Quota Hunts




Kentucky Fish and Wildlife conducts quota hunts for deer, small game (pheasant, wild quail and upland birds) and migratory birds (waterfowl and mourning doves).

Some hunts are mentored hunts for youth and accompanying adults. Some hunts are open to mobility-impaired hunters only.

Any resident or nonresident may apply for quota hunts. Only the person(s) successfully drawn for quota hunts may hunt. Substitutions are not allowed.

Applicants drawn for quota hunts must purchase applicable licenses and permits to legally hunt during the quota hunts.

  • See below for details about new quota hunts at select state parks.
  • On West Kentucky WMA, the quota deer hunt is scheduled for four consecutive days starting the Saturday before Thanksgiving. A youth mentor shotgun-only quota deer hunt on the “A” tracts of the WMA is scheduled for four consecutive days starting the Saturday before Thanksgiving.
  • On Taylorsville Lake WMA, the January quota deer hunts have been eliminated. Drawn hunters may harvest either-sex deer in the remaining quota deer hunts. Preference points no longer will be awarded for female deer harvested in the November quota hunts.
  • Participants in the Lake Barkley State Resort Park and Greenbo Lake State Resort Park quota deer hunts must check in and check out at the unmanned check station at the park headquarters.
  • A recommendation by Kentucky Fish and Wildlife to move the start of the pheasant quota hunt at Yellowbank WMA to the first Friday in December was pending legislative approval when this guide went to press.


To apply for deer, pheasant, quail, upland bird, Ballard and Slough Waterfowl quota hunts: Go online to https://app.fw.ky.gov/QuotaHunt/default.aspx or call 1-877-598-2401. The non-refundable fee is $3 per hunter to apply.

The application period is September 1-30 only. Hunters may apply for multiple quota hunts for different species at the same time.

Applicants will receive a confirmation number.

When the drawing is completed, the results will be posted online.

Applicants can check their results on their My Profile page. Call 800-858-1549, weekdays 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. (Eastern time) if results are not showing correctly.


Deer quota hunts are held on 16 WMAs, six state parks (Dale Hollow Lake, Greenbo Lake, Green River Lake, Kenlake, Kincaid Lake and Lake Barkley) and Otter Creek Outdoor Recreation Area.   Additionally, there are quota deer hunts for mobility-impaired hunters on Green River Lake WMA, Taylorsville Lake WMA, and Zilpo-Twin Knobs Campgrounds (on Cave Run Lake).

Drawn quota hunters may bring one non-hunting person along on their hunt. The non-hunting person is not required to have applied for the quota hunt but must check in and check out with the drawn quota hunter and abide by hunter orange requirements.

Ground blinds used during gun quota hunts for deer must have a hat or vest made of solid, unbroken hunter orange material attached to the blind so that it is visible from all sides. Hunter orange clothing requirements still apply for any persons inside the blind.

My Profile contains instructions for those drawn for quota hunts.


The elk quota hunt application period runs from January 1 - April 30 each year and the drawing takes place in May.  Residents and non-residents are eligible to apply for each of the four permit types (bull or cow firearms, bull or cow archery/crossbow) but can only be drawn for one.  Each application costs $10. 


Pheasant quota hunts are held on Yellowbank WMA, Green River Lake WMA and Clay WMA. All drawn pheasant hunters must buy (regardless of attendance) and carry while hunting a pheasant quota hunt permit, which is $25 and may be purchased online or from license vendors anytime before the hunt.  Permits are not transferrable.


Hunters must apply for a sandhill crane hunt online from Nov. 15 through Nov. 30, each year and pay a $3 application fee. The results will be posted by December 8th.  Applicants must have a valid Kentucky hunting license or be license exempt when they apply. Results are posted to individual applicants online following the drawing. Drawn hunters must pass an online identification exam before receiving a sandhill crane hunting permit.  


Quota hunts for wild quail are held on the Ken Unit of Peabody WMA.

Upland bird (wild grouse, wild quail and woodcock) quota hunts are held on Clay WMA.


Waterfowl quota hunts are held on Ballard and Sloughs WMA.


Youth hunters and an accompanying adult may participate in Mentor Dove Hunts on a limited number of public fields.

Locations of mentor hunts are published in the Kentucky Hunting Guide for Dove and Early Migratory Bird guide.

Follow the rules!

Hunters who do not comply with quota hunt requirements are ineligible to apply for any quota hunt the following year (including deer, pheasant, quail, upland bird and waterfowl), and will lose any accumulated preference points.


Persons with one of the following physical conditions are eligible to apply for a mobility-impaired quota hunt. At check in, drawn hunters must show a WMA Mobility-Impaired Access Permit, available in advance of the hunt date from Kentucky Fish and Wildlife.

