Iowa Hunting License

Complete your Iowa hunter education requirements to get your license.

How Do I Get My State Hunting License?

Depending on your age, you may be required to have the Hunter Education Certificate in order to legally buy a license or permit to hunt.

  1. Complete the Iowa hunter education certification requirements.
  2. Choose the correct license type.
  3. Buy the license through the Iowa Department of Natural Resources website or an Iowa–approved retailer.

Types of Iowa Hunting Licenses

Iowa Resident

A resident is a person who has lived in Iowa for at least 90 days. Active-duty military members and non-resident full-time students who live in Iowa and attend an educational institution in Iowa are considered residents. Visit the Iowa Department of Natural Resources website for more details on residency requirements.

All Iowa residents age 16 or older must have a resident hunting license. Residents ages 16 to 64 must pay the Wildlife Habitat Fee. Additional licenses may be required.

Non-Resident

All non-residents must have a non-resident hunting license and pay the Wildlife Habitat Fee. Additional licenses may be required.

Youth Hunting License

Iowa residents under the age of 16 are not required to have a hunting license or pay the Wildlife Habitat Fee. They must be accompanied by a licensed person age 18 or older.

Non-residents under the age of 16 must have a non-resident youth hunting license and pay the Wildlife Habitat Fee.

Senior Hunting License

Iowa offers a free annual hunting license to residents age 65 and older whose household income is below federal poverty guidelines. Visit the Iowa Department of Natural Resources website for more details.

Disability License

Iowa residents with disabilities may be eligible for non-ambulatory permits and species-specific licenses. In addition, Iowa offers a free annual hunting license to permanently disabled residents whose household income is below federal poverty guidelines.

Visit the Iowa Department of Natural Resources website for more information on disability licenses.

Military and Veteran License

Active-duty military members who are stationed in Iowa may purchase a resident hunting license. In addition, active-duty military members who are Iowa residents but stationed elsewhere are not required to have a hunting license while on leave. Visit the Iowa Department of Natural Resources website for more details.

Resident veterans with a service-connected disability may be eligible to purchase the Veteran Lifetime Hunting and Fishing License. Resident veterans who were prisoners of war during their military service are eligible for this license.

Migratory Waterfowl Requirements

All hunters age 16 or older must purchase the Federal Duck Stamp when hunting migratory waterfowl. They must pay the Iowa Migratory Game Bird Fee. In addition, hunters are required to have proof of their participation in the Harvest Information Program (HIP).

License Expiration

Hunting licenses go on sale on Jan. 1 and expire on Jan. 10 of the next year.

Where to Buy an Iowa Hunting License

Need help? Here are the answers to the questions Iowa Hunting students most frequently ask.

Frequently Asked Questions