West Virginia's Canada goose and mourning dove seasons open Sept. 1, 2015SOUTH CHARLESTON, W.Va. - West Virginia's 2015–2016 migratory game bird seasons will begin statewide Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2015, with the opening of the early Canada goose and mourning dove seasons, according to Paul Johansen, chief of the Wildlife Resources Section of the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources (DNR). "This is a great way to start off your hunting seasons with a morning goose hunt and an afternoon dove hunt," said Johansen.
The dove season is split into three segments with this first segment running from Sept. 1 to Oct. 17. Shooting hours Sept. 1 are noon to sunset. For the remainder of the season, hours are one-half-hour before sunrise to sunset. The daily bag limit is 15 birds.
The early Canada goose season ends Sept. 12. Shooting hours are one-half-hour before sunrise until sunset with a bag limit of five. All waterfowl hunters, 16 years old and older, must possess a federal Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp or "Duck Stamp." Duck Stamps can be purchased from local post offices or with a credit card by calling 1-800-782-6724. All other general waterfowl hunting regulations apply to the September season.
Federal regulations require all licensed migratory bird hunters (including lifetime and senior citizens) to register with the Migratory Bird Harvest Information Program (HIP) and carry proof of registration while hunting. HIP cards are free and available from DNR offices, all hunting license agents and online at www.wvhunt.com.
"Several hundred doves and geese are banded with leg bands each year throughout West Virginia for population monitoring and research purposes," Johansen said. "It is very important that hunters who harvest a banded bird report these bands." Banded birds can be reported by calling 1-800-327-2263 or going online at www.reportband.gov. Hunters may keep the band and will receive information on when and where the bird was banded.
More information on West Virginia's migratory game bird seasons can be found in the 2015-2016 West Virginia Migratory Bird Hunting Regulations, which will be available from DNR offices and the DNR web site (www.wvdnr.gov) in late August.