Migratory Birds Hunting Regulations, 2015–2016: Alberta
The information presented here is a summary of the law. If there is a discrepancy between the law and this summary, the law prevails. For complete information on fines, general prohibitions, permitted hunting methods and equipment, the requirement to have adequate means to retrieve birds immediately, restrictions on the use of bait, the description of hunting zones, and other restrictions on hunting, please refer to the Migratory Birds Convention Act, 1994 and the Migratory Birds Regulations. These, along with other useful information for hunters, can be found on the Environment Canada website, or you may contact:
Canadian Wildlife Service
Edmonton, Alberta T6B 1K5
You are required to possess a valid federal Migratory Game Bird Hunting Permit with a Canadian Wildlife Habitat Conservation Stamp to hunt migratory birds in Canada. This permit and stamp are valid in all provinces and territories. Most provinces and territories have additional licence requirements for hunting migratory birds and/ or to carry firearms. To know what you require, and if there are further restrictions for hunting migratory birds, please verify the applicable regulations for the province/territory where you will be hunting. Note that all required permits and licences must be in your possession while you are hunting.
Hunters are advised to pay particular attention to the Alberta Hunting Guide to ensure that they are hunting for the correct species in the correct wildlife management unit during the permitted times and dates. Note that these zone numbers do not correspond to regions as presented in the Guide.
If you need more information to determine in which zone you are located, please visit: Alberta Guide Hunting Regulations
Consultation Process and Migratory Birds Regulatory Reports
The hunting provisions of the Migratory Birds Regulations are reviewed by Environment Canada, with input from the provinces and territories, as well as a range of other interested stakeholders. Environment Canada has developed a consultation process for establishing hunting regulations for migratory birds, and publishes the Migratory Birds Regulatory Report Series that can be found on the Environment Canada website.
Waterfowler Heritage Days provide young hunters under the age of majority (12 to 17 years) with the opportunity to practise hunting and outdoor skills, learn about wildlife conservation, and reinforce safety training in a structured, supervised environment. Licensed adult hunters who serve as mentors have an opportunity to pass on their considerable skills and knowledge by offering guidance and advice to younger hunters. The following rules are in effect:
- to participate, young hunters under the age of majority do not require the federal Migratory Game Bird Hunting Permit;
- young participants must comply with all existing safety and licensing requirements found in the Firearms Act and provincial hunting regulations;
- participants must be accompanied by a licensed mentor over the age of majority; and
- mentors may not hunt or carry a firearm, and may accompany no more than two young hunters.
In Alberta, non-toxic shot must be used to hunt migratory game birds. Within National Wildlife Areas, the possession of lead shot is prohibited for all hunting, including the hunting of migratory birds and upland game birds. Hunters should consult provincial or territorial regulations for additional restrictions.
|Area||Ducks, geese, coots and snipe|
(Waterfowler Heritage Days)
|Ducks, coots and snipe||Snow Geese and Ross’s Geese||Canada Geese, Cackling Geese and |
|Zones 1Note a of Table, 2Note b of Table, 3Note c of Table, 4Note d of Table and 8Note h of Table||Sept. 5 and Sept. 6, 2015Note i of Table||Sept. 1 to Dec. 16, 2015Note j of Table||Sept. 1 to Dec. 16, 2015Note i of Table||Sept. 1 to Dec. 16, 2015|
|Zones 5Note e of Table, 6Note f of Table and 7Note g of Table||Sept. 5 and Sept. 6, 2015Note i of Table||Sept. 8 to Dec. 21, 2015Note k of Table||Sept. 8 to Dec. 21, 2015Note i of Table||Sept. 8 to Dec. 21, 2015|
Notes of Table: Open Seasons in Alberta
- Note [a] of Table
“Zone No. 1” means that part of Alberta included in Provincial Wildlife Management Units (PWMUs) 501 to 506, 509 to 512, 514 to 519, 529 to 532, and 841.
- Note [b] of Table
“Zone No. 2” means that part of Alberta included in PWMUs 344, 347, 349 to 360, 520 to 528, 534 to 537, 539 to 542, and 544.
- Note [c] of Table
“Zone No. 3” means that part of Alberta included in PWMUs 200, 202 to 204, 230, 232, 234, 236, 238, 240, 252, 254, 256, 258, 260, and 500.
- Note [d] of Table
“Zone No. 4” means that part of Alberta included in PWMUs 206, 208, 216, 220 to 222, 224, 226, 228, 242, 244, 246, 248, 250, 320, 322, 324, 326, 328, 330, 332, 334, 336 to 340, 342, 346, 348, 429, 507, 508, and 936.
- Note [e] of Table
“Zone No. 5” means that part of Alberta included in PWMUs 151, 160, 162 to 164, and 166.
- Note [f] of Table
“Zone No. 6” means that part of Alberta included in PWMUs 104, 106, 108, 110, 112, 128, 130, 132, 134, 136, 138, 140, 142, 152, 156, 158, 210, 212, 214, 300, 302 to 306, 308, 310, 312, and 314.
- Note [g] of Table
“Zone No. 7” means that part of Alberta included in PWMUs 102, 116, 118, 119, 124, 144, 148, and 150.
- Note [h] of Table
“Zone No. 8” means that part of Alberta included in PWMUs 316, 318, 400, 402, 404, 406, 408, 410, 412, 414, 416 to 418, 420, 422, 426, 428, 430, 432, 434, 436 to 442, and 444 to 446.
- Note [i]
Recorded Snow Goose and Ross's Goose calls may be used when hunting Snow Geese or Ross's Geese; any species of migratory bird for which it is open season may be taken while hunting Snow Geese or Ross's Geese with those calls.
- Note [j]
Falconry season is open from September 1 to December 16, 2015.
- Note [k]
Falconry season is open from September 8 to December 21, 2015.
|Limits||Ducks||Snow Geese and Ross’s Geese||Canada Geese, Cackling Geese and White-fronted Geese||Coots||Snipe|
|Daily bag||8Note l of Table||50||8Note n of Table||8||8|
|Possession||24Note m of Table||No limit||24Note o of Table||24||24|
Notes of Table: Bag and Possession Limits in Alberta
- Note [l] of Table
Not more than 4 may be Northern Pintails. For non-residents of Canada, not more than 2 may be Barrow's Goldeneye or Common Goldeneye or any combination of them.
- Note [m] of Table
Not more than 12 may be Northern Pintails. For non-residents of Canada, not more than 6 may be Barrow's Goldeneye or Common Goldeneye or any combination of them.
- Note [n] of Table
Not more than 5 may be White-fronted Geese.
- Note [o] of Table
Not more than 15 may be White-fronted Geese.
The Migratory Birds Regulations also provide for special conserva tion periods when hunters may take overabundant species. Please note that additional hunting methods or equipment are permitted during the special conservation periods. See the table below for details.
|Area||Period during which Snow Geese and Ross’s Geese may be killed||Additional hunting method or equipment|
|Throughout Alberta||Mar. 15 to June 15, 2016||Recorded bird callsNote i of Table|
Note of Table: Measures in Alberta Concerning Overabundant Species
- Note [p] of Table
"Recorded bird calls" refers to bird calls of a species referred to in the heading of column 2.
Hunters interested in participating in the spring conservation harvest of Snow Geese and Ross's Geese should keep their 2015–2016 federal permits.
Report Your Migratory Bird Bands
Call 1-800-327-BAND (2263) or go to the Report a bird with a Federal Band or Color Marker website
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