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Hunt Species Guide: Migratory Birds


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Regulations & Maps

Regulations

Regulations for upcoming seasons are posted online throughout the year. Waterfowl, Sandhill Crane, Mourning Dove & Snipe regulations are typically posted mid June.

All downloads below are in PDF format.

 

Reporting Banded Birds

Please report the band number, location and date shot for any banded migratory game bird that you harvest to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service. Internet reporting of bird bands may be easily done by going to www.reportband.gov. In most cases, you will quickly receive information on when and where a bird was banded.

 

Plan Your Hunt Online

Launch maps, obtain legal descriptions, regulations, and statistics all in one place.

Seasons

These dates are provided only as a general reference. Check current regulations or use FWP's online Hunt Planner for specific dates.

 

2021 Common Snipe Season Dates

Central Flyway 

September 1 – December 16

Pacific Flyway

September 1 – December 16

 

2021 Duck & Coot Season Dates

Central Flyway 

Duck & Coot - Zone 1 

October 2 – January 6

Duck & Coot - Zone 2

October 2 – October 10 and October 23 – January 18

Falconry - Zone 1 

September 22 – January 6

Falconry - Zone 2

September 22 – October 10 and October 23 – January 18

Youth Weekend

September 25 – September 26

 

Pacific Flyway

Ducks

October 2 – December 26 

December 27 – January 14 

Falconry, Ducks, Coots & Geese

October 2 – January 14

Scaup

October 2 – December 26

Youth Weekend

September 25 – September 26

 

2021 Goose Season Dates

Central Flyway*

*Central Flyway is divided into 2 zones. See the regulations for details on the zones and the specific dates.

Geese & Falconry - Zone 1 

October 2 – January 14 

Geese & Falconry - Zone 2

October 2 – October 12 and October 23 – January 26

Youth Weekend

September 25 – September 26

 

Pacific Flyway

Geese & Falconry

October 2 – January 14

Youth Weekend

September 25 – September 26

 

2021 Mourning Dove Season Dates

Central Flyway 

September 1 – October 30

Pacific Flyway

September 1 – October 30

Licenses & Fees

Migratory Bird License

Details: Residents and nonresidents, 17 and under, need to purchase a Conservation and Base Hunting License and may purchase a Migratory Bird License at half cost (resident - $3.25; nonresident - $25). Federal Migratory Bird Stamp is also required for individuals, both resident and nonresident, 16 and older. The federal stamp is available from the USPS as well as all FWP offices.

All migratory bird hunters in Montana, as well as in al other states, are required to take part in a National Harvest Survey Program. To comply with HIP, you must complete a survey including your name, address and date of birth before you can purchase your Montana Migratory Bird License.

Fees:

  • Resident: $6.50

  • Nonresident: $50

Application & Drawing Deadlines

Availability 

This license is available Over the Counter.

Duck & Goose Identification

Most FWP regional offices will have free waterfowl identification guides that you may pick up and carry while hunting.

Helpful Information

MONTANA OUTDOORS

What Duck is That?

Waterfowl hunters are legally required to identify the species and even gender of the birds they shoot. For everyone else, it’s simply fun to know which duck is which.

Read the Article 
What Duck is That cover article