Land Between The Lakes
National Recreation Area
100 Van Morgan Drive
Golden Pond, KY 42211

Phone: 270-924-2000
Toll Free: 800-525-7077

Home > Hunting > Small Game Info

Small Game & Waterfowl Hunting Information, 2012-2013

(Valid through July 31, 2013) See Table at end for species, season, and limit information.

Stewardship Agreement: The Forest Service and National Wild Turkey Federation have a stewardship agreement to cooperatively manage open lands in LBL. Cooperative work under this agreement will improve open lands habitat and benefit many species of wildlife. See habitat maps at LBL Welcome Stations and Hunter Check Station for locations or on the map page of our website.

Prescribed Fire: The Forest Service has an active LBL prescribed burning program to improve diverse wildlife habitat and reduce hazardous fuels. Prescribed burns require very specific conditions and may occur during all seasons of the year. To learn about the locations and timing of burns, visit the Alerts & Notices page of this website.

Hunter Use Permits: (The fee information is valid through Feb. 2013.) An annual LBL Hunter Use Permit ($20) is required for all hunters, age 16 and older, in addition to a valid Kentucky or Tennessee hunting license for the state portion of LBL in which you are hunting. A discounted Hunter Use Permit/Backcountry Camping Permit (age 18 and older) is also available for $25. Permits may also be purchased at LBL welcome stations, the Golden Pond Visitor Center, or wherever Kentucky or Tennessee State hunting licenses are sold. Note: Combination permits not available in KY state licensing system.

Hunter Safety Requirements: LBL is a National Recreation Area and there are many visitors enjoying a variety of outdoor activities during all seasons of the year. Everyone's safety is a top priority. All hunters must possess a hunter safety card according to state regulations for the state portion of LBL on which they are hunting. Additionally for LBL, all youth hunters who are not required to carry a hunter safety card must receive basic hunter safety instructions and carry a verification form signed by the responsible adult. The verification form and basic hunter safety instructions can be found HERE.

Camping: (The fee information is valid through Feb. 2013.) LBL offers developed campgrounds, lake access areas, and backcountry camping. Backcountry camping requires a $20 annual permit for each person 18 years and older ($5 for a 3-day permit) or a combination Hunting/Backcountry Camping Permit (for $25), and is permitted anywhere in LBL except in the Nature Watch Areas, Brandon Spring Group Camp, cemeteries, picnic areas, and within 200 yards of The Trace, Silver Trail Road, Mulberry Flat Road, and Fort Henry Road. The backcountry length of stay limit is 14 days on a site. Campfires are permitted but must be attended at all times and completely extinguished before leaving the site. Fire ring rocks shall not be left in fields. During periods of extreme fire danger all open-air fires may be prohibited. Additional camping information is available in the camping section of our web site.

Legal Weapons for Small Game Hunting: Shotguns, rimfire rifles, rimfire handguns, muzzleloaders, and archery equipment according to state regulations with the following exceptions: the use of centerfire rifles, centerfire handguns, and shotguns loaded with slugs or buckshot are prohibited. (See exceptions under Coyote/Feral Hog section below.) Broadheads may not be used for small game hunting except for specified game during the deer archery season.

Ticks: Tick repellent is highly recommended from March 15 to October 15. Tick repellents are available at LBL.

General Regulations: To report a violation or an emergency call 877-861-2457

  • All areas are open to small game and waterfowl hunting during specified seasons except: Nature Watch areas, wildlife refuges, safety zones around facilities, and areas posted as closed.
  • Licensed motorized vehicles are permitted only on roads that are marked by numbered signs and corresponding numbers on the LBL Recreation and Motor Vehicle Use Maps (MVUM). Other roads are maintained for administrative access or trails, but are not legal for driving. Maps are available online or at LBL facilities.
  • Unlicensed motorized vehicles, including four-wheelers, are allowed only in the Turkey Bay Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) Area and require an OHV Permit.
  • Parking is permitted within one vehicle length of a legal road. Blocking access to any road or trail is prohibited. Rutting of fields or leaving campfire rings in fields are prohibited.
  • There shall be no discharge of a firearm, or other implement capable of taking life, within 150 yards of any developed area.
  • Wildlife refuges are closed to all hunting year-round and closed to human entry during the refuge period.
  • Hunters hunting on LBL all the way to the waters' edge, at any elevation of Kentucky Lake or Lake Barkley, must possess a valid LBL Hunter Use Permit.
  • Hunters possessing weapons who use LBL to access hunting opportunities off of LBL, (e.g. launch a boat from LBL or wade into the lake from the LBL shoreline) must possess a valid LBL Hunter Use Permit.
  • Small game hunting from horseback is permitted (except in conjunction with deer bow hunting).
  • Hunting dogs must have a current rabies vaccination and wear a collar showing owner's name, address, and phone number.
  • No species of wildlife may be harassed or taken except those authorized.
  • Spotlighting or the use of any artificial lights to locate wildlife is prohibited.
  • Hunters must not be under the influence of controlled substances or alcoholic beverages.
  • All applicable state and federal regulations must be observed.
  • Paint, tape, flagging, or other artificial materials shall not be used to mark trees, trails, or routes.
  • The placement of bait or hunting over bait, including food or mineral substances, is prohibited on LBL.
  • To protect the future of hunting, hunters are encouraged to be sensitive and courteous to other visitors.
  • Parking along US68/KY80 is permitted. Do not drive on the paved bike/hike trail or block farming access.

