Nov. 13, 2023

PHOENIX — When it comes to experiencing some of the finest wing-shooting that Arizona has to offer, the “second” dove season — which opens Friday, Nov. 17 — is not to be missed.

While the bigger white-winged doves, prized during the traditional 15-day season in September, have long since migrated to Mexico, the more acrobatic mourning doves remain abundant and widespread. The second season is a longer one, lasting 45 days and running through Dec. 31, 2023. 

There still is a 15-bird daily bag limit, all of which must be mourning doves. The possession limit remains 45 mourning doves after opening day, of which no more than 15 may be taken in any one day. Note: The Arizona Game and Fish Department encourages all hunters to harvest as many Eurasian collared-doves as possible. There is an unlimited daily bag and possession limit year-round for this invasive species. 

A few things to remember to make the most of the upcoming season:

Dove hunters play an important role in conservation. Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration (WSFR) Program funds consist of excise taxes collected on the sale of hunting and fishing equipment (including 11 percent on ammunition), the benefit of which comes right back to Arizona for habitat improvements, shooting ranges, boating access and more.

In addition to the late dove season that opens Friday, several other small game hunting seasons are underway, including quail (Gambel’s, scaled), Oct. 13, 2023-Feb. 11, 2024; cottontail rabbit, July 1, 2023-June 30, 2024; chukar, Sept. 1, 2023-Feb. 11, 2024; and tree squirrel (Abert’s, Kaibab and red, excluding Mount Graham red squirrel), Sept. 29, 2023-Jan. 31, 2024. The season for Mearns’ quail opens Dec. 1, 2023, and closes Feb. 11, 2024.    

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