(a) A person may not possess a firearm or ammunition outdoors during the period beginning the fifth day before the open firearms season and ending the second day after the close of the season within an area where deer may be taken by a firearm, except:
(1) during the open season and in an area where big game may be taken, a firearm and ammunition authorized for taking big game in that area may be used to take big game in that area if the person has a valid big game license in possession;
(2) an unloaded firearm that is in a case or in a closed trunk of a motor vehicle;
(3) a shotgun and shells containing No. 4 buckshot or smaller diameter lead shot or steel shot;
(4) a handgun or rifle capable of firing only rimfire cartridges of .17 and .22 caliber, including .22 magnum caliber cartridges;
(6) on a target range operated under a permit from the commissioner.
(b) This section does not apply during an open firearms season in an area where deer may be taken only by muzzleloader, except that muzzleloading firearms lawful for the taking of deer may be possessed only by persons with a valid license to take deer by muzzleloader during the muzzleloader season. While muzzleloader hunting, a person with a valid license to take deer by muzzleloader may not possess a firearm other than:
(1) a muzzleloader that is legal for taking deer under section 97B.031, subdivision 1; and
(2) a firearm as described in paragraph (a), clauses (2) to (5).