State offers tips for responsible dove hunting

Staff report

RALEIGH — With dove-hunting season opening Sept. 5, the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission’s Home From The Hunt campaign reminds hunters to be safe and responsible in the field throughout the season.

Shooting hours are half-hour before sunrise to sunset for the entire season, including opening day. The 2015-16 season for mourning and white-winged dove is Sept. 5 to Oct. 10, and resumes Nov. 23 to Jan. 15. Daily bag limit is 15 and possession limit is three times the daily bag limit.

The season does not include Sundays — hunting of migratory game birds by any method is not allowed on Sundays.

The Home From The Hunt campaign lists the following Top 5 dove-hunting recommendations:

— When hunting in a group, adhere to established zones of fire.

— Never shoot at low-flying birds and alert others when a bird is too low for a safe shot.

— Take time prior to hunting to walk the field and inspect the area for bait.

— Never place decoys on utility lines, which is trespassing and risks electrical shock.

— Don’t combine game bags, which is a hunting regulations violation.

All hunters must follow applicable licensing requirements and hunting regulations. It is an individual hunter’s responsibility to know the area being hunted.

Don’t hunt over baited fields. According to state regulations, the placing, exposing, depositing, distributing or scattering of salt, grain or other feed that could serve as a lure for migratory game birds can constitute a baited area.

Because birds often return to a feeding area even after the food source is exhausted, hunting within 10 days after complete disappearance of feed from a baited area is illegal.

For more information on migratory game bird hunting, hunter safety, hunting regulations and free Hunting Heritage Apprentice Permits, go to

Staff report

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