You won't find a better place than Southeast South Dakota for your next hunting excursion! In our region, pheasants are abundant along with geese and ducks.
Southeast South Dakota offers access to nearly 4.5 million acres of public land for your hunting pleasure. Many private land owners will allow you to hunt on their property if you ask permission first and honor the privilege of hunting their land. We also have private reserves that offer guided hunts along with lodging and meals.
The avid hunter will find Southeast South Dakota a virtual hunter's paradise, with abundant game of varied species providing a variety of hunting opportunities. Upland game, waterfowl, small game and big game dominate the fall hunting seasons. Predator hunting fills the winter months and spring signals the start of turkey hunting as well as the snow goose hunt. Though pheasant and deer are the most popular, South Dakota hunters can find additional hunts for partridge, quail, dove, coyote and fox. For more information about hunting in Southeast South Dakota, read our South Dakota Sportsman's Guide or click here to request a full packet of travel information on Southeast South Dakota.
South Dakota Pheasant Hunting
Traditional Southeast South Dakota pheasant hunting season usually starts in mid-October. Preserve season, September through March. Although pheasants are found statewide, the main pheasant range encompasses the eastern two-thirds of the state. Pheasants prefer agricultural fields, wooded draws, tree strips, wetlands and set-aside acres. Most of South Dakota is privately owned and permission is required to hunt, but public lands such as Game Production Areas and Walk-In Areas offer choice habitat for pheasants. Early in the season, pheasants are scattered in small flocks, but winter's fury pushes birds into heavy cover and concentrates them. Tree strips, cattail sloughs and dense weed patches hold pheasants this time of year.
East River Deer
Traditional Southeast South Dakota hunting season for deer is:
◦ Firearm, mid-November through early December.
◦ Archery, late September through December.
Range and Habitat: East of the Missouri River, deer hunters will find crops such as corn, oats, wheat, sunflowers and soybeans attracting the whitetail deer population. South Dakota hunting for mule deer is limited to counties bordering the Missouri River. Rolling pastures, tree strips, river bottoms and cattail sloughs provide escape cover for the deer. Non-resident firearm hunting opportunities are limited, and non-residents are only able to apply for South Dakota hunting licenses after three resident drawings. Archery east river deer licenses are unlimited.
South Dakota Goose Hunting
Southeast South Dakota hunting season for canada geese is late September to December.
Spring Light Goose Season: Mid February to December. (November to mid February in some areas)
Fall Light Goose Season: Late September to mid January.
Range and Habitat: Geese can be found and hunted statewide. The Missouri River corridor is the main route for more than 400,000 migrating Canada geese, and eastern South Dakota attracts 350,000 snow- and blue-geese migrants.
South Dakota Duck Hunting
Traditional Southeast South Dakota hunting season for duck is early October to mid-November.
Range and Habitat: South Dakota's prairie pothole country, located in the heart of the Central Flyway, consistently leads the nation in duck production. More than 15 million ducks migrate annually through South Dakota. They include mallards, gadwall, pintails and teal. Ducks can be found and hunted statewide, with varying numbers of birds depending on the fall migration. Along the Missouri River, the migration peaks in mid-November with 600,000 ducks, primarily mallards.
South Dakota Prairie Turkey Hunting
Traditional Southeast South Dakota hunting season for turkey is:
◦ Spring firearm and archery, April to mid May.
◦ Fall prairie turkey, November through January.
Range and Habitat: Wild turkeys are found statewide in varying densities. In the eastern portion of the state, turkeys prefer the woods and brushy hillsides of rivers, as well as tree belts. Spring archery hunters may hunt statewide, and licenses are unlimited.
South Dakota Hunting Licenses
Visit www.gfp.sd.gov for fees and more information.
Or call South Dakota Dept. of Game, Fish & Parks at 605-223-7660.
Please refer to the current South Dakota Hunting & Trapping Handbook for all South Dakota hunting regulations.
Country Cottage Hideaway
28936 433rd Avenue
Menno, SD 57045
(605) 387-5256, (605) 660-1410
601 Cabela Drive
Mitchell, SD 57301
Platte Area Chamber of Commerce
PO Box 393
Platte, SD 57369
1-888-297-8175 or (605) 337-2275
3200 W. Maple Street
Sioux Falls, SD 57107
(605) 336-0650, 800-528-1234
Broken Willow Lodge
31149 SD Hwy 37
Springfield, SD 57062
Springfield Chamber of Commerce
P.O. Box 329
Springfield, SD 57062