- Can I use electronic decoys or electronic calls to hunt game species during open seasons?
It is illegal to hunt waterfowl, wild turkeys, or deer with the use or aid of battery-powered or other electronic devices as decoys. It is illegal to hunt waterfowl, wild turkeys, or deer with the use or aid of electronic calls. Restrictions do not currently exist for other game species.
- What are the legal specifications for archery, crossbow, muzzleloading firearm, handgun, rifle, and shotgun hunting for big game?
See the “Equipment and Hunting Methods” section of the Big Game Hunting Regulations Pamphlet.
- Can a felon possess or use a muzzleloader, rifle, handgun, or shotgun for hunting?
No, unless the felon has had his/her right-to-bear-arms restored through a state superior court. If the felon’s rights have been restored, he/she can use muzzleloaders, rifles, handguns, and shotguns to hunt. But if the felon has not had his/her firearm rights restored, then he/she cannot ...
- Can I carry a modern handgun while archery or muzzleloader hunting?
Yes. A modern handgun can be carried while archery or muzzleloader hunting, but only for personal protection. Modern handguns cannot be used to hunt big game or to dispatch wounded big game during the big game hunting season for archery or muzzleloaders.
- Where can I find rules and regulations about firearms (especially handguns and carrying concealed weapons)?
Refer to chapter 9.41 RCW, “Firearms and Dangerous Weapons.” The Hunter Education Division within WDFW’s Enforcement Program has a brochure titled “Firearms Safety, The Law and You. Basic Safety, General Laws and Regulations.” The brochure contains information abou ...
- What is the definition of a loaded rifle or shotgun?
A shotgun or rifle is considered loaded if it contains shells or cartridges in the chamber or magazine. In addition, any firearm that has a detachable clip or magazine is considered unloaded if the detachable clip or magazine is not inserted in or attached to the firearm. A muzzleloader is cons ...
- What are the firearms possession rules for non-U.S. citizens?
It is a class C felony for any person who is not a citizen of the United States to carry or possess any firearm, unless the person: 1) Is a lawful permanent resident; 2) has obtained a valid alien firearm license pursuant to RCW 9.41.173; or 3) meets the requirements of RCW 9.41.175. A citizen ...
- Can I have a loaded rifle or shotgun while riding a quad or motor bike while hunting?
No. Both a quad and motor bike are motor vehicles, so any rifle or shotgun being transported on them must be unloaded.
- Is it OK to have a loaded shotgun or rifle while riding on a mountain bike or horse while hunting?
Yes, because neither is a motor vehicle. However, it is extremely dangerous to do this in certain situations, so it is discouraged.
- During modern firearm seasons, can a muzzleloading firearm be used that has telescopic sights, uses 209 primers, and has a closed ignition system?
Yes. Muzzleloading firearms used during a modern firearm season are not required to meet ignition, primer, or sight restrictions. Muzzleloading firearms used during a modern firearm season are also not required to meet double-barrel restrictions. A muzzleloading firearm can have both barrels fu ...
- What is the magazine-capacity restriction on firearms used for big game hunting?
There is no magazine capacity restriction on firearms used for big game hunting.
- If I'm under age 18, can I possess and use a rifle, shotgun, or muzzleloader?
Yes, but only under the following circumstances (RCW 9.41.042): You are attending a certified hunter education course or a firearms safety course; You are shooting or target practicing at an established range where shooting is allowed, or in other areas where it is legal to shoot firearms; You ...
- Why aren't retractable broadheads legal to hunt big game in Washington?
WDFW does not think that the use of retractable broadheads is justified for hunting big game in Washington at this time. The main issue is regarding the failure rate of the expandable broadhead.
- Can I have both barrels of my double-barreled muzzleloader loaded during a legal season for muzzleloading firearms?
Yes. A hunter lawfully hunting small game with a double-barreled muzzleloading shotgun may keep both barrels loaded. A hunter lawfully hunting big game with a double-barreled muzzleloading firearm during a muzzleloader season may load both barrels with powder charges and projectiles, BUT may ha ...
- Is it legal to use retractable broadheads during wild turkey seasons?
Yes. Turkeys are classified as game birds, and retractable broadheads are allowed for game birds in Washington. However, retractable broadheads cannot be used for big game in Washington. Use caution, however, when the turkey season is overlapped with big game seasons, such as during the spring ...
- What are the rules for firearm restriction areas, and can crossbows now be used?
In firearm restriction areas, hunters may hunt only during the season allowed by their deer and/or elk tag. Modern firearm tag holders may hunt firearm restriction areas during modern firearm deer and/or elk seasons with bows and arrows, crossbows, muzzleloading firearms, revolver-type handguns ...
- Am I restricted to the use of solid lead projectiles in Washington while hunting with a muzzleloading firearm?
No; you may use any type of projectile. Sabots are also allowed.
- How can I propose changes to current hunting equipment restrictions?
See WDFW's “Rule Information Center” website. WDFW offers several formal and informal ways to provide input or to communicate on proposed rules. Input is accepted by WDFW throughout the rule-making process and during the actual rule-making public hearing conducted by the Fish and Wi ...
- Is a .410 legal for hunting game birds in Washington?
Yes. Even though a .410 is measured in caliber, not gauge, it is considered a shotgun. A .410 is smaller than a 20-gauge shotgun. It is unlawful to hunt game birds with a shotgun larger than a 10-gauge (WAC 232-12-047). Game birds cannot be hunted with a handgun or rifle, with the exception of ...
- My wild turkey shotgun will hold only three 3 ½ inch magnum shells but will hold four 2 ¾ inch shells. Will I be cited for not having a plug in my gun in violation of the 3-shell rule?
Yes, you will probably be cited if you are in possession of more than three 2 ¾ inch shells while in the field at the time of contact--see WAC 232-12-047.