Colorado Duck Hunting

Important Information for Colorado Dove Hunters

Colorado’s dove season opens statewide on Monday, September 1.  Dove hunters should be aware of the following information before entering the field this season:

Mourning Dove Banding Program


Earlier this summer, the DOW and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service banded over 700 mourning doves across Colorado. Doves were trapped, fitted with aluminum, individually numbered leg bands and then released.  This effort is part of a nationwide program to help biologists determine annual survival rates, harvest rates and distribution of the harvest as well as refine techniques for future dove-banding programs.  Hunters may encounter doves banded by other states as well.

To assist with this research, the DOW is asking dove hunters to look for leg bands on the mourning doves they shoot. Hunters are a critical link in this mourning dove banding study. By checking all harvested doves for bands and reporting banded doves, hunters help biologists manage this important migratory game bird. Because dove bands are small, hunters can easily overlook the bands, so all birds should be carefully checked.

Hunters who harvest banded doves are asked to report the band number to the Federal Bird Banding Laboratory ( or 1-800-327-BAND).  

Walk-In Access Program  

In an effort to provide increased opportunity for early-season hunters, the DOW has now expanded the Walk-In Access (WIA) Program to begin on September 1.

Over 168,000 WIA acres are now available for the early, small game seasons. Many of these properties offer dove hunting opportunities.  For best results, hunters should focus their efforts on areas providing water, roosting trees and crop plots.  

The 2008 Walk-In Access Program Brochure/Atlas is available at any authorized license agent or DOW office.  An electronic version is also available on the DOW Website at:  

To hunt doves on WIA properties, all hunters must first purchase, sign and have in their possession a small game license, a valid WIA permit and comply with Habitat Stamp regulations.  

Rattlesnake Warning  

The DOW would like to remind early-season hunters to be aware of rattlesnakes.  Hunters with dogs should be particularly mindful of their surroundings. If a dog is bitten by a rattlesnake, take the dog to a veterinarian immediately.  A veterinarian can perform the appropriate medical analysis, treatments, and inject anti-venom if needed.  Dogs can now be vaccinated against rattlesnake bites, but if bitten, even vaccinated dogs should be taken to a veterinarian as soon as possible.

For more information on dove hunting, including bag and possession limits, please obtain a copy of the 2008 Colorado Small Game brochure.  Brochures are available at any DOW office, license agent or on the DOW Web site at:  

The Colorado Division of Wildlife is the state agency responsible for managing wildlife and its habitat, as well as providing wildlife related recreation. The Division is funded through hunting and fishing license fees, federal grants and Colorado Lottery proceeds through Great Outdoors Colorado.

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply