San Jacinto Wildlife Area 2019 Dove Season Opener – Sunday, September 1st

Sunday, September 1st is the opening day of dove season in California.  Tom Trakes, from San Jacinto Wildlife Area, let SoCalHunt know that the entire wildlife area will be opened to dove hunting for the first two days of dove season.  From the opener on Sunday September 1st, until Monday September 2nd, hunters will be allowed to pursue doves not only on the upland areas of San Jacinto, but also over on the Wildlife Area’s duck hunting areas.  After Monday, for the remainder of the dove season, from September 3rd until September 15th, dove hunting will be allowed only on the upland side of San Jacinto.  There will be no dove hunting on the waterfowl side of SJ after September 2nd.

Tom wanted SoCalHunt to remind everyone that this year, for the first time statewide, due to Department of Fish and Wildlife regulations only non-toxic shot may be used to take any game anywhere in California.  Although the last couple years lead shot has been banned on State Wildlife Areas this is the first year for the statewide regulation.  So even if you don’t choose to hunt doves at SJ you still need UNLEADED anywhere you hunt in California.  DFW Wardens will be checking for lead shot and possession of even one round will earn you a citation.  So, if you’ve hunted upland game in areas that allowed lead shot last year be sure to check your hunting vest thoroughly to make sure an old round of lead shot from last year isn’t hiding in one of your pockets.  Also, don’t forget that your old hunting license expired at the end of June.  Be sure you have your 2019/20 hunting license including your upland endorsement on you license.

As for limits, Mourning Dove and White-Winged Dove have a daily bag limit of 15 in combination, up to 10 of which may be white-winged dove. The possession limit is triple the daily bag limit. There are no limits on Spotted Dove and Ringed Turtle Dove, although these two varieties have the same season dates as Mourning Doves (September 1st -15th).  Hunting for Eurasian Collared Dove is legal year-round and there are no limits. Note: There is no open hunting season on common ground-doves, ruddy ground-doves, and Inca doves.

Tom told SoCalHunt that the SJ Staff are seeing a good amount of dove on the Wildlife Area this year and several fields have been planted with dove-attracting crops.  Now, that said, SJ isn’t Niland or any other “famous” dove hunting area and you’re definitely not going to limit out in an hour, but you do have a good chance of bagging a few birds close to home.

So, banning any last-minute thunderstorms that might chase the birds further south there should be at least a fair chance of bagging a few.  If you’re want to try your luck at San Jacinto things are looking pretty good for opening day, Sunday September 1st.

Also, don’t forget, you have a great chance to scout out areas to hunt doves at San Jacinto by attending the upcoming volunteer blind clean-up/brush-up day on Saturday August 24th, just a week and a day before the dove opener.  As I said, it’s a great way to scout out some doves on SJ and also a great way to help get things ready for the quickly approaching duck season.  Details at the below link:

Hope we’ll see you out at good old San Jacinto some time.

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