Ducks, Coots and Mergansers
*updated 2011- Waterfowl breeding habitat in the U.S. and Canadian prairies is in excellent condition. Habitat was in fair to good condition last year, but the amount of water in most of the prairies this spring was extremely high.
The US Fish and Wildlife Service estimates the mallard breeding population at 9.2 million, 9% above last year and 22% over the long-term average. Estimates of most species were higher than 2010, with green-winged teal, black ducks, and wigeon declining, but most other species increasing. Pintails have reached their long-term average after a 26% increase over last year, with good production expected this year. Scaup were stable this year, and have increased by 33% since 2006. Total ducks, blue-winged teal, shovelers, and redheads are at or near record levels in 2011.
North Zone Oct. 15, 2011 - Dec. 11, 2011
Dec. 24, 2011 - Dec. 25, 2011
South Zone Oct. 22, 2011 - Oct. 30, 2011
Nov. 23, 2011 - Jan. 12, 2012
Ohio River Zone Oct. 29, 2011 - Oct. 30, 2011
Nov. 26, 2011 - Jan. 22, 2012
The daily bag limit for ducks is six. This includes any combination of goldeneyes, ruddy ducks, ring-necked ducks, buffleheads, gadwalls, long-tailed ducks, scoters, teal, wigeon and shovelers. Included in the daily limit of six are additional restrictions on the following:
Mallards: Only four mallards may be taken daily, including not more than two females.
Wood ducks: Only three wood ducks may be taken daily.
Pintails: Only two pintails may be taken daily.
Redheads: Only two redheads may be taken daily.
Scaup: Only two scaup may be taken daily.
Black ducks: Only one black duck may be taken daily.
Canvasback: Only one canvasback may be taken daily.
Mottled duck: Only one mottled duck may be taken daily.
The daily bag limit for coots is 15.
The daily bag for mergansers (which is separate from the duck limit) is five, including not more than two hooded mergansers.
Possession limit for ducks, coots and mergansers is two times the daily bag limit.
Shooting hours: one-half hour before sunrise to sunset. Shooting hours at some DNR properties may vary.
*updated 2011 - A normal spring allowed for average nesting effort for both long-distance migrant populations that use Indiana. The Southern James Bay Population of Canada geese are expected to have average production this year. The Mississippi Valley Population is recovering from two poor reproduction years in 2009 and 2010. Production is expected to be improved this year, but due to a smaller breeding population, there will still be fewer geese available. We expect to see an average number of goslings in the flight of snow geese. The Mississippi Flyway giant population is at record levels. Breeding conditions in the Flyway were fair, and conditions within Indiana for breeding geese were among the worst in several years. Flooding occurred virtually statewide just as many nests would have hatched, so we expect reduced numbers of goslings to be available this fall.
Zone Dates Daily Bag Limits
North Zone Oct. 15, 2011 - Nov. 6, 2011
Nov. 23, 2011 - Jan. 8, 2012
Jan. 14, 2012 - Jan. 17, 2012 Canada Geese: 2
South Zone Oct. 22, 2011 - Oct. 30, 2011
Nov. 23, 2011 - Jan. 26, 2011 Canada Geese: 2
Ohio River Zone
Oct. 29, 2011 - Oct. 30, 2011
Nov. 21, 2011 - Jan 31, 2012 Canada Geese: 2
Snow Geese, Brant and White-fronted Geese
Zone Dates Daily Bag Limits
Light (Snow/Ross) Geese
Statewide Oct. 15, 2011 - Jan. 27, 2012 20
Statewide Oct. 15, 2011 - Jan. 27, 2012 1
Statewide Oct. 15, 2011 - Nov. 6, 2011
Nov. 23, 2011 - Jan. 26, 2012 1
The possession limit for Canada geese, white-fronted geese and brant is two times the daily limit. There is no possession limit for light geese.
