Take Advantage of Snow Goose Hunting in East and West

North Carolina guide with a bag of 44 snow geese taken by his hunters during a morning's hunt.

Click on the iBooks image to order Book

  Snow geese are eating themselves out of habitat in the high Arctic and extended seasons and bags have been introduced with the objective of reducing their populations. Although hunting snow geese offers North American hunters the chance to see and shoot waterfowl in numbers that have not been available since the 1930s, many are not taking advantage of this opportunity.

Guide returns with snow goose shot over a spread using "flyers" and "Texas Rags" used in North Carolina.

  Snows, often with associated blue geese, migrate in flocks that may be in the hundreds or thousands. There may be more than 10,000 birds using one pond or resting area that will disperse in the morning at daylight and fly out into fields to feed. Usually the hunting method is to set out very large spreads of decoys (1,000 or more) where the flock was feeding the afternoon before in hopes that they will return to the same area the next morning.

  This special season allows the use of unplugged guns and mechanical calling which are not permitted during regular waterfowl hunting. Although bag limits may change from season to season and area to area, these are usually about 25 per day per hunter (in the West) or season (the month of February in the East). Either way, this represents an excellent opportunity for waterfowl hunting in the late Winter and Spring.

Snows, like this young and adult bird, allow some nice specimens to be taken including the greater and lesser snow geese.

  In the Western U.S., Texas likely takes more snows than any other state, but they may be shot through all of the prairie states and provinces as they make their return trip home. They are somewhat early flyers and there may still be some scattered snow flurries during snow-goose season. When farmers start putting in their grain, the geese take this opportunity to utilize this easy food source to fuel their northern migration. The exact migration dates can vary depending on the weather, but once in an area about two weeks of good shooting might be expected.

  These grain-fed snows are excellent eating birds. In a few days I will post a video showing several ways to cook these birds. I describe a recent North Carolina hunt on my radio show, “Hovey’s Outdoor Adventures.” This show may be heard by clicking on the following link:

To go directly to the show page  click on the following URL : This show will be  available February 15, 2011, and later stored  in the Archived section for 24/7 availability:   http://webtalkradio.net/shows/hoveys-outdoor-adventures/.

A video, “Backyard Goose Hunting: North Carolina and Manitoba” appears below. If you have trouble viewing it here it is also available on YouTube by clicking the following link:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KKDHz-yOhKc.

Click on the iBooks image to order Book

Leave a Reply