Tag Archives: GOOSE

spring snow goose migration hot line

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North Dakota spring light goose hunters can track general locations of geese as birds make their way through the state.

 

Hunters are able to call (701) 328-3697 to hear recorded information 24 hours a day. Migration reports are also posted on the North Dakota Game and Fish Department website, gf.nd.gov. Updates will be provided periodically during the week as migration events occur, until the season ends or geese have left the state.

 

North Dakota’s spring light goose season opens Feb. 15 and continues through May 18. Season information, including licensing requirements and regulations, are also available by accessing the Game and Fish website.

Sportsmen Against Hunter Program–goose

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On a trial basis, North Dakota’s Sportsmen Against Hunger Program is accepting donations of goose meat taken during the early Canada goose season.

 

Much like the popular SAH deer donation program, hunters can bring in their goose meat to participating processors. However, hunters must remove the breast meat from the birds before processors can accept them.

 

Hunters can clean their geese at home prior to delivery to a processor, but breast meat brought from home without a wing or head attached to the meat, must be accompanied by written information that includes the hunter’s name, address, signature, hunting license number, date taken and species and number taken.

 

Hunters may also deliver geese directly from the field to a processor, but identification must remain attached to the bird until in possession of the processor.

 

Since no goose carcasses or feathers are allowed inside processing plants, hunters must be able to ensure proper disposal and clean-up of carcasses.

 

“We have 11 locations across the state that will handle goose donations,” said Ann Pollert, Executive Director of North Dakota’s Community Action Partnership, which sponsors SAH as part of its effort to serve low-income families across the state. “We’re kind of testing the waters this year to see if goose donations can work out as well as deer have in the past.”

 

The list of participating processors is available on the NDCAP website at http://www.capnd.org/sahprogram/.

 

Hunters interested in donating are encouraged to call processors before dropping off geese, to have a clear understanding of how goose breasts will be accepted and the processor’s hours of operation, Pollert said.

 

For more information, visit the CAPND website or contact Pollert at (701) 232-2452.

 

North Dakota’s early Canada goose season closes Sept. 7 in the Missouri river zone and Sept. 15 in the rest of the state, though goose meat is only accepted through Friday, Sept. 14. Daily bag limit is 15 with 30 in possession.

 

The early hunting season is intended to reduce local Canada goose numbers. Despite liberalized regulations the past several years, with longer seasons, large bag limits and expanded shooting hours the statewide population remains high, with numbers well above population goals. For additional information and regulations, hunters should refer to the Game and Fish Department website.

signed, sealed and delivered the early goose season will open August 15

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Early Canada Goose Season Opens Aug. 15

North Dakota’s early Canada goose season is set and the season will open Aug. 15. The limits are 15 daily and 30 in possession

Limits and shooting hours for the early season are different from the regular season. Shooting hours during the early season are one-half hour before sunrise to sunset daily.

Normal licensing requirements for the regular season, including a federal duck stamp, apply to the early season. Nonresidents who hunt in Benson, Ramsey, Towner, Sargent and Richland counties during the early season may do so without counting against their 14-day regular season license.

All migratory bird hunters must register with the Harvest Information Program prior to hunting. Hunters who purchase a license through the North Dakota Game and Fish Department website at gf.nd.gov, or instant licensing telephone number (800) 406-6409, can easily get HIP certified. Otherwise, hunters can call(888) 634-4798 and record the HIP number on their fishing, hunting and furbearer certificate. Those who registered to hunt the spring light goose season in North Dakota do not have to register with HIP again, as it is required only once per year.

Waterfowl rest areas, closed to hunting during the regular season, will be open during the early season. Most land in these rest areas is private, so hunters may need permission to hunt.

The early hunting season is intended to reduce local Canada goose numbers. Despite liberalized regulations the past several years, with longer seasons, large bag limits and expanded shooting hours the statewide population remains high, with numbers well above population goals.

The early season ends in the Missouri River zone Sept. 7, while the rest of the state closes Sept. 15. The Missouri River zone closes early to provide additional late season hunting opportunities by adding these days to the end of the regular season.

For additional information and regulations, hunters should refer to the Game and Fish Department website.