  • Has permanent paralysis of at least one (1) leg;
  • Has at least one (1) foot amputated;
  • Is permanently confined to a wheelchair or must use crutches, or a walker as a means of support to pursue daily activities;
  • Is restricted by a lung disease to such an extent that the person’s forced respiratory expiratory volume for one (1) second, when measured by spirometry, is less than one (1) liter, or the arterial oxygen tension is less than sixty (60) mm/hg on room air at rest;
  • Requires portable oxygen;
  • Has a cardiac condition to the extent that the person’s functional limitations are classified in severity as Class 3 or Class 4 according to standards set by the American Heart Association; or
  • Has a diagnosed disease which creates a severe mobility impairment.



WMA - Outdoor Recreation Area choices Dates # of Slots # of 2016 applicants Hunt Remarks (Quota Hunts are for either sex deer unless otherwise noted)
1 Ballard Nov. 4-5 100 950

Hunters awarded one preference point for each female deer harvested, up to four. Scouting permitted through Oct. 14.

2 Beaver Creek Nov. 4-5 330 219 Antlered deer only.
3 Big Rivers WMA & State Forest #1 Oct. 16 - Nov. 30 130 411 Archery and crossbow only.  Closed during the two-day quota hunt that starts the first Saturday in November. Must telecheck harvested deer.
4 Big Rivers WMA & State Forest #2 Nov. 4-5 100 302
5 Clay Nov. 4-5 225 759 Limit four, only one of which may be antlered, during quota hunt. Hunters awarded one preference point for each female deer harvested, up to four.
6 Dewey Lake Dec. 2-3 150 206 Limit one during quota hunt.
7 Fishtrap Lake Nov. 18-19 200 303 Limit one during quota hunt.
8 Green River Lake & Dennis-Gray
Nov. 4-5 400 615
9 Green River Lake & Dennis Gray Mobility-Impaired* Nov. 4-5 15 14 Open only to mobility-impaired persons.
10 Kentucky River Nov. 4-5 65 211
11 Kleber and Rich #1 Nov. 4-5 200 384
12 Kleber and Rich #2 Dec. 2-3 200 202
13 Otter Creek Outdoor Recreation Area Dec. 9-10 30 92 User permit required.
14 Paintsville Lake Nov. 4-5 300 325
15 Pennyrile State Forest/Tradewater WMA Nov. 4-5 300 460
16 Taylorsville Lake WMA #1 Nov. 4-5 268 432
17 Taylorsville Lake WMA Mobility Impaired* #1 Nov. 4-5 7 15 Open only to mobility-impaired persons.
18 Taylorsville Lake WMA #2
Dec. 2-3 268 384
19 Taylorsville Lake WMA Mobility-Impaired #2 Dec. 2-3 7 8 Open only to mobility-impaired persons.
20 Veterans Memorial #1 Nov. 4-5 75 287
21 Veterans Memorial #2 Dec. 2-3 75 98 Antlerless deer only.  Hunters awarded one preference point for each female deer harvested, up to four.
22 West Kentucky WMA Nov. 18-21 160 190 Shotgun and muzzleloader only. 
23 West Kentucky WMA youth mentor Nov. 18-21 10
Shotgun only, youth mentor hunt on "A" tracts. Only youth hunters apply. No more than two youth hunters may accompany an adult mentor. No more than one adult can mentor a youth hunter. An adult mentor may take a deer during the hunt. Check in and check out at the WMA check station.
State park, other public lands choices
24 ​Dale Hollow Lake State Resort Park #1 ​Dec. 9-10 40​ Youth only. Must telecheck harvested deer.​
25​ Dale Hollow Lake State Resort Park #2​ Jan. 6-7​ 50​ Must telecheck harvested deer.​
​26 ​Greenbo Lake State Resort Park #1 Nov. 3-5​ 40​ ​Must telecheck harvested deer.
​27 Greenbo Lake State Resort Park #2​ Nov. 10-12​ 40​ ​Must telecheck harvested deer.​
​28 Greenbo Lake State Resort Park #3​ Jan. 9-10​ 90​ 110​ ​Must telecheck harvested deer.
​29 Green River Lake State Park #1​ Dec. 7-10​ 55​ 166​ ​Archery and crossbow only. No check in or out. Must telecheck harvested deer.
30​ Green River Lake State Park #2​ Dec. 14-17​ 55​ 78​ ​Archery and crossbow only. No check in or out. Must telecheck harvested deer.
31​ Kenlake State Resort Park​ Nov. 9-12​ 20​ ​Archery and crossbow only. Must telecheck harvested deer.
​32 Kincaid Lake State Park #1​ Dec. 14-17​ 10​ Archery and crossbow only. Must telecheck harvested deer.
​33 Kincaid Lake State Park #2​ Dec. 21-24​ 10​ ​Archery and crossbow only. Must telecheck harvested deer.
​34 Lake Barkley State Resort Park​ Jan. 9-10​ 75​ 190​ ​Must telecheck harvested​ deer.
​35 Twin Knobs Mobility-Impaired*​ Dec. 9​ 12​ 6​ Open only to mobility-impaired persons.​
*Only hunters who are mobility-impaired as described in this section can apply and be drawn for this hunt. Antlered deer taken during quota hunts count against the statewide limit of one antlered deer per hunter, per season.​