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Migratory Bird Regulations

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The complete migratory bird regulations will be published in the New Jersey 2014–15 Migratory Bird Regulations available in September at license agents, Fish and Wildlife offices and on the Fish and Wildlife website at Migratory bird season dates published in the Migratory Bird Regulations booklet supersede those printed in this Digest if there are discrepancies.

Migratory Bird Seasons




Daily Bag Limit

September Canada Goose*


Sept. 1 – 30


Rail and moorhen


Sept. 1 – Nov. 8

Sora & Virginia rail:
25 total or aggregate;

moorhen and clapper rail: 10

Sea Duck

Special Sea Duck Area

Sept. 23 – Jan. 24

7, except no more than
4 scoters



Sept. 17 – Jan. 1


(Mon., Thurs., Fri., Sat.)


Aug. 11 – Dec. 6** and
Dec. 15 – Mar. 21

No limit


North Zone

Oct. 18 – Nov. 22


South Zone

Nov. 8 – 29 and Dec. 19 – Jan. 1

Mourning Dove, swans,
harlequin duck, king rail



No Season

Youth Waterfowl Hunting Days

North Zone

Oct. 4; Nov. 1

For all species, Youth Day
limits are the same as for
regular seasons

South Zone

Oct. 11; Nov. 8

Coastal Zone

Oct. 25; Feb. 7

* See special regulations only for September Canada goose hunting, on right.

** The starting time to hunt any migratory game bird, including waterfowl, on the opening day of the pheasant season (Nov. 8, 2014) shall be 8 a.m. on wildlife management areas stocked with pheasant and quail. See Wildlife Management Area Regulations for stocked WMAs.

What Do I Need To Hunt Migratory Birds In New Jersey?

Species Hunted

Hunting License

HIP Certification

NJ Stamp Certification

Federal Stamp


Woodcock, rail, moorhen, snipe

Duck, brant, goose

Waterfowl Stamps: Both the New Jersey Waterfowl Stamp Certification and Federal Migratory Bird Hunting Stamp are required for waterfowl hunters 16 years and older and must be signed in ink. New Jersey Stamp Certifications (the state stamp itself no longer exists) are available from license agents and from the Licenses and Permits button on Fish and Wildlife’s website. Federal stamps are available from some U.S. post offices and online at

Information For Migratory Bird Hunters

Important Reminder in Obtaining HIP Certification

Hunters, including youths, must purchase a Harvest Information Program (HIP) certification before hunting ducks, geese, brant, woodcock, rails, snipe, coot or moorhens (gallinules) in New Jersey and must always hunt with proof in possession in the license holder. HIP certifications are valid from Sept. 1 to April 15 each year.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will use this confidential information only to conduct migratory bird harvest surveys. Only a small, random group will be surveyed.

Hunters may purchase an HIP certification via three sales outlets:

  1. License Agents
    HIP certification may be purchased at any license agent for a $2 fee. Hunters will have their HIP certification printed on their license or as a separate document.
  2. Internet Sales Site
    Hunters may purchase an HIP certification for a $2 fee on Fish and Wildlife’s Internet sales site ( then self-print the HIP certifications.
  3. Telephone Sales Site
    Hunters may purchase their HIP certifications using Fish and Wildlife’s telephone sales process (888) 277-2015. Hunters will receive a transaction number; record this number for immediate proof of completing an HIP certification. The actual HIP certification will be mailed to the hunter. Note: purchases made via telephone will incur an additional shipping and handling fee of $5.13.

Regulations in red are new this year.

Purple text indicates an important note.

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