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Waterfowl Hunting Seasons & Bag Limits

California Bird Hunting

(c) Seasons and Bag and Possession Limits for American Coots, and Common Moorhens.

(1) Statewide Provisions

(A) Species

(B) Season

(C) Daily Bag and Possession Limits

American Coot and Common Moorhen Concurrent with duck season(s) Daily bag limit: 25, either all of one species or a mixture of these species.

Possession limit: triple the daily bag limit

(d) Seasons and Bag and Possession Limits for Ducks and Geese by Zone.

(1) Northeastern California Zone (NOTE: SEE SUBSECTION 502(d)(6) BELOW FOR SPECIAL SEASONS AND CLOSURES.)

(A) Species

(B) Season

(C) Daily Bag and Possession Limits

Ducks (including Mergansers) From the first Saturday in October extending for 105 days. (Oct 6 – Jan 18)

Scaup: from the first Saturday in October extending for a period of 58 days (Oct 6 – Dec 2) and from the fourth Saturday in December extending for a period of 28 days. (Dec 22 – Jan 18)

Daily bag limit: 7

Daily bag limit may include:

  • 7 mallards, but not more than 2 females.
  • 2 pintail (either sex).
  • 2 canvasback (either sex).
  • 2 redheads (either sex).
  • 3 scaup (either sex).

Possession limit: triple the daily bag limit.

Geese Regular Season:

Large Canada Geese: from the first Saturday in October extending for 100 days. (Oct 6 – Jan 13)

White-fronted geese and white geese from the first Saturday in October extending for a period of 58 days (Oct 6 – Dec 2) and from the first Saturday in January extending for a period of 14 days. (Jan 5 – Jan 18)

Late Season: White-fronted and white geese from February 6 extending for 33 days. (Feb 6 – Mar 10)

During the Late Season, hunting is only permitted on Type C wildlife areas listed in Section 550-552, navigable waters, and private lands with the permission of the land owner under provisions of Section 2016, Fish and Game Code. Hunting is prohibited on Type A and Type B wildlife areas, the Klamath Basin National Wildlife Refuge Complex, the Modoc National Wildlife Refuge, and any waters which are on, encompassed by, bounded over, flow over, flow through, or are adjacent to any Type A and Type B wildlife areas, the Klamath Basin National Wildlife Refuge Complex, or the Modoc National Wildlife Refuge.

Daily bag limit: 30

Daily bag limit may include:

  • 20 white geese.
  • 10 dark geese but not more than 2 Large Canada geese (see definitions: 502(a)).

Possession limit: triple the daily bag limit.

(2) Southern San Joaquin Valley Zone (NOTE: SEE SUBSECTION 502(d)(6) BELOW FOR SPECIAL SEASONS AND CLOSURES.)

(A) Species

(B) Season

(C) Daily Bag and Possession Limits

Ducks (including Mergansers) From the third Saturday in October extending for 100 days. (Oct 20 – Jan 27)

Scaup: from the first Saturday in November extending for 86 days. (Nov 3 – Jan 27)

Daily bag limit: 7

Daily bag limit may include:

  • 7 mallards, but not more than 2 females.
  • 2 pintail (either sex).
  • 2 canvasback (either sex).
  • 2 redheads (either sex).
  • 3 scaup (either sex).

Possession limit: triple the daily bag limit.

Geese From the third Saturday in October extending for 100 days. (Oct 20 – Jan 27) Daily bag limit: 30

Daily bag limit may include:

  • 20 white geese.
  • 10 dark geese (see definitions: 502(a)).

Possession limit: triple the daily bag limit.

(3) Southern California Zone (NOTE: SEE SUBSECTION 502(d)(6) BELOW FOR SPECIAL SEASONS AND CLOSURES.)

(A) Species

(B) Season

(C) Daily Bag and Possession Limits

Ducks (including Mergansers) From the third Saturday in October extending for 100 days. (Oct 20 – Jan 27)

Scaup: from the first Saturday in November extending for 86 days. (Nov 3 – Jan 27)

Daily bag limit: 7

Daily bag limit may include:

  • 7 mallards, but not more than 2 females.
  • 2 pintail (either sex).
  • 2 canvasback (either sex).
  • 2 redheads (either sex).
  • 3 scaup (either sex).

Possession limit: triple the daily bag limit.

Geese From the third Saturday in October extending for 100 days.(Oct 20 – Jan 27) Daily bag limit: 23

Daily bag limit may include:

  • 20 white geese.
  • 3 dark geese (see definitions 502(a)).

Possession limit: triple the daily bag limit.

