Chester Township
1 Parker Road
Chester, New Jersey 07930
908-879-5100

The goal of Chester Township’s controlled hunting program is to manage wildlife on Township owned park preserve and open space areas without excessively conflicting with park users or park neighbors.  The specific objective of the controlled deer hunting program is to reduce the population of white-tailed deer on six Township-owned tracts totaling approximately 700 acres, to reduce agricultural crop damage, to reduce motorist collisions with deer, and to restore or improve forest health by reducing over browse of the forest understory.   A multi-year controlled hunting program has been designed to decrease the deer herd on these lands to an average of 20 deer per square mile, in a program consistent with state regulations.

In the Township of Chester, we are fortunate to have many acres of preserved parkland. Some of our parkland is managed by Chester Township, some by Morris County, and some by the State of New Jersey. Separate management plans mean that schedules for hunting can differ from park to park.

Parks Hunting Dates Notes
Township Parks
Township Parks all follow same deer hunting dates. Township parks include: Evans Family Forest Preserve, Tiger Brook Park, MacGregor Preserve, Highlands Ridge Park, Parker Rd. Preserve, and Tannersbrook Preserve. Hunting is for white-tailed deer only, and requires a township permit.
Permit bow

11/6 – 12/30/2017

No hunting on Sundays, or on 11/24 and 11/25 (Thanksgiving Holiday), 12/25 (Christmas Day), and 1/1 (New Year’s Holiday).
Permit muzzleloader

11/27/2017 – 2/10/2018

No hunting on Sundays
Six day firearm

12/4 – 12/9/2017

No hunting on Sundays
Permit shotgun

12/4/2017 – 2/10/2018

No hunting on Sundays
Winter bow

1/2/2018- 2/17/2018

No hunting on Sundays
County Parks
Black River County Park (Kay Environmental Center, Bamboo Brook & Willowwood Arboretum, Knight Allen/Luce )
Fall bow

9/9 – 10/27/2017

Saturdays permitted

No hunting on Sundays

Permit bow

10/28 – 12/23/2017

12/26 – 12/30/2017

Saturdays permitted; No hunting on 12/25 (Christmas Day)

No hunting on Sundays

Winter bow

1/1 – 2/17/2018

Saturdays permitted

No hunting on Sundays

Firearm

M 12/4,  Th 12/7,  Th 12/14/2017

Th 1/4,  Th 1/11 , Th 1/18,  Th 1/25/2018

Th 2/1,  Th 2/8/2018

park and trails closed
Mount Paul Memorial County Park
Fall bow

9/9 – 10/27/2017

Saturdays permitted

No hunting on Sundays

Permit bow

 

10/28 – 12/23/2017

12/26 – 12/30/2017

Saturdays permitted; No hunting 12/25

No hunting on Sundays

Winter bow

1/1 – 2/17/2018

Saturdays permitted

No hunting on Sundays

State Parks
Hacklebarney State Park; Black River Wildlife Management Area 9/9/2017 – 2/17/2018 At Hacklebarney State Park, hunting allowed on 620-acre parcel of land separated from the day use area by the Black River. The hunting area is accessible from three parking areas on Pottersville Road. No hunting 12/25. No firearm hunting on Sundays; limited bow hunting is allowed on Sundays.

For more information about the NJ Division of Fish and Wildlife Service’s hunting programs, click here.

For more information about Morris County’s hunting program, click here.

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For information on New Jersey’s 2017 black bear hunt, including bear permit availability, and information on past years’ bear harvest results, visit:
http://www.njfishandwildlife.com/bearseason_info.htm

For the state’s Comprehensive Black Bear Management Policy, visit: http://www.nj.gov/dep/fgw/bearpolicy10.htm

For more information on black bears, including black bear biology and behavior, and bear safety tips, visit: http://www.njfishandwildlife.com/bearfacts.htm