TPWD Announces Major Changes to Dove & Deer Hunting Regulations


AUSTIN  — The Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission has approved hunting regulations for the 2024-25 season, incorporating several adjustments and clarifications to the Statewide Hunting and dove and deer hunting regulations.

The modifications include:

  • Elimination of the Light Goose Conservation Order: This measure applies to both eastern and western zones due to continual declines in wintering light geese populations in Texas.

  • Extension of Regular Goose Season: In the Eastern Zone, the regular goose season for light geese will be extended by 19 days to enhance hunting opportunities during the regular season.

  • Reduction of Daily Bag Limit: The daily bag limit for light geese in both eastern and western zones will be reduced from 10 to five.

  • Standardization of Possession Limit: The possession limit for light geese will be standardized to three times the daily bag limit for regulatory consistency.

  • Changes to Greater White-fronted Goose Bag Limit: Daily bag limit restrictions for greater white-fronted goose will be simplified from two in the aggregate to a dark goose daily bag limit of five in the western zone.

  • Alteration of Special White-winged Dove Days Season Structure: This change is implemented due to calendar progression.

  • Revision of Dove Season Structure: The season structure of the second segment for dove in the north zone will be adjusted to allow later dove hunting during the holiday season.

  • Implementation of Statewide Mandatory Harvest Reporting: Mandatory harvest reporting for all wild turkeys during all seasons and counties will be required to enhance harvest data for management purposes.

  • Closure of Spring-only Hunting Season for Wild Turkeys: In Fannin, Lamar, Red River, and Bowie counties south of Highway 82, the spring-only hunting season for wild turkeys will be closed due to ongoing restoration efforts by TPWD, NWTF, and landowners.

  • Closure of Wild Turkey Hunting Seasons in Certain Counties: Wild turkey hunting seasons will be closed in Bell and Williamson counties east of Interstate 35 (I-35) and in all of Milam County to facilitate restocking efforts for population restoration by TPWD and landowners.

  • Simplification of Wild Turkey Subspecies Regulations: References to Rio Grande and Eastern wild turkey subspecies will be replaced with "wild turkey" to simplify county regulations.

  • Reduction of Wild Turkey Hunting Season Length and Bag Limit: In certain counties, the wild turkey hunting season length and annual bag limit will be reduced to a spring-only season from April 1-30 and a one gobbler (male turkey) annual bag limit to align with wild turkey populations.

  • Change of Desert Bighorn Sheep Hunting Season: The desert bighorn sheep hunting season will be changed from Sept. 1 – July 31 to Nov. 15 – Sept. 30 to facilitate safer flying conditions during TPWD aerial surveys.

  • Expansion of Harvest Option in the Managed Lands Deer Program: Youth will be allowed to harvest bucks with a firearm on properties enrolled in the Harvest Option of the Managed Lands Deer Program during the same days corresponding to the early youth-only season for county regulations.

  • Expansion of Doe Days and Youth-only Seasons: Doe days will be expanded in 43 counties in the Post Oak Savannah and Pineywoods ecoregions to improve white-tailed deer population management. Additionally, youth-only seasons in the fall will be expanded to include Friday for white-tailed deer, squirrels, and wild turkeys to provide greater hunting opportunities for youth.

Hunters are advised to take note of these changes and adhere to all regulations regarding species, tagging, bag limits, counties, season dates, means, and methods. Complete and updated regulations for the 2024-25 season will be available in the Outdoor Annual beginning May 13 on the TPWD website. It's important to note that information currently in the Outdoor Annual reflects last season’s data.

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