Idaho Weapon Restrictions

Rifle and Shotgun

In any hunt, including any-weapon seasons, it is unlawful to

pursue or kill big game animals:

• By any means other than approved firearms,

muzzleloaders and archery methods.

• With any electronic device attached to, or incorporated

on, the firearm or scope; Except scopes containing

battery powered or tritium lighted reticles are allowed.

• With any firearm that, in combination with a scope, sling

and/or any attachments, weighs more than 16 pounds.

• With any fully automatic firearm.

• With any shotgun using shot smaller than #00 buck.

• With any rimfire rifle, rimfire handgun, or muzzleloading

handgun, except for mountain lion.

Short Range Weapons

In big game seasons restricted to short-range weapons,

it is unlawful for hunters to use any weapon other than a

muzzleloader, archery equipment, crossbow, or a shotgun

using slugs or shot of size #00 buck or larger.

Muzzleloader Caliber Requirements

In any hunt, including general any-weapon seasons and shortrange

hunts, it is unlawful to pursue or kill big game animals:

• With any muzzleloading rifle or musket that is less than

.45 caliber for deer, pronghorn, or mountain lion; or

is less than .50 caliber for elk, moose, bighorn sheep,

mountain goat or black bear.

Muzzleloader-Only Season

Any person hunting in a muzzleloader-only season, including

controlled hunts, must have in their possession a license with

a muzzleloader permit validation. During a muzzleloaderonly

season, it is illegal to pursue or kill a big game animal

with any firearm, muzzleloading pistol, or weapon other

than a muzzleloading rifle or musket. In addition, the

muzzleloading rifle or musket must be:

• Capable of being loaded only from the muzzle.

• Equipped with only open or peep sights. Scopes and any

electronics are prohibited. Except hunters with a visual

disability may apply for a permit to use nonmagnifying

scopes. (Applications are available at Fish and Game


• Loaded only with loose black powder, loose Pyrodex, or

other loose synthetic black powder. Pelletized powders

are prohibited.

• Equipped with a single or double-barrel.

• Loaded with a projectile that is within .010 inch of the

bore diameter. Sabots are prohibited.

• Loaded with a patched round ball or conical non-jacketed

projectile comprised wholly of lead or lead alloy.

• Equipped only with a flint, percussion cap or musket cap.

209 primers are prohibited.

• Equipped with an ignition system in which any portion

of the cap is exposed or visible when the weapon is

cocked and ready to fire.



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Idaho Deer Hunting, Idaho Elk Hunting, Idaho Bear Hunting, Idaho Mountain Lion Hunting.
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