The unmistakable booms from shotguns will be heard Saturday with the annual opening of dove hunting season in Texas.
In the north and central zones, this year's season runs 90 days over two periods, the first from Sept. 1 through Nov. 4 and the second from Dec. 21 through Jan. 14, 2019.
Texas is home to several subspecies of dove, some are legal to hunt, such as the mourning, white-winged and white-tipped varieties, in limited amounts. Others, such as the band-tailed pigeon, inca dove are common ground dove, are protected and are illegal to hunt. Hunters unfamiliar with the varieties of birds can familiarize themselves with the fowl at the Texas Parks and Wildlife web page.
Legal shooting hours run from one-half hour before sunrise to sunset. All migratory game bird hunters must have a valid hunting license, as well as a stamp endorsement. The daily bag limit for doves statewide is 15 and the possession limit is three times the daily bag limit.
Dove hunting is a popular activity in several North Texas counties and can occur relatively close to populated areas. The cities of Frisco and McKinney have provided maps showing areas where hunting is permitted inside city limits. See the Frisco map here and the McKinney map here.
Texas' 81s legislature passed Senate Bill 1742 which regulated the firing of weapons in municipalities.
Frisco summarized the legislation saying hunters "must ensure that they are at least 1,000 feet from schools, hospitals, and day care facilities, as well as at least 600 feet from residential housing and multi-family residential complexes. Additionally, hunters should ensure--as always--that they fire their weapons in a manner not reasonably expected to cause a projectile to cross the boundary of property tracts."
If you need to know more about where you can hunt for dove, what the regulations are while hunting and what kind of dove you can hunt -- head over to The Texas Parks and Wildlife's Dove Hunting Checklist here.