JACKSON, Miss. – Mississippi’s alligator hunting season is less than two months away.
There are only 920 permits available and this year some changes have been made in how hunters can get their hands on them. “There will be no drawing, no drawing,” said Mississippi Department of Wildlife Fishier and Parks (MDWFP) Alligator Program Coordinator Ricky Flint. Instead all permits, which must be bought through the agency’s website, will be on a first come first serve basis. Flint said in the past, many would send in a free application for a permit and after their names were drawn, only three out of four would actually participate. “With such low participation, the harvest was not what it could have been.” Flint said it’s believed that by having to pay up front for a permit, the actual hunting numbers will go up.
Interested hunters can begin buying permits Tuesday, July 14, at 9 a.m. Each costs $150 and requires an additional $25 alligator hunting license.
“The only other big change is the training course; it is no longer mandatory,” Flint explained. “We had required that if you were drawn for a permit for the first time, you had to go through the training course.”
Mississippi’s alligator hunting season runs August 28 – September 7. Each permit allows for the harvest of two alligators over four feet long, but only one may exceed seven feet in length. To be eligible to hunt, you must be a Mississippi resident, at least 16 years of age, and have a valid Mississippi hunting/fishing license.