Deer Hunting in the City

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Hunting is a vital management tool that keeps urban deer populations in healthy balance within the habitat they live, while also maintaining the safety of people and protecting property.  The City of Eau Claire regularly surveys its deer population and recent totals indicate that deer populations are in excess of 50 per square mile in some areas.  A healthy urban deer herd is between 15 and 25 per square mile. 


Can I Hunt in the City of Eau Claire?  Yes!

Although it is unlawful for any person to fire or discharge any type of firearm in the city, bow hunting is permitted. 

Archery hunting is allowed on private property within city limits.  No hunting is allowed on city owned property.

When Can I hunt in the City of Eau Claire?

The archery hunting season is September 14, 2019 through January 31, 2020.

A Few Rules

  • Baiting and feeding deer is against State law and against City ordinance.
  • Hunters must follow all State of Wisconsin hunting laws, Wisconsin DNR hunting regulations, and have a current and valid DNR license and eligible tags.  No additional permits or fees are required from the City of Eau Claire.
  • Hunters must practice safe hunting practices such as ensuring no people or property are in the vicinity of the target and the area beyond the target before discharging an arrow.
    • It is unlawful for a person to discharge a bow and arrow or crossbow within a distance of 50-yards from a building located on another person's land.  This restriction can be waived if the person who owns the building allows and gives written permission to the person to use or discharge an arrow or crossbow within the specified distance of a building.
    • Hunting may not occur across or within any public right of way or within 50 feet of the center of the right of way and never closer that 30 feet of the nearest border of the right of way.
    • A bow and arrow or crossbow must be discharged toward the ground.  In other words, the hunter should be elevated when shooting.
    • Hunters should use best efforts to promptly dispatch a deer on the permitted property with a safe and effective shot.  If a wounded deer is not recovered on the permitted property, then entry on to another's property is permitted only with prior permission of the landowner.   
  • No hunting is allowed on any public property in the City of Eau Claire.
  • Additional rules and information governing deer hunting in the City of Eau Claire can be found in Ordinance No. 7152 
  • Email Community Services or call 715-839-4649 with additional questions.
Are you a property owner, but not a bow hunter?  Or, are you a hunter looking for a place to hunt?

The Interested Hunters List contains contact information for bow and arrow hunters who are interested in hunting deer in the City of Eau Claire.  If you’re a property owner interested in having someone hunt on your property, use the contact information provided on the list.   

To be added to the list as an available hunter, email your contact information to Community Services.

What if I find a dead deer in my yard?

Please contact the Community Services Department at (715) 839-4963 and the City will retrieve the deer if it’s on the boulevard.  If a deer dies in your yard, please place it on a plastic tarp and drag it to the boulevard for pickup. The City will not go on to your property to retrieve a deer.