Sept. 1 is almost here. And most hunters in Oklahoma know what that means: It’s opening day for dove hunting season!
Widely seen as the traditional first opportunity to venture afield in the fall, dove hunting is always a big deal — and a big draw. Based on the Wildlife Department’s annual Game Harvest Survey of hunting license holders, about 69,000 people went dove hunting in Oklahoma, taking more than a million birds over the course of the split season.
In recent years, the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation has been working to offer much more information to hunters preparing to hunt dove. This treasure trove of tips and resources on the Department’s website includes a list of promising places to hunt, wildlife management area maps, locations of ODWC fields specifically managed for dove hunting, and various articles and videos to prepare everyone for a great dove hunting experience.
Hunters who want to increase their odds of taking a limit of dove are urged to get out in the days ahead of the opener to scout potential hunting sites, including some great spots for walk-in hunting through the Oklahoma Land Access Program (OLAP). Those who are regular dove hunters know that these birds can change their daily patterns just as fast as they can fly!
Dove hunting season is open statewide the entire months of September and October, closes during November, and reopens from Dec. 1-29. The daily bag limit is 15, which may consist of any combination (aggregate) of mourning, white-winged and fully dressed Eurasian collared doves (those without a head or fully feathered wing naturally attached to the carcass). However, there is no bag limit on Eurasian collared doves provided that the head or one fully feathered wing remains naturally attached to the carcass of all such birds while being transported to their final destination.
For details on dove hunting requirements, read the Oklahoma Fishing and Hunting Regulations online at www.wildlifedepartment.com, in the free Go Outdoors Oklahoma mobile app for Apple or Android, or in print free at license dealers statewide.