Kansas Big Game Hunting Basics
Heading out for that big game hunt is a thrill all in itself. And hunting in Kansas makes it easy to enjoy the hunt just as much as actually taking your prey. With stunning vistas, great access to several amazing hunting locations, and plenty of animals in the field, Kansas really is a must-visit for any hunter.
However, it surprises many to learn that almost all big game species were eradicated by 1900 due to overhunting. In 1965 the first modern deer season was held, with limited permits available. Today, hunting elk, mule deer, pronghorn, white tail deer, and antelope is all possible within Kansas.
Of course, there are several restrictions here just as with other states. Beyond the licensing and tag limits, some population and location factors will impact what is available for a hunter to hunt at any point in their hunting career here. For example, the following factors will impact hunting:
• Pronghorn antelope are limited in scope and found only in the far western counties. Only residents may hunt pronghorn, and that is only if their name is drawn from the highly competitive annual drawing.
• Elk hunting is also only available on a very limited basis, with limited permits drawn each year for residents.
• White tailed deer thrive throughout the state and receiving a license for them is much easier to do, particularly for in-state resident hunters.
• Mule deer are common in western Kansas, but hunting permits are very limited as well and only available through special drawings.
Kansas makes it very easy to purchase a license as well, with an online portal and the option to auto-renew every 365 days. Additionally, residents and nonresidents alike may search for draw statuses to see more about whether or not they are selected. License vendors are located around the state as well, further simplifying the process.
Once the license is bought and a hunter is chosen in the draw, the only remaining thing to do is to wait for the appropriate season. Hunting in Kansas occurs in the fall, with some spring seasons on certain species – mainly smaller game.
Additionally, the state actually maintains an unofficial Top 20 list for deer and antelope size kills and hunters will receive a Kansas Trophy Certificate if their antlers or horns achieve a minimum score. From the trophy on the field to the certificates outside the hunting areas, Kansas offers plenty for hunters to see and experience.