Mississippi Dove Hunters Have More Opportunity in 2008

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Mississippi hunters have averaged taking around a half-million mourning doves per year in the last half-decade.Jackson- The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has approved a more liberal season length and bag limit for dove hunting than what has been allowed in the past, according to the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks.  Past federal frameworks have only allowed a 60 day season and 15 dove bag limit or a 70 day season and a 12 dove bag limit.  A state had to choose one of the two options.  Hunters will now be able to enjoy the longer 70 day season with the larger 15 dove bag limit.

Through the work of the states that comprise the Eastern Management Unit (EMU) dove technical committee, in which Mississippi is a member, it was determined there was no significant difference in harvest numbers among those states that chose the 60 day 15 dove limit or the 70 day 12 dove limit season packages.  It was determined that the majority of the dove harvest occurs on the opening weekend with very little harvest occurring after opening weekend.

“Mississippi dove hunters will finally be able to have their cake and eat it too,” said Scott Baker, MDWFP Wildlife Biologist. “This coupled with our private dove field program will make a lot of hunters happy.”  

Dove hunters looking for a place to dove hunt in a safe, family like atmosphere need to look no further than the MDWFP’s Private Land Dove Field Program.  The MDWFP has partnered with National Sports Shooting Foundation (NSSF) to offer dove hunting opportunities on private property prepared just for dove hunting.  Interested hunters need to log on to the MDWFP web site, MDWFP.com, for regular updates on field location and permit availability.  Permits will available beginning on August 4.  For more information the MDWFP’s Private Lands Dove Field Program, please contact Scott Baker at (601) 432-2229.