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Hunting Small Game on your Farm

According to Ontario.ca and various other Ontario government websites, you do not need a hunting license to hunt small game on farm land if you are a farmer or living on that farm as part of the family.

Do I need a hunting license if I’m a farmer?

A farmer or member of a farmer’s family who lives with the farmer, may hunt on the farmer’s land, during the open season, for anything other than big game (deer, moose, elk, bear) or wild turkey, without a license.

So the rationale here is that people can hunt on their farmland in order to do pest control - eg. hunting the raccoons or foxes who keep murdering your chickens. Or rabbits keep eating your garden crops, etc. Or maybe you just happen to enjoy the taste of squirrel.

For large game like deer, elk, moose, black bear and wild turkey you would still need a hunting license and the appropriate tags.

What I like about this is that if you choose to farm your off-the-grid land, regardless of whether you are farming corn, apples or grapes - you will also have a secondary source of food by shooting any varmints, pests, rodents, foxes, ducks, geese, etc - assuming it is currently the open season for the prey of choice. Certain kinds of prey are ALWAYS open season.

Thus if you plant grapes with the intention of making homemade wine, or grape juice, or grape jelly, whatever - you are therefore farming the land - and thus qualify for the loophole to hunt small game on your own land. I mention grapes because grapes can grow practically anywhere that it is warm enough.

As a landowner you can also apply for a Trapping License so you can set traps and manage traps on your own land. So that creates a 3rd way of potentially gaining food.

Reference Source

https://www.ontario.ca/faq/do-i-need-hunting-licence-if-im-farmer

https://www.ontario.ca/page/trapping-ontario#section-1

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