ODFW’s electronic licensing system (ELS)

September 28, 2020

Buy licenses/tags online and print them immediately from any printer—or choose electronic tagging to carry your documents and tag fish and game with the MyODFW mobile app on your phone.

Buy a license

Tech tips before hunting or fishing

Before you go out in the field, make sure you:

Tip 1: Update your app. 

Go to the Google Play store on Android devices or the App store on Apple devices. Update your MyODFW app or hit “Open” to be sure you have the latest version.

Tip 2: Login to the MyODFW app and sync before you lose cell reception. 

The MyODFW app works without cell reception, but you need to be logged in for your profile to come up and to be able to use the app out of cell range. If you haven’t used the app in awhile you may need to login again—even if you never logged out. Once you’re logged in, click the three lines on the upper right corner and hit “Sync Account” to be sure the app is fully synced and has your latest information.

Tip 3: SportsPac holders still need to “purchase” (pick up) their tag before the hunt.

black bear

Like with the old system, Sports Pac holders still need to pick up their voucher tag before the deadline. The tag won’t cost anything, but you’ll still need to “purchase” it by logging in to your account and going through purchase steps. The tag sale deadline is always the day before the hunt begins for big game. See how-to video on how to pick up your voucher tag. SportsPac controlled tags that need to be picked up are indicated by the dollar sign in a dotted-line box next to the tag (see screenshot)


Tip 4: Big game and turkey hunters, don’t forget flagging tape, duct tape or some other material to “tag” your animal.

If you’re using e-tagging, your first step is to validate the tag in the MyODFW app. Then, write down the confirmation number provided by the app, plus your name, ODFW ID, date of birth and harvest date on anything that will stand up to the elements (like flagging or duct tape). Affix it to the animal like a traditional tag and keep it attached to the carcass in transport. Hunters must still physically tag an animal so they can be visually identified by OSP and other hunters. See the regulations for more information.

Tip 5: Try turning off your WiFi if you have problems tagging or opening app while in the field.

If you’re connecting other peripheral devices (such as GPS or camera) through your phone's wireless connection, you may need to disconnect your WiFi to validate your tag in the app. If you get a message that says “An error has occurred,” try turning off your WiFi. You can turn it back on once you’re done tagging.

Tip 6: Keep your phone charged with a portable charger or other method.

Just like in previous years, hunters/anglers are still required to have and display their license and tag to ODFW or OSP, when requested. If you chose electronic tagging, you need to have enough battery life (or an external battery source) so you can show your license or tag. Putting your phone in airplane mode will conserve battery life when out of cell range. Note that ODFW and OSP will also be able to access information about your licenses and tags while in the field and not in cell range.

Tip 7: Make sure kids have paper tags or their own smart phone. 

Each hunter/angler is required to carry their own license or tag, so young hunters/anglers need to have their own phone or tablet, or use paper tagging.

Tip 8: Protect paper licenses/tags in a plastic bag or other waterproof container. 

Lost licenses can be reprinted if you have an online account, but if you lose your tag, you must visit an ODFW office or license sales agent and pay $2 for a reprint. The new tag will have a new barcode and your old tag will be invalid.


Print these FAQ

After you set up your online account at  - don't forget to download the MyODFW app and sign in! Find the app at the Google Play or iPhone App Store.

I’m new to ODFW’s online licensing system. How do I buy an annual license or tag online?

You will need to either Verify your account online or Create a new one to buy online. Go to If you have preference points, any other certifications (such as disabilities permit), or have purchased an annual license since 2016, then you already have an online profile and will need to use Verify/Look up your Account to find it. Provide your Hunter/Angler ID # (aka ODFW ID), email address or phone number associated with your account to look it up; contact ODFW if you can’t remember any of these.

Complete the account setup process and then select Paper or E-tagging. If you choose e-tagging, be sure to download the MyODFW app on your phone and then enter the username and password you just created to see your licenses and tags.

You can also purchase at a license sales agent. See below for how to avoid common problems people have when verifying your account.

How do I apply for a controlled hunt online?

There are step-by-step directions at "How to apply for a controlled hunt."

Common problems and how to fix them

I am unable to see the text typed into the mobile app or the list of fish I have harvested. 

If you are using an iPhone device to access the mobile app, you may encounter issues with how text is displayed. Updating your phone settings so that you are no longer in “dark mode” will show all the text in the mobile app except for the list of harvested fish. To see the list of fish harvested, please log into the ODFW licensing page and click on your Recreational Portfolio.  From there, locate your angling tag and click View Harvest. You can continue to use the mobile app to document harvested fish even while they do not display within the app.  Future updates to the ELS mobile app will address both of these issues.

I am having problems with the site and using Internet Explorer.

The preferred browsers for ODFW’s licensing system are Chrome and Firefox. Safari and Edge also work.

Customers using Internet Explorer are likely to experience problems as Internet Explorer is no longer supported by Microsoft (Edge is now Microsoft’s default browser).

If you are still using Internet Explorer, ODFW recommends changing to another browser. Here’s how to do that:

From your desktop

In the search bar next to the start menu type “default” then select “Choose a default web browser.”