Waterfowl: Waterfowl hunting is allowed throughout the inland portion of LBL except as designated under General Regulations above. Portable blinds are allowed, but must be removed at the end of each hunting day. A waterfowl hunter shall not hunt within 200 yards of a waterfowl refuge or another blind. Goose and duck hunting are allowed according to state seasons for the zone in which LBL is located; however, there is no waterfowl hunting on LBL during quota deer hunts (KY portion closed Oct. 27-28 and Nov. 17-18, TN portion closed Oct 20-21, Nov 9-10 and Nov. 24-25). Steel shot is required for all waterfowl hunting. Hunters must not have lead shot in their possession while waterfowl hunting. All state and federal waterfowl regulations, license requirements, and bag limits apply. Carefully review all General Regulations above.

Fox Chasing & Hunting:Fox chasing is permitted south of U.S. Highway 68 only, from sunset to sunrise. Foxes (gray and red) may be harvested only during the specified hunting seasons during daylight hours in any open hunting area. Hand- or mouth-operated calling devices are permitted. Electronic calling devices for taking foxes are prohibited.

Coyote, Feral Hogs, Armadillos: may be taken during daylight hours in any open hunting season with weapons specified for that season. Hand, mouth, or electronic calling devices are permitted. During February, center-fire rifles and handguns, and shotguns with shot size T or smaller may be used. Hog hunting with dogs is prohibited.

Crow: Crows may be hunted during dates and days indicated on the front of this sheet. Decoys and hand, mouth, or electronic calls are permitted.

Bobcat and Otter:
Kentucky: The bobcat and otter hunting season is Dec. 1-Feb. 28. All bobcats and otters must be Telechecked and tagged according to state regulations. The statewide season limit is five bobcats and six otters per person, (only three bobcats may be taken with a gun), including bobcats and otters harvested on LBL. Bobcats and otters may be hunted during daylight hours only. Legal weapons are those specified for small game hunting, or for deer archery hunting during the Dec.-Jan. bow season. Hand- or mouth-operated and electronic calls are permitted for bobcat hunting.

Tennessee: Bobcats and otters may be taken Dec. 1 - Feb 28 by legally licensed and/or permitted hunters. Statewide regulations and limits apply.

Field Trials & Dog Training: A field trial permit from LBL and approval by the appropriate state wildlife agency are required to conduct field trials. Trials must be scheduled at least two months in advance to prevent conflicts with hunting seasons or recreational events. An LBL Hunter Use Permit is required for all dog training. No game may be taken or shaken out and no firearms possessed during field trials or dog training. Horses may be used. Raccoon dog training is permitted only in Hunt Areas 1, 9, 13, and 15. closed dates in Oct. are during youth deer hunt.

Trapping: Trappers must obtain a trapping permit in advance at the Golden Pond Administrative Office and submit a completed report at the end of the season. The trapping season is Jan. 14-27, on Kentucky Hunt Areas 2, 3, & 4 and Tennessee Hunt Areas 12 & 14. Areas closed to hunting under General Regulations above are also closed to trapping. All trappers must possess an LBL Hunter Use Permit and state trapping license. Legal traps, sets, and species must conform to state regulations. All traps must bear the trapper's name and address. All bobcats and otters harvested on the Kentucky portion of LBL must be Telechecked and tagged according to state regulations and statewide limits apply. There will be a beaver trapping season Feb. 1-28 in KY and TN in all areas open to hunting. Otters may be taken during February days which coincide with state otter seasons for the respective counties.

NOTE: Trappers will be in Hunt Areas 2, 3, & 4 and Areas 12 & 14 from Jan. 14-27. Hunters with dogs should avoid those areas during this period.





Daily /
SquirrelAug 18 -
Oct 14
Dec 1-Feb 28
May 18-June 21
Aug 18-Sep 21
Oct 1-14
Dec 1-Feb 28
May 11-June 9
6/12 10/20
Quail Dec 1-Feb 10 Dec 1-Jan 31 8/16 6/12
Rabbit Dec 1-Feb 10 Dec 1-Feb 28 4/8 5/10
Raccoon* Dec 1-Feb 28 Dec 1-Feb 28 One per person per night One per person per night
Opossum* Dec 1-Feb 28 Dec 1-Feb 28 No limit No limit
Dove, Woodcock, Wilson Snipe Open to conform to statewide seasons before Oct. 15 & after Nov. 30 Open to conform to statewide seasons before Sep 22 & after Nov. 30 According
to state &
federal regulations
According to state & federal regulations
Waterfowl See text See text See text See text
Fox Hunting Dec 1-Feb 28 Dec 1-Feb 28 No limit -- see text No limit -- see text
Fox Chasing Aug 18-Sep 16 Aug 18-Sep 16 None may be taken, see text None may be taken, see text
Bobcat, Otter Dec. 1 - Feb. 28 Dec. 1 - Feb. 28 See Bobcat regulations See Bobcat regulations
Coyote, Feral Hogs, & Armadillo During any open hunting season During any open hunting season No limit -- see text No limit -- see text
Crow Sep 1-30
Jan 4-Feb 28
Fri, Sat, Sun only Aug 18-Sep 21 Dec 1-Feb 28 June 1-9
No limit -- see text No limit -- see text
Bird Dog, Rabbit Dog, Raccoon Hound TrainingOct 1- 26
Oct 1-18
Oct 22-31
See text See text
Field Trials Jul 1-Mar 31 J