Maragle fallow deer hunting ballot

Balloted hunts: Friday 1 March 2019 - Friday 31 May 2019

Key dates

  • Registrations open - Wednesday 7 November 2018
  • Registrations close - Friday 7 December 2018
  • Ballot draw - 2 pm, Monday 17 December 2018

Maragle South State Forest is a highly sought after forest known for deer hunting. Its popularity with hunters means that online bookings are sometimes hard to secure.

The Maragle South fallow deer hunting ballot helps ensure all NSW R-Licence hunters have a fair and equal opportunity to hunt this forest during the peak fallow deer hunting period.

Online bookings for Maragle South are closed for the ballot period. Normal online bookings apply for hunts up to Thursday 28 February 2019 and resume from Saturday 1 June 2019.

Balloted hunters must obey the Maragle South State Forest conditions, as well are their game hunting licence and State forest conditions.

The recent State-wide suspension of deer hunting regulations do not impact the running of this ballot. The following will apply:

  • The suspensions allow for the hunting of fallow deer in Maragle South State forest all year round. However, a restriction on fallow buck harvest will be implemented for January and February 2019 and hunting from 1 March to 31 May 2019 in Maragle South State forest will only be as part of the ballot.
  • The use of spotlights, hunting from vehicles and hunting at night are not affected by the suspensions and remain in-force on all lands declared for hunting, including Maragle South State forest.

About balloted hunts

  • Each ballot period is four days.
  • Five Written Permissions are available for each ballot period.
  • 23 ballot periods are available for allocation and therefore a total of 115 Written Permissions.
  • Hunters are able to nominate a first and second preference from the 23 periods.
  • Group hunt registrations are accepted for youth hunts only - all adult hunters must apply as an individual unless they intend to hunt with a minor for educational purposes.

Who is eligible?

Only individuals who hold a current NSW Restricted Game Hunting Licence (including minor R-Licences) are eligible to apply for the Maragle South ballot.

Further requirements

To allow a written permission to be issued to successful hunters, R-Licence holders must have completed their additional online training and acknowledged the State forest signs advisory.

Normal booking rules apply. As R-Licence holders may only have two concurrent Written Permissions at any time, hunters must also ensure they have no outstanding harvest returns and no more than one hunt booking.

Special conditions for Maragle South State Forest

Penalties apply for breaches of these conditions, such as restrictions on booking Maragle South State Forest for 12 months or licence suspension or cancellation.

  • There are no harvest restrictions on female fallow deer.
  • Fallow bucks must not be harvested during January and February.
  • Each licence holder may harvest only one fallow buck during the ballot period.
  • Only fork-antlered bucks (no bump or spike-antlered bucks) may be harvested.
  • If you mistakenly harvest a bump or spike-antlered buck, it counts as a harvested buck and must be reported on your Harvest Return.
  • You must submit a Maragle South Harvest Return as well as the standard harvest return attached to your Written Permission within 30 days after hunting. Maragle South Harvest Returns must be submitted even if you did not go hunting.
  • Licence holders are encouraged to supply a good quality digital image of each deer harvested. Digital photographs can be emailed to with the subject line ’EDM forest harvest return photo’.
  • Please consider limiting your non-hunting companions to one person when hunting in Maragle South State Forest due to its lack of facilities.

Youth hunts

Two Written Permissions are reserved for youth hunts in three ballot periods:

  • Period 5: Sunday 17 March - Wednesday 20 March
  • Period 12: Sunday 14 April - Wednesday 17 April
  • Period 14: Monday 22 April - Thursday 25 April.

One Written Permission is allocated to an eligible youth holding a minor's Restricted Game Hunting Licence and the other is allocated to an adult holding a standard Restricted Game Hunting Licence. The minor hunter must always hunt in the company of the fully licensed adult hunter according to the conditions of their licence .

2019 Balloted hunts

Period 1
Friday 1 March -
Monday 4 March

Period 2
Tuesday 5 March -
Friday 8 March

Period 3
Saturday 9 March -
Tuesday 12 March

Period 4
Wednesday 13 March -
Saturday 16 March

Period 5 (youth)
Sunday 17 March -
Wednesday 20 March

Period 6
Thursday 21 March -
Sunday 24 March

Period 7
Monday 25 March -
Thursday 28 March

Period 8
Friday 29 March -
Monday 1 April

Period 9
Tuesday 2 April -
Friday 5 April

Period 10
Saturday 6 April -
Tuesday 9 April

Period 11
Wednesday 10 April -
Saturday 13 April

Period 12 (youth)
Sunday 14 April -
Wednesday 17 April

Period 13
Thursday 18 April -
Sunday 21 April

Period 14 (youth)
Monday 22 April -
Thursday 25 April

Period 15
Friday 26 April -
Monday 29 April

Period 16
Tuesday 30 April -
Friday 3 May

Period 17
Saturday 4 May -
Tuesday 7 May

Period 18
Wednesday 8 May -
Saturday 11 May

Period 19
Sunday 12 May -
Wednesday 15 May

Period 20
Thursday 16 May -
Sunday 19 May

Period 21
Monday 20 May -
Thursday 23 May

Period 22
Friday 24 May -
Monday 27 May

Period 23
Tuesday 28 May -
Friday 31 May


Terms & conditions

  • There is no charge to enter the ballot.
  • Applicants must only register once. Duplicate registrations will be removed before the ballot draw.
  • All additional online training must be completed and there must be no outstanding harvest returns and no more than one booked hunt for each applicant.
  • By entering the Maragle South State Forest fallow deer hunting ballot, applicants agree to the collection and retention of personal information and for NSW DPI to apply for and issue Written Permission to hunt.
  • Special conditions apply to the number of fallow bucks licence holders may harvest, among others (see above).
  • Hunters must observe their Written Permission conditions, Maragle South State Forest special conditions, all standard rules and regulations as well as the rules governing this ballot.

Balloted hunters must observe the Maragle South harvest restrictions, attach a wild deer tag to any buck harvested during the allocated period, submit a Maragle South Harvest Return including a photo of any harvested buck and complete their Written Permission Harvest Return at the end of their allocated period.

Successful hunters receive a Maragle South Ballot Written Permission pack. The pack includes a written permission, wild deer tags and information specific to Maragle South State Forest.

More information

If you have any questions about the ballot, contact our Wildlife Management Team on or 02 6051 7772.

2018 ballot statistics

No. of Written Permissions available


Total no. of ballot registrations


No. of eligible ballot registrations


Registration error rate


No. of individual hunter registrations


No. of youth group ballot registrations


Chance of drawing a Written Permission


There was a 28% error rate among hunters who were drawn in the ballot - these hunters did not meet the eligibility requirements relating to harvest returns and additional training.

Successful hunters who did not meet these requirements were removed from the ballot and replaced by hunters drawn from the emergency list.

2017 ballot statistics

No. of Written Permissions available


Total no. of ballot registrations


No. of eligible ballot registrations


Registration error rate


No. of individual hunter registrations


No of group registrations


No. of youth hunt ballot registrations


Chance of drawing a Written Permission


  • 13 periods were comprised of one group with three individual hunters.
  • Nine periods were comprised of two groups with one individual hunter.
  • One period was comprised of solely individual hunters.
  • 53 Written Permissions were issued to individuals.
  • 62 Written Permission were issued to groups.
  • In two of the three youth periods (5, 11 and 14) a group from the main ballot was also successful.
  • One youth group was successful in the main ballot, in addition to the three successful youth ballot groups.