North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission

2017-18 Trapping Seasons

Dec. 1 – Feb. 28

In and east of Hertford, Bertie, Martin, Pitt, Greene, Lenoir, Duplin, Pender and New Hanover counties.

Nov. 1 – Feb. 28

In all other counties.

NOTE: In addition to the regular trapping seasons  listed above, coyotes may be taken in counties, areas  and times where fox-trapping is allowed by statute


Nov. 1, 2017 – Mar. 31, 2018  - Statewide for beaver only

NOTE: Landowners whose property is or has been  damaged or destroyed by beaver may take beaver on their property anytime by any lawful method without obtaining a permit from the Wildlife Resources Commission. The landowner may obtain assistance from other persons in taking the depredating beaver by giving those persons permission to take beaver on the landowner’s property.

Feral Swine

There is no closed season and no bag limits for trapping feral swine. A hunting or trapping license is required, except for those persons who are license-exempt (see page 4 of the regulations digest).  A feral swine trapping permit is also required, even for those persons who are license-exempt. This free permit is available online. Only box and corral traps are legal for trapping feral swine and the permit number must be displayed on all traps. Traps must be constructed in a manner such that a non-target animal (such as a bear) can easily be released or can escape without harm. All feral swine must be euthanized while in the trap and may not be removed alive from any trap. The permit does not authorize access to any property. Landowner permission is still required. Feral swine trapping on game lands is allowed only with permission of the Commission. Call 919-707-0150 to inquire about trapping feral swine on game lands.


Jan. 6 - 27, 2018

Fox trapping is allowed in Clay, Graham, Henderson, Macon and Tyrrell counties with a daily bag limit of  two and a season bag limit of 10. Trappers must have fox tags prior to taking foxes, and the sale of live foxes under this season is prohibited.

Click here for more county-specific information on fox harvest seasons.


There is no closed season and no bag limit for trapping nutria east of I-77.

2017-18 Statewide Restrictions

It is unlawful to:

  • Sell or otherwise transfer ownership of the carcass or pelt of a fox*, bobcat or otter without first tagging it with the appropriate tag available from the Wildlife Resources Commission. The fee is $2.20 for each bobcat or otter tag and $2.25 for fox*. You may purchase these tags by telephone, 888-248-6834, using a VISA or MasterCard credit card, or you can mail your request along with the fee to: NCWRC, Bobcat/Otter/Fox Tags, 1707 Mail Service Center, Raleigh, NC 27699-1707. Include your name, address, date of birth and WRC number. NOTE: All fox*, bobcat and otter fur must be tagged within 30 days of the close of the applicable season. Once the season closes, the Commission will ship tags for another 23 days only. *except Beaufort, Chowan, Davidson, Hyde, Johnston, Rockingham and Stokes counties and Winston-Salem where local laws do not require fox tagging.
  • Open or damage a beaver lodge without a permit from the Wildlife Resources Commission.
  • Sell, keep or transfer ownership of any live animals, except foxes or coyotes.  Foxes and coyotes may be sold live only to licensed fox preserves and only up to 10 days after the trapping season.
  • Take red and gray fox except where provided by state or local law. For more information about fox trapping seasons, visit
  • Take wild animals by trapping upon the land of another without having in possession written permission issued and dated within the previous year by the landowner or his agent. This restriction does not apply to public lands on which trapping is not specifically prohibited including tidelands, marshlands, and any other untitled land.
  • Remove or disturb any lawfully set trap or remove any fur bearing animal from a trap without permission of the trap owner.


Statewide Trap-type Restrictions

  • All traps must have a weather-resistant permanent tag attached legibly with the trapper’s name and address.
  • Unlawful to set or use a trap so that animals or birds will be suspended when caught.
  • Unlawful to set or use a hook of any sort or type to take wild animals or wild birds.

Request a Regulations Digest copy to be mailed to you

or call or write to the following address or telephone number:

North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission
1707 Mail Service Center
Raleigh, NC 27699-1707
(919) 707-0391