2012 spring snow goose season is set

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Light goose hunters planning to hunt during North Dakota’s spring season can purchase a license online at the state Game and Fish Department’s website. The season opens Feb. 18 and continues through May 6.

Residents can hunt during the spring season by having last fall’s 2011-12 bird licenses. Otherwise, hunters will need to purchase either a 2012-13 combination license; or a small game, and general game and habitat license.

Nonresidents, regardless of age, need a 2012 spring light goose season license. The cost is $50 and the license is good statewide. Nonresidents who hunt the spring season remain eligible to buy a fall season license. The spring season does not count against the 14-day fall hunting season regulation.

A federal duck stamp is not required for either residents or nonresidents.

Licenses are available only from the Game and Fish Department’s Bismarck office, the department’s website at gf.nd.gov, or by calling (800) 406-6409.

Availability of food and open water dictate when snow geese arrive in the state. Early migrants generally start showing up in the southeast part of the state in mid-to-late March, but huntable numbers usually aren’t around until the end of March or early April. If this winter’s mild weather conditions continue, light geese could arrive earlier than normal.  However, movements into and through the state will depend on available roosting areas and the extent of the snow line.

Hunters must obtain a new Harvest Information Program registration number before venturing out into the field. The HIP number can be obtained online or by calling (888) 634-4798. The HIP number is good for the fall season as well, so spring hunters should save it to record on their fall license.

The Game and Fish Department will provide hunters with migration updates once geese have entered the state. Hunters can access the department’s website, or call (701) 328-3697, to receive generalized locations of bird sightings in North Dakota until the season ends or geese have left the state. Migration reports will be updated periodically during the week.

The spring season is only open to light geese – snows, blues, and Ross’s. Species identification is important because white-fronted and Canada geese travel with light geese. The season is closed to whitefronts, Canada geese, swans and all other migratory birds.

The statewide season is open through May 6. Shooting hours are 30 minutes before sunrise to 30 minutes after sunset. There is no daily bag limit or possession limit. Electronic and recorded calls, as well as shotguns capable of holding more than three shells, may be used to take light geese during this season.

There are no waterfowl rest areas designated for the spring season. Hunters should note that private land within waterfowl rest areas closed last fall may be posted closed to hunting.

Nontoxic shot is required for hunting all light geese statewide. Driving off established roads and trails is strongly discouraged during this hunt because of the likelihood of soft, muddy conditions, and winter wheat that is planted across the state.

To maintain good landowner relations, hunters are advised to seek permission before hunting on private lands or attempting any off-road travel during this season. Sprouted winter wheat is considered an unharvested crop. Therefore, hunting oroff-road travel in winter wheat is not legal without landowner permission.

All regular hunting season regulations not addressed above apply to the spring season. For more information on regulations refer to the 2012 Spring Light Goose Hunting Regulations and the 2011 North Dakota Waterfowl Hunting Guide.

 

getting set for the duck opener

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YOUR 2010 duck & goose opener begins Saturday

2010 Waterfowl Regulations Set

North Dakota’s 2010 waterfowl season has been set, with season details similar to last year. The only significant changes are an increase in the limit on pintails, and elimination of one waterfowl rest area.

Opening day for North Dakota residents is Sept. 25 for ducks, geese, coots and mergansers. Nonresidents may begin hunting waterfowl in North Dakota Oct. 2.

Hunters may take six ducks per day with the following restrictions: five mallards of which two may be hens, three wood ducks, two scaup, two redheads, two pintails (an increase of one from last year) and one canvasback. For ducks, the possession limit is twice the daily limit.

The daily limit of five mergansers may include no more than two hooded mergansers.

The waterfowl rest area five miles north and six miles west of McClusky in Sheridan County has been eliminated. In addition, the waterfowl rest area two miles north of Noonan in Divide County will be closed to all small game hunting. Last year it was closed only to waterfowl hunting.

The hunting season for Canada geese in the Missouri River zone will close Dec. 31, while the remainder of the state will close Dec. 23. The season for whitefronts closes Dec. 5, while the season on light geese is open through Dec. 31. Shooting hours for all geese are one-half hour before sunrise to 1 p.m. each day through Nov. 6. Beginning Nov. 7, shooting hours are extended until 2 p.m. each day.

