary risk of contracting CWD.

Trapping -- Fisher:
  • The bag limit for the fisher trapping season has been reduced from 4 to 2.
  • Trappers are required to submit fisher carcasses to the Wildlife Division for research purposes. The carcasses can be frozen and submitted during one of the listed pelt tagging dates, or if needed, call the Wildlife Division at 860-424-3011 to arrange for a pick-up or drop-off date.
Waterfowl and Migratory Birds:

One area of the Quinnipiac River and two areas of the West River in New Haven, West Haven, and Guilford are closed to hunting. This information will be included in the 2020-2021 Migratory Bird Hunting Guide. The closed areas are:

  • No waterfowl hunting in the Quinnipiac River in New Haven from the Middletown Avenue bridge south to the Amtrak Route 1 bridge.
  • No waterfowl hunting on the West River in Guilford between Route 1 and Route 146.
  • No waterfowl hunting on The West River in West Haven between Route 1 and Route 122 (Kimberly Avenue).

Marine Fisheries

Striped Bass: No person shall possess any Striped Bass less than 28 inches or greater than or equal to 35 inches measured from the tip of the snout to the end of the tail. Any striped bass less than 28” or greater than or equal to 35” shall, without avoidable injury, be returned immediately to the water from which it was taken.

Bluefish: The daily limit for Bluefish has been reduced from 10 to 3.


Collection/Take of Amphibians

A new regulation prohibits the taking of red-spotted newts. Newts have been documented to be extremely susceptible to the emerging disease Bsal (Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans), also known as salamander chytrid disease, and experience high mortality rates. The disease is not in North America at this time, but it will likely occur if measures are not taken to prevent further transmission. Unrestricted take and movement of newts would be a vector for transmission and spread of the disease which has the potential for negative population-level impacts. The disease is spread to native populations by direct salamander-to-salamander contact or by movement of aquatic fungal spores that can cling to nets or other collection equipment. (Red-spotted Newt Fact Sheet)

Importation, Transportation, or Liberation of Butterflies

A new regulation prohibits the release of butterflies, in any life stage. The commercial market for butterflies has resulted in many species being raised by unregulated commercial interests, resulting in:

  • Disease and parasite transmission to Connecticut’s native populations.
  • Release of butterflies far from their native point of origin. This situation results in unsuitable genetic mixing, introduction of non-natives possibly resulting in an invasive species, and altered distribution and migration of butterflies.
  • Creates a market for collection from the wild for breeding stock, which is a particular concern with monarch butterflies.
  • Alters normal behavior of butterflies regarding migratory physiology, over-wintering ability, and other natural behaviors that may affect the survival of the species.

The North American Butterfly Association has strongly recommended that states take action in banning the release of commercially-obtained butterflies. Also, considering the Connecticut General Assembly passed Public Act 16-17 (AAC Pollinator Health) with the intent of protecting the health of bees and butterflies, this regulation provides additional safeguards for Connecticut’s native pollinating butterflies. It still allows for captive-rearing of butterflies for conservation situations with educational institutions.

Content last updated March 2020.