For requirements on hunter orange, legal means of taking, public lands, shooting hours, carcass disposal, more than one method of take in the field, tracking with dogs, field tagging, and checking requirements, see Big Game Regulations.
Combined Season Limit
One: either sex. This includes bear archery and bear muzzleloader seasons.
No baiting is allowed on wildlife management areas. Shooting of cubs or females with cubs is prohibited. No den shooting of bears. Pursuing bears with dogs is prohibited. Shooting collared bears is prohibited.
Field Tagging & Checking
Upon harvesting a bear, all hunters must immediately attach their name and customer ID number securely to the carcass.
The attached item can be anything, as long as it contains the required information. This information must remain attached to the carcass until it is checked.
The carcass must be checked in by the hunter who harvested the bear. After the carcass is checked, a carcass tag will be issued, which must remain with the carcass to its final destination or through processing and/or storage at commercial processing or storage facilities.
Bear carcasses may be quartered, with or without skin, but the head and sex organs must remain naturally attached to the skin until the bear is checked by a Department employee.
Muzzleloader Bear Quota
The Wildlife Department has set the 2023 muzzleloader harvest quota at 20 bears. The muzzleloader season will be open until 20 bears have been harvested or the season ends. Hunters must check via telephone whether the quota has been reached before going hunting each day. Once the quota has been reached, the season will close.
To check the status of the harvest quota: Call (888) 901-3256.
Lifetime License holders are not exempt from the purchase of a bear license. Hunters must be in possession of all appropriate licenses before hunting Bears. Hunters using an air-powered arrow rifle must purchase a one-time Arrow Rifle Permit.
- Residents: Must possess a hunting license (see License Exemptions) or proof of exemption. In addition, resident bear hunters must possess a bear license.
- Nonresidents: Nonresident bear hunters are exempt from a hunting license while hunting bear but must possess a nonresident bear license.
- License Purchasing Deadlines: Bear licenses for the archery season must be purchased prior to the first day of archery season. No bear licenses will be sold on or after the first day of the archery season.
Bear licenses for the muzzleloader season must be purchased prior to the first day of muzzleloader season. No bear licenses will be sold on or after the first day of muzzleloader season.
Bear Season Dates & Open Areas
Only in Choctaw, Haskell, Latimer, Le Flore, McCurtain and Pushmataha counties; and that portion of McIntosh, Muskogee and Sequoyah counties south of Interstate 40; and that portion of Atoka, Bryan, McIntosh and Pittsburg counties east of U.S. Highway 69. There is no harvest quota for bear archery season.
(unless quota is met earlier). Only in Choctaw, Haskell, Latimer, Le Flore, McCurtain and Pushmataha counties; and that portion of McIntosh, Muskogee and Sequoyah counties south of Interstate 40; and that portion of Atoka, Bryan, McIntosh and Pittsburg counties east of U.S. Highway 69.