Extended shooting hours for all geese are permitted from one-half hour before sunrise to sunset on Saturdays and Wednesdays through Nov. 28, and on Saturdays, Sundays and Wednesdays from Dec. 1 through the end of each season.

The daily bag limit for Canada geese during the regular season is three, with six in possession. The daily limit on whitefronts is two with four in possession, and light goose is 20 daily, with no possession limit.

The special youth waterfowl hunting season is Sept. 18-19. Legally licensed residents and nonresidents 15 years of age or younger can hunt ducks, coots, mergansers and geese statewide. Youth hunters must have a general game and habitat license and a fishing, hunting and furbearer certificate. A licensed adult at least 18 years of age must accompany the youth hunter into the field. The daily bag limit and species restrictions for the youth season are the same as for regular duck and goose seasons.

Nonresidents have the option of buying either a statewide waterfowl license or one with zone restrictions. Nonresidents who designate zones 1 or 2 may hunt that zone for only one seven-day period during the season. Nonresident hunters who chose to hunt in zone 1 or 2 and wish to use the full 14 consecutive days allowed, must use the other seven days in zone 3. Hunters in zone 3 can hunt that zone the entire 14 days.

In accordance with state law, nonresidents are not allowed to hunt on North Dakota Game and Fish Department wildlife management areas or conservation PLOTS (Private Land Open To Sportsmen) areas from Oct. 9-15.

All migratory bird hunters, including waterfowl, must register with the Harvest Information Program prior to hunting. Hunters purchasing a license from the Game and Fish Department can easily get a HIP number. Otherwise, hunters must call (888) 634-4798, or log on to the Game and Fish website at gf.nd.gov, provide the registration information, and record the HIP number on their fishing, hunting and furbearer certificate. Those who HIP registered to hunt this spring’s light goose season do not have to register again, as it is required only once per year.

Hunters should refer to the 2010 North Dakota Waterfowl Hunting Guide, available in early September, for further details on the waterfowl season.

ready? set DUCK!

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Your 2010 North Dakota waterfowl regulations are set:

2010 Waterfowl Regulations Set

North Dakota’s 2010 waterfowl season has been set, with season details similar to last year. The only significant changes are an increase in the limit on pintails, and elimination of one waterfowl rest area.

Opening day for North Dakota residents is Sept. 25 for ducks, geese, coots and mergansers. Nonresidents may begin hunting waterfowl in North Dakota Oct. 2.

Hunters may take six ducks per day with the following restrictions: five mallards of which two may be hens, three wood ducks, two scaup, two redheads, two pintails (an increase of one from last year) and one canvasback. For ducks, the possession limit is twice the daily limit.

The daily limit of five mergansers may include no more than two hooded mergansers.

The waterfowl rest area five miles north and six miles west of McClusky in Sheridan County has been eliminated. In addition, the waterfowl rest area two miles north of Noonan in Divide County will be closed to all small game hunting. Last year it was closed only to waterfowl hunting.

The hunting season for Canada geese in the Missouri River zone will close Dec. 31, while the remainder of the state will close Dec. 23. The season for whitefronts closes Dec. 5, while the season on light geese is open through Dec. 31. Shooting hours for all geese are one-half hour before sunrise to 1 p.m. each day through Nov. 6. Beginning Nov. 7, shooting hours are extended until 2 p.m. each day.

Extended shooting hours for all geese are permitted from one-half hour before sunrise to sunset on Saturdays and Wednesdays through Nov. 28, and on Saturdays, Sundays and Wednesdays from Dec. 1 through the end of each season.

The daily bag limit for Canada geese during the regular season is three, with six in possession. The daily limit on whitefronts is two with four in possession, and light goose is 20 daily, with no possession limit.

The special youth waterfowl hunting season is Sept. 18-19. Legally licensed residents and nonresidents 15 years of age or younger can hunt ducks, coots, mergansers and geese statewide. Youth hunters must have a general game and habitat license and a fishing, hunting and furbearer certificate. A licensed adult at least 18 years of age must accompany the youth hunter into the field. The daily bag limit and species restrictions for the youth season are the same as for regular duck and goose seasons.

