DNR announces 2022-2023 season dates, bag limits for migratory game birds

SOUTH CHARLESTON, W.VA. — West Virginia’s hunting season dates and bag limits for migratory game birds have been set for the 2022-2023 season in accordance with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s annual guidelines.

The mourning dove season is split into three segments, with the first segment running from Sept. 1 to Oct. 9. The second and third segments are Oct. 31 to Nov. 13 and Dec. 19 to Jan. 24, respectively. Shooting hours on Sept. 1 are noon to sunset. For the remainder of the season, shooting hours are one-half hour before sunrise to sunset.

The woodcock season is split into two segments, from Oct. 15 to Nov. 19 and Nov. 28 to Dec. 6. The sora and Virginia rail season runs Sept. 1 to Nov. 9. The snipe season runs from Sept. 1 to Dec. 16. The early Canada goose season runs Sept. 1 to Sept. 11. The duck season is split into three segments from Oct. 1 to Oct. 14, from Nov. 7 to Nov. 12 and from Dec. 23 to Jan. 31.

Shooting hours for woodcock, snipe, rails, Canada goose, ducks and other waterfowl are one-half hour before sunrise to sunset.

One notable change to this year’s waterfowl regulations is the removal of the restriction on hooded mergansers. The five-daily merganser bag limit can now include up to five hooded mergansers with a possession limit of 15 in aggregate.

Federal regulations require all licensed migratory, including lifetime license holders and senior citizens, bird hunters to register with the Migratory Bird Harvest Information Program and carry proof of registration while hunting. HIP cards are free and available at all hunting license agents and online at wvhunt.com.

All waterfowl hunters 16 and older must also possess a federal migratory bird hunting and conservation stamp or duck stamp, which must be signed by the hunter. Duck stamps can be purchased at local post offices, by calling 1-800-782-6724 or at usps.com/shop. Hunters should report harvested banded birds online at reportband.gov.

For more information about game bird hunting in West Virginia and for a full list of season dates and bag and possession limits, download a copy of the Migratory Bird Regulations at wvdnr.gov/hunting-regulations

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