Migratory game bird hunting permit

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Notices

Exporting migratory gamebirds in the United States

Hunters intending to travel to the United States with migratory game birds harvested in Canada should familiarize themselves with the United States regulations regarding the importation of migratory game birds. Please check the U.S. code of Federal regulations:  eCFR: 50 CFR Part 20 Subpart G - Importations

To hunt migratory game birds in Canada, you must have a valid federal migratory game bird hunting (MGBH) permit on which the Canadian Wildlife Habitat Conservation (CWHC) stamp appears. The MGBH permit is valid anywhere in Canada. The cost of the MGBH permit (including $8.50 for the CWHC stamp) is $17.00 plus applicable taxes. It is not transferable and can only be used by the person who is named on the permit.

You must be able to show the permit to game officers upon request. To be valid, the permit (physical or electronic) no longer needs to be signed. You must carry the permit with you at all times, either in physical or electronic PDF format, when hunting or when in possession of unpreserved migratory game birds or any murres, in a place other than your residence. 

Youth Migratory Game Bird Hunting Permit

The Youth MGBH permit is an option available to hunters who are minors (under the age of 18), that provides the opportunity to youth to practice their skills under the supervision of an adult hunter throughout the full open seasons and the special conservation season in spring, while enabling them to benefit from having their own daily bag and possession limits.

The Youth MGBH permit and CWHC stamp are available to youth free of charge.

Individuals who are hunting under the authority of the Youth MGBH permits must always be accompanied by an adult hunter (over 18 years of age), known as a mentor.

With the introduction of the Youth MGBH permit, Waterfowler Heritage Days have been repealed.

Purchasing or obtaining a permit

Beginning August 1, 2023, you can obtain your permit, valid from August 1, 2023 to June 30, 2024, by choosing one of these three options:

The Youth MGBH permit and CWHC stamp are available free of charge, and are only available through the e-permitting system.

When you purchase a MGBH permit electronically, there are a few additional benefits to consider.

Lost or misplaced a permit

Please note that if you have lost or misplaced your physical permit that was purchased through Canada Post or an independent vendor, you must purchase a new permit at your own expense, as Canada Post and independent vendors do not keep records of individuals who purchased permits. However, if you have misplaced your e-permit, it can be recovered through the e-permitting system using the email that was provided when it was obtained, or from the confirmation email that was received at the time of purchase.

If your permit, physical or e-permit cannot be presented when requested by a game officer, you will be seen to be in contravention to the law.

Canadian Wildlife Habitat Conservation Stamp (CWHC)

Funds raised from the sale of the stamp go to Wildlife Habitat Canada (WHC), a national charitable non-profit conservation organization. Since its inception in 1984, WHC has received over $64M through the sales of the stamp supporting more than 1,600 habitat conservation projects across the country.

Changes for migratory bird hunting

The Migratory Birds Regulations, 2022 include many important changes for hunting migratory game birds. For more information, please refer to:

Additional information

Enforcement

Most migratory birds found in Canada are protected under the Migratory Birds Convention Act (MBCA) which fulfills the terms of the Migratory Birds Convention of 1916 between Canada and the USA. The Canadian government has the authority to pass and enforce regulations to protect those species of migratory birds included in the Convention. Similar legislation in the United States protects species found there.

Under the MBCA and its regulations, the Government of Canada is responsible for managing migratory bird populations and for regulating the hunting of migratory game birds such as ducks and geese.

In Canada, the MBCA is administered by the Government of Canada in cooperation with:

Depending on the offence, enforcement actions may include:

Related links

Contact us

For any questions about the act or its regulations, you can reach us at: 1-800-668-6767 or at enviroinfo@ec.gc.ca.

Disclaimer: This is not a legal document. If there is a discrepancy between the law and the information on this page, the law prevails.

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