All You Need to Know About AZ Hunting & Fishing

person hunting with shotgun

With hunting season in full swing, there’s no better time than now to score your hunting and fishing license. And Arizona is home to some of the best hunting and fishing in the United States.

In order to partake legally, it’s a good idea to get your game and fishing licenses. But, what exactly does that entail?

In this guide, you’ll learn everything you need to know about how to get your game and fishing license in Arizona. Plus, you’ll learn what species are available for recreation as well as some of the legalities regarding sporting licenses. Let’s get started!

What Can You Hunt in Arizona?

The question really should be what can’t you hunt in the state? Arizona is home to a plethora of wildlife, including mule deer, bighorn sheep, antelope, and elk.

You can also find deer turkeys, black bears, and buffalo. Some of the smaller game includes rabbits, quail, doves, and pheasants.

Another big plus to hunting in Arizona? You can hunt most of this game year-round (as long as you have the proper licenses and permits, of course).

It’s also helpful to understand some of the common hunting and fishing laws in Arizona before you set out. 

What Can You Fish in Arizona?

Similar to big and small game available to hunt, there are plenty of species of fish for those looking to get their feet wet. Some of these species include smallmouth bass, catfish, crappie, largemouth bass, brown trout, bluegill, and even trophy-sized largemouth bass.

The location you choose to fish in determines what species you’ll come across most often so be sure to map out your fishing before venturing out.

Who Needs a License to Hunt and Fish?

If you want to hunt any wildlife (including fish) here, you will need a valid Arizona license. You will need to carry this license with you when hunting, fishing, or participating in any other form of “take.” According to the State of Arizona, take refers to any activities that pertain to game such as:  pursuing, shooting, hunting, fishing, trapping, killing, capturing, snaring, or netting wildlife. Any animals such as mammals, wild birds, reptiles, amphibians, mollusks, crustaceans, and fish count as wildlife.

Getting Your License in Phoenix, AZ

There are many kinds of game and fishing licenses in the state. Below is a helpful breakdown of hunting and fishing licenses, as well as special considerations to keep note.

Hunting License

If you live in Arizona, whether you’re a resident or not, you need a valid hunting license if you are 10 years of age or older. If you are under 10 but are accompanied by someone with a proper license who’s 18 years or older, then you do not need a license to hunt. Two children can accompany a license holder.

However, there are specific rules regarding big game (like bison). If you are under the age of 14, you cannot hunt big game without a completion certificate from the Hunter Education Course. This rule also applies to anyone under the age of 10.

Fishing License

If you are 10 years old or older, you need a fishing license to fish in Arizona. This rule applies whether you are a resident or not. 

Special Licenses

If you are an Honorary Boy or Girl Scout (which means you’ve achieved the highest level in the Scouts organization), you can get a combination license to hunt and fish for a reduced fee. Girl and Boy Scouts are eligible for this type of license up until their 21st birthday.

You also have the option to purchase a lifetime fishing or hunting license but these fees vary based on the age and license type. If you move out of Arizona, you can still use this license to come back and hunt and fish.

If you are really passionate about wildlife, you can look into the Lifetime Wildlife Benefactor License. Not only does this license allow you to take game, but you can also donate to Arizona’s wildlife conservation which seeks to protect and manage programs that pertain to wildlife.

Residency Requirements

It’s helpful to distinguish between residents and non-residents because there are slightly different costs when it comes to game and fishing licenses for each. As a general rule of thumb, an Arizona resident is defined as a person who considers the state thier true, fixed, and permanent home and main residence for at least 6 months before the license application date. 

This term is known as domiciled and also means that a person cannot state residency in another state.

How Much Does a Game and Fishing License in Arizona Cost?

Costs differ depending on whether you’re a resident or non-resident, as well as the exact type of license you’re seeking. For example, a general fishing license will cost you about $37 if you’re a resident versus $55 for non-residents. It’s helpful to see a full breakdown of license costs before purchasing. 

You can typically get a game and fishing license from a number of places, including places like your local Motor Vehicle Services store.

Get a Game and Fishing License Today!

Hopefully, you now have a solid understanding of game and fishing licenses in Phoenix, Arizona. Remember that there are slightly different rules for residents and nonresidents so be sure to know your status before attempting to get a license.

Are you ready to get your game and fishing license ASAP? Head over to GG&D to get your game and fishing license in the Phoenix area today! With locations around the valley in Phoenix, Mesa and Glendale, you’re sure to find one close to home.