Hunting regulations summary for migratory birds: New Brunswick, August 2019 to July 2020
To hunt migratory game birds in Canada, you must possess:
- a valid Migratory Game Bird Hunting Permit
- a Canadian Wildlife Habitat Conservation Stamp affixed to or printed on the permit
These two documents are issued by the federal government and are valid in all provinces and territories.
Most provinces and territories have additional licence requirements for hunting migratory birds and/or to carry firearms. To know what you require, and if there are further restrictions for hunting migratory birds, please verify the applicable regulations for the province/territory where you will be hunting. Municipalities may have additional restrictions on discharging firearms. Note that all required permits and licences must be in your possession while you are hunting.
Buy permit online
You can purchase and print your Migratory Game Bird Hunting Permit by visiting the Migratory Game Bird Hunting Permit web page.
Zone No. 1 Saint John County south of No. 1 Highway and west of Saint John Harbour, that part of Charlotte County lying south of No. 1 Highway, and the Grand Manan Islands and Campobello Island, except the following area, which is closed to hunting: the area in the Bay of Fundy known as The Wolves, including the surrounding waters.
Zone No. 2 The remainder of the Province of New Brunswick, except the following, which are closed to hunting: the estuary of the Tabusintac River; Bathurst Basin and most of Bathurst Harbour (two islands remain open); and the Dalhousie shoreline from the eastern tip of Dalhousie Island to the mouth of the Miller Brook and extending one kilometre offshore.
For more information on hunting zones, contact the New Brunswick Department of Energy and Resource Development.
Consultation process and migratory birds regulatory reports
A national consultation process has been developed to provide an opportunity for everyone to participate in developing the migratory birds hunting regulations. For more information, consult the Migratory Birds Regulatory Report Series web page.
Use of bait prior to and during the migratory bird hunting season is restricted; please consult the Migratory Birds Regulations for restrictions regarding deposition of bait. Check your permit and provincial hunting regulations for additional restrictions, such as Sunday closures and minimum required distances from residences and businesses.
National Wildlife Areas located in New Brunswick are administered under the Wildlife Area Regulations of the Canada Wildlife Act. Refer to notices posted at entrances for area-specific rules.
In June 2017, the Environmental Violations Administrative Monetary Penalties Regulations came into force. In particular, these regulations authorize game officers to use administrative monetary penalties (AMPs) to enforce the provisions of the Migratory Birds Convention Act, 1994 (MBCA) and its associated regulations.
In July 2017, amendments to the fine regime and penalty provisions in the MBCA and the Designation of Regulatory Provisions for Purposes of Enforcement (Migratory Birds Convention Act, 1994) Regulations came into force. In particular, these amendments allow courts to impose penalties that reflect the seriousness of offences following a conviction pursuant to the MBCA or its associated regulations.
For more information on AMPs and the new fine regime, consult the About the Environmental Enforcement Act web page.
Game officers enforce the federal MBCA throughout Canada. This law regulates human interventions, such as hunting that could adversely affect long-term wildlife conservation. For any questions, please contact Wildlife Enforcement by telephone or by email at the contact information at the end of this hunting summary.
Waterfowler Heritage Days
Waterfowler Heritage Days are intended for young hunters under 18 years of age. These days provide opportunities for young hunters, for a few days before or during hunting seasons, to:
- develop safe hunting habits in a supervised and structured environment
- be guided by adult hunters who serve as mentors and pass on their skills and knowledge
- learn more about wildlife conservation
The following rules are in effect during Waterfowler Heritage Days:
- young hunters can hunt without having a Migratory Game Bird Hunting Permit or Canadian Wildlife Habitat Conservation Stamp
- young hunters must comply with all safety and licensing requirements found in the Firearms Act and provincial hunting regulations
- young hunters must be accompanied by a licensed mentor (who is not a minor)
- adults acting as mentors:
- must have a valid Migratory Game Bird Hunting Permit and Canadian Wildlife Habitat Conservation Stamp
- may not hunt or carry a firearm
- may accompany no more than two young hunters
- only young hunters are allowed to hunt when Waterfowler Heritage Days fall outside of the regular open seasons
- Non-toxic shot must be used to hunt migratory game birds, except for woodcock
- Within National Wildlife Areas that allow hunting, the possession of lead shot is prohibited for all hunting, including the hunting of migratory birds and upland game birds
- Hunters should consult provincial or territorial regulations for additional restrictions
To reduce your exposure to contaminants in meat, make sure, before cooking it, to remove the lead shot from birds hunted with lead shot.
Species at Risk
Barrow’s Goldeneye is listed in the Species at Risk Act as a species of special concern, and the daily bag and possession limit is 1 bird.
Anyone wishing to report illegal hunting activities, illegal selling of birds or other offences related to migratory birds is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477). Your call is anonymous, and you may be eligible for a cash reward.
Open seasons and Waterfowler heritage day in New Brunswick (No open season for Harlequin Ducks)
|Area||Waterfowler Heritage Day||Open seasons in New Brunswick||Open seasons in New Brunswick||Open seasons in New Brunswick||Open seasons in New Brunswick|
|N/A||Ducks (other than Harlequin Ducks) and geese||Ducks (other than Harlequin Ducks, Common and Red-breasted Mergansers, Long-tailed Ducks, eiders, and scoters) and snipe||Geese||Common and Red-breasted Mergansers, Long-tailed Ducks, eiders, and scoters||Woodcock|
|Zone No. 1||Sept. 21||Oct. 15 to Jan. 14||Sept. 3 to Sept. 24 and
Oct. 15 to Jan. 4
|Oct. 15 to Jan. 4 and
Feb. 1 to Feb. 24
|Sept. 15 to Nov. 30|
|Zone No. 2||Sept. 21||Oct. 1 to Dec. 31||Sept. 3 to Sept. 24 and
Oct. 1 to Dec. 18
|Oct. 1 to Dec. 18||Sept. 15 to Nov. 30|
Bag and possession limits in New Brunswick
|Limits||Ducks (other than Common and Red-breasted Mergansers, Long-tailed Ducks, Harlequin Ducks, eiders, and scoters)||Common and Red-breasted Mergansers, Long-tailed Ducks, eiders, and scoters||Geese||Woodcock||Snipe|
|Daily bag||6 (a)||6 (c)||5 (e)||8||10|
|Possession||18 (b)||12 (d)||16||16||20|
(a) Not more than 1 may be Barrow’s Goldeneye. In Zone No.1 during the period beginning on December 15, and ending on January 14, and in Zone No.2 during the period beginning on December 1 and ending on December 31 not more than 4 may be American Black Ducks.
(b) Not more than 1 may be Barrow’s Goldeneye.
(c) Not more than 4 scoters or 4 eiders may be taken daily.
(d) Not more than 8 scoters or 8 eiders may be possessed.
(e) Up to 3 additional Canada Geese or Cackling Geese, or any combination of them, may be taken daily from September 3 to September 24 inclusive.
For more information
The information presented here is a summary of the law. If there is a discrepancy between the law and this summary, the law prevails.
- the Migratory Birds Convention Act, 1994
- the Migratory Birds Regulations
- the frequently asked questions for hunters
You can also address your questions to:
Environment and Climate Change Canada
Canadian Wildlife Service
17 Waterfowl Lane
P.O. Box 6227
Sackville, NB E4L 1G6
Report migratory bird bands
Call 1-800-327-band (2263) to leave a message or go to the Report a bird with a Federal Band or Color Marker website.
Report a problem or mistake on this page
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