Nonresidents have the option of buying either a statewide waterfowl license or one with zone restrictions. Nonresidents who designate zones 1 or 2 may hunt that zone for only one seven-day period during the season. Nonresident hunters who chose to hunt in zone 1 or 2 and wish to use the full 14 consecutive days allowed, must use the other seven days in zone 3. Hunters in zone 3 can hunt that zone the entire 14 days.

In accordance with state law, nonresidents are not allowed to hunt on North Dakota Game and Fish Department wildlife management areas or conservation PLOTS (Private Land Open To Sportsmen) areas from Oct. 9-15.

All migratory bird hunters, including waterfowl, must register with the Harvest Information Program prior to hunting. Hunters purchasing a license from the Game and Fish Department can easily get a HIP number. Otherwise, hunters must call (888) 634-4798, or log on to the Game and Fish website at gf.nd.gov, provide the registration information, and record the HIP number on their fishing, hunting and furbearer certificate. Those who HIP registered to hunt this spring’s light goose season do not have to register again, as it is required only once per year.

Hunters should refer to the 2010 North Dakota Waterfowl Hunting Guide, available in early September, for further details on the waterfowl season.

Early Canada Goose Season Opens Sunday, Aug. 15

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North Dakota’s early Canada goose season opens statewide Sunday, Aug. 15.

This year’s early season will have a daily limit of five Canada geese and a possession limit of 10. Shooting hours are one-half hour before sunrise to sunset daily. Limits and shooting hours are different from the regular season, as the proposed regular season bag limit is three daily and six in possession.

Normal licensing requirements for the regular season, including a federal duck stamp, apply to the early season. Nonresidents who hunt in Sargent and Richland counties during the early season may do so without counting against their 14-day regular season license.

All migratory bird hunters must register with the Harvest Information Program prior to hunting. Hunters who purchase a license through the North Dakota Game and Fish Department’s website (gf.nd.gov) or instant licensing telephone number (800) 406-6409 can easily get HIP certified. Otherwise, hunters can call (888) 634-4798 and record the HIP number on their fishing, hunting and furbearer certificate. Those who registered to hunt the spring light goose season in North Dakota do not have to register with HIP again, as it is required only once per year.

Waterfowl rest areas, closed to hunting during the regular season, will be open during the early season. Most land in these rest areas is private, so hunters may need permission to hunt.

The early hunting season is intended to reduce local Canada goose numbers. Despite liberalized seasons the past several years, the statewide population remains high, with numbers well above population goals. The large population has resulted in increased reports from landowners concerning depredation on crops and nuisance problems.

During the past decade, hunters have been able to take advantage of longer Canada goose hunting seasons, large bag limits and expanded shooting hours. While these strategies have increased harvest considerably, the population remains above objective levels.

For additional information and regulations, hunters should refer to the Game and Fish Department website.

 

Minnesot waterfowl numbers

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Minnesota’ s 2010 breeding duck and goose populations are similar to last year, according to the results of the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources’ (DNR) spring waterfowl survey.

The state’s estimated breeding duck population was 531,000 compared with last year’s estimate of 541,000. This year’s estimate is 15 percent less than the long-term average of 624,000 breeding ducks. The Canada goose population was estimated at 311,000, similar to last year’s estimate of 285,000. The number of breeding Canada geese has been relatively stable the past 10 years.

Minnesota’s spring breeding population of waterfowl is influenced each year by the quantity and quality of the state’s wetlands as well as habitat conditions in states and provinces to the north and west. Data on breeding duck numbers across other regions of North America is not yet available, but preliminary reports suggest good to excellent wetland habitat conditions in the Dakotas and portions of southern Canada.

Although breeding duck numbers were similar to last year, the goal in the DNR’s statewide Duck Recovery Plan is to attract and hold a breeding population of 1 million ducks. “This will require that the DNR and all of our conservation partners stay focused on the long-term effort to restore the additional habitat that is needed to accomplish this goal,” said Dennis Simon, DNR wildlife section chief.

Steve Cordts, DNR waterfowl specialist, said this year’s survey results showed no significant changes from last year. The main indices of breeding duck abundance – mallard, blue-winged teal, and total ducks – were statistically the same. The index of wetland habitat abundance was very similar to last year.

