Migratory bird hunting seasons on tap
MONTPELIER — The Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department has announced the 2019-2020 migratory bird hunting season dates and bag limits.
A printable copy of the Migratory Bird Syllabus can be downloaded from the Vermont Fish & Wildlife website, vtfishandwildlife.com, under “Hunt” – “Hunting Regulations and Seasons.” A printed version also will be available from license agents and post offices by late August.
A statewide Vermont open hunting season for resident Canada geese will occur Sept. 1-25. The daily bag limit is five Canada geese in the Connecticut River Zone and eight in the rest of the state during the September season. The purpose of the September season is to help control Vermont’s resident Canada goose population prior to the arrival of Canada geese migrating south from Canada.
A second Canada goose hunting season for resident and migrant geese will be held Oct. 10-Nov. 8 in the Lake Champlain and Interior Zones with a daily bag limit of two Canada geese.
In the Connecticut River Zone, the second Canada goose season will be Oct. 2-Nov. 3, and Nov. 20-Dec. 16, with a daily bag limit of two Canada geese.
Duck season this fall opens on Oct. 10 in the Lake Champlain and Interior Vermont Zones and on Oct. 2 in the Connecticut River Zone. The Lake Champlain Zone has a split season (Oct. 10-Nov. 1 and Nov. 23-Dec. 29). The Interior Vermont Zone has a straight season (Oct. 10-Dec. 8). The Connecticut River Zone has a split season (Oct. 2-Nov. 3 and Nov. 20-Dec. 16).
Vermont’s youth waterfowl hunting weekend will be Sept. 28 and 29. Resident and nonresident hunters 17 years of age or younger on those dates may hunt ducks and geese within the Lake Champlain and Interior Vermont Zones during this weekend while accompanied by an adult 18 or older. In the Connecticut River Zone, youth must be 15 years of age or younger on those dates. Both adult and youth must have Vermont hunting licenses. The adult may not hunt or carry a firearm. Youth ages 16 and 17 must have a Vermont Migratory Waterfowl tag and federal duck stamp.
Woodcock hunting season is Oct. 1-Nov. 14 statewide with a three-bird bag limit.
In addition to a hunting license, a waterfowl hunter 16 or older must carry a current federal duck stamp and Vermont Migratory Waterfowl tag in order to hunt waterfowl in Vermont. Federal stamps are sold at post offices, federal refuges, or online at fws.gov/birds/get-involved/duck-stamp/buy-duck-stamp.php. State Migratory Waterfowl tags are available at vtfishandwildlife.com and from license agents. The hunter must sign the federal duck stamp.
All migratory game bird (woodcock, ducks and geese) hunters must also be registered with the Harvest Information Program (H.I.P.) in each state they hunt. You can register on Vermont Fish & Wildlife’s website or call toll-free 1-877-306-7091. After providing some basic information, you will receive your annual H.I.P. registration number, which you then need to record on your hunting license.