A white-tailed deer stands near a wooded area

Hunting in Iowa

Planning a hunting getaway? White-tailed deer and turkey are the primary species to hunt near Honey Creek Resort.

Where to Hunt Near Honey Creek Resort

Several hunting areas are located near the resort in Appanoose County, including public hunting areas managed by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, wildlife management areas (including several in Appanoose County), other public hunting areas, and private shooting preserves. Practice shooting ranges are located across the state, including the Appanoose County Shooting Club in nearby Centerville, Iowa.

Find out more information about where to hunt in Iowa.

Hunting is not permitted on the grounds of Honey Creek Resort.


Iowa Hunting Licenses & Turkey and Deer Tags

A wild turkey stands on grassIowa resident hunters (ages 16 and older) and all nonresident hunters are required to have a hunting license, have paid all applicable fees, and possess all required stamps while hunting game or taking part in a hunt.

To hunt deer or turkey in Iowa, hunters will also need tags. A transportation tag must be applied to the deer or turkey before moving it or within 15 minutes of harvest, depending on which one occurs first. It must be visible. A harvest report tag must be applied after reporting your deer or turkey.

Tag requirements for Iowa residents and nonresidents:

Residents
  • Spring Turkey: May obtain a maximum of two spring turkey hunting tags. Tag options: two archery-only or one archery-only and one combination gun/bow for the fourth season or two combination gun/bow, with at least one tag being for the fourth season. Tags go on sale December 15, 2018.
  • Fall Turkey: May obtain a maximum of two fall turkey hunting tag: two combination gun/bow tags, or two archery-only tags, or one combination gun/bow tag and one archery-only tag. If the hunter is eligible, one of these tags can be a landowner-tenant tag. Tags go on sale August 15, 2018. Gun/bow tags are available until quotas are filled and archery-only tags are sold until the last day of the season, as there is no quota.
  • Deer: General deer tags are valid statewide in the season chosen by the hunter when the tag is purchased. Residents are permitted to have one general deer tag for the bow season and one general deer tag for one of the following seasons: Early Muzzleloader, Late Muzzleloader, Shotgun Season 1, or Shotgun Season 2. (Exceptions apply; please refer to the 2018-19 Iowa Hunting, Trapping & Migratory Game Bird Regulations guide for more information. PDF - Requires Adobe® Reader® Download Acrobat Reader). General deer/antlerless-only and antlerless-only tags are offered. Tags are on sale August 15, 2018 until the end of each deer hunting season, or until quotas are satisfied.
Iowa residents can purchase hunting licenses and tags:
  • Online
  • At a license retail outlet, such as Honey Creek Resort
  • By calling 1-800-367-1188
Nonresidents
Nonresident hunters must apply for deer and turkey tags during the timeframes specified below either online or by calling 1-800-367-1188.
  • Spring Turkey: The tag application period is January 1 to the last Sunday in January, and the application will be available in December on the Iowa Department of Natural Resources website.
  • Fall Turkey: Nonresidents are not eligible for fall turkey hunting tags.
  • Deer: The application period is the first Saturday in May through the first Sunday in June, and the application will be available in December on the Iowa Department of Natural Resources website. General deer/antlerless-only and antlerless-only tags are offered. Nonresident Holiday Season deer tags are available for purchase from December 15, 2018 until the end of the season, or until the nonresident antlerless quota is reached.
Nonresidents can purchase an Iowa hunting license either online or by calling 1-800-367-1188.


Iowa Hunting Season Dates

Deer

2018 Deer Hunting Season Dates
Youth Season (Residents Only) September 15-30
Disabled Hunter Season September 15-30
Archery Season
      - Early Split October 1 - November 30
      - Late Split December 17, 2018 - January 10, 2019
Early Muzzleloader October 13-21
Late Muzzleloader December 17, 2018 - January 10, 2019
Shotgun
      - Season 1 December 1-5
      - Season 2 December 8-16
Nonresident Holiday Season December 24, 2018 - January 2, 2019
January Antlerless (Residents Only) January 11-27, 2019

Please refer to p. 6 of the 2018-19 Iowa Hunting, Trapping & Migratory Game Bird Regulations guide for more information. (PDF - Requires Adobe® Reader® Download Acrobat Reader)

Shooting Hours: Half-hour before sunrise to half-hour after sunset.


Fall Turkey
2018 Fall Turkey Hunting Season Dates
Gun/Bow October 16 - November 30
Archery-Only October 1 - November 30 and December 17, 2018 - January 10, 2019

Please refer to p. 8 of the 2018-19 Iowa Hunting, Trapping & Migratory Game Bird Regulations guide for more information. (PDF - Requires Adobe® Reader® Download Acrobat Reader)

Bag Limit: Daily bag and season possession limit is one wild turkey of either sex for each valid license and transportation tag issued to the hunter

Shooting Hours: Gun - Half-hour before sunrise to sunset / Bow - half-hour before sunrise to half-hour after sunset


Spring Turkey
2019 Spring Turkey Hunting Season Dates
Combination Gun/Bow Licenses
Youth Season (Residents Only) April 5-7
Season 1 April 8-11
Season 2 April 12-16
Season 3 April 17-23
Season 4 April 24-May 12
Resident Archery-Only Licenses April 8-May 12

Please refer to p. 5 of the 2018-19 Iowa Hunting, Trapping & Migratory Game Bird Regulations guide for more information. (PDF - Requires Adobe® Reader® Download Acrobat Reader)

Bag Limit: Daily bag and season possession limit is one bearded or male wild turkey for each valid license and transportation tag issued to the hunter

Shooting Hours: Half-hour before sunrise to sunset

Harvest Reporting

Two wild turkeys walk near treesAll successful deer and turkey hunters are required to report every deer and/or turkey that they harvest. The hunter listed on the transportation tag is responsible for reporting the harvest. Hunters can report their harvest:
  • Online, available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week
  • By calling 1-800-771-4692, available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week
  • By visiting a local hunting license retailer during their regular business hours
Hunters must report their deer or turkey harvest by midnight on the day after it’s been tagged, or before one of the following occurs - whichever occurs first:
  • Taking it to a meat locker or taxidermist
  • Processing it for consumption
  • Transporting it out-of-state
Learn more about harvest reporting.


Hunter Education

Prior to obtaining a hunting license, resident and nonresident hunters born after January 1, 1972 must satisfactorily complete a hunter education course. Alternatively, a hunter education certificate issued by another state or certain foreign nations will satisfy this requirement, and proof of completion is required when purchasing your first Iowa hunting license.


Meat Processing Near Honey Creek Resort

Honey Creek Resort has an on-site cleaning station, and is located only a few miles away from a meat processor and locker:

Moravia Meat Locker
10315 IA-5
Moravia, IA 52571
(641) 724-3336


Details about hunting laws, requirements to obtain a hunting license including hunter education, methods of take, tagging requirements, quota hunts, preference points, and much more, can be found on the Iowa Department of Natural Resources website.

Learn More

More Things To Do

Golf course view at Honey Creek Resort's The Preserve on Rathbun Lake

The Preserve Golf Course

Tee off at our 18-hole championship golf course, The Preserve on Rathbun Lake.

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Group of friends playing volleyball on the beach at Honey Creek Resort

Outdoor Recreation

Honey Creek Resort offers ample opportunities for outdoor exploration.

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A group of friends prepare to use stand up paddleboards on Rathbun Lake

On-Site Programs & Activities

Stop by the Activities Building for hands-on educational programs and activities led by our on-site naturalist staff.

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