Youth Waterfowl Weekends
North Zone Oct. 8, 2011 - Oct. 9, 2011
South Zone Oct. 15, 2011 - Oct. 16, 2011
Ohio River Zone Oct. 22, 2011 - Oct. 23, 2011
Hunters must be 15 years of age or younger to participate and must be accompanied by an adult at least 18 years of age. An adult may accompany more than one youth. The accompanying adult may not hunt waterfowl that day (except snow geese or brant when and where the season is open). Bag and species limits are the same as those allowed in the regular season.
Late Canada Goose Zone Season
Indiana Late Goose Hunting Permits
Indiana is once again offering a late season for Canada geese during the 2011 – 12 hunting season. This late season targets urban geese that are forced out of towns and cities to feed as the weather gets colder. Snow cover also helps to drive birds out of town.
The season runs from 1 – 15 February 2012 in the following counties only: Adams, Allen, Boone, Clay, DeKalb, Elkhart, Greene, Hamilton, Hancock, Hendricks, Huntington, Johnson, Kosciusko, La Porte, Lagrange, Madison, Marion, Marshall, Morgan, Noble, Parke, St. Joseph, Shelby, Steuben, Starke, Sullivan, Vermillion, Vigo, Wells, and Whitley.
Many years of surveying and research went into the preparation of this season before it was approved by the US Fish and Wildlife Service. Below are listed some of the important regulations of which you need to be aware when participating in this season.
The evaluation of the late seasons for the past three years has shown that most of the state exceeds the 80% giant harvest required by the US Fish and Wildlife Service for special late seasons. However, the Terre Haute subzone did not reach 80%. The Service has allowed us to continue to hunt in this subzone as long as we continue to evaluate harvest there. See below for special regulations in the Terre Haute subzone.
The bag limit is five Canada geese per day (possession limit 10).
Shooting hours are from one-half hour before sunrise to sunset.
Hunters must have an Indiana hunting license, Indiana waterfowl stamp, federal waterfowl stamp, and a HIP number to participate.
Hunters must also have a special free permit to participate. These permits will be available beginning in early December at Indiana Fish and Wildlife Areas, electronically at Indiana Late Goose Hunting Permits, or by phone at 317-232-4200 . The permit has a brief survey attached to it. Hunters must return this survey to us. These surveys help us determine if we are meeting the federal requirements for this season. Failure to return the survey will make hunters ineligible for participation in this late season next year. The survey is postage-paid—no stamps are required. Regular waterfowl regulations apply. It is illegal to take Canada geese using electronic callers, shotguns capable of holding more than three shells, or to shoot after sunset.
Hunters are encouraged to report any banded geese harvested. This will help augment the data gathered through the check stations. Goose bands may be reported by calling toll-free 1-800-327-BAND , or online at http://www.reportband.gov/
Special Regulations for the Terre Haute Subzone (Vermillion, Parke, Vigo, Clay, Sullivan, and Greene counties): All geese shot in the Terre Haute Subzone (Clay, Greene, Parke, Sullivan, Vermillion, and Vigo) must be checked within 48 hours of kill at a state check location (listed below). Geese must be checked within 48 hours of kill and no later than 3pm on 15 February. Geese will be sexed and aged, and the heads of all adult geese will be collected. You will need to provide the date of kill and the county of kill to the check station. They will give you a receipt that indicates that your birds were properly checked. You must show this receipt to a conservation officer upon request.
Only those geese shot in Clay, Greene, Parke, Sullivan, Vermillion, and Vigo counties need to be checked. Geese shot in the other open counties do not need to be checked.
The check stations will be open from 11am – 3pm on Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays, Mondays and Wednesdays of the late season, plus the last day of the season (February 2, 4-7, 9, 11-15). They may be open at other times, but call ahead to make sure there is someone there who can check your birds if you go outside of these published times.
Terre Haute Subzone Goose Check Stations
Minnehaha State Fish and Wildlife Area: 2411 E SR 54, Sullivan; (812) 268-5640
Goose Pond State Fish and Wildlife Area: two miles south of Linton on SR 59; (812) 659-9901
Turkey Run State Park Nature Center: 8121 E Park Rd, Marshall; (765) 597-2635
Gander Mountain, 3602 S US 41, Terre Haute (1/2 mi south of I-70 on US 41)