(4) Colorado River Zone (NOTE: SEE SUBSECTION 502(d)(6) BELOW FOR SPECIAL SEASONS AND CLOSURES.)

(A) Species

(B) Season

(C) Daily Bag and Possession Limits

Ducks (including Mergansers) From the third Friday in October extending for 101 days. (Oct 19 – Jan 27)

Scaup: from the first Saturday in November extending for 86 days. (Nov 3 – Jan 27)

Daily bag limit: 7

Daily bag limit may include:

  • 7 mallards, but not more than 2 females or Mexican-like ducks.
  • 2 pintail (either sex).
  • 2 canvasback (either sex).
  • 2 redheads (either sex).
  • 3 scaup (either sex).

Possession limit: triple the daily bag limit

Geese From the third Friday in October extending for 101 days. (Oct 19 – Jan 27) Daily bag limit: 24

Daily bag limit may include:

  • 20 white geese.
  • 4 dark geese (see definitions: 502(a)).

Possession limit: triple the daily bag limit.

(5) Balance of State Zone (NOTE: SEE SUBSECTION 502(d)(6) BELOW FOR SPECIAL SEASONS AND CLOSURES.)

(A) Species

(B) Season

(C) Daily Bag and Possession Limits

Ducks (including Mergansers) From the third Saturday in October extending for 100 days. (Oct 20 – Jan 27)

Scaup: from the first Saturday in November extending for 86 days. (Nov 3 – Jan 27)

Daily bag limit: 7

Daily bag limit may include:

  • 7 mallards, but not more than 2 females.
  • 2 pintail (either sex).
  • 2 canvasback (either sex).
  • 2 redheads (either sex).
  • 3 scaup (either sex).

Possession limit: triple the daily bag limit.

Geese Early Season: Large Canada geese only from the Saturday closest to October 1 for a period of 5 days (Sept 29 – Oct 3) EXCEPT in the North Coast Special Management Area where Large Canada geese are closed during the early season.

Regular Season: Dark and white geese from the third Saturday in October extending for 100 days (Oct 20 – Jan 27) EXCEPT in the Sacramento Valley Special Management Area where the white-fronted goose season will close after December 21. (Oct 20 – Dec 21)

Late Season: White-fronted geese and white geese from the second Saturday in February extending for a period of 5 days (Feb 9 – Feb 13) EXCEPT in the Sacramento Valley Special Management Area where the white-fronted goose season is closed. During the Late Season, hunting is not permitted on wildlife areas listed in Sections 550-552 EXCEPT on Type C wildlife areas in the North Central and Central regions.

Daily bag limit: 30

Daily bag limit may include:

  • 20 white geese.
  • 10 dark geese

EXCEPT in the Sacramento Valley Special Management Area where only 3 may be white-fronted geese (see definitions: 502(a)).

Possession limit: triple the daily bag limit.

(6) Special Management Areas (see descriptions in 502(b)(6) )

(A) Species

(B) Season

(C) Daily Bag and Possession Limits

1. North Coast All Canada Geese From October 31 extending for a period of 89 days (Oct 31 – Jan 27) (Regular Season) and from February 23 extending for a period of 16 days (Feb 23 – Mar 10)(Late Season). During the Late Season, hunting is only permitted on private lands with the permission of the land owner under provisions Section 2016, Fish and Game Code. Daily bag limit: 10

Canada Geese of which only 1 may be a Large Canada goose (see definitions: 502(a)),

EXCEPT during the Late Season the bag limit on Large Canada geese is zero.

Possession limit: triple the daily bag limit

2. Humboldt Bay South Spit (West Side) All Species Closed during brant season.
3. Klamath Basin Geese Large Canada Geese from the first Saturday in October extending for 100 days. (Oct 6 – Jan 13)

White-fronted and white geese from the first Saturday in October extending for 105 days. (Oct 6 – Jan 18)

Daily bag limit: 30

Daily bag limit may include:

  • 20 white geese.
  • 10 dark geese but not more than 2 Large Canada geese (see definitions: 502(a)).

Possession limit: triple the daily bag limit.

4. Sacramento Valley White-Fronted Geese Open concurrently with the goose season through December 21, and during Youth Waterfowl Hunting Days. (Oct 20 – Dec 21) Daily bag limit: 3 white-fronted geese.

Possession limit: triple the daily bag limit.

5. Morro Bay All species Open in designated area only from the opening day of brant season through the remainder of waterfowl season.
6. Martis Creek Lake All species Closed until November 16.
7. Northern Brant Black Brant From November 8 extending for 37 days. (Nov 8 – Dec 14) Daily bag limit: 2

Possession limit: triple the daily bag limit.

