How and Where to Get Started in Dove Hunting

Have you ever wondered how to start wing shooting but didn’t know where to get started? Then you have come to the right place! While dove hunting can be as simple as taking a shotgun out to the field and looking for doves, there are a few things you should know before getting started!

Where to Hunt

Depending on where you live in the US, there are different seasons and regulations for the variety of dove species that live here. Many states, however, allow liberal seasons that allow you to hunt throughout the majority of the year. This is especially true if you are targeting invasive species, which often have year-round season dates and unlimited bag limits!

Depending on the state you intend to hunt, you will still need to acquire the proper hunting licenses and hunt within the correct season dates. A little bit of homework online can show you all of these dates as well as where you can purchase your hunting license.

Finding a quality dove hunting location in your area is very simple as well. All you have to do is find where they are feeding, and you are sure to find plenty of doves. Agriculture fields are a favorite pick, such as harvested wheat or corn. Once you have a bead on where they are feeding, you can start to hunt them!

Dove Hunting Shotguns

Of course, you will need a good shotgun before you are ready to hunt for doves. While the large variety of shotguns and ammunition can be intimidating, doves don’t require anything special. Stick to popular shotguns sizes such as 12 or 20 gauge, and load them with standard birdshot ammunition. This can be shot sizes like 7, 7 ½, or 8. Doves are fairly small and don’t take a whole lot to bring down, so don’t stress about your shotgun too much!

How to Hunt Doves

The preferred method of shooting doves involves shooting birds as they fly over you (also called pass shooting). After you arrive at your hunting area, find a comfortable place to stand or sit and patiently wait for the doves to come to you. The best times of the day to hunt are right after sunrise and right before sunset. This is when the doves will be most active and feeding, giving you the opportunity to have them fly in front of or above you.

Final Thoughts

Dove hunting is a lot of fun and luckily it is extremely easy to get into, even for a complete novice. Not only is it a great way to enjoy the outdoors, but doves are some of the tastiest birds out there as well!

Want to learn more about game bird hunting? We’ve got you covered! Check out the articles below:
Game Bird Hunting: Grouse, Quail, Dove, and Pheasant
Top Tips For Hunting Snow Geese
Waterfowl Hunting: Duck, Geese, and Swan

For more great ideas on how to fish and hunt from the experts, check out the awesome articles on our Bradley Smoker Hunting & Fishing Blog for more great tips & tricks.