MDWFP Alligator Program
Alligator Program Coordinator
Alligators may be found all across Mississippi. They are most prevalent in the southern two-thirds of the state (south of Hwy 82). While alligators typically avoid humans and human activity, occasionally they do cause conflicts with humans. Juvenile alligators often disperse into new territories in the late spring and early summer months. During this dispersal, they occasionally find themselves in unusual locations near human development, such as; farm ponds, road ditches, highways, parking lots, yards, swimming pools, neighborhood water landscape pools, and even buildings. It is illegal and very dangerous for the public to capture and remove or kill an alligator without a special permit from the MDWFP. As human developments (residential and commercial) continue to encroach into more rural areas of the state, increased interaction and conflicts with wildlife are subject to occur. To report a nuisance alligator please see Nuisance Alligator Information below.
Mississippi offered its first public alligator sport hunting season in 2005. From 2005 until 2011, opportunities expanded gradually to include 480 permits on portions of two major waterways, one coastal and one inland. In 2012, Mississippi expanded sport hunting opportunities on public waters to over two-thirds of the state and in 2013 alligator hunting on public waters was opened statewide. The State was divided into 7 geographical zones with a 10-day season total of 920 available in a web-based application/drawing and permit sales process. An alligator hunting training course is provided by the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, & Parks. Permit holders may harvest 2 alligators over 4 feet long, only one of which may exceed 7 feet long. The bag limit restrictions are intended to distribute harvest among adults and juvenile alligators. Alligators over 7 feet long comprised 50%, 47%, 48%, and 43% from 2014-2017, respectively. Total alligator harvests were 682, 982, 784, 741 on public waterways from 2014-2017, respectively. Females comprised 30%, 35%, 31%, and 31% of the harvest from 2014-2017, respectively. The average length of all harvested alligators from 2014-2017 were 7.77 feet (Males 8.28 ft. and Females 6.55 ft.). Alligators that were 10 feet or longer comprised 23%, 27%, 28%, and 26% of harvest from 2014-2017, respectively.
Private lands alligator hunting opportunities are offered in 33 counties. In 2017, there were a record of 126 landowner applications approved for permits that totaled 307 available harvest vouchers on 23,278 acres of alligator habitat. There were 84, 115, 95, and 117 alligators harvested on private lands from 2014-2017, respectively. Properties in the open counties must contain a minimum of 20 acres of privately owned permanent surface water to qualify for an alligator harvest voucher. Additional vouchers are issued for each additional 100 acres of privately owned permanent surface water. Each voucher allows the harvest of 2 alligators over 4 feet long, only one of which may exceed 7 feet long.
PUBLIC WATERS Alligator Hunting Information
PRIVATE LANDS Alligator Hunting Information
Nuisance Alligator Program Information
Alligator Articles & Video Clips
- Alligator Awareness (Pamphlet)
- Range Map - Alligators in MS
- Alligator Nest Hatch Videos
- Alligator Tagging and Tales - (The tagging and release program)
- Alligators in Mississippi Then & Now
- The Recovery of the American Alligator in Mississippi
- Mississippi's First Alligator Hunting Season - 2005
- Alligator Hunting & Harvest History in Mississippi
- Public Water Harvest Summaries - 2012-2016
- MS Alligator Hunting Records
- Alligators - Neighbors or Nuisance Pest?
- Feeding Alligators: "It Could Cost You an Arm and A Leg"
- What's the Problem With Alligators? PEOPLE!
Mississippi Processors Information
Alligators legally harvested and properly tagged by permitted alligator hunters may only be sold to:
- A licensed MS Agent Alligator Trapper
- A person who possesses a MS Fur Dealer's License.
- A person who is licensed to purchase alligators in another state.
The following contacts are MDWFP approved buyers and processors. They have CITES Tags on hand for your convenience. They will not receive any alligator or hide that is not properly tagged with a MS Temporary Possession Tag.
