MADISON – Migratory game bird hunters are reminded that Sept. 1 marks the opener for Wisconsin’s mourning dove, early teal and early goose hunting seasons.
Canada Goose hunting begins with the early season Sept. 1-15, with a daily bag limit of five geese during this time. Goose hunters are required to complete registration within 48 hours of harvest. During this early goose season, regulations apply statewide, with no zone-specific regulations.
With the transition to Go Wild, the Canada goose harvest registration phone number is now consistent with all other species registered in Wisconsin – this new system also provides for online registration. Hunters can now register online at gamereg.wi.gov or via phone at 844-426-3734 (844 GAME-REG).
In addition, Early, Exterior and Horicon Zone goose permits are now printed on regular white paper, rather than green thermal paper. While afield, hunters must carry their Canada goose harvest permit – department staff encourage hunters to carry these permits in a plastic bag to shield it from any adverse weather conditions.
For more information regarding Go Wild, visit gowild.wi.gov.
The final year of the three-year experimental early teal-only duck hunting season will run Sept. 1-7, with a daily bag limit of six teal. Opening day shooting hours for the teal season will be 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
For the remainder of the season, shooting hours will be sunrise to 7 p.m. Early teal season hunters are not required to purchase any licenses or permits in addition to those required for hunting ducks during the regular waterfowl season.
The duck identification quiz, found at dnr.wi.gov, keyword “waterfowl” gives hunters an opportunity to brush up on duck identification prior to this early season.
While the early teal season is offered statewide, some state owned properties have special waterfowl hunting limitations. For example, Mead Wildlife Area does not allow waterfowl hunting prior to the regular duck season, and Lake Mills Wildlife Area (Zeloski Marsh) has unique shooting hour restrictions. Contact a local wildlife biologist or consult the 2016 Migratory Bird Regulations for a list of areas with additional requirements or limitations.
To view a full list of waterfowl hunting seasons and the 2016 Migratory Game Bird Regulations, search keyword “waterfowl.”
In 2016, the mourning dove hunting season will run from Sept. 1 to Nov. 29. This season structure is identical to 2015 – an additional 20 days will remain in place at the end of the traditional 70-day dove hunting season.
Dove hunters are encouraged to check out the Fields & Forest Lands Interactive Gamebird Hunting Tool. FFLIGHT helps hunters of all types locate young aspen and alder habitat, pheasant-stocked public hunting grounds, and managed dove fields.
FFLIGHT also allows users to print maps and find GPS coordinates to assist in navigation and provides measuring tools to help estimate acreage and walking distance. Mobile users can use this tool on-the-go to find suitable habitat for hunting.