Changes are coming soon to the way Iowans can hunt and trap raccoons, and how farmers can deal with raccoon depredation issues.

New Law:

Raccoons were the focus of a bill approved during the 2023 Iowa legislative session, allowing landowners or tenants to dispatch raccoons causing damage to their agricultural property, outside of the city limits. Landowners may shoot or trap raccoons using cage or dog-proof traps. A license is not required and landowners do not need to notify the DNR before shooting or trapping. That bill was signed into law by Governor Reynolds and becomes effective on July 1.

New Rules:

The other related change relaxes the rules for hunting and trapping raccoons for everyone. The new rules, developed by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and approved by the Natural Resource Commission of the Iowa DNR, allows for year-round hunting and trapping of raccoons on private land.

While the raccoon season will be continuously open, during the time of year outside of the furharvester season, only firearms, cage traps or dog-proof traps are legal methods of take. During the furharvester season, trappers may use other lawful traps normally allowed during the trapping season. Hunters or trappers pursuing raccoons on private land they do not own are required to have a valid furharvester license. These new rules are currently in effect.