This year’s mallard breeding population was estimated at 242,000, which was unchanged from last year’s estimate of 236,000 breeding mallards, 15 percent below the recent 10-year average and 8 percent above the long-term average.

The blue-winged teal population was 132,000 this year compared with 135,000 in 2009.
Blue-winged teal numbers remained 36 percent below the recent 10-year average and 40 percent below the long-term average.

“Blue-winged teal numbers have been below average for the past six years in Minnesota,” Cordts said. “Continental teal populations are doing very well, so it may relate to conditions specific to Minnesota.”

Breeding blue-wings tend to respond favorably to areas with an abundance of very shallow, seasonally flooded wetlands. “We don’t have sufficient amounts of this type of wetland habitat remaining in the prairie regions of Minnesota,” Cordts said.

The combined populations of other ducks, such as wood ducks, ring-necked ducks, gadwalls, northern shovelers, canvasbacks and redheads, was 157,000, which is 12 percent below the long-term average.

The estimated number of wetlands (Types II-V) was 270,000, down 15 percent from last year but near the long-term average of 250,000.

“Wetland habitat conditions were actually somewhat dry at the beginning of the survey in early May, but improved with rain events beginning in mid-May,” Cordts said. “While this is usually favorable for summer brood-rearing conditions, the drier conditions in April likely did not attract additional breeding ducks to settle in Minnesota.”

The same waterfowl survey has been conducted each May since 1968 to provide an annual index of breeding duck abundance. The survey is funded by hunting license dollars. The survey covers about 40 percent of the state that includes much of the best remaining duck breeding habitat in Minnesota. A DNR waterfowl biologist and pilot count all waterfowl and wetlands along established survey routes by flying low-level aerial surveys from a fixed-wing plane. The survey is timed to begin in early May to coincide with peak nesting activity of mallards. The U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service provides ground crews that also count waterfowl along some of the same survey routes. This data is used to correct for birds not seen by the aerial crew.

Canada Geese

Since 2001, the DNR has conducted a helicopter survey of nesting Canada geese in April. The survey, which includes most of the state except for the Twin Cities metropolitan area, counts Canada geese on randomly selected plots located in prairie, transition and forested areas.

“The number of breeding Canada geese has been relatively stable statewide for the past 10 years,” said DNR biologist Dave Rave. “Because of the early spring this year and very favorable nesting conditions, goose production should be excellent. Most managers have been reporting good numbers of goose broods so far this summer, which should provide plenty of hunting opportunity this fall.”

spring snow goose migration update

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This information is current as of Tuesday, March 30.

There are flocks of snow geese still being seen and migrating through the Sand Lake area, but it appears that the main concentration of snow geese has already moved into North Dakota. There was only a small flock of about 8000 on the refuge yesterday.

The main lakes on the refuge still have some ice on them, but it should break up soon. The tour route remains closed due to flooding. Roads throughout the Brown County area remain extremely wet, with water over many of the roads, and many roads closed. Please use caution when driving in the Sand Lake area.

counting down to the early Canada goose opener

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An early hunting season intended to reduce local Canada goose numbers in North Dakota opens statewide Aug. 15.

Last year was the first time the early season opened in mid-August. Before, opening day was Sept. 1. The earlier opener is permitted under the framework provided by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which allows states to open what is considered a “management take” season on Canada geese as early as Aug. 1.

Despite liberalized Canada goose seasons the past several years, the statewide population remains high, with numbers well above population goals. The growing population has resulted in increased reports from landowners concerning depredation on crops and nuisance problems.

During the past decade, hunters have been able to take advantage of longer Canada goose hunting seasons, maximum bag limits and expanded shooting hours. While these strategies have resulted in considerable increases in harvest, the population remains above objective levels.

Any Canada goose hunting days added in August do not count against the 107-day federal framework. Therefore, the mid-August opening date does not affect the length of the early Canada goose or regular waterfowl seasons.

Normal licensing requirements for the regular season, including a federal duck stamp, apply to the early season. Nonresidents who hunt in Sargent and Richland counties during the early season may do so without counting against their 14-day regular season license.

Hunters should refer to the North Dakota Game and Fish Department website, gf.nd.gov, for additional information and regulations, including Harvest Information Program certification and bag limits.