All Firearm Deer Seasons-Rifle Zone
(See page 12)
In the rifle zone, deer may be taken with handguns, rifles, crossbows, bows and arrows, shotguns and muzzleloading firearms including black powder handguns. It is legal to hunt deer in the rifle zone with any caliber of firearm except a .22 caliber or smaller rimfire (rifle or handgun).
All Firearm Deer Seasons-Shotgun Zone
(See page 12)
In the shotgun zone, all hunters afield from Nov. 15-30, and all deer hunters in this zone during other deer seasons, must abide by the following firearm restrictions or use a crossbow or a bow and arrow. Legal firearms are as follows:
A shotgun may have a smooth or rifled barrel and may be of any gauge.
A muzzleloading rifle or black powder handgun must be loaded with black powder or a commercially manufactured black powder substitute.
A conventional (smokeless powder) handgun must be .35 caliber or larger and loaded with straight-walled cartridges and may be single- or multiple-shot but cannot exceed a maximum capacity of nine rounds in the barrel and magazine combined
Transporting Firearms, Crossbows, and Bows and Arrows
These rules apply whether your vehicle is parked, stopped, moving or is on private or public property. Firearms must be unloaded in the barrel, and all arrows must be in a quiver when a hunter is afield outside the legal hunting hours.
At all times when carried in or on a motor vehicle, including snowmobiles:
Rifles, shotguns, muzzleloading and other firearms must be unloaded in both barrel and magazine and enclosed in a case or
carried in the trunk of a vehicle.
Crossbows, slingshots and bows and arrows must be enclosed in a case or unstrung or carried in the trunk of a vehicle.
At all times, when carried in or on an off-road vehicle (ORV): l Rifles, shotguns, muzzleloading and other firearms must be
unloaded in both barrel and magazine and enclosed in a case or equipped with and made inoperative by a manufactured keylocked trigger-housing mechanism.
Crossbows, slingshots and bows and arrows must be enclosed in a case or unstrung.
At all times, when carried in or on a motor-propelled boat or sailboat:
Rifles, shotguns, muzzleloading and other firearms must be unloaded in both barrel and magazine.
Firearms may not be loaded.
Exception: See the 2012-2013 Waterfowl Hunting Digest, under the Joint State-Federal Migratory Bird Hunting Regulations section.
Exception: These rules do not apply to a pistol carried under authority of a concealed pistol license or properly carried under authority of a specific exception from the requirement of a concealed pistol license. See Statewide Handgun Regulations below.
A percussion cap muzzleloading longarm is considered unloaded if the percussion cap is removed. A flintlock muzzleloading longarm is considered unloaded if the cock is left down and the pan is open. Black powder handguns must be transported as stated above.
A muzzleloading firearm that has an electric ignition system is considered unloaded if the battery is removed.
Statewide Handgun Regulations
The rules listed below may not apply to those having a concealed pistol license (CPL) or specifically exempt by law from a CPL and carrying their handgun in accordance with their license or exemption.
A person must be at least 18 years of age to hunt with (possess) a handgun.
Handguns cannot be borrowed or loaned to another person other than provided for under the CPL.
While in the field, handguns must be carried in plain view.
Carrying a handgun in a holster in plain view is permitted.
You may transport your registered handguns while in route to and from your hunting or target shooting area; however, handguns, including BB guns larger than .177 caliber and all pellet guns, must be unloaded and in a closed case designed for the storage of firearms and cannot be readily accessible to any occupant of the vehicle.
It is a crime for certain felons to possess firearms, including rifles and shotguns, in Michigan.
Nonresidents must have a CPL or a license to purchase, carry or transport issued by their home state in their possession in order to legally carry or transport a handgun in Michigan.
(added - Michigan does not recognize third party issued CPLs)
For more information regarding statewide handgun regulations, obtaining a CPL, or concealed weapons and firearms laws, contact your local police department