Regulations and Harvest

Important Notice: will be shutting down on January 2, 2019. However, most of the content found here will now be available on the the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Migratory Bird Program website.

Waterfowl hunter in camoRegulations regarding migratory bird hunting are varied and sometimes complex. Why is that? Migratory birds in North America are an international resource, with numerous species breeding throughout the United States and Canada. In the fall of each year, these birds migrate south to winter in the USA, Mexico, and Central and South America.

Because these birds cross international borders, ultimate management authority lies with the federal governments in the respective countries. Migratory bird treaties with other countries govern the management of migratory birds in the US, distinguishing those species that can be hunted from those that can't and establishing limits on hunting-season dates and season lengths. State and provincial agencies can set additional regulations within the overall frameworks established by treaties and federal regulations.