8. Balance of State Brant Black Brant From November 9 extending for 37 days. (Nov 9 – Dec 15) Daily bag limit: 2

Possession limit: triple the daily bag limit.

9. Imperial County White Geese From the first Saturday in November extending for a period of 86 days (Nov 3 – Jan 27) (Regular Season) and from the first Saturday in February extending for a period of 17 days (Feb 2 – Feb 18) (Late Season). During the Late Season, hunting is only permitted on private lands with the permission of the land owner under provisions of Section 2016, Fish and Game Code. Daily bag limit: 20

Possession limit: triple the daily bag limit.

(e) Youth Waterfowl Hunting Days Regulations (NOTE: To participate in these Youth Waterfowl Hunts, federal regulations require that hunters must be 17 years of age or younger and must be accompanied by a non-hunting adult 18 years of age or older.)

(1) Statewide Provisions.

(A) Species

(B) Season

(C) Daily Bag and Possession Limits

Ducks (including Mergansers), American Coot, Common Moorhen, Black Brant, Geese
  1. Northeastern California Zone: The Saturday fourteen days before the opening of waterfowl season extending for 2 days. (Sept 22 – 23)
  2. Southern San Joaquin Valley Zone: The Saturday following the closing of waterfowl season extending for 2 days. (Feb 2 – 3)
  3. Southern California Zone: The Saturday following the closing of waterfowl season extending for 2 days. (Feb 2 – 3)
  4. Colorado River Zone: The Saturday following the closing of waterfowl season extending for 2 days. (Feb 2 – 3)
  5. Balance of State Zone: The Saturday following the closing of waterfowl season extending for 2 days. (Feb 2 – 3)
Same as regular season.

(f) Falconry Take of Ducks (including Mergansers), Geese, American Coots, and Common Moorhens.

(1) Statewide Provisions

(A) Species

(B) Season

(C) Daily Bag and Possession Limits

Ducks (including Mergansers), Geese, American Coot and Common Moorhen
  1. Northeastern California Zone. Open concurrently with duck season through January 13, 2019. (Oct 6 – Jan 13)
  2. Balance of State Zone. Open concurrently with duck season and February 2-3, 2019 EXCEPT in the North Coast Special Management Area where the falconry season for geese runs concurrently with the season for Small Canada geese (see 502(d)(6)). (Oct 20 – Jan 27 & Feb 2 – Feb 3)
  3. Southern San Joaquin Valley Zone. Open concurrently with duck season and January 28-30, 2019. Goose hunting in this zone by means of falconry is not permitted. (Oct 20 – Jan 30)
  4. Southern California Zone. Open concurrently with duck season and January 28 – February 1, 2019. EXCEPT in the Imperial County Special Management Area where the falconry season for geese runs concurrently with the season for white geese. (Oct 20 – Feb 1)
  5. Colorado River Zone. Open concurrently with duck season and January 28-31, 2019. Goose hunting in this zone by means of falconry is not permitted. Federal regulations require that California’s hunting regulations conform to those of Arizona, where goose hunting by means of falconry is not permitted. (Oct 19 – Jan 31)
Daily bag limit: 3

Daily bag limit makeup:

  • Either all of 1 species or a mixture of species allowed for take.

Possession limit: 9

Youth and Junior Waterfowl Hunts for the 2018-19 Season

Hunt

Dates

Details

How to Apply

Northeastern Zone

Federal Youth Waterfowl Hunt Days

9/22/2018

9/23/2018

Open to waterfowl hunters age 17 or under. Federal refuges and State wildlife areas (except Butte Valley, Shasta Valley, and Willow Creek) are open for youth hunters. Contact the wildlife area you wish to hunt for details.
Sacramento NWR

Special Junior Hunt

12/15/2018 All blinds are reserved for junior hunters. Hunters must have a valid junior hunting license to apply. Use a post card to apply directly to the USFWS. For information visit: fws.gov/refuge/Sacramento/visit/hunting.html
Delevan NWR

Special Junior Hunt

12/8/2018 All blinds are reserved for junior hunters. Hunters must have a valid junior hunting license to apply. Use a post card to apply directly to the USFWS. For information visit: fws.gov/refuge/Sacramento/visit/hunting.html
Southern San Joaquin Valley, Southern California and Balance of State zones Federal Youth Waterfowl Hunt Days 2/2/2019

2/3/2019

Open to waterfowl hunters age 17 or under. Most federal refuges and state wildlife areas are open for youth hunters. Submit a season-long application or a multiple-choice reservation application for these dates online, at a license agent or a CDFW license sales office.