Summary of Migratory Birds Hunting Regulations: Newfoundland and Labrador, August 2021 to July 2022

Summary

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.

Waterfowl and snipe hunting zones

Bird Hunting zone, see long description
Waterfowl and Snipe hunting zones
Long description

Northwestern Coastal Zone means all that portion of the coast of the Island of Newfoundland lying within 100 m of the mean ordinary high-water mark, including portions of adjacent offshore islands not included in the inland zone, and the adjacent marine coastal waters, bounded by a due west line from Cape St. Gregory, and from there northward and eastward along the coast ending in a boundary line drawn due northeast through Cape Bauld.

Northern Coastal Zone means all that portion of the coast of the Island of Newfoundland lying within 100 m of the mean ordinary high-water mark, including portions of adjacent offshore islands not included in the inland zone, and the adjacent marine coastal waters, bounded by a line due northeast from Cape Bauld and southward along the east coast, ending in a boundary line drawn due northeast through Cape St. John.

Southern Coastal Zone means all that portion of the coast of the Island of Newfoundland lying within 100 meters of the mean ordinary high-water mark, including portions of adjacent offshore islands not included in the inland zone, and the adjacent marine coastal waters, bounded by a due west line through Cape Ray, thence southward and eastward along the coast ending at a due south line through Cape Rosey.

Southwestern Coastal Zone means all that portion of the coast of the Island of Newfoundland lying within 100 m of the mean ordinary high-water mark, including portions of adjacent offshore islands not included in the inland zone, and the adjacent marine coastal waters, bounded by a due west line from Cape St. Gregory, and from there southward along the coast ending in a boundary line drawn due west through Cape Ray.

Northeastern Coastal Zone means all that portion of the coast of the Island of Newfoundland lying within 100 m of the mean ordinary high-water mark, including portions of adjacent offshore islands not included in the inland zone, and adjacent marine coastal waters, bounded by a due northeast line drawn through Cape Bonavista, and from there in a generally westerly direction along the coast ending at a boundary line drawn due northeast through Cape St. John.

Avalon-Burin Coastal Zone means all that portion of the coast of the Island of Newfoundland lying within 100 m of the mean ordinary high-water mark, including portions of adjacent offshore islands not included in the inland zone, and the adjacent marine coastal waters, bounded by a straight line drawn due south from Cape Rosey, and from there in a generally easterly and northerly direction along the coast ending at a boundary line drawn due northeast from Cape Bonavista.

“Coastal” refers to that portion of the coast lying within 100 metres of the mean ordinary high-water mark, including the coastal portions of offshore islands and the adjacent marine coastal waters. For more information on hunting districts, contact the Provincial Ministry of Fisheries and Land Resources.

Northern Labrador Zone means all that portion of Labrador lying east of longitude 65°W and north of latitude 54°24′N.

Western Labrador Zone means all that portion of Labrador lying west of longitude 65°W.

Southern Labrador Zone means all that portion of Labrador lying east of longitude 57°06′40″W and south of latitude 53°06′N (Boulters Rock).

Central Labrador Zone means all of Labrador other than the portions described in paragraphs (a) to (c).

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.

Enforcement

The Environmental Violations Administrative Monetary Penalties 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.

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 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

Image of badge

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

Murre (turr) hunters: All hunters must purchase and be in possession of a Migratory Game Bird Hunting Permit and a Canadian Wildlife Habitat Conservation Stamp while hunting murres. This hunt is only open to residents of Newfoundland and Labrador. Murres are the only migratory bird that can be legally hunted from a powerboat. Any occupant of a boat who shoots or retrieves murres, or anyone who operates a boat to pursue murres, is hunting as defined in the Migratory Birds Regulations and is required to hold a Migratory Game Bird Hunting Permit.

Shot

  • Non-toxic shot must be used to hunt all migratory game birds, except for murres (turrs)

To reduce your exposure to contaminants in meat, make sure, before cooking it, to:

  • remove the shot from birds hunted with lead shot
  • remove the skin and fat from fish-eating birds

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.

Crime stoppers

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) or “Échec au crime” in the province of Quebec at 1-800-711-1800. Your call is anonymous, and you may be eligible for a cash reward.

Waterfowler Heritage Day and Open Seasons on the Island of Newfoundland (No open season for Harlequin Ducks)

Waterfowler Heritage Day and Open Seasons on the Island of Newfoundland (No open season for Harlequin Ducks)
Area Waterfowler Heritage Day

Ducks, including Mergansers (other than Long-tailed Ducks, Harlequin Ducks, Eiders and Scoters), Geese and Snipe
Open Season on the Island of Newfoundland

Ducks (other than Common and Red-breasted Mergansers, Long-tailed Ducks, Harlequin Ducks, Eiders and Scoters), Geese and Snipe
Open Season on the Island of Newfoundland

