Where to hunt

There are many land classifications throughout Victoria and, depending on the type, hunting may or may not be permitted. The table below provides general information on where you may hunt.

More detailed information on the land classifications can be found at the bottom of the page.

For more specific details, refer to the additional information provided and call the nearest DELWP office for details before you enter the field.

Hunting Maps Areas closed to all Deer hunting Areas closed to all hound hunting Seasonal road closures

Hunting locations explained

LocationIs hunting permitted?
State forest, forest parks (Cobboboonee and Otway) and other unoccupied Crown landGame species may be hunted during the open season only. Pest animals may be hunted at any time. Only deer hunting is permitted in the Thomson River Forest Reserve
State Game ReservesGame species may be hunted, but only during the open season. Sixteen State Game Reserves are available for quail hunting, one for Sambar Deer hunting and six for Hog Deer hunting. Recreational hunters can hunt foxes, hares and rabbits on State Game Reserves while hunting for game duck during the open season for duck hunting.
SanctuariesGame species may not be hunted at any time. Pest animals may be hunted
Melbourne water catchment areasHunting of any type is not permitted at any time
Flora and fauna reserves and nature conservation reservesHunting of any type is not permitted at any time
National parks, state parks, coastal parks, wilderness parks and regional parksGenerally, hunting of any type is not permitted at any time, but there are some exceptions. See 'National, state, wilderness, coastal and regional parks' for details
Alpine resortsHunting of any type is not permitted at any time
Leased Crown landGame (only during the open season) and pest animals may be hunted, but only with the permission of the lessee
Licensed Crown landGenerally, game (during the open season) and pest animals (at any time) may be hunted, subject to the permission of the licensee
Private landGame (only during the open season) and pest animals may be hunted, but only with the permission of the landowner/manager
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Generally, hunting for pest animals and game species is permitted in all state forests, forest parks (Cobboboonee and Otway) and unoccupied Crown land (i.e. Crown land that is not leased or licensed). However, some restrictions may apply.

Hunters are advised to consult the local DELWP office for specific information about any restrictions that apply to the area of a state forest, forest park or unoccupied Crown land where they wish to hunt. Remember, many people use state forests for recreation and/or their livelihood.

Pest animals may be hunted at any time throughout the year. However, hunting for game species is only allowed during the open season and permitted times for that species. Make sure that you know when the open seasons are. Game species cannot be hunted between 30 minutes after sunset until 30 minutes before sunrise.

Deer hunting by stalking is permitted in the Thomson River Forest Reserve and with the use of hounds or gundogs in parts of the reserve. In this reserve, hunting pest animals is not permitted.

In the Delatite Arm Reserve at Lake Eildon, an unloaded shotgun may be carried during the duck season.

Jack Smith LakeDowd MorassEwings MorassClydebank MorassHeart Morass and Lake Coleman State Game Reserve are open for Hog Deer hunting during the Hog Deer season.

Game species may not be hunted at any time in areas declared to be Sanctuaries. However, pest animals may be hunted.

Major Victorian sanctuaries are Mount Cole SanctuaryGunbower Island Sanctuary and Kow Swamp. The location of other sanctuaries should be checked with the local DELWP office.

A number of catchments and reservoirs in the outer metropolitan and central highlands area are controlled by Melbourne Water and are part of the metropolitan water supply system. Public entry to these areas is prohibited.

Carrying and using firearms in these areas is prohibited.

Most national, state, wilderness, coastal and regional parks are closed to hunting at all times. However, you are allowed to hunt in the parks listed below, subject to various conditions.

Hunters must not possess a firearm in, or transport a firearm through, a park (except in some instances) when hunting is prohibited. Also, where hunting is allowed, firearms must only be those calibres or gauges permitted for the species available for hunting in that park.

For further information, contact Parks Victoria on 131 963.

