Dove hunters hitting the fields Saturday need to be sure they know the law.

Erath County Game Warden Tony Navarro said every hunter should inspect the land for bait before hunting begins. A hunter may not hunt migratory birds with the aid of bait, or on, or over any baited area.

“If the hunter finds bait he should leave the place immediately and notify the local game warden,” Navarro said.

Navarro said he can be contacted through the Erath County Sheriff’s Department.

Erath County is in the central hunting zone which means hunters have a daily bag limit of 12 and a possession limit of 24 birds. But, the area north of Interstate 20 is considered the northern zone, Navarro said, and the daily limit is 15 birds.

Navarro said anyone bird hunting should have a migratory bird stamp on their hunting licenses and said he encountered several hunters last year that did not have the required stamp.

Navarro said the legal hunting hours are 30 minutes before sunrise to sunset.

“Hunters should look at a GPS for sunrise/sunset tables for the area they will be in,” Navarro said. “That’s the most accurate device.”

Navarro said he and Hood County Game Warden Danny Tuggle, along with local biologist, James Edwards, will be on hand to answer any questions at Star Arms on U.S. Hwy 377 towards Dublin beginning at 9 a.m. today and continuing until the afternoon.

This dove season will run through Oct. 1. The next season will begin on Dec. 26 and run through Jan. 4.

ANGELIA JOINER is a staff writer for the Empire-Tribune. She can be reached at or (254) 965-3124,ext. 238