December 18, 2023

More Than Just Hot Air: ODWC Seeks to Expand Arrow-shooting Airgun Opportunities in Sooner State

Article Contact: Kent Keene,

Why It Matters: As airguns and arrow-shooting airguns continue to gain popularity and pique the interest of sportsmen and women, state fish and wildlife agencies have begun exploring opportunities to allow their use for hunting. Following last year’s legislative efforts to authorize arrow-shooting airgun use during Oklahoma’s general firearms deer season, staff at the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation recently proposed a regulatory change to expand their use into the state’s muzzleloader seasons.


  • Arrow-shooting airguns were legalized during Oklahoma’s firearm deer season thanks to the work of the Oklahoma Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus in 2022.
  • Since that time, there have been calls for the expanded use of arrow-shooting airguns during other deer hunting seasons.
  • Recognizing that arrow-shooting airguns are not archery equipment, staff at the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation (ODWC) balanced these calls with the need to protect the integrity of our outdoor sporting heritage by proposing regulatory changes that would allow arrow-shooting airguns to be used during Oklahoma’s muzzleloader season.

As the latest step in the ongoing saga of arrow-shooting airguns in Oklahoma, ODWC staff recently recommended regulatory changes that would expand the use of this new technology into the state’s muzzleloader deer hunting season. In response to this proposal, the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation (CSF) submitted comments to the Oklahoma Wildlife Conservation Commission expressing our support for this expansion.

Arrow-shooting airguns (also referred to as airbows) were first authorized for deer hunting in Oklahoma in 2022, thanks to efforts led by the Oklahoma Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus. As originally passed by the Legislature, arrow-shooting airguns may currently only be used during the state’s firearms deer hunting season following the one-time purchase of an airbow conservation stamp. The inclusion of this stamp was critical since airguns are not currently subject to the same excise taxes as other methods of take through the Pittman-Robertson Act.

For additional information on airguns and arrow-shooting airguns, visit CSF’s issue brief dedicated to the topic. Likewise, for more information regarding the legality of airgun and arrow-shooting airgun use in your state, contact your state fish and wildlife agency.

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