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Pheasant Hunting in Connecticut 

Thomaston Dam is open for pheasant hunting and is being stocked.

Ring-necked Pheasant

CONNECTICUT RESIDENT GAME BIRD CONSERVATION STAMP: All pheasant hunters must purchase a Resident Game Bird Conservation Stamp, along with a hunting license. The Resident Game Bird Conservation Stamp is also required for those who wish to hunt wild turkey, ruffed grouse, bobwhite quail, and chukar and Hungarian partridge. The stamp costs $28 for adults and non-residents. Connecticut resident youth hunters (ages 12-17) can purchase the stamp for a discounted price of $14. All revenues from the sale of Resident Game Bird Conservation Stamps will be deposited into a separate, non-lapsing account to use exclusively for the purchase and management of game birds and their habitat. Hunters who wish to enjoy hunting woodcock while pursuing pheasant are required to also purchase a Connecticut Migratory Bird Conservation Stamp (which includes the HIP permit). The cost of the stamp is $17Both stamps can be purchased through the Online Outdoor Licensing System and from participating Town Clerks and Retail Agents.

Three-day Non-Resident License: Non-resident hunters wishing to take advantage of the vast bird hunting opportunities that Connecticut has to offer can now purchase a three-day, non-resident bird hunting license, which is good for 3 consecutive privilege days (Sundays not included). The license costs $35. In addition to the three-day, non-resident license, hunters wishing to pursue wild turkey, pheasant, quail, and partridge will also need to purchase a Resident Game Bird Conservation Stamp. Visitors wishing to hunt woodcock, snipe, rails, crows, and waterfowl will need to purchase a Connecticut Migratory Bird Conservation Stamp in addition to their three-day, non-resident license.

Daily Permits Online: Daily permits for a select group of Permit-Required Areas will be available online. To see which areas have online permitting and/or vendor permitting, consult the list of Permit-Required Area Vendors, the Online Outdoor Licensing System, or the CT Interactive Hunting Area Map. Permits will be available three to five days in advance, with only one permit issued per day online to any one individual. Online permits can be obtained through the Online Outdoor Licensing System. Instructions for Online Purchases.

Pheasant StockingINFORMATION ABOUT THE PROGRAM: Each year pheasants are purchased and distributed throughout the state on state-owned, state-managed, and Permit-Required Areas. The Pheasant Program is funded by the sale of Resident Game Bird Conservation Stamps and hunting licenses and a Federal Aid in Wildlife Restoration grant. 

The Pheasant Program relies heavily on cooperative relationships with hunting clubs and landowners. Many of our Permit-Required Hunting Areas are available due to agreements with private landowners. Thanks to these landowners, pheasants are released in the towns of Bristol, East Windsor, Enfield, Meriden, Norwich, Seymour, Sprague, Suffield, and Wallingford.

There are still several private hunting clubs throughout the state who add to our state program by providing public access to private lands and by purchasing and stocking birds. These clubs participate in a statewide Cooperative Liberation Program. Through this program, hunters have the opportunity to hunt on private areas where both the state and the clubs are purchasing birds. While some clubs are provided with adult birds for stocking, others receive 8-week-old birds and raise them for release. Through the 8-week-old Cooperative Program the state is able to purchase birds at a reduced fee and the club then incurs the cost of raising and releasing birds on areas that the public can access.

If you are out on a Permit-Required Area, please be respectful of our cooperating landowners and club members who are working hard to provide additional hunting opportunities!

SEASON DATES AND BAG LIMITS: Pheasant stocking activities begin each year just prior to the third Saturday in October, "Opening Day," and end the in early December. During that time-frame, pheasants are generally stocked 2-3 days each week on each area. No birds will be stocked during the third week of November when the Private Land Shotgun/Rifle season opens for deer hunters.

All pheasant hunters must purchase a resident or nonresident small game firearms hunting license (Conservation License) and a Resident Game Bird Conservation Stamp for $28 ($14 for ages 12-17). Daily bag limits are 2 birds per day and the season limit is 10 birds

Areas by County

Hartford County

Bristol Permit-Required Area, Bristol (Map) - Daily Permit Required. 200+ birds/season (+stocked by club)

East Windsor/Enfield Permit Required Hunting Area, East Windsor (Map) - Daily Permit Required.  585 birds/season - including late season birds

Flaherty Field Trial Area, East Windsor (Map)  On most weekends, this area is used for Field Trial events and is closed to public access. 440 birds/season.  Please note that work will be conducted along the powerlines the week of October 25th.  Hunting will be open, however, hunters need to maintain a safe distance away from the powerlines and no shooting may occur in the direction or in areas where utility workers are located.  

Simsbury WMA, Simsbury (Map) - Saturday Permit Required.  885 birds/season - including late season birds

Suffield Permit-Required Area, Suffield (Map) - Daily Permit Required.   270+ birds/season. 

