Is It Illegal To Kill Pigeons In California

Spread the love

The increase in the pigeon population in California is alarming. They are widely known as rats with wings and are a common neighborhood pest. The state government does not allow California residents to feed wild birds. As the food attracts the pigeons, they cause filth and destruction. So, you must be wondering, is it illegal to kill pigeons in California?  

No. It is not illegal to kill pigeons in California. The state government does not protect local pigeons and allows the hunting of all species. However, you will need a license. Plus, an additional permission letter for hunting Band-tailed pigeons.  

Continue reading to learn more about the process of legal hunting of pigeons in California.

Which Type Of Pigeons Are Illegal To Hunt And Eat In California? 

It is legal to hunt and eat all types of pigeons in California, as long as you have a hunting license issued by the local authorities. Common pigeons in the city are the Rock dove, Band-tailed pigeon, Mourning dove, Eurasian colored dove, and Diamond dove.

The band-tailed pigeons have included a migratory bird. According to the Migratory act 1918, it is not allowed to kill a migratory bird like the band-tailed pigeon.  

However, the California state government allows only two band-tailed pigeons to hunt per year. You will need a special hunting license issued by the local authority to hunt band-tail pigeons.

It is legal to eat pigeons in California. Numerous fancy restaurant across the city offers pigeon meat as well. However, locals do not encourage the eating of pigeon meat.  

Why Is It Illegal To Hunt And Eat Pigeon In California?  

It is not illegal to hunt and eat pigeons in California. In fact, there is nine days season twice a year, especially for hunting local pigeons. The state government allows the resident to kill all species of pigeons. However, you will need a license issued by the local authorities to hunt and eat pigeons.  

The only exception is the band-tailed pigeon. The state requires you to have a hunting license and a special permit for hunting band-tailed pigeons. Because band-tailed pigeons are migratory birds according to the Migratory act 1918. It is not allowed to kill migratory birds unless you have a permit, or it can result in a fine and jail.

Can You Hunt Rock Pigeons In California?

You can hunt rock pigeons in California. Rock pigeons are a species of feral pigeons, and the local government does not protect them.

It is legal to hunt and kill rock pigeons even without a license on your property. However, hunting rock pigeons outside your property or on public property requires a hunting license.

Rock pigeons are common in California. They are more adapted to the city lifestyle than living in the countryside. The rock pigeon population is so high that they are now considered a pest.

Therefore, state authorities and locals encourage hunting rock pigeons to eliminate annoyance. But, eating rock pigeons is unsafe, and the local food authorities have declared it unsafe.

When Can You Shoot Pigeons In California?

You can shoot pigeons all around the year in California. The peak breeding time of the pigeons is spring and fall. Therefore, the best pigeon hunting months are between August to December.

In California, every year, there are two nine days of pigeon hunting season split according to the time and location. September hunting season occurs in the northern zone, and December hunting season is in the southern.  

The state authorities are lenient towards the farmers and other agricultural cropland owners. You can shoot pigeons anytime on your property, with or without a license. They are allowed to kill any bird, including pigeons causing annoyance and destroying the property.

Can I Shoot Pigeons For Food In California?

You can shoot pigeons for food in California. However, it is not safe to eat wild pigeons in California as they carry infectious diseases which can be lethal for humans. The state encourages hunting pigeons, but food authorities do not entertain the idea of eating and serving pigeons.  

E Coli is the most common organism that spreads from pigeons to humans and causes many health risks. Other infections you can get from pigeons are histoplasmosis and cryptococcus. Therefore, it is better to only hunt pigeons in California for fun and game, or you can end up in the emergency room.

Laws Governing About Pigeon Shooting In California  

The pigeon population is increasing in California at an alarming rate. Therefore, the government has made pigeon hunting legal to control their growth and to keep the city pest free.

There are specific laws about pigeon shooting. Some laws are implemented across the US but differ in conditions, and other rules are according to the state. Following are the rules about pigeon shootings in California.  

Hunting Band-Tailed Pigeon  

According to this Migratory act treaty, the residents of the united states are forbidden to hunt migratory birds that are in the country for only a few months. The Migratory treat act applies to the Band-tailed pigeon in California.

The authorities of wildlife California are slightly lenient and require you to have a permit to hunt Band-tailed pigeons. However, you cannot kill more than two band-tailed pigeons each year.  

Hunting License   

Participating in pigeon hunting season in California requires you to have a license issued by the local authorities. Minors under 12 can hunt when accompanied by an adult and must possess a minor hunting license. People above 16 must have an adult hunting license to shoot pigeons.

How Can You Shoot And Hunt Pigeons In California?

There are many different species of pigeons living in California. Common are feral or rock pigeons and the most annoying species of pigeon. The pigeons in California are a nuisance destroying properties and crops.

Therefore, California authorities have no pigeon protection laws and allow people to shoot pigeons without a license on their private properties. You still need to follow guidelines to shoot and hunt pigeons legally in California.  

  • You will need a license from state wildlife authorities to hunt pigeons legally in California.  
  • The hunting license is according to age. Below the age of 12, must possess a minor hunting license. People above 16 must have an adult hunting license.  
  • Move far from the residential area for pigeon hunting unless the pigeon infestation is severe around your house.
  • Select a good quality weapon or an air rifle that can kill the pigeon without causing it much pain.  
  • It is best to hunt pigeons during the breeding season, between august and September. However, you can kill pigeons any time you want.  
  • It is allowed to hunt only two band-tailed pigeons each season. However, wildlife does not protect feral pigeons.  
  • Use pigeon decoys and food to attract more pigeons to the hunting site.

Conclusion  

It is legal to kill pigeons in California as their infestation is becoming severe in the city. Their many species of pigeons residing in California. Hunting pigeons in California is legal.

But food authorities do entertain the idea of eating wild pigeons. The local government does not protect the feral or rock pigeons. However, it is necessary to have a permit to hunt band-tailed pigeons.  

You must have a hunting license to shoot or kill a pigeon in California. However, you can kill pigeons on your private property without a hunting license. In California, every year, there are two nine days of pigeon hunting season split according to the time and location.

References

Leave a Comment