One of the most popular hunting days of the year is quickly approaching. Dove hunting season will open on September 1 at 2 p.m. All Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks (MDWFP) conservation officers will be working with federal officers to ensure hunters are in compliance with state and federal hunting laws.
Hunters need to be sure their hunting license is current for the 2013-14 hunting season, complete with Harvest Information Program (HIP) certification. HIP certification is required for hunting all migratory game birds and is required for each state hunted. Upon purchasing a license, hunters are asked questions about their harvest from the previous hunting season. The most frequent citation written in Mississippi has been no hunting license. This violation has a direct impact on conservation due to the loss of Federal Aid dollars. Hunters should also be sure shotguns are not capable of holding more than three shells and should be aware of how their hunting field was prepared. Hunting with the aid of bait is illegal, and it is the hunter’s responsibility to know if the field is baited or not. A brochure on dove field preparation and hunting regulations can be found online at www.mdwfp.com/dove.
There are three questions hunters will need to be able to answer regarding how the field was prepared before hunting. Those questions are: Did I know the field was baited? Did I look to see if the field was baited? Did I ask how the field was prepared? Hunters in violation of state or federal regulations will be cited. MDWFP’s primary objectives are to conserve and enhance the resource, provide quality outdoor recreation, and make sure everyone has a safe hunting experience.
Hunters are encouraged to have a safe and enjoyable hunt. The bag limit for mourning doves is 15 per day with no more than 45 in possession. On opening day, the possession limit is the same as the daily bag limit. After opening day, shooting hours are from 30 minutes prior to sunrise until sunset.
For more information regarding doves in Mississippi, visit our website at www.mdwfp.com/dove or call us at (601) 432-2199. Follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/mdwfp or on Twitter at www.twitter.com/MDWFPonline.
Logo courtesy Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks