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Hunting Dove with an Airgun

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#1 ShooterJohn



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Posted 07 September 2012 - 08:08 AM

I noticed this on the DFG site and thought I would post it as information.

Dove Hunting
Question: I understand that doves can be taken with airguns/spring guns with use of pellets. Does this mean I can take them while perched but not in flight? If yes, when I go dove hunting can I take both my shotgun and my airgun? And if this is alright, can I use my shotgun when the doves are in flight and my air gun when they land? Do the same regulations apply to quail? (Blong Y.)

Answer: It is legal to take perched doves and other resident small game (including quail) with air rifles powered by compressed air or gas, as prescribed in the regulations. However, only the following dove species are classified as Resident Small Game and may be taken with pellet guns: Chinese spotted doves, Eurasian collared-doves and ringed turtle-doves of the family Columbidae. Western mourning dove and all other migratory game birds may not be taken by pellet gun (California Code of Regulations Title 14, section 300( B ). You may carry both the pellet gun and shotgun while hunting.
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#2 True2ThySelf



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Posted 07 September 2012 - 10:02 AM

Good to know. I believe Chukar are also classified as resident small game...not that I could ever get close enough to any resident small game birds with a shotgun let alone an air gun :D.

#3 mackeralboy



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Posted 07 September 2012 - 06:16 PM

Great info John. I had looked into hunting quail with a pellet gun on the DFG website a few years back and couldn't find any definitive answer so I refrained. This clears that up.

#4 Thumper Dunker

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Posted 10 September 2012 - 07:09 PM


#5 jambo



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Posted 17 May 2013 - 09:06 AM

There seems to be some discrepancy in the regulations as Section 507 states that Eurasian collared doves are to be taken in the same manner as Migratory Game Birds:


507. Provisions Related to the Taking of
Migratory Game Birds
(as defined in Section
502 but also includes mourning doves, white-
winged doves, band-tailed pigeons, ringed
turtle doves, and Eurasian collared doves).

#6 4NDone0331



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Posted 14 June 2013 - 10:15 AM

does anyone know if you need an upland game bird validation for rock doves (feral pigeons)? 

#7 DagoRich



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Posted 24 June 2013 - 09:56 PM

I don't believe feral pigeons are considered game birds. :)

#8 Keeper


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Posted 03 August 2013 - 10:15 PM

Hello CPC Family, 

I just wanted to share some info regarding the take of Doves with Pellet guns. 

I'm sure this is good info for anyone on planning to hunt Doves with a Pellet Rifle, PLEASE start reading from the Bottom - Up. 


From: Fischer, Rick@Wildlife [mailto:Rick.Fischer@wildlife.ca.gov]
Sent: Saturday, July 27, 2013 10:53 AM
To: Luis
Subject: RE: Dove Hunting


As of now the take (hunting) of any doves is restricted to the general open season.  That may change, as it is being proposed to allow the hunting of Eurasian collared doves year-round in Imperial County.  That is not a “done deal” yet, so for now the only hunting of all dove species (that are legal) is during the general season only.  Stay tuned, and keep checking our website for possible changes.

Rick Fischer


From: Luis
Sent: Saturday, July 27, 2013 1:51 AM
To: Fischer, Rick@Wildlife
Subject: Re: Dove Hunting


Mr. Fischer,

First of all I would like to thank you for replying back to my Email. 

The information you provided is very helpful as this will be my first year hunting with a pellet rifle & I want to make sure I'm following and respecting the Hunting Regulations. 

I have one more question regarding Dove's, I may ONLY hunt all types of Doves during season correct (Sep 1 - 15 & Nov 10 - Dec 24)? Or is there certain Dove's that are open all year to hunt? 



On Jul 26, 2013 2:26 PM, "Fischer, Rick@Wildlife" <Rick.Fischer@wildlife.ca.gov> wrote:

Hello Luis,

You may hunt Eurasian collared doves with a pellet gun, but not mourning or white-wing doves.  Additionally, if you can find them, you may hunt ringed turtle doves and Chinese spotted doves with a pellet gun.  These two species are mostly city birds and are not found in legal hunting areas.


Rick Fischer

Game Warden, Southern Enforcement

Department of Fish and Wildlife

(951) 288-7651

#9 ShooterJohn



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Posted 04 August 2013 - 07:26 AM

That's how I understood it too.  But thank you for posting the info you obtained directly from Fish & Wildlife.

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