WATERFOWL SEASON DATES APPROVED BY OHIO WILDLIFE COUNCIL|
Sixty-day season with a six-duck bag limit, same as last year
COLUMBUS, OH - Ohio hunters will have the same number of days to
hunt ducks as last year with a 60-day duck season and a six-duck bag limit,
the most liberal regulations allowed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
The 2003-2004 waterfowl season dates were recently approved by the Ohio
"Abundant habitat in the Mississippi Flyway and in the prairie
potholes of Canada contributed to a healthy waterfowl population this year,"
said Steven A. Gray, chief of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources
(ODNR) Division of Wildlife. "A lot of great duck and goose hunting awaits
Ohio's hunters this season."
According to the Division of Wildlife, waterfowl hunting seasons are
set to open October 18 in Ohio's north zone and October 25 in the south
zone. Young hunters, 15 and younger, will have their own special season
statewide October 11 and 12.
The duck hunting season (except pintails and canvasbacks) in the
north zone is October 18 through November 29, with a second split season
opening December 7 through December 23. The north zone season for pintails
opens October 18 and runs through November 16. Canvasbacks can be hunted
from October 31 through November 29 in the north zone.
In the south zone, duck season (except pintails and canvasbacks) is
open October 25 through November 16, with a second split season opening
December 13 through January 18, 2004. The south zone season for
pintails is October 25 through November 1, with a second split season
opening December 13 through January 3, 2004. Canvasbacks season in the south
zone will be December 13 through January 11, 2004.
The daily bag limit for ducks is six, which may not include more
than three mallards (only one of which may be female), one black duck, one
pintail, two wood ducks, two redheads, one canvasback, three mottled ducks,
or three scaup. Possession limits after the first day are twice the daily
In the Lake Erie Canada Goose Zone, the goose season is October 18
through October 26, with a second split season opening December 7 and
running through January 1, 2004. Hunters may harvest light geese (snows,
blues, and Ross'), white-fronted and brant within the Lake Erie Canada Goose
Zone during the dates of the open goose season for the remainder of the
North Zone. The goose season for the remainder of the North Zone is October
18 through November 29, with a second split season December 7 through
January 2, 2004. In the South Zone, goose season is October 25 through
November 16 with a second split December 13 through January 28, 2004.
The daily bag limit for Canada geese is one in the Lake Erie Goose
Zone, and two in the remainder of the state. Light geese (snows, blues,
Ross') have a daily bag limit of 10, and white-fronted geese and brant have
a daily bag limit of two. The possession limit for brant and geese is twice
the daily bag limit after the first day.
The Special Late Canada Goose Season is January 17 through February
5, 2004. No special late season permits are required.
Areas open to the Special Late Canada Goose Season will include all
of Fulton, Henry, Seneca and Huron counties; those portions of Lucas county
west of I-280 and I-75 north to the Ohio/Michigan line; the portion of Allen
County north of U. S. Route 30; Summit County south of 1-80 and the portion
of Geauga County north of U. S. Route 6.
Falconry season for ducks, coots and mergansers in the north zone
will be from September 1 through 16, October 11 through 12, October 18
through November 29, December 7 through December 23 and January 19 through
February 16, 2004. South Zone falconry season is September 1 through
September 16, October 11 through 12, October 25 through November 16,
December 13 through February 16, 2003.
People planning to hunt waterfowl are required to answer several
questions for the Harvest Information Program (HIP) survey when purchasing
their hunting license. A state wetland habitat stamp endorsement and a
valid and signed federal duck stamp are required in addition to a hunting
license when hunting waterfowl. The 2003-2004 hunting licenses and wetland
stamps are on sale now and remain valid through February 29, 2004.
Legal shooting hours for all waterfowl will be one-half hour before
sunrise to sunset.
Copies of final approved waterfowl regulations (Publication 295,
Waterfowl Hunting Regulations) will be available to hunters from all license
vendors, on-line at ohiodnr.com and at Division of Wildlife district offices
in Akron, Athens, Columbus, Findlay, or Xenia, or by calling 1-800-WILDLIFE.