Migratory Birds Hunting Regulations, 2017-2018: British Columbia

Summary

The information presented here is a summary of the law. If there is a discrepancy between the law and this summary, the law prevails. For complete information on fines, general prohibitions, permitted hunting methods and equipment, the requirement to have adequate means to retrieve birds immediately, restrictions on the use of bait, the description of hunting districts, and other restrictions on hunting, please refer to the Migratory Birds Convention Act, 1994 and Migratory Birds Regulations. These, along with other useful information for hunters, can be found on the Environment and Climate Change Canada website, or you may contact:

Environment and Climate Change Canada
Canadian Wildlife Service

Pacific Wildlife Research Centre
R.R. 1
5421 Robertson Road
Delta, British Columbia
V4K 3N2
Tel.: 604-350-1950
Toll free: 1-800-668-6767
ec.enviroinfo.ec@canada.ca

You are required to possess a valid federal Migratory Game Bird Hunting Permit with a Canadian Wildlife Habitat Conservation Stamp to hunt migratory birds in Canada. This permit and stamp are valid in all provinces and territories. Most provinces and territories have additional licence requirements for hunting migratory birds and/or to carry firearms. To know what you require, and if there are further restrictions for hunting migratory birds, please verify the applicable regulations for the province/territory where you will be hunting. Note that all required permits and licences must be in your possession while you are hunting.

Hunting districts

Map showing the boundaries of the 8 Hunting Districts in the province of British Columbia
Map showing the boundaries of the 8 Hunting Districts
Long description for British Columbia's hunting districts

Map showing the boundaries of the 8 Hunting Districts in the province of British-Columbia with Zone 7 in the North-East corner and Zone 6 in the North-West corner. Going South from Zones 7 and 6 are Zones 5 and 3. Further South are Zones 1, 2, 8 and 4. Zone 1 is mainly Vancouver Island and the southern boundary of Zones 2, 8 and 4 follows along the US-Canada border.

  1. Provincial Management Units (PMU) 1-1 to 1-15
  2. PMU 2-2 to 2-19
  3. PMU 3-12 to 3-20 and 3-26 to 3-44
  4. PMU 4-1 to 4-9 and 4-14 to 4-40
  5. PMU 5-1 to 5-15
  6. PMU 6-1 to 6-30
  7. PMU 7-2 to 7-58
  8. PMU 8-1 to 8-15 and 8-21 to 8-26

 

The Migratory Game Bird Hunting Permit is now available online on the Environment and Climate Change Canada website. Purchase and print your permit from the comfort of home.

 

Consultation process and migratory birds regulatory reports

The hunting provisions of the Migratory Birds Regulations are reviewed by Environment and Climate Change Canada, with input from the provinces and territories, as well as a range of other interested stakeholders. Environment and Climate Change Canada has developed a consultation process for establishing hunting regulations for migratory birds, and publishes the Migratory Birds Regulatory Report Series that can be found on the Environment and Climate Change Canada website.

New enforcement tool, fine regime, and sentencing provisions

In June 2017, the Environmental Violations Administrative Monetary Penalties Regulations came into force and administrative monetary penalties (AMPs) are now available to game officers to enforce designated violations of the Migratory Birds Convention Act, 1994 (MBCA) and its associated regulations. In addition, amendments to the fine regime and sentencing provisions of the MBCA and the regulations necessary to complete the fine regime, the Designation of Regulatory Provisions for the Purposes of Enforcement (Migratory Birds Convention Act, 1994) Regulations, came into force on July 12, 2017. The amendments aim to ensure that court-imposed fines more accurately reflect the seriousness of environmental offenses. The new fine regime will be applied by courts following a conviction pursuant to the MBCA or its associated regulations. Under the new fine regime, when designated offenses are contravened, the offender upon conviction, is subject to minimum and higher maximum fines. For more information on AMPs and the new fine regime, please visit the Environmental Enforcement Act.

Waterfowler Heritage Days provide young hunters who are minors (under 18 years of age) with the opportunity to practise hunting and outdoor skills, learn about wildlife conservation, and reinforce safety training in a structured, supervised environment. Licensed adult hunters who serve as mentors have an opportunity to pass on their considerable skills and knowledge by offering guidance and advice to younger hunters. The following rules are in effect:

  • to participate, young hunters do not require the federal Migratory Game Bird Hunting Permit;
  • young participants must comply with all existing safety and licensing requirements found in the Firearms Act and provincial hunting regulations;
  • participants must be accompanied by a licensed mentor (who is not a minor);
  • mentors may not hunt or carry a firearm, and may accompany no more than two young hunters; and
  • only young hunters may hunt when Waterfowler Heritage Days fall outside of the regular open seasons.

In British Columbia, non-toxic shot must be used to hunt migratory game birds, except for Band-tailed Pigeons and Mourning Doves. Within National Wildlife Areas, the possession of lead shot is prohibited for all hunting, including the hunting of migratory birds and upland game birds. Hunters should consult provincial or territorial regulations for additional restrictions. For those birds still hunted with lead shot, remove the lead shot before cooking in order to reduce your exposure to contaminants. As well, remove the skin and fat from fish-eating birds before cooking them.

