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Virginia Duck Hunting Limits
#1
I just made this handy identification sheet that also lists the bag limits for each duck to make a total of 6 for the daily limit. (Attached as a PDF)

Personally, I am in search of that Fulvous Whistling Duck!

I figure if I blast anything that flies and stop for identification after three, I should be OK.

The Black Duck is off-limits, so I'll look for a blue flash on the wing with a stripe going across the eye.  Similar to the Mottled Duck, but darker I suppose.


Attached Files
.pdf   Virginia Duck Hunting Limits.pdf (Size: 402.23 KB / Downloads: 6)
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#2
On the blacks it's pretty much shoot and pray in the swamp. They look so much like mallard hens it's hard to tell until they hit the water/ground. I have buddy who can tell on the wing but not me. I can make educated guesses when they are in groups but when singled up in low light it is pretty dang hard to say for sure. No idea why they close that first split on them. Seems like they could make it 1 to start the season and for the 2nd split then go to 2 blacks for the last split and probably save a few "illegal ducks" over truly honest mistakes and still get the same end point in terms of numbers.
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#3
Virginia is trying to increase the reaidemt population of Black Ducks. There are essentially no migrators in Virginia at this time of year, with the exception of some leftover teal and maybe some very early migrators (I saw about 2 dozen widgeon  two days ago).  That is why they are closed during the October split. 

As far as whistling ducks go, good luck. There may be a handful that reside in Virginia but they will be long gone in a couple weeks, as the weather gets cooler. You want to shoot those?  Go to Florida and hunt the Stormwater Treatment Areas between Lake Okechobee and the Everglades. I know a spot that holds thousands, every year.  I have hunted it once but the old lady that owns it doesn't normally allow hunting.

I would hate to think what would happen if the first duck you shot, before you started identification, was a Harlequin. That is likely the least possible scenario that could occur, just food for thought.
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