Laws To Trap And Hunt Squirrels In Montana [Know Laws Here]

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The squirrel’s widespread range in Montana, reproductive capabilities, and ability to damage crops make it an economically significant rodent. If you want to get rid of squirrels in Montana, you should find out the laws to trap and hunt squirrels in Montana. 

Only Montana residents with a valid license can hunt or trap furbearers. Nonresidents have to buy a Conservation License and a Nonresident Trapping License if they want to use traps or snares to trap non-game animals.

No FWP fees are needed to shoot animals like prairie dogs and ground squirrels that are not considered “game.”This page has a lot of information about hunting for squirrels in Montana.

Squirrel Types Found In Montana

Here are the three kinds of squirrels that live in the state of Montana:

American Red Squirrels

The red squirrel, native to the Americas, is one of the tiniest squirrel species in the world. The season and the environment in which it lives significantly impact the fur’s hue. Most often, the upper sections are a shade of brown or red. In the warmer months, its dark side stripe stands in stark contrast to its lighter underfur.

The tail of this North American squirrel is noticeably smaller than that of other tree squirrels, and it often has a white tip. It has huge black eyes with white rings around them. The muscles in this squirrel’s small but powerful frame allow it to sharpen its claws and run and climb with ease through the treetops.

Fox squirrels

The eastern United States is home to Fox squirrels. The ones who carried them to the west. Missoula and the Bitterroot Valley are difficult parts of western Montana.

People often leave them food scraps like nuts, seeds, plants, insects, and mushrooms. In places where they don’t live naturally, the fact that they eat bird eggs and chicks is a cause for concern.

Eastern fox squirrels are common in Missoula, and practically everyone can spot one in their backyard, in the streets clinging to power or phone lines, or lying dead on the road.

Even though eastern fox squirrels are nearly extinct in western Montana, they are interesting to watch because they are a link between people and the natural world.

Flying Squirrels

A little rodent with large black eyes, the flying squirrel is exclusively arboreal in its habitat. They make their homes in rural communities in Montana’s forested river valleys. The hairy fold of skin between a flying squirrel’s ankles and wrists acts as a sail. Not equipped with flaps, but can cover 100 yards in a straight line if launched high enough.

Typical gliding distances range from 20 to 50 yards. Both the red squirrel and the Eastern fox squirrel are diurnal. Flying squirrels are rarely seen during the day because they sleep during the day.

  • During the regular hunting season in Montana, the Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks department say that it is acceptable to hunt ground squirrels. When it comes to tree squirrels, the rules are much clearer.
  • The red squirrel and the northern flying squirrel are the two native species of tree squirrels that live in Montana. In addition, there is at least one invasive (non-native) specie living here, and that would be the fox squirrel or potentially the eastern grey squirrel.
  • If you want to hunt these squirrels in Montana, you’ll need a hunting license because it’s against the law to hunt tree squirrels there without one.
  • You, as a local, should be aware of the regulations regarding the capture, relocation, and killing of these animals.

Squirrels Hunting Season In Montana

According to the Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks, there are two hunting seasons for squirrels in the state of Montana:

  • The Youth Season, which begins in September and lasts through the end of September
  • The youth season has a daily bag limit of eight squirrels of any kind. During the fall season, you can only bring home 8 squirrels of any kind.
  • However, predators and nongame species are not protected by federal and/or state law or regulation, so both resident and non-resident hunters can hunt them in Montana without a license all year long.

Laws Governing The Hunting Of Squirrels In Montana

There are many rules about hunting squirrels in the state of Montana. Here are some of them:

  • In Montana, it is legal to hunt squirrels.
  • The Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife, and Parks says it is legal to hunt a squirrel in a gun-permitted area, so long as you do so responsibly.
  • It is against the law to hunt or trap any furry animal without the right license or permit on you at the time.
  • Refuse to give a game warden your license or permit and the ID you used to buy it so they can check it.

Laws Governing The Trapping and Relocating Squirrels In Montana

The Montana Department of Natural Resources says that there are different rules about trapping squirrels. In Montana, it is legal to both relocate and trap squirrels.

  • Nongame species, which the Department of Livestock controls, are not limited in any way in Montana.
  • Residents don’t need a trapping license; trapping can be done yearly without limits or being reported.
  • Trappers and hunters who live in the area do not need a license to catch squirrels and other nongame animals.
  • No one can use a trap or snare to catch a fur-bearing animal on private property, though, without written permission from the landowner, lessee, or their agents.
  • Trapping and relocating animals are only short-term solutions that are cruel and against the law.
  • If a landowner wants to kill a squirrel, they need a trapping license.
  • Relocating squirrels is against the law, doesn’t work, and hurts the environment.

How Can You Shoot And Hunt Squirrels In Montana?

Since squirrels are nocturnal, it is rare to see a healthy squirrel during the day. Here are some ways to hunt them and shoot them:

  • In Montana, you can shoot between 30 minutes before sunrise and 30 minutes after sunset.
  • Before you can hunt an animal in Montana, you need a hunting license, which is sometimes called a “tag,” and a conservation license for a specific species and the gender of the animal.
  • If you can, stay away from guns with bigger bullets and shotguns.
  • People use 22-caliber guns.
  • It is okay to use dogs to hunt squirrels.
  • Experienced hunting dogs with strong noses can smell squirrels in the air and help you find them.
  • If you want trophy skin or want to mount your squirrel, you should use a gun with a smaller caliber.
  • State hunting laws say that you can’t use any kind of artificial light anywhere in the state.

Montana has no law governing non-powder Pellet, BB, and air firearms. However, in many states in the United States, it is legal to shoot squirrels with a. 25-caliber air rifle that fires lead pellets at 800 feet per second. In Montana, you have to be at least 18 years old to buy a BB gun, airgun, air rifle, or pellet gun.

On private property, it is against the law to hunt squirrels or even attempt to hunt squirrels without first receiving permission from the proprietor, lessee, or a representative of the landowner. Since a private property owner owns the land, he can do whatever he wants with it.

It is permissible to hunt squirrels on public property, but only if one possesses the appropriate hunting license. During seasons designated specifically for the pursuit of squirrels, you are not prohibited from hunting them.


In Montana, people with permits can kill and trap squirrels. There are states where you can hunt and trap squirrels. Squirrels can’t go somewhere else. When a squirrel moves, it is quickly replaced by a new squirrel.

The best thing to do is to leave the squirrels alone and get rid of or change whatever draws them to your yard. If a squirrel wants to hurt you, a licensed person is allowed to kill it. You can always call the police and ask them to come to take a look at the squirrels.