Standing water and green grass in August, we have been living right.

Although we are not going to complain about the water standing around, this can definitely put a hamper on dove hunting around windmill tanks and ponds. Usually the start of September brings us waiting for that break from the summer heat and a shortage of rainfall, which can make dove hunting around the scattered water sources fast and furious.

But if the dove can just walk around in a field and find little pockets of standing water, there is no reason for them to travel to a pond. Keep this in mind the next few days as you start thinking about where you are going to hunt when the dove season opens Sept. 1

For many of you, the wait for opening day of dove season can be a long one, it always seems to be the kickoff for the fall hunting seasons and if you are a hunter, you know how long that wait can be. Hunting these birds that can sometimes resemble a little jet plane is a great sport, one that will definitely test your shooting ability.

I personally like hunting around little ponds and around windmill tanks where the water spills over and is standing around. But as I mentioned above, if the rainfall continues and there is plenty of water, you may need to switch tactics and find a field that the birds are feeding in. And although you find a field they are feeding in, you must continue your scouting right up to the time of the hunt. Many times I have found a large concentration of doves one day, and you go back the next and they have gone. Who knows what makes them just leave a field, but trust me they sometimes do.

Dove season begins Sept. 1 and runs through Oct. 30 and the daily limit is 15 with the possession limit of 30 after the first day. Shooting hours begin one-half hour before official sunrise and ends at official sunset, and remember that your shotgun most not be able to hold more than three shells total, which would mean one in the chamber and two in the magazine. Please review the current hunting regulations to look at any additional laws pertaining to dove hunting, these can be found on pages 22 and 23.

If you k now anyone who wants to try hunting, but they prefer not to make a total dollar investment, opening weekend of dove season is a great opportunity for them. Sept. 3-4 is a free hunting weekend in this state for Oklahoma residents. They can borrow a shotgun from you, get some shells and go hunting without having to buy a license; definitely a great chance for you to introduce someone to hunting that might not otherwise give it a try. Please remember, all other rules and regulations apply.

I want to keep reminding you of the upcoming Hunter Education Course in Woodward County. It is my goal to get as many there as we can, so get the word out to those that you know who need to take a class before the fall hunting season. The course will be Saturday, Sept. 17 at the High Plains Technology Center in Woodward and will run from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. No pre-registration is necessary and please bring a pencil.

Call me at 334-0353 if I can be of assistance to you.



Paul Cornett is the game warden in Woodward County.

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