6 Facts: Indiana’s Migratory Bird Hunting Season ’22 – ’23

Indiana’s migratory bird season for 2022 – 2023 includes mourning doves, waterfowl (ducks, coots, mergansers, and geese), woodcock, snipe and sora rails. 

Fact 1: Indiana Migratory Bird Hunting Dates

SpeciesAreaSegment 1Segment 2Segment 3
Mourning DoveStatewideSept. 1 – Oct. 16Nov. 1 – 27Dec. 17, 2022 – Jan. 2, 2023
WoodcockStatewideOct. 15 – Nov. 28—-
SnipeStatewideSept. 1 – Dec. 16—-—-
Sora RailStatewideSept. 1 – Nov. 9—-—-
Early TealStatewideSept. 10 – 25—-—-
Ducks, Coots MergansersNorth ZoneOct. 22 – Dec. 11Dec. 26, 2022 – Jan. 3, 2023—-
Central ZoneOct. 29 – Nov. 6Nov. 19, 2022 – Jan. 8, 2023—-
South ZoneNov. 5 – Nov. 6Nov. 26, 2022 – Jan. 22, 2023—-
Geese (Canada, BrantNorth ZoneSept. 10 – 18Oct. 22 – 30Nov. 19, 2022 – Feb. 12, 2023
White-fronted, Snow, Ross’s)Central ZoneSept. 10 – 18Oct. 29 – Nov. 6Nov. 19, 2022 – Feb. 12, 2023

South ZoneSept. 10 – 18Nov. 5 – Nov. 20Nov. 26, 2022 – Feb. 12, 2023
Youth & Veteran ONLYNorth ZoneOct. 15 – 16—-—-

Central ZoneOct. 22 – 23—-—-

South ZoneOct. 29 – 20—-—-

Fact 2: Daily Bag Limit

The daily bag limit for all dark geese (Canada geese, white-fronted, and brant) is five, with no other limitations by species. Hunters can harvest any number of each species if the total does not exceed five per day: this is for the whole season. The daily bag limit of five Canada geese no longer changes after the month of September. The daily bag limit for light geese (snow and Ross’s geese) remain 20 per day. 

Fact 3: Map of Indiana Migratory Bird Hunting Zones

Fact 4: Migratory Bird Hunting Limitations

No persons shall take migratory game birds: 

– With a trap, snare, net, rifle, pistol, swivel gun, shotgun larger than 10 gauge, punt gun, battery gun, machine gun, fishhook, poison, drug, explosive or stupefying substance. 

– From a sink box, which is a low, floating device. 

– From or with the aid or use of a car or other motor-drive land transportation, or any aircraft, except that paraplegics and single or double amputees of the legs may take from any stationary motor vehicle or stationary motor-drive land transportation. 

– By the use of aid of live decoys. All live, take or captive ducks and geese shall be removed for a period of 10 consecutive days prior to hunting, and confined within an enclosure which substantially reduces the audibility of their calls and totally conceals such tame birds from the sight of migratory fowl. 

– By driving, rallying and chasing birds with any motorized transportation or any sail boat to put them in the range of the hunters. 

– By the aid of baiting, or on or over any baited area. This is a punishable offense and the federal penalties are: for hunting over bait: $15,000/6 months in jail, placing bait: $100,000/1 year in jail.

For more information visit these links: 
Dove Hunting and Baiting

Waterfowl Hunting and Baiting

– With a shotgun capable of holding more than three (3) shells, unless plugged. 

– By the use or aid of recorded or electrically amplified bird calls or sounds. 

Fact 5: License and Stamp Requirements

Anyone hunting migratory gamebirds such as ducks, mergansers, coots, geese, dove, woodcock, sora, and snipe, must have an Indiana hunting license and HIP registration number. An Indiana waterfowl stamp privilege, purchased through a local retailer is also required for hunting ducks and geese. A game bird habitat stamp is also required to hunt mourning doves. 

License and stamp privileges are available from retailers and most Department of Natural Resources properties throughout the state. 

Resident and non-resident youth age 17 or younger are exempt from needing a state migratory waterfowl stamp. 

Anyone 16 years or older must have a signed Federal duck stamp when hunting ducks and geese. 

Landowners or lessees, hunting on farmed land they own or lease need to get a Federal duck stamp when hunting waterfowl and free HIP registration number. 

What is a HIP Registration Number? 

Licensed hunters in Indiana must register with the National Migratory Bird Harvest Information Program (HIP) before they hunt ducks, mergansers, coots, geese, doves, woodcock sora and snipe.

You can register either by phone at 1.866.671.4499 or online HERE

Fact 6: Migratory Bird Hunting Fees

All annual licenses and stamp privileges are valid from April 1 of the current year through March 31 of the following year. 

Resident and Non-Resident Waterfowl Stamp Privilege – $11

Resident and Non-Resident Game Bird Habitat Stamp Privilege – $11

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