Is It Illegal To Kill Pigeons In Michigan [No]

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Pigeons are common in Michigan. This harmless appearing bird is the source of house mites. It is essential to prevent sky rodents from landing on your home. The easiest way to eliminate infesting pigeons is by killing them. However, is it illegal to kill pigeons in Michigan?  

No. It is not illegal to kill pigeons in Michigan. The federal authorities do not protect Feral pigeons and Eurasian collared doves. People can hunt unprotected species all year. To hunt Migratory pigeons, hunters will have to register for small games.   

The gaming festival is organized yearly depending on the breeding season. To learn more about pigeon shooting and hunting rules, read the article thoroughly.   

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

In Michigan, it is legal to hunt and eat all pigeon species. According to recent wildlife research, there are almost eight pigeon and dove species in Michigan. The most common pigeon species in Michigan state are the Rock pigeon, Band-tailed pigeon, Eurasian collared dove, Passenger pigeon, Inca, and Common ground dove. People can hunt Rock pigeons and Eurasian collared doves all year and anywhere in the state except in the state park and recreation areas. 

To hunt Migratory pigeons, hunters must sign themselves for the small game. The wildlife authorities organize small game or hunting festivals each year from the beginning of September till the 1st of January.

The hunting season for each Migratory pigeon species is divided into days depending on the breeding of the pigeon specie. There is a daily bag count and possession limit for each Migratory pigeon species. It is illegal to hunt Migratory pigeons off-season or on other dates not given by the wildlife authorities.  

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

In Michigan, it is not illegal to hunt and eat pigeons. People can shoot and hunt Rock pigeons and Eurasian collared doves all year. But food authorities do not recommend people eat unprotected pigeon species as they carry and spread multiple infectious diseases.   

Federal authorities allow pigeon hunting only during the gaming festival. Migratory pigeons are part of the Migratory bird act Treaty. This treaty was signed in 1918 between the USA and other foreign countries to protect endangered and migratory birds.

The Migratory pigeons have limited hunting days, bag count, and possession limits to ensure the population does not decline in Michigan. The daily possession limit indicates the number of pigeons one hunter can possess. For example, in Michigan, the possession limit of the Mourning dove is 30, and the daily bag count is 15.

If a hunter has 20 Mourning doves from the previous game, he/she cannot hunt more than 10 Mourning doves the next day. To hunt five more doves, hunters can eat five from their possession.   

Laws Governing About Pigeon Shooting In Michigan State 

Shooting laws are to ensure the safe hunting and killing of pigeons. The rules are different in each state depending upon the breeding of pigeon species and their development. In some states, it is essential to have a Hunting education certificate, but in other USA states, it is not. 

Similarly, there are different hunting age criteria. Below are some necessary laws about pigeon shootings in Michigan. 

Hunting License  

In Michigan, anyone above age ten can purchase a hunting license. It is available online, or you can buy it via wildlife agents. There are multiple types of hunting licenses depending on age and background. A youth hunting license is for people from ages 10 to 17. As per the law, young hunters must be under the direct supervision of an adult hunter above age 21.  

The charges for hunting licenses slightly differ for residents and non-residents. However, both residents and non-residents must revoke their hunting licenses each year. Adults aged 65 will have to get a senior hunting license.   

Hunting Season  

People can hunt or take down Rock pigeons and Eurasian collared doves all year. However, it is not legal to hunt Migratory pigeons off-season. For hunting, Migratory pigeon hunters can check dates on the Michigan wildlife website or local newspaper.   

Hunting On Private Property  

Hunters can freely shoot pigeons on their own land without permission, but they must have a hunting license. If you want to shoot pigeons on someone else private property, you will have to get permission from the landowner by writing an application.

Then submit the signed application to the local wildlife office for the permit. Therefore, you will have to carry a hunting license and permit on the field along with you.  

Pigeon Shooting Weapons  

To shoot pigeons, hunters can use Shotguns and archery equipment. The Shotgun must be of 10 calibers and should not hold more than three bullets. A Shotgun that has the capacity of more than three bullets is illegal on the field. Archery equipment includes a simple bow and arrow or crossbow. Arrow or bullet must not be poisoned and neither running on an electronic medium.   


Hunters use different techniques to attract pigeons on the field. The most common way is using decoys or food like grains and seeds. Hunters can use decoys and food only for Rock pigeons and Eurasian collared doves. The authorities do not allow either of these attractions to lure Migratory pigeons onto the field. 

How Can You Shoot And Hunt Pigeons At Michigan State? 

Hunting pigeon is a centuries-old practice. In the past, people used to hunt pigeons as a leisure time activity. This practice is still common. Many people enjoy shooting and eating specific pigeon species. However, hunting and shooting pigeons can be dangerous when hunters do not follow a set of guidelines. 

Following are some pointers to shoot and hunt pigeons in Michigan state:

  • Complete the Hunting education certificate course and purchase a hunting license via a website or agent.  
  • Young people aged 17 or below must be under the direct supervision of an adult hunter age 21 or above.  
  • To hunt Migratory pigeons, check official dates on the wildlife website or in the local newspaper.   
  • Hunting timing begins thirty minutes before sunrise and ends thirty minutes after sunset.   
  • Avoid shooting pigeons in residential areas. The state does not allow the use of firearms within 150 yards of a residence or any dwellings.   
  • To hunt on private property, obtain a permit by writing an application to the landowner.  
  • Hunters must wear all the safety gear on the field, including vests, gloves, and goggles.   
  • When participating in a small game, wear bright orange or pink vest, cap, and backpack.  
  • Hunters must carry a legal weapon on the field. No bullet or arrow can be poisoned.  
  • Submit the daily harvest and possession count of Migratory pigeons by filling out the forum online.   
  • Avoid eating Feral pigeons. It is better to dispose of the harvest in large plastic bags. 


Pigeons are frequent in cities and developed areas due to many food and shelter sources. Their invasion of homes is common and annoying. People living in Michigan can spot Rock pigeons and Eurasian-collared doves hanging around their property. Their infestation is the source of multiple health risks. The best way is to shoot them. It is illegal to shoot within 150 yards of a residential area. Farmers and other agricultural landowners can shoot pigeons. 

Hunting pigeon is a centuries-old game. Hunters living in Michigan can enjoy hunting Migratory pigeons during the late months of September till December. However, it has a possession limit and daily bag count.