The Game To Hunt In Winter
The winter season comes with its peculiarity and this means that there is likely going to be a limitation for many hunters on what can be hunted. This point of note notwithstanding, there is lots of game to choose from as the cold kicks in across North America and the rest of the northern hemisphere.
There is no doubt that the weather can make hunting less desirable and difficult, but, there is a wide array of animals that will be a hunter’s delight to prey upon. There are several migratory birds, waterfowl, big game, trapping and other small game.
The scheme for hunting during winter
The winter opening might be restrictive, but, it offers several weeks of hunting expedition that will be eventful for the hunter. Here is my outline of suitable animals that make the cut for winter hunting:
The Endangered Snow Leopard
While the snow leopard can be classified as endangered, it can be seen around the peaks of the high mountain range that stretches from outlying parts of Bhutan to the inland regions of China.
It is estimated that there are about 4,000 snow leopards in existence in the wild and coming across them is not easy. However, if you happen to be in the northernmost parts of Asia, wherever you find the big blue sheep, the snow leopard will be lurking around. The taste for livestock is the lure that makes the snow leopard a target for experienced hunters during winter.
In North America, the ruffled grouse, pheasants, snow owl, and geese, among others, is the common prey for hunters. It is a tiny opening to hunt the ruffled grouse in January as the late season affords hunters a chance to target the birds.
As a hunter, you can still put your shotgun to use across the northern regions that stretches into Pelee Island in the south of Ontario. If you were able to get the quota for the season, the birds will be an attraction. The geese and ducks are open to be hunted as January closes, while the late season could extend to mid-February to allow for the hunt of the white geese.
In Pennsylvania and Texas, you need to have the migratory bird hunting stamp before you can roam the wild to make the kill. The Canada goose can be hunted in Nova Scotia and southern parts of Ontario while duck hunting is active around Newfoundland and Eastern Quebec.
The doves can be hunted in Texas from late December till the end of the first week of January. The snow owl can be found around the Arctic Tundra, as this is the active prey it feeds on during the winter season. Any hunter targeting snow owls will do well to have a clear idea on where the Arctic tundra can be seen in their numbers.
The open season for dove hunting in Georgia lasts till the end of January. Eurasian doves can be hunted without a limit but the mourning dove quota is put at 15 per day for each hunter, and it is the common kill among hunters in the state during this season.
The big game presents a perfect lure for hunters when the season gets chilly and cold for everyone. In northern Texas, you can find the white-tailed deer as the main attraction when winter sets in around mid-November till early January. The spike deer and the late antlerless is the big kill all through January except for the last week.
In Canada, the caribou (or reindeer) becomes the attraction till February ends in the precincts of Manitoba. These animals are known to migrate in great numbers when winter sets in, and they do so in search of tundra plants found in North America.
Lovers of the feral boars around the region will find the prey in farmlands in the southern regions of Manitoba. Since there is no closed season here, only a hunting permit will do for the perfect winter hunting harvest.
If you love the Georgian landscape in winter, you can go bear hunting in this American state till the end of December. However, there is a curb on the number of bears you are allowed to bag, in different parts of the state. While you are allowed one bag in some parts, you are allowed two in others. The hunting regulations make for certain bears to be tagged and cleared with the wildlife agencies before they can be shot.
The Musk Ox
The cozy Musk Ox is known to grow an additional layer of insulating undercoat when the Arctic winter becomes fierce, although hunting once drove this game to near-extinction.
Through protective action and legislation, this prey has regained its numbers across North American northern fringes. If you are a match for the fierce winter, head to Alaska and find this rare breed for a perfect kill.
The snowshoe hare is one prey that hunters can hunt till the end of February in many parts of North America. There is a chance to hunt them through March in some regions where the quota is more accommodating.
In Georgia, rabbits can be hunted till the end of February and a hunter can bag up to 12 each day in this American state. Other variants of rabbits like the cottontail are a protected species in British Colombia although they can be hunted in the other Prairie Provinces.
In Ontario southern fringes, cottontail rabbits like the European hare, are allowed to be hunted till February ends. The daily quota is 6 per hunter for the CT rabbits. In Quebec, hunting cottontail rabbits will be allowed until the end of March while the Arctic hare has no quota and can be hunted all through winter.
Other Small game
There are a couple of other small game that can be hunted during winter and they include pigeons, squirrels, porcupines as well as raccoons and crows. The cougar is also an attraction in North America, and they add to the number of small game that keeps hunters busy till the Turkey hunting season opens.