Alpine National Park and Avon Wilderness Park: All deer may be hunted by stalking only in parts of the Alpine National Park and in the whole of the Avon Wilderness Park from 15 February to 15 December. The use of dogs to hunt Sambar Deer is not permitted in these parks. Hog Deer can only be hunted in these areas during April. Pest animals and other species must not be hunted in these parks.

Baw Baw National Park: All deer may be hunted by stalking only in the area east of Thomson Valley Road from 15 of February to 15 December each year. The use of dogs to hunt Sambar Deer is not permitted in this park. Pest animals and other species must not be hunted in this park.

Cape Conran Coastal Park: On Sydenham Inlet in the park, game duck may be hunted during the open season. Dogs are allowed for the flushing or retrieval of ducks during the open season.

Gippsland Lakes Coastal Park: In certain sections, game duck, Stubble Quail and Hog Deer may be hunted in season. Dogs are allowed for the flushing or retrieval of game ducks during the duck season. Check with Parks Victoria for details. Pest animals and other species must not be hunted in this park. Hunters must have a permit from Parks Victoria to erect a hide or to cut vegetation or a hide in the Gippsland Lakes Coastal Park.

Lake Albacutya Park: The hunting of pest and feral animals (rabbits, foxes or cats) is allowed, as is the hunting of game duck during the open season. Gun dogs are allowed for retrieval of game ducks during the duck open season. Hunting is not permitted in part of the park at the Western Beach visitor facilities, including near the boat ramp.

Lake Eildon National Park: In certain sections in the south-east of the park, Sambar Deer may be hunted from the first Saturday after Easter until 30 November. The use of dogs to hunt deer is not permitted in this park. Pest animals and other species must not be hunted in this park.

Mitchell River National Park: Sambar Deer hunting by stalking is permitted east of the Mitchell River and south of Hortons and Calvi Tracks from 15 February to 15 December. The use of dogs to hunt deer is not permitted in this park. Pest animals and other species must not be hunted in this park.

Tara Range Park Deer: Hunting (not in the close season) by stalking is permitted in this park from 15 February to 15 December. The use of dogs to hunt deer is not permitted in this park. Pest animals and other species must not be hunted in this park.

Nooramunga Marine and Coastal Park: Hunting for Hog Deer and game duck is permitted in certain sections in season. Pest animals and other species must not be hunted in this park.

Parks Victoria is responsible for managing national, state, wilderness, coastal, regional and metropolitan parks and other conservation areas, such as State Game Reserves.

All alpine resorts are closed to hunting at all times. However, you are allowed to transport a dog and firearms through a resort, providing the dogs are in a vehicle and the guns are in a safe and locked compartment.

Game species in season and pest animals may be hunted on leased Crown land, provided that hunters have obtained the permission of the lessee to enter the area.

Remember, people usually use leased land for their livelihood. Never shoot on or across an area of leased Crown land without the permission of the lessee and never shoot across public roads or tracks or towards populated areas, including camping and picnic areas and walking tracks.

If you are in doubt about the status of a particular area, contact your local DELWP office.

Generally, hunting for game species (during the open season for that species) and pest animals is permitted on licensed Crown land. However, some exceptions may apply. If an area of Crown land is licensed, hunters must obtain the permission of the licensee before using firearms on that area. This generally includes areas such as unused roads and water frontages, which may be licensed for grazing or other purposes.

If you are in doubt about the status of a particular area, or require any further information, contact your local DELWP office.

Game species in season and pest animals may be hunted on private land provided the hunters have obtained the permission of the landowner/manager.

If you are in doubt about the status of a particular area, or require any further information, contact your local DELWP office or Parks Victoria.

The hunting of Sambar Deer with scent-trailing hounds and gundogs is prohibited around Marysville and Kevington-Jamieson. Deer hunting by stalking is still permitted in the Marysville and Kevington-Jamieson areas.

All forms of deer hunting are prohibited around the Rubicon Power Station and several areas around Halls Gap.

More information is available within the areas closed to all Deer hunting and the areas closed to Hound hunting pages.

Page last updated: 09 Dec 2019