If not using a search bar, click on the start menu and go to Settings > Choose a default web browser (or Settings > Apps > Default Apps. )

Scroll down to the web browser section and click on the menu to pick a new default browser. You may need to visit the App store to download Chrome, Firefox or Edge (or Safari for Apple products).

As with any app, it’s important to keep the app updated. Most browsers on your desktop will automatically update (though you can check to confirm this and update manually). From your mobile phone, go to the App store, hit updates, and then Update the browser to be sure you are using most current version.

I can’t report on my tags/ see my preference points / see my certifications online.

It’s likely you didn’t Verify/Look up your Account, but created a new one, and that’s why you are not seeing your tags or points. Email, call Licensing at 503-947-6101 or reach out to ODFW on social media (via private message on Facebook or Instagram or Twitter) so we can delete your duplicate account. Once that’s done, go back to the ODFW Licensing website and use Verify/Lookup Account to enter your Hunter/Angler ID number# (aka ODFW ID#) from a prior license, or an email or phone number associated with your account. You will be able to use your email again in your verified account but will need to select a new username. 

I can’t get past verifying my residence / verifying social security number in system.

Be sure you are entering residence for the date system is asking for, which is not necessarily your current residence. Another trick is to try entering just a zip code and letting the city auto-populate (the system is picky about spelling and sometimes information migrated from old system was misspelled when entered). If that still doesn’t work, you can contact ODFW (via private message on Facebook or Instagram or Twitter, by email to, or at 503-947-6101 and we’ll look up your city for you.

If the system is not letting you past social security number verification, it may indicate that you created a duplicate account or have some other problem. Contact us via one of the channels above so we can try to fix your problem.

I’m locked out of the ELS system and can’t login.

Wait at least five minutes and try again. Users have three tries to enter a correct username and password before they are locked out for five minutes. If needed, use the “Forgot Password” or “Forgot Username” and follow the process to reset your password or retrieve username. If you do reset your password, you still need to wait five minutes to enter information and log back in.

If you never receive your password reset email, check your spam folder. If you used a work email, it may be because your employer’s firewall is blocking the email. There also may be an issue with the spelling of the email you entered into the licensing system. Contact ODFW if you are unable to reset your password.

I get an error message when I try to visit the ODFW Licensing page?

Do not use Internet Explorer to attempt to login to ODFW’s licensing page – this browser is no longer supported by Microsoft and does not meet security standards. Chrome and Firefox are the preferred browsers for the ODFW licensing system. Safari and Edge are supported, but can experience issues if not kept up to date.

My Android version 4.0 and earlier does not work with the MyODFW app?

The MyODFW app works with Android version 5 and newer because earlier versions (for Android phones version 4.0 from 2013 and earlier) do not meet industry security standards. Android phones from 2013 and prior will not be able to use the app and people with these phones should choose paper tags. ODFW is unaware of similar compatibility issues with any version of iPhone.


How do I buy a one-day or multi-day license online?

For a paper one-day or multi-day license, you can use Guest Checkout to purchase a license and print it from any printer.

For an electronic one-day or multi-day license, you will need to Verify or Create an account at Then download the MyODFW app on your phone and enter the username and password you created to see your licenses/tags and tag fish and game when offline.

You can also purchase at a license sales agent.

How do I buy a hunter education class or outdoor workshop on the new system?

Hunter education classes and outdoor workshops are available for sale online through the licensing page and at ODFW offices. They are not available at license sale agents. More information at:



How do I register for the Mentored Youth Hunter Program?

Children age 9-15 are eligible to register for this program. The child who will be mentored (or their parent) needs to login to the child’s online account to register. (Don’t forget to Lookup/Verify the child’s account first if they already have preference points or had an annual Combo license between 2016-2018). Click “Purchase from the Catalog” and the “General” tab, then select Mentored Youth Hunter Program as you would any other item from the catalog and follow through to checkout. Registration is free and you will not be charged for this item. If the child chooses e-tagging, the Mentored Youth registration will show up in their MyODFW app when they sign in to their account.

What products can I purchase online without creating an account at

Use the “Shop for Products that don’t Require an account” button to purchase paper (not electronic) daily or multi-day fishing and bird hunting licenses, wildlife area parking permit, habitat conservation stamp, aquatic invasive species prevention permit (motorized or non-motorized), or to make a contribution to conservation. Reminder that if you want to purchase an electronic daily or multi-day license, you will need to create an account.

How do I report my hunt?

The fastest and easiest way to report you hunt is online. Login to your account on the Licensing page, then choose “Submit a Hunting and Fishing Outcome Report” or “Outcome Reporting / Mandatory Reporting” to complete your report. Click 2019 under License Year to find the tags you need to report on.

If you have never logged in to the Licensing page before, make sure to use the Verify/Look up your Account feature to retrieve your account and setup a username and password. Once your account setup is complete, you will be able to report on your tags.

