Is It Illegal To Kill Pigeons In Missouri

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Pigeons are adaptable. They are persistent and will stay in one place for a long time. An ample food supply and a good shelter make them cling to one place. Therefore, eliminating pigeons from home is not as easy as it sounds. You always have the option to kill them. So, is it illegal to kill pigeons in Missouri?   

No. It is not illegal to kill pigeons in Missouri. The law doesn’t classify pigeons as wildlife specie. So, you can hunt Feral pigeons and Eurasian-collared doves all year. But there are restrictions for certain pigeon species.  

Pigeons nest are also the source of House mites. Read the article to learn more about the ways to eliminate pigeons.  

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

It is legal to hunt and eat all pigeon species in Missouri. But, the federal authorities restrict Migratory pigeon hunting. It is legal to shoot them only during the gaming season. Migratory pigeon species in the state are Mourning doves and White-winged doves.   

Mourning doves are graceful, small-headed, and slender-tailed doves. They are tan overall with black spots on the wings. Their tail is printed with white strips.

White-winged doves are brown overall with a dark line on the cheek. They have a white stripe at the edge of the wing, which appears darker on the flight. Their tail is tipped in white and grey shades.  

The small games start on 1st September and end on 29th November. The dates for the Small game can change each year depending on the season. Hunters can eat the pigeons harvested during the Small game. 

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

In Missouri, it is illegal to hunt Migratory pigeons off-season. The gaming season begins in September. Hunters can take down a certain number of doves during the games. However, hunting of doves or Migratory pigeons is not legal all year.   

The doves are part of the Migratory bird treaty act. The treaty was signed in 1918 between the USA and other countries’ governments. As per the act, it is unlawful to harm, kill, shoot, trap, and trade the doves.   

Hunters can hunt doves only during Small games. But there is a daily bag count and possession limit for them. The possession limit is the number of doves one can have during the hunting season.  

The combined possession limit of doves in Missouri is 45. It is legal to eat doves to increase your daily harvest count. But, it’s better to avoid the meat of Feral pigeons and Eurasian collared doves. Both of these unprotected species carry bacteria. 

Laws Governing About Pigeon Shooting In Missouri State. 

There are laws for pigeon hunting all across the USA. The rules are the same in all states, with slight differences. These rules ensure safe hunting and have shown some positive results. I have discussed some essential laws you must know about pigeon shootings in Missouri. 

Hunting Education Course 

If you are planning to purchase a hunting license in Missouri, you must complete a Hunting education course. The course is mandatory for people born on or after 1st January 1967. One must be at least ten years old to take the course. People aged ten can take the classes but can’t take the Hunting education skills session. To enroll in the skills session, one must be at least eleven.  

The hunting lessons are given online. But the skill practice is done on the ground. At the end of the classes, there is an MCQ-based test. You must take both sessions to attempt the quiz. To get the certificate, you must score eight percent on the test. 

Hunting License 

Every hunter needs to have a hunting license regardless of age and residence. It is available online, or you can purchase it via an agent. The hunting license lasts only a year. Hunters will have to revoke it during the last days of Feb. 

The hunting age in the state is six or above. But only people above ten can participate in the small game. Youth hunting License is for people ten to sixteen. Youth hunters can participate in small games. However, they must be under the guidance of a licensed hunter. Additionally, youth hunters will also have to carry permits for hunting doves. 

Hunting Time  

In Missouri, the hunting hours begin thirty minutes before sunrise. It ends thirty minutes after the sun sets. The federal authorities don’t permit hunting on Sundays. It is also unlawful to shoot pigeons within 500 meters of worship places. 

Private Land  

Most of the land in the state is privately owned. To hunt on private land, you will need a permit from the owner. The permit form is available online on the wildlife website. After acceptance of the request form, hunters can shoot pigeons on private land. However, the landowner, their spouse, children, and tenants can hunt on it without a permit. 

How Can You Shoot And Hunt Pigeons In Missouri state? 

Shooting and hunting pigeons are legal. But it is easy only if you know the rules. You must know the procedure or steps of pigeon hunting in Missouri. Given below are some pointers to help you. 

  • Carry your hunting license and essential permits on the field.  
  • You must have the safety gear and first aid kit with you.  
  • Select a legal weapon for hunting pigeons. You can use a shotgun of at least ten calibers or a bow and arrow. However, the shotgun must not hold more than ten pallets.  
  • Check the newspaper and website for an update on Migratory pigeon hunting days.  
  • Register for Small games ahead of the date. So you can get the slot. 
  • Get your registration done ahead if you wish to hunt on private property.  
  • Wear blaze orange or pink clothing on the field. You can wear a similar vest, cap, and backpack. 
  • It is forbidden to use decoys, food, and electronic calls to attract Migratory pigeons onto the field. You can use it for Feral pigeons and Eurasian collared doves.  
  • Collect harvest in separate bags according to their species.  
  • Inform the bag count and possession limit of the wildlife authorities. 


Hunting pigeons is legal in Missouri. The state authorities don’t consider pigeons as wildlife species. However, there are some protected pigeon species, and some are not. The state doesn’t preserve the Rock pigeons and Eurasian-collared doves. You can hunt them all year without limit. 

But you can’t hunt Mourning and White-winged doves all year. Hunters will have to wait for a small game to hunt them. There is also a restriction on the harvest count of Migratory pigeons. Hunters can only shoot or hunt 15 while possessing 45 per day. The hunting weapons can be shotguns, bows, and arrows.