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In South Carolina, the big game group includes the white-tailed deer, black bear, and the wild turkey.

White-tailed deer tracks of a white-tailed deer

White-Tailed Deer

Reddish-brown to blue-gray or tan coloring; underside of tail is white, producing a “flag” when raised off the rump. Antlers on males consist mainly of main beam with tines growing from it.

Habitat and Habits: Lives in forests, swamps, open brushy areas, foothills, plains, and river bottoms. Herbivorous. Movement limited from one to two miles. Lives up to 16 years. Male is polygamous; rut runs Oct.–Dec. One to two spotted fawns typical.

  • State Hunting License required
  • Big Game Permit required
  • Additional tags may be required
black bear tracks of a black bear

Black Bear

Color varies from black or cinnamon to blond in West and black in East; muzzle usually brown; may have a small white patch on chest. Male much larger than female.

Habitat and Habits: Lives primarily in forest and swamps in East, in forest and wooded mountains in West. Omnivorous. Lives up to 30 years. Nocturnal, usually solitary, except mother with cubs. Mates Jun.–Jul. Typically two to three cubs, born in winter.

  • State Hunting License required
  • Big Game Permit required
  • Additional tags may be required
wild turkey

Wild Turkey

Large, long-legged bird with dark, iridescent body; featherless, reddish head. Male is larger and more iridescent than female.

Habitat and Habits:Lives in open woodlands, brush country, thickets of shrubs or trees, river bottoms, and hardwoods. Lives up to 12 years. Polygamous males. Mating call is a gobble; normal calls are clucks, putts, and purrs. Nests in depressions; 6–20 whitish eggs.

  • State Hunting License required
  • Big Game Permit required
  • Additional tags may be required