The Wisconsin 2021 pheasant hunting season opens statewide at 9 a.m. this Saturday, Oct. 16, and runs through Jan. 9, 2022.

Pheasants are one of the most sought-after gamebirds in North America, and populations do best in the agricultural landscape of southern and western Wisconsin provided there is grassland habitat present in sufficient quantities to meet their food and cover needs throughout the year.

Some state properties now close at noon to reduce safety conflicts for staff and to allow pheasants a resting period before being pursued, according to the DNR. 

Hunters should check Wisconsin Hunting Regulations for a complete list of properties with the noon closure rule as well as rules and season structures for other game species they may pursue.

To pursue wild pheasants, hunters should look for areas that contain adequate winter cover, such as cattail marshes and dense brush, intermixed with cropland, hay and idle grasslands which provide food and nesting cover. It will be important for hunters to identify areas with high-quality habitat, concentrating their hunting efforts in those areas.

Wisconsin’s pheasant stamp program uses funds derived from stamp sales to create and maintain the habitat required for pheasants to survive and reproduce year-round.

A 2021 Pheasant Stamp and a valid small game license are required to hunt pheasants statewide. Hunters should note that the free leg tags previously required on the hen/rooster areas are no longer required.

The daily bag limit is one pheasant daily for the first two days of the season and two pheasants daily for the remainder of the season, with a possession limit of three times the daily bag limit. 

In addition to wild pheasant hunting opportunities, the DNR wildlife management staff plan to release approximately 75,000 pheasants from the state game farm on over 80 public hunting grounds. 

A list of all properties stocked with pheasants is available on the Pheasant Stocking Information page at dnr.wi.gov. The DNR’s free Hunt Wild Wisconsin mobile app includes a map layer showing where pheasants are stocked on public lands. In addition to using it to locate pheasant hunting opportunities, hunters can also view the regulations and buy a license.

Hunters can also use FFLIGHT, the DNR's gamebird mapping web application, to locate and explore properties stocked with pheasants, as well as ruffed grouse and woodcock habitat and managed dove fields. 

FFLIGHT allows hunters to use aerial maps, topography and measuring tools 

to easily navigate and identify areas of interest and make their trips more productive.