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New Jersey Offers Three Youth Waterfowl Days in 2007

August 22, 2007

The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection’s Division of Fish and Wildlife is offering three waterfowl hunting days for young hunters this fall. Youth days will be held on a Saturday in each of the state’s three waterfowl zones – October 6 in the North Zone; October 13 in the South Zone; and October 27 in the Coastal Zone. Youth days are part of the division's Take a Kid Hunting program.

This special opportunity is provided to introduce young hunters to waterfowl hunting. New Jersey's three waterfowl zones are ecologically quite different, with unique patterns of waterfowl migration within each zone. This allows the Division of Fish and Wildlife to schedule youth days during periods of higher waterfowl abundance within each zone to enhance the hunting experience for youths and their mentors.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has allowed states to select their own youth waterfowl hunting days since 1997. States must select weekends, holidays, or other non-school days when youngsters can participate. In addition, these special youth days are held outside of the regular duck season within a given zone so youngsters can hunt in a more relaxed atmosphere.

Young hunters with a valid youth license and accompanied by an adult (aged 21 or older) may participate in as many youth hunting days as they wish. As such, mentors that are willing to travel could involve their youths in up to three different youth waterfowl hunting days in New Jersey.

During the youth days, daily bag limits for all species will be the same as their respective bag limit during the regular season. Specifically, duck bag limits will be 6 ducks and may not include more than 4 mallards (including no more than 2 hens), 4 scoters, 2 scaup, 2 wood ducks, 2 redheads, 2 canvasbacks, 1 pintail, and 1 black duck. Youths will also be able to take 3 Canada geese, 2 brant, and 15 snow geese in each of the zones. Bag limits for coots, moorhens and gallinules will also be the same as the bag limit allowed during the regular season. See the New Jersey 2007-08 Migratory Bird Regulations for details.

During the past several years, New Jersey has held it's North Zone Youth Day during September. However, with the addition of special regulations for September Canada geese (i.e.: permitted use of electronic calls, unplugged guns, and extended shooting hours) beginning in 2007, states cannot hold any waterfowl seasons, including youth days, concurrently with this season. As a result, the North Zone Youth Day was moved into October.

Mentors and young hunters should note that New Jersey’s Wildlife Management Area System currently consists of over 300,000 acres of public land open to hunting which can help them make the most of these multiple youth days. The WMA system includes a plethora of waterfowl habitats including wooded swamps, flowing streams, lakes, and tidal marshes, allowing a mentor to choose the type of hunt best suitable for his style of waterfowl hunting.

Youth hunters can also take advantage of having a mentor assist them with waterfowl hunting at the Wading River Youth Hunting Blind within the 162-acre Wading River Wildlife Management Area in Burlington County. Use of a blind is by registration only at select dates during the regular waterfowl season.

For more information on hunting opportunities in New Jersey as well as maps of wildlife management areas, visit

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Copyright © State of New Jersey, 1996-2007
Department of Environmental Protection
P. O. Box 402
Trenton, NJ 08625-0402

Last Updated: August 21, 2007