Can You Bow Hunt On Sundays? – The Definitive Answer

By Andy Ryan


Updated at

There are several states that have banned hunting on Sundays. Virginia changed their opinion a few years ago which was great, but there are still too many of those who won’t allow it. In this article, I will tell you where it’s not legal to hunt on Sundays and what you should do if you are in one of the states where it’s not allowed.

Can you bow hunt on Sundays? Yes, It is allowed to hunt on Sundays in most of America. 41 states allow hunting on Sundays and 11 states have banned it. The law is different for each state, some states allow certain hunting activities on Sundays whereas some have totally banned it.

WAIT! if you find your state don’t leave just yet, because some of these states allow bow hunting under certain circumstances. Read the full list below and find your state to read the regulations that follow! Make sure to get yourself a hunting license as well.

List of states that have banned hunting on Sundays


You can bow hunt, but only on licensed shooting preserves. This means you need approval from the town, according to the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection. If someone catches you with any hunting equipment you will be cited if you are found on a property not licensed as a private shooting preserve.

(No hunting, but bow hunting is allowed on licensed shooting preserves)


Delaware is more strict when it comes to hunting rules, the only hunting allowed on Sunday in Delaware is “Chase red fox in season”. Sadly this is the only form of hunting allowed in Delaware on Sundays. Unlike other states such as Connecticut the state Delaware has made no effort to work around this law or make any other option such as bow hunting.

(No hunting or bowhunting allowed on Sundays)


In 2011 there was hope for hunting in main. A lawmaker worked and kept on a proposal where hunting on your own land would be allowed for a fee of 25 USD. This would be a nice solution, but sadly the proposal didn’t get much further and Main remained as a “no hunting zone on Sundays”

(No hunting or bowhunting allowed on Sundays)


Maryland has some openings and laws giving the opportunity to hunt on Sundays. In some cities, you can hunt on a few particular Sundays. I will paste a link here for you to check out regarding the Sundays allowed for hunting (Link to Sundays allowed to hunt). Unarmed fox chasing is allowed. Even deer and turkey hunting are allowed in various counties and there are several “Regulated Shooting Areas” in Maryland.

(Depending on the time and place you can hunt deer and turkey with your bow. The link posted in the article will show you Sundays allowed to hunt deer.)


The rules in Massachusetts are very similar to Main. There is not much hunting allowed on Sundays in this state sadly. There have not been many attempts to change this law in Massachusetts besides a few Vocal protestors. There was one lawmaker attempting to change it, but no progress or change was made.

(No hunting or bow hunting allowed on Sundays in Massachusetts)

New Jersey

New Jersey has a very complex Sunday hunting law. It’s weird they just haven’t removed the whole law and allowed hunting on Sundays. The law states that no man can carry a firearm in the field or on any land, but there are so many exceptions including bowhunting.

If you wonder about any other form of hunting Most types of pheasant, quail, or partridge hunting are also allowed on Sundays.

You can bow hunt deer on Sundays in New Jersey if you have a bow and arrow license or a valid “All around Sportman License” and you need to hunt on a state wildlife management area or on private property.

North Carolina

North Carolina holds on to the dear tradition of keeping Sunday a sacred day. Legislators made the effort to try to change the law. But like in many other states the new change did not go through and the law holds its place. The law was made in 1868! yes, that’s a long time and maybe long enough to change and tweak it a little to make bow hunting allowed? Well if you live close to a military camp you can actually hunt. The state allows for any hunter to hunt on military reservations.

You can bow hunt, but only on military reservations.

South Carolina 

The same goes for South Carolina. The rules are strict, but there are a lot of exceptions.

You can bow hunt if the following: You can hunt all Sunday on controlled hunting preserves or If it’s in defense of your property.

You can also hunt on any property if you get written permission. So you can use your family or your own property to hunt on which is great. But there are a few regulations to this, actually a lot. You cannot use a dog to chase the deer, you cannot hunt between 9:30 and 12:30 except for controlled hunting preserves. And You cannot bow hunt within 500 yards of a residence not owned by the landowner. So the property you hunt on must be far away from other people, or else sign a written agreement with the landowner.

You cannot: Hunt on field trials authorized by the wildlife resources commission.

(You can bow hunt in South Carolina, read the paragraph above for the terms involved)


Pennsylvania is strict on its hunting law on Sundays. Only small games are allowed or catching animals with traps that have been placed there, you are also allowed to reset the traps if that is needed. There have been a lot of lawsuits against Pennsylvania taken place by hunters. The state did not follow through or change its opinion on the case.

(No bow hunting allowed in Pennsylvania on Sundays)

West Virginia

West Virginia allows hunting on private land ONLY, “you can not hunt on private land after 5. a.m without a written concept without the written consent of the landowner provided the county holds an election to let residents determine if Sunday hunting will be allowed on private land only. “