Suspending deer hunting regulations

If you are an individual or group with responsibility for a parcel of land that is affected by a local wild deer population, you can make a simple application to DPI requesting a suspension of the deer hunting regulations.

A suspension of the regulations means that licensed hunters you may choose to enlist are exempt from the special rules for hunting deer in NSW.

If approved, a suspension order will be published in the NSW Government Gazette and will set out the specific conditions and requirements of the suspension and well as when the order expires.

If your property is located in any of the following Local Government Areas (LGAs), hunters you permit on your property will continue to require a game hunting licence, but will not be required to follow certain hunting rules for wild deer like hunting at night, hunting using spotlights and hunting from a vehicle.

    A silhouette of two deer with the words Ecological Deer Management

  • Bega Valley LGA
  • Coffs Harbour LGA
  • Glen Innes Severn LGA
  • Kempsey LGA
  • Liverpool Plains LGA
  • Nambucca LGA
  • Port Macquarie Hastings LGA
  • Snowy Monaro LGA
  • Snowy Valleys LGA
  • Tenterfield LGA
  • Upper Hunter LGA
  • Wollongong LGA.

Primefact 1461: Suspending the deer hunting regulations summarises the steps needed to apply for a suspension.

Wild deer management plans

Before an application to suspend the regulations is considered, there must be a Wild deer management plan for your property or area.

There are many options to support you to develop a management plan for your land.

  • Contact the DPI Game Licensing Unit for advice before submitting your application.
  • Submit an application and request assistance in developing a plan.
  • Submit a draft management plan, either on the DPI template or in your own format that we may consult on, evaluate and revise.

Wild deer management plans must:

  • satisfy game hunting legislation and any other relevant legislation.
  • include defined management objectives that are consistent with those stated on the suspension application form.
  • be realistic and likely to be effective in meeting deer management objectives.
  • consider monitoring and reporting provisions to ensure management objectives are being met during the duration of the suspension.

You can use the DPI template, or develop your own Wild deer management plan that addresses these areas:

  • an overview
  • expected outcomes
  • duration of the plan
  • contact information for the land manager
  • property or area information
  • wild deer management issues
  • control methods
  • monitoring of outcomes
  • a map of the property or area.
EDM suspension of wild deer regulations application kit 
FORM EDM-S: Application to suspend the game hunting regulations for wild deer(PDF, 80.72 KB)
Template - Ecological deer management - Wild deer management plan(DOCX, 264.21 KB)

How do we assess a suspension application?

To meet our legislative requirements, DPI must assess your application and its’ management objectives. This may involve:

  • requests for more information, in writing or by email, a phone call or face-to-face visit at the specified land area.
  • on-site surveys to support the land manager in development of a wild deer management plan.

How long will it take?

There is no set processing period for resolution of a suspension application. This is due to the nature of assessing different herds on different lands, DPI will endeavour to minimise delays and give timely advice and approval.

Following an approval, a suspension order will be published in the NSW Government Gazette within ten days. The date of publication in the Gazette is the commencement date for the suspension. The order will also set an expiry date.

Finding licensed hunters to help

If you need assistance from licensed, reputable hunters to control wild deer on your land, we encourage you to contact a local Approved Hunting Organisation.

If your property is located in an LGA where the deer hunting regulations are suspended, you can add your details to an EDM Landholder Register, or access the EDM Hunter Register to find available hunters near you.