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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys, just saw this & passing it along

To further increase hunting opportunities and simplify regulations, MassWildlife is proposing to:
Add a Late Goose Season to the Berkshire Zone.
Create simultaneous opening days for the regular goose season in the Berkshire and Central zones so more hunters can hunt the Columbus Day holiday (October 10, 2022).

Combine sea duck with the regular duck season with one bag limit and season.

Remove the 2-bird daily bag restriction for hooded mergansers. If approved, licensed hunters would be able to take 5, which is the overall merganser bag limit.

Remove the 4-bird limit of any one species restriction. If the species does not have additional bag limit restrictions (i.e. the 2 mallard daily limit), you could now take 6 (the overall duck daily limit) instead of being limited to 4.

Changing the 4 bird limit to 6 would be great for the early season to me. I would happily shoot 6 teal a day instead of 4 & then look for a couple black ducks in the salt marsh
 

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Adding a "Late" goose season to the Berkshire Zone seems to be a Positive.
Instead of a separate opening day for the Berkshire and Central Zone, have one opening day for both zones. IMO this is a Negative. Instead of being able to hunt two different opening days, now you'll have to make a choice. Columbus Day is one of those holidays that many workers don't get.
Combing sea ducks with regular ducks is a Big Negative! I understand sea ducks are declining, but making them part of your regular duck limit and legal only during the regular duck season means you're losing hunting days.
5 Hooded Mergansers? What are people going to do with them? Good for dog work? Looking to have a pair mounted? Pretending you had a good hunt because you shot 5 Hoodies and a puddle duck. IMO a Negative.
Changing the 4 bird limit of a specific species to a 6 bird limit IMO a Positive.
Think about this: Because of Covid the Feds haven't been doing their Canadian surveys as they used to do. When that starts up again and if mallards, Canada geese, and sea ducks continue to decline, do you think the season will still be 60 days?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Combing sea ducks with regular ducks is a Big Negative! I understand sea ducks are declining, but making them part of your regular duck limit and legal only during the regular duck season means you're losing hunting days.
5 Hooded Mergansers? What are people going to do with them? Good for dog work? Looking to have a pair mounted? Pretending you had a good hunt because you shot 5 Hoodies and a puddle duck. IMO a Negative.
Think about this: Because of Covid the Feds haven't been doing their Canadian surveys as they used to do. When that starts up again and if mallards, Canada geese, and sea ducks continue to decline, do you think the season will still be 60 days?
The federal framework already got rid of the separate sea duck season in the Atlantic flyway plus cut the sea duck limit to 3 per species & 4 total.

Mergansers don't count towards your regular duck limit in states that have mergansers listed separate like Mass. So you can shoot 6 regular ducks & 5 mergansers (if you really want to), getting rid of the 2 hoody limit is cause there is plenty of them around
Again this was something changed in the Atlantic flyway framework
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I caught part of the zoom meeting this morning
Some of the quick notes I wrote down

Sea ducks combined into regular duck season & bag limits as expected

Removed the 2 hooded merganser limit

Removed the 4 duck limit of any species not specially listed

Late goose season in the Berkshires zone

Pushed end of duck season dates back in the Berkshires to January 7th, Central to January 14th & Coastal to January 30 or 31st(I missed the exact date). Eliminate the few days of the second coastal opener during Thanksgiving week.

Move the first day of youth/veteran hunt from September 24th to February 4th 2023. October 8th youth/veteran hunt stays the same
Early goose season picks up the 24th as the last day
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Still nothing posted yet for the upcoming season but the minutes from the April meeting were recently posted.

The third amendment was to set the second split of the Coastal Zone seasons for duck and goose for December 1, 2022—January 31, 2023

The fourth amendment was to set the second split for the Berkshire zone for December 19, 2022— January 7, 2023, and for the Central zone for December 27, 2022—January 16, 2023.
 

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Just to clarify, we can now fill our bag limit with 6 ducks, regardless if they are additionally restricted? Example, I can kill 2 mallards, 2 black ducks, and 2 canvasbacks? I know only 4 of that limit can now be sea ducks.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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Your example is correct. Just do the math while hunting. Like 3 wood ducks and 3 teal. Or 2 blacks and 4 teal etc. I don’t see the sea duck issue coming into play unless your on the coast during regular duck season and want to take a few eider. i.e, 2 blacks and 4 sea ducks.
 
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