Hunting regulations summary for migratory birds: Northwest Territories, August 2019 to July 2020

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.

The 2019 federal permit is also valid for the 2020 spring special conservation harvest for Snow Geese and Ross’s Geese.

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.

If you are hunting on private lands within an area with a settled land claim, you must ask permission first.

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

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

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.

Shot

  • Non-toxic shot must be used to hunt all migratory game birds

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). Your call is anonymous, and you may be eligible for a cash reward.

Open seasons in the Northwest Territories

Open seasons in the Northwest Territories
Area Ducks, geese, coots and snipe
Throughout the Northwest Territories Sept. 1 to Dec. 10 (a)

(a) Recorded Snow Goose and Ross’s Goose calls may be used when hunting Snow Geese and Ross’s Geese; any species of migratory bird for which it is open season may be taken while hunting Snow Geese and Ross’s Geese with those calls.

Bag and possession limits in the Northwest Territories

Bag and possession limits in the Northwest Territories
Limits Ducks

Residents of Canada
Ducks
Non-residents of Canada
Canada Geese, Cackling Geese, White-fronted Geese and Brant

Residents of Canada
Canada Geese, Cackling Geese, White-fronted Geese and Brant
Non-residents of Canada
Snow Geese and Ross’s Geese Coots Snipe

Residents of Canada
Snipe

Non-residents of Canada
Daily bag 25 8 15 5 (a) 50 25 10 10
Possession No limit 16 No limit 10 (a) No limit No limit No limit 20

(a) Except that non-residents may not take more than 2 White-fronted Geese daily and may not possess more than 4.

Overabundant species

The Migratory Birds Regulations also provide for special conservation harvest periods when hunters may take overabundant species. See the table below for details.

Measures in the Northwest Territories concerning overabundant species

Measures in the Northwest Territories concerning overabundant species
Area Period during which Snow Geese and Ross’s Geese may be killed Additional hunting method or equipment
Banks Island, Victoria Island and Queen Elizabeth Islands May 1 to Jun. 30 Recorded bird calls (a)
Throughout N.W.T. except Banks Island, Victoria Island and Queen Elizabeth Islands May 1 to May 28 Recorded bird calls (a)

(a) "Recorded bird calls" refers to bird calls of a species referred to in the heading of column 2.

Note
No person shall hunt earlier than one hour before sunrise or later than one hour after sunset.

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 can also address your questions to:

Environment and Climate Change Canada
Canadian Wildlife Service
5019, 52 Street
P.O. Box 2310
Yellowknife NT X1A 2P7

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

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.

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