Open seasons and waterfowler heritage days in British Columbia
DistrictWaterfowler Heritage Days
Ducks and geese
Open Seasons
Ducks, coots and snipe
Open Seasons
Snow Geese and Ross’s Geese
Open Seasons
Other geese
Open Seasons
Brant
Open Seasons
Band-tailed Pigeons
Open Seasons
Mourning Doves
No. 1Sept. 30 and
Oct. 1, 2017
Oct. 7, 2017, to
Jan. 19, 2018
Oct. 7, 2017, to Jan. 19,
2018
Oct. 7, 2017, to Jan. 19, 2018 Table Footnote a;
Sept. 2 to Sept. 10, 2017 Table Footnote b Table Footnote c Table Footnote d;
Oct.7 to Nov. 19, 2017 Table Footnote b Table Footnote c Table Footnote d;
Dec. 16, 2017, to Jan. 7, 2018 Table Footnote b Table Footnote c Table Footnote d;
and Feb. 10 to Mar. 10, 2018 Table Footnote b Table Footnote c Table Footnote d
No open
season
Sept. 15 to
Sept. 30,
2017
No open
season
No. 2Sept. 30 and Oct. 1, 2017 Table Footnote e Table Footnote fOct. 7, 2017, to Jan. 19,
2018 Table Footnote c Table Footnote e
Oct. 7, 2017, to Dec. 31,
2017 Table Footnote e and
Feb. 20 to Mar. 10, 2018
Table Footnote e
Oct. 7, 2017, to Jan. 19, 2018 Table Footnote e Table Footnote g;
Sept. 2 to Sept. 10, 2017 Table Footnote c Table Footnote d Table Footnote e;
Oct. 7 to Nov. 19, 2017 Table Footnote c Table Footnote d Table Footnote e;
Dec. 16, 2017, to Jan. 7, 2018 Table Footnote c Table Footnote d Table Footnote e;
and Feb. 10 to Mar. 10, 2018 Table Footnote c Table Footnote d Table Footnote e
Mar. 1 to
Mar. 10,
2018 Table Footnote c Table Footnote h
Sept. 15 to
Sept. 30,
2017 Table Footnote e
No open
season
No. 3Sept. 2 and
Sept. 3, 2017
Sept. 10 to Dec. 23, 2017Sept. 10 to Dec. 23, 2017Sept. 10 to Dec. 23, 2017 Table Footnote g;
Sept. 10 to Sept. 20, 2017 Table Footnote d;
Oct. 1 to Dec. 23, 2017 Table Footnote d;
and Mar. 1 to Mar. 10, 2018 Table Footnote d
No open
season
Sept. 15 to
Sept. 30,
2017 Table Footnote i
Sept. 1 to
Sept. 30,
2017
No. 4Sept. 2 and
Sept. 3, 2017
Sept. 10 to Dec. 23, 2017Sept. 10 to Dec. 23, 2017Sept. 10 to Dec. 23, 2017No open
season
No open
season
Sept. 1 to
Sept. 30,
2017
No. 5Sept. 9 and
Sept. 10, 2017
Sept. 15 to Dec. 25, 2017Sept. 15 to Dec. 25, 2017Sept. 15 to Dec. 25, 2017No open
season
No open
season
No open
season
No. 6Sept. 2 and
Sept. 3, 2017
Sept. 1 and
Sept. 4 to Nov. 30,
2017 Table Footnote j;
Oct. 1, 2017, to
Jan. 13, 2018 Table Footnote k
Sept. 1 and
Sept. 4 to Nov. 30,
2017 Table Footnote j;
Oct. 1, 2017, to
Jan. 13, 2018 Table Footnote k
Sept. 1 and
Sept. 4 to Nov. 30, 2017 Table Footnote j;
Oct. 1, 2017, to Jan. 13, 2018 Table Footnote k
No open
season
No open
season
No open
season
No. 7Sept. 1 and Sept. 2,
2017 Table Footnote l;
Sept. 9 and Sept. 10, 2017 Table Footnote m
Sept. 3 to Nov. 30,
2017 Table Footnote l;
Sept. 1 to Sept. 8 and
Sept. 11 to Nov. 30, 2017
Table Footnote m
Sept. 3 to Nov. 30,
2017 Table Footnote l;
Sept. 1 to Sept. 8 and
Sept. 11 to Nov. 30, 2017
Table Footnote m
Sept. 3 to Nov. 30,
2017 Table Footnote l;
Sept. 1 to Sept. 8 and Sept. 11 to Nov. 30,
2017 Table Footnote m
No open
season
No open
season
No open
season
No. 8Sept. 2 and
Sept. 3, 2017
Sept. 12 to Dec. 25, 2017Sept. 12 to Dec. 25, 2017Sept. 12 to Dec. 25, 2017 Table Footnote g;
Sept. 20 to Nov. 28, 2017 Table Footnote d;
Dec. 20, 2017, to Jan. 5, 2018 Table Footnote d;
and Feb. 21 to Mar. 10, 2018 Table Footnote d
No open
season
No open
season
Sept. 1 to
Sept. 30,
2017
Bag and possession limits in British Columbia
LimitsDucksWhite geese (Snow Geese and Ross’s Geese)Dark geese (Canada Geese, Cackling Geese and White
-fronted Geese
BrantCoots and snipeBand-tailed Pigeons and Mourning Doves
Daily bag8 Table Footnote n, Table Footnoteo, Table Footnotep, Table Footnote q5 Table Footnote r5 Table Footnote s, 10 Table Footnote t2 Table Footnote u105
Possession24 Table Footnotev, Table Footnote w, Table Footnote x Table Footnote y15 Table Footnote z15 Table Footnote s, 30 Table Footnote t6 Table Footnote u3015

100 Years of taking birds under our wings

1916-2016

The Canada-US Migratory Birds Convention

1917-2017

The Migratory Birds Convention Act

Centennial celebrations

For more information on centennial celebrations, visit Celebrating 100 years of bird conservation

Report your migratory bird bands

Call 1-800-327-BAND (2263) or go to the Report a bird with a Federal Band or Color Marker website

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