Suffield WMA, Suffield (Map) - A Massachusetts license is required if hunting in both states. 780 birds/season - including late season birds

Litchfield County

Goshen WMA, Goshen (Map) 855 birds/season - including late season birds

Housatonic WMA, Cornwall and Kent (Southern Map, Northern Map) 525 birds/season - including late season birds

Mad River Dam, Winsted (Map) 300 birds/season - including late season birds

MDC New Hartford, New Hartford (Map) 555 birds/season - including late season birds

Robbins Swamp WMA, Canaan (Map) 620 birds/season - including late season birds

Skiff Mountain Coop WMA Permit-Required Area, Kent (Map) - Daily Permit Required and Saturday Permit Required.  730 birds/season - including late season birds

Thomaston Dam, Thomaston - CLOSED TO PHEASANT HUNTING DUE TO FLOODING (Oct. 27, 2021 -- check back for updates)
Maps available through the Army Corps Office. 365 birds/season - including late season birds

Middlesex County

Cromwell Meadows WMA, Cromwell (Map) - Saturday Permit Required.  605 birds/season - including late season birds

Durham Meadows WMA, Durham (Map) - Saturday Permit Required.  535 birds/season - including late season birds

Higganum Meadows WMA, Haddam (Map) 510 birds/season - including late season birds

Meriden Permit-Required Area, Meriden (Map) - Daily Permit Required.  210+ birds/season (+stocked by club) 

Wallingford Permit-Required Area, Wallingford (Map) - Daily Permit Required.  300+ birds/season (+stocked by club)

Wangunk Meadows WMA, Portland (Map)  705 birds/season - including late season birds

New Haven County

Naugatuck State Forest, Oxford, Beacon Falls, Naugatuck, Cheshire, Hamden (West Block, Mount Sanford Block). Saturday Permit Required on West Block/Hunter's Mountain Block.  1075 birds/season at Hunter's Mnt and 130 birds/season at Mount Sanford Block. - including late season birds - The Mount Sanford Block has only limited access this year for stocking.  No birds will be released in the clearcut.

Seymour-Oxford Permit-required Area, Oxford (Map- Daily Permit Required. - 530 birds including late season birds

New London County

Babcock Pond WMA, Colchester (Map)  525 birds/season - including late season birds

Barn Island WMA, Stonington (Map)  610 birds/season - including late season birds.  Beware that some work will be ongoing on interior roads and may affect where birds will be stocked this year.

Bartlett Brook WMA, Lebanon (Map)  750 birds/season - including late season birds

Bear Hill WMA, Bozrah (Map)  655 birds/season - including late season birds

Larson Lot WMA, Colchester (Map)  495 birds/season - including late season birds

Meadow Brook WMA, Colchester (Map)  740 birds/season - including late season birds

Norwich Permit-Required Area, Norwich (Map - Daily Permit Required. Approximately 300 birds/season

Pachaug State Forest, Voluntown (Map)  590 birds/season 

Pease Brook WMA, Lebanon (Map) 155 birds/season

Rose Hill WMA, Preston and Ledyard (Map)  580 birds/season

Sprague Town-Owned Permit-Required Area, Sprague (Map - Daily Permit Required. 300 birds/season

Tolland County

Mansfield Hollow Lake State Leased Hunting Area, Mansfield/Chaplin (Field Trial Map and Pheasant Area Map)  850 birds/season - including late season birds

Nathan Hale State Forest, Coventry (Map) - Saturday Permit Required.  605 birds/season - including late season birds

Windham County

Quinebaug River WMA (Sugarbrook FTA and hatchery), Plainfield, Canterbury (Sugarbrook Map and Hatchery Map)  635 birds/season - including late season birds

Spignesi WMA, Scotland (Map)  435 birds/season - including late season birds

West Thompson Dam, Thompson (Overview Map, Southern Map, Northern Map)   550 birds/season   - including late season birds.  Some areas of West Thompson Dam were flooded this summer and remain very wet.  Expect some changes in the locations where birds are stocked due to wet, muddy conditions.

Woodstock Permit-Required Area, Woodstock - This area is no longer open for public hunting.

Additional Information
Reminders on Hunting Safety and Hunter Ethics
  • Be Safe - wear 400 square inches of fluorescent orange clothing above the waist that is visible from all sides. An orange hat, in addition to an orange coat/vest is strongly recommended. 
  • Leave the field or stay inactive while pheasant stockers are on the area.
  • Respect landowners and others using the property.
  • Connecticut Migratory Bird Conservation Stamp required for hunting woodcock, snipe, rail, crows, and waterfowl.
  • Bring a junior hunter to pass on the tradition.
  • Report violations by calling the DEEP Emergency Dispatch at 860-424-3333.

Content last updated on November 24, 2021.