Wildlife Commission reminds dove hunters to practice safety, ethics

Published 3:02 pm Wednesday, September 2, 2020

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The N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission’s Home from the Hunt campaign reminds hunters to follow state and federal laws and practice safe hunting techniques as dove season opens on Sept. 5.

The 2020-21 season for mourning and white-winged dove is separated into three segments: Sept. 5 through Oct. 10, Nov. 14 through Nov. 28 and Dec. 12 through Jan. 30. All hunters must follow applicable licensing requirements and hunting regulations.

The daily bag limit is 15 doves and shooting hours are from 30 minutes before sunrise to sunset for the entire season, including opening day. Hunting of migratory game birds by any method is not allowed on Sundays.

It is a violation of state and federal law to take migratory game birds with the use or aid of salt, grain, fruit or any other bait. Additionally, hunters need to be aware that an area is considered baited for 10 days following the removal of all salt, grain or other feed.

Migratory gamebirds may be hunted in agricultural areas where grain has been distributed as the result of normal agricultural operations. Information regarding agriculture and planting techniques may be obtained from a local N.C. State Extension Service Center.

The Commission advises dove hunters to follow these safety tips:

• Always adhere to established safe zones of fire.

• Always be sure to have the correct ammunition for your firearm.

• Never shoot at low-flying birds.

• Never place decoys on utility lines.

For more information on mourning doves, visit ncwildlife.org/mourning-dove.