Common and Red-breasted Mergansers
Open Season on the Island of Newfoundland

Long-tailed Ducks, Eiders and Scoters

Northwestern Coastal Zone

Sept. 11

Sept. 18 to Dec. 25

Oct. 10 to Jan. 23

Nov. 1 to Feb. 14

Southwestern, Southern, Avalon-Burin, Northeastern and Northern Coastal Zone

Sept. 11

Sept. 18 to Dec. 25

Oct. 10 to Jan. 23

Nov. 25 to Mar. 10

Newfoundland Inland Zone

Sept. 11

Sept. 18 to Dec. 25

Oct. 10 to Jan. 23

No open season

Bag and possession limits on the Island of Newfoundland

Bag and possession limits on the Island of Newfoundland
Limit Ducks (other than Mergansers, Long-tailed Ducks, Harlequin Ducks, Eiders and Scoters) Mergansers Long-tailed Ducks, Eiders and Scoters Geese Snipe

Daily Bag

6 (a)

6

6

5

10

Possession

18 (b)

12

12

10

20

(a) Not more than one may be Barrow’s Goldeneye and, during the period beginning on November 30 and ending on December 25, not more than 4 may be American Black Ducks.

(b) Not more than one may be Barrow’s Goldeneye.

Waterfowler Heritage Day and Open Seasons in Labrador (No open season for Harlequin Ducks)

Waterfowler Heritage Day and Open Seasons in Labrador (No open season for Harlequin Ducks)
Area Waterfowler Heritage Day

Ducks (other than Harlequin Ducks and Eiders), Geese and Snipe
Open Seasons in Labrador

Ducks (other than Harlequin Ducks and Eiders), Geese and Snipe
Open Seasons in Labrador

Eiders

Northern Labrador Zone

Sept. 4

Sept. 4 to Dec. 18

Sept. 25 to Jan. 8

Western Labrador Zone

Sept. 4

Sept. 4 to Dec. 18

No open season

Southern Labrador Zone

Sept. 4

Sept. 4 to Dec. 18

Nov. 1 to Feb. 14

Central Labrador Zone

Sept. 4

Sept. 4 to Dec. 18

Oct. 30 to Nov. 27
Jan. 1 to Feb. 28

Bag and possession limits in Labrador

Bag and possession limits in Labrador
Limit Ducks (other than Common and Red-breasted Mergansers, Harlequin Ducks, Eiders and Scoters) Common and Red-breasted Mergansers Eiders and Scoters Geese Snipe

Daily Bag

6 (a)

6

6

5

10

Possession

18 (a)

12

12

10

20

(a) Not more than one may be Barrow’s Goldeneye.

Open Seasons in Newfoundland and Labrador (Murres/Turres)

Bird Hunting zone, see long description
Murre/Turr hunting zones
Long description

Zone No. 1 means all coastal waters in the Northern Labrador Zone and the Central Labrador Zone as defined in Table II of this Part.

Zone No. 2 means all coastal waters in the Southern Labrador Zone as defined in Table II of this Part, and those portions of the Northwestern Coastal Zone, Northern Coastal Zone and Northeastern Coastal Zone of Newfoundland as defined in Table I of this Part, bounded by a due northeast line from Deadman’s Point (49°21′N, 53°41′W) and a due west line from Cape St. Gregory (49°24′N, 58°14′W).

Zone No. 3 means those portions of the Southwestern Coastal Zone and Avalon-Burin Coastal Zone of Newfoundland as defined in Table I of this Part, bounded by a due west line from Cape St. Gregory (49°24′N, 58°14′W) and a due east line from Western Bay Head (47°53′N, 53°03′W), excluding the portion of the Avalon-Burin Coastal Zone of Newfoundland bounded by a due east line from Cape Race (46°39′N, 53°04′W) and a due east line from Cape Spear (47°31′20″N, 52°37′40″W).

Zone No. 4 means those portions of the Avalon-Burin Coastal Zone and the Northeastern Coastal Zone of Newfoundland as defined in Table I of this Part, bounded by a due east line drawn from Cape Race (46°39′N, 53°04′W) and a due northeast line from Deadman’s Point (49°21′N, 53°41′W), excluding that portion of the Avalon-Burin Coastal Zone of Newfoundland bounded by a due east line from Cape Spear (47°31′20″N, 52°37′40″W) and by a due east line from Western Bay Head (47°53′N, 53°03′W).

Open Seasons in Newfoundland and Labrador (Murres/Turres)
Area Murres

Zone No. 1

Sept. 1 to Dec. 16

Zone No. 2

Oct. 6 to Jan. 20

Zone No. 3

Nov. 25 to Mar. 10

Zone No. 4

Nov. 3 to Jan. 10 and Feb. 2 to Mar. 10

Bag and possession limits in Newfoundland and Labrador (Murres/Turrs)

Bag and possession limits in Newfoundland and Labrador (Murres/Turrs)
Limit Murres

Daily Bag

20

Possession

40

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.

Please consult:

You may also direct your questions to:

Environment and Climate Change Canada
Canadian Wildlife Service
6 Bruce Street
Mount Pearl NL A1N 4T3

Tel.: 1-800-668-6767
ec.enviroinfo.ec@canada.ca

Report your 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.

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