If after you open an online account, you don’t see your tags to report on, it may be because you created a duplicate account. Contact ODFW at or (503) 947-6101, or via private message on social media (@MyODFW on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter) to fix this issue.

Mandatory reporting can also be completed by calling ODFW at 1-866-947-6339 during regular business hours or by visiting a license sales agent.

Other FAQs about ODFW’s electronic licensing system

What happens if my phone dies and I can’t show my electronic license, tag or validation?

Just like today, hunters and anglers will be required to have and display a license and tag upon contact by ODFW or OSP. It will be the hunter or angler’s responsibility to ensure they always have enough battery or an external battery source to power their phone so they can validate their harvest and show their license or tag. Note that even when they are in the field and without cell reception, ODFW and OSP will also be able to see information about licenses/tags/validations you purchased and to check your confirmation number (which indicates you have electronically tagged your big game animal).

Will I have to pin my location when I tag my fish or animal electronically?

Customers will have the option of either pinning the location of their harvest or providing the wildlife management unit or fishery location code as they currently do. ODFW recognizes the potential sensitivity of personal hunting and fishing locations and has no current plans to change how it uses location data received from recreational hunters and anglers (which is at the wildlife management unit or fishery location level only).

Do I still have to report my hunt (mandatory reporting) even if I’m using electronic tagging?

Yes and reporting will remain a separate step under the new system as this data is handled separately. Report online through your online licensing account or if you don’t have access to the internet, call ODFW at (503) 947-6101 during regular office hours to report your hunt.

Will the paper tags/validations I print hold up as well as the specialized paper from the old system?

Paper tags/validations will be printed on regular printer paper and will require a little extra care when you’re in the field, such as keeping them in a Ziploc/plastic bag or some other waterproof carrier. If you damage or lose your paper tag, visit any license sales agent or ODFW office and get a new one for $2. The new paper tag will have a different barcode so the old paper tag will be invalid. (Note that previously, duplicate tags cost $25.50 or the original cost of the document if lower.)

Can I have both an electronic and paper version of my license or tag?

No. You will need to choose either electronic or paper. However, customers who choose paper will have the option of changing to electronic during the season. Customers who chose paper will also be able to create an online account and use the MyODFW app where they can see licenses/tags purchased, but will be expected to furnish a paper copy of their license (recreational portfolio) and tag upon contact by OSP.

How many copies of my tags can I print?

Customers may print only one big game, turkey, fee pheasant, angling tag or hatchery harvest card. It will be unlawful to make copies. If you lose your tag and need a reprint, you will need to go to a license sales agent or ODFW office and pay $2 for a reprint. Each reprinted tag is unique and only the most recent reprint from the system is valid. OSP and ODFW staff will have the ability to scan the barcode on a printed tag to confirm it is valid.

While tags are limited to one copy, customers may print multiple copies of their paper license (e.g. recreational portfolio).

Can I carry my kids’ (or anyone else’s) electronic licenses/tags along with my own on my phone?

No, due to the long-standing regulation that requires each hunter/angler to carry their own license/tag. People without cell phones should choose paper tagging.

Can I purchase a federal duck stamp on the new system?

No. Federal duck stamps (required for duck, goose, merganser, brant hunting) are not sold through ODFW’s licensing system and will not appear on the MyODFW app or in your online account. Hunters need to carry their federal duck stamp in addition to their ODFW licenses. Purchase your stamp at a post office or another location that sells them (such as an outdoor retailer or national wildlife refuge and some ODFW offices). While it’s not available in Oregon right now, some state electronic licensing systems sell federal duck stamps, see for more information.

Why did ODFW change its licensing system?

To provide better service to customers, reduce our operating costs and modernize our licensing system. Customers are now able to buy and print their documents directly from home, 24 hours a day, without waiting for them to be mailed like under the current system. Or, customers can now buy and immediately use an electronic document, keeping licenses/tags/validations on their smartphone instead of in their pockets. The move to the new system is expected to save as much as $2 million per year, thanks to the elimination of specialty paper and computer equipment and overall lower cost of the system. The system will also allow ODFW and Oregon State Police to look up licensing information while in the field and offline, which is not possible under the current system.

Does ODFW intend to eventually phase out paper licenses/tags?

No. ODFW will continue to offer an electronic or paper option.

Are other states using this type of electronic licensing?

Yes. Several states (including GA, FL, OH, AR) currently provide a paperless tag option. The vendor ODFW is using for the new system (JMT) also manages the license sales system for the states of Idaho and Washington. ODFW regularly communicates with other state fish and wildlife agencies about best management practices for licensing systems and spoke with 22 other states before making a final decision on the new license sales system. 

Will my data be secure?

Yes, the new system will meet all data security requirements, including encryption of personally identifiable information in transit and at rest. Personally identifiable information and financial information will not be collected by or stored in the system that you will interact with to access your license and other products. The information will be stored, using full encryption for both in transit and at rest data, in a separate system that has no direct access point for the general public.

Need help? Email, call ODFW Licensing at (503) 947-6101 or Contact ODFW (via private message on Facebook or Instagram or Twitter).

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