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Information on hunting dove in Arizona. Read the essentials.
Dove Species and Season Information
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- Hunters age 18 and older need a valid Arizona Hunting License (or combination hunt and fish license) and migratory bird stamp. Buy a migratory bird stamp
- Hunters age 10-17 only need the youth combination hunt and fish license (the state migratory bird stamp is included with this license).
- Youth under age 10 can hunt doves without a license if accompanied by a licensed adult age 18 or older ( a maximum of two unlicensed children may accompany one adult licensed hunter).
- The daily bag limit is 15 total doves (mourning and white-winged), of which no more than 10 can be white-winged. The possession limit is 45 total doves after opening day, of which no more than 30 can be white-winged. There are no daily bag or possession limits on invasive Eurasian collared-doves.
Do’s and don’ts for dove hunting
Do not shoot within ¼ mile (440 yards) of an occupied structure without the resident’s permission.
Do not shoot from, across or into roads or railways.
Do not leave shotgun shells or other litter on the ground.
Do not hunt over waters all day. (Allow time for livestock to access waters)
Do not consume drugs or alcohol while hunting or handling firearms.
Do leave one fully feathered wing attached to the bird for identification until you reach your permanent residence or where the dove will be consumed.
Do keep individual limits of birds separate from others while in the field, in the cooler and in transit.
Do respect postings on private land and leave gates as you found them.
Do make a reasonable effort to retrieve all downed birds.
Do report violations to Operation Game Thief, 800 352-0700.
How to clean doves
Experience dove hunting in Arizona with Randy Newberg: Video 1, Video 2
cook Paloma Guisada
This is a one-pot Tex-Mex style meal that can be made on the tailgate right after harvesting a limit of doves.
15 dove breasts – filleted off breast bone and cut into bite-sized pieces
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 large white onion, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
2 15 oz. cans Ro-Tel diced tomatoes (with green chiles, optional)
5 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried Mexican oregano, crushed
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
Heat oil over medium-high heat in a Dutch oven. Add the dove meat, and stir until the meat just starts to brown on all sides (approximately 5-7 minutes). Reduce the heat to medium, and add the onion, pepper, and garlic while stirring and cook until fragrant (about 2 minutes). Then add all the remaining ingredients. Stir often and allow to cook until the meat is tender (around 30 minutes). Serve over rice or in a tortilla.
About Hunting and Conservation
Did you know that mourning doves are the most numerous, widespread game bird in North America? They are prolific breeders with an average life span of 1-2 years. Dove hunting seasons are regulated and maintain doves as a sustainable wildlife resource. Dove hunters are a valuable conservation tool. There is an excise tax on firearms and ammunition that is contributed to the federal Pittman-Robertson Fund, which in turn is apportioned to state wildlife agencies for the management of wildlife, which benefits all citizens.
Additionally, hunters provide hundreds of thousands of dollars into the local economy, by purchasing ammunition, gas, food and lodging while engaging in this American tradition.
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