- B and L Taxidermy and Processing, MEAT PROCESSING ONLY, Danny Boler, 73 Standard Hill Rd., Vicksburg, MS 39183, PH. (601) 634-6338 or (601) 218-9378
- Woodrow (Woody) Cain, MEAT PROCESSING ONLY, 2133 Old Hwy 61 N., Port Gibson, MS 39150, PH (601) 618-8261
- Dewayne Denton, MEAT PROCESSING ONLY, 338 Denton Rd. Holcomb, MS 38940. PH (662) 310-3337.
ALLIGATOR CARCASS and HIDE BUYER:
- Tab and Yvette Pitre, WHOLE CARCASS and HIDE BUYERS, will receive alligators Aug 25 - 28 at B & L Processing in Vicksburg. Call for more information on prices and pickup times call Tab Pitre (985) 258-0355 or Yvette Pitre (985) 258-0354.
2017 ALLIGATOR HUNTING SEASON NEWS AND UPDATES:
August 24 -
Alligator Hunting Season opens at 12:00 Noon on Friday, August 25 and will remain open until Monday, September 4, 2017 at 12:00 Noon.
EFECTIVE August 24: Per MDWFP Administration, Lifetime License Holders are NOT required to purchase/possess an Alligator Hunting License ($25)(Priv# 754). However, any Lifetime License Holder participating in alligator hunting activities with a permit holder is required to have their Lifetime License in their possession.
Lifetime License Holders are NOT exempt from either the Public Waters Alligator Possession Permit or the Private Lands Alligator Possession Permit.
Any Lifetime License holder who has been charged for an Alligator Hunting License, since June 14, 2017, may contact the MDWFP License Bureau to request a refund by calling (601) 432-2055.
August 25 -
Opening day of the public water alligator season was greeted with very comfortable weather conditions and cloudy skies which resulted in many hunting parties finding success early before sunset in several zones.
Numerous hunting parties were successful with numerous reports of alligators in the 10-12 foot range being harvested. At this time, no reports of any potential record breaking alligators harvested. No accidents reported, however, we know of two hunters who fell overboard while hunting last night. Neither were wearing their PFD. One had to be thrown a throwable flotation device to be rescued after the trolling motor shaft broke after hitting a submerged stump. The operator, who was standing in the front of the boat at the time, fell overboard. Neither of the hunters were injured.
We encourage everyone to wear their life jackets at all times. Law requires that a PFD (personal flotation device) is on board for every occupant on board and a throwable flotation device is required for all vessels 16 feet long or longer.
Here are a couple of pics of successful hunters in the Pearl River/Ross Barnett Zone on opening night.
The hunting party above harvested an alligator (Orange 80) that was previously tagged and released by the MDWFP Alligator Program.
A hunting party (above and below photo) is preparing to safely release a 7 foot 3 inch alligator. As instructed in the MS Alligator Hunting Training Course, the mouth is taped shut while a rope is tied to the tape underneath the bottom jaw, then the alligator is place overboard. The rope is then pulled to remove the tape from the alligators mouth while it is safely overboard.
AUGUST 28 -
New Mississippi Alligator Length Record
8/28/2017 12:30:32 PM
NATCHEZ - A new alligator length record was certified August 28, 2017 by Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks (MDWFP) Alligator Program Coordinator, Ricky Flynt. The alligator was taken in the Southwest Alligator Hunting Zone by the hunting party of Bryan Burnside of Brandon, MS near Natchez, MS.
The alligator was certified as the “longest male alligator taken by a permitted hunter in Mississippi.” The alligator’s length was 14 feet ¾ inch, which broke the previous record by ½ inch. The alligator weighed 766.5 pounds. The belly girth was 69 inches, and the tail girth was 43 inches.
HUNTING PARTY PHOTOS (L-R) Colby Acy, Stephen Brady, Anthony Acy, and Brian Burnside