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Administration Home News/Information Contact Us DNR Home   

Joe Manchin III, Governor
Frank Jezioro, Director

News Release : August 10, 2007

Hoy Murphy, Public Information Officer (304) 558-3381 hoymurphy@wvdnr.gov
Contact:
Curtis Taylor, Wildlife Resources Section Chief (304) 558-2771wildlife@wvdnr.gov

Mourning Dove Season Opens September 1

The September 1st opening of mourning dove season marks the beginning of traditional fall hunting for many West Virginia hunters, according to Curtis I. Taylor, Chief of the Division of Natural Resources’ Wildlife Resources Section. The 2007 season will open at noon on September 1, and the first of three segments will continue through October 6. The two remaining segments are October 22 through November 3 and December 17 through January 5. Shooting hours, after the first day, are from one-half hour before sunrise until sunset. The daily bag limit is 12 with a possession limit of 24.

“Mourning dove seasons are set to maximize hunting opportunity in relation to other hunting seasons,” Taylor said. “The bulk of the season falls in September when few other hunting seasons are open and the second and third segments target late crop harvests and the Christmas/New Year holiday period, respectively.”

“Doves are found throughout the state, but the greatest concentrations will be associated with farming areas,” according to Taylor. “A recently-harvested grain field with water nearby is almost sure to be a hotspot for dove hunting.” Hunters should be contacting landowners now for permission to hunt on private land. Scouting areas immediately prior to when you plan to hunt is very important.

Federal regulations require all licensed dove hunters (including lifetime and senior citizens) to register with the Migratory Bird Harvest Information Program (HIP) and carry proof of registration while hunting. HIP registration is free and available from DNR offices and all hunting license outlets. Hunters may not hunt migratory birds with a shotgun capable of holding more than three shells unless the shotgun is “plugged” with a one-piece filler that cannot be removed without disassembling the gun.

Several hundred doves are banded with leg bands each year in West Virginia for monitoring and research purposes. If you harvest a banded bird, you can report it by calling1-800-327-2263 or online at www.pwrc.usgs.gov (select bird banding lab). Hunters may keep the band and will receive a certificate of appreciation that includes the banding information for the bird.

More complete information on morning dove season can be found in the 2007-2008 West Virginia Migratory Bird Hunting Regulations which should be available from DNR offices, license agents and the DNR Web site www.wvdnr.gov in late August.

 

**DNR**



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