Mourning Dove
Register for HIP to Hunt Doves

To hunt doves and other migratory birds in Iowa, federal regulations require that hunters be registered with the Harvest Information Program (HIP). Hunters who hunt waterfowl or other migratory birds such as woodcock register for HIP when they pay the state migratory bird fee (stamp). Although dove hunters are not required to pay the state or federal migratory bird fee they must still register for HIP to legally hunt doves. Landowners who are only going to hunt on their own land or hunters such as those 16 and under who do not need a license do not need to register for HIP.

This year, hunters who purchased their hunting licenses after August 14th should have been asked whether they were going to hunt doves. If they responded “yes” then: “Dove: Y” was printed on their license. If a hunter responds "no" at the time of purchase but later changes their mind they need to register with HIP to hunt doves even if they paid the state migratory bird fee.

Dove hunters can register for HIP in two ways:
  1. They can go to the DNR’s online license sales site and login as if they were going to buy a license. Once they have entered their ID information (either the DNR # printed on their hunting license, their driver license number or their social security number and date of birth) they will see a "Dove Registration" button on the top of the screen.

  2. Hunters who do not have access to the internet can call a toll free number: 855-242-3683.
Hunters do not need to pay for a duplicate license that has the Dove: Y printed on it to go hunting for doves. Registering for HIP online or by phone is all that is needed.

Determining accurate harvest levels for game species, such as doves, are critical to the scientific management of game populations. The HIP program gives biologists the information they need to ensure conservation of migratory bird populations while providing quality hunting opportunities.
  • Purchase and view / print your licenses & permits
  • Submit harvest reports and check quotas
  • View and Manage Your Customer Account


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Mourning Dove Hunting in Iowa

Iowa became the 42nd state to have a hunting season for mourning doves in 2011. Dove hunting provides an opportunity for hunters of any age or experience level to participate due to an abundance of birds, simple equipment needs and moderate physical activity.

Doves are a  migratory bird and can be found in all 99 counties with highest populations in the Loess Hills and southern three tiers of Iowa counties. They prefer open habitats such as farmland, prairies, grasslands and lightly wooded areas.

Dove Hunting in Iowa Guide
Landowner Tips for Attracting Doves

Food Plot Sites
DNR Wildlife Management Areas & IHAP Sites with Food Plots Attractive to Doves
Migratory Game Bird Season Dates

We work hard to keep our calendar current, but always refer to the hunting regulation booklet for official, legal season dates.

2021-2022 North Zone Central Zone South Zone
Youth Waterfowl Sept. 25-26 Oct 2-3 Oct 9-10
Ducks, Mergansers & Coots Oct 2-8 &
Oct 16 - Dec 7
Oct 9-15 &
Oct 23 - Dec 14
Oct 16-22 &
Oct 30 - Dec 21
Dark Geese & Light Geese Sept 25 - Oct 10 &
Oct 16 - Dec 7 &
Dec 11 - Jan 8, 2022
Oct 2-17 &
Oct 23 - Dec 14 &
Dec 18 - Jan 15, 2022
Oct 9-24 &
Oct 30 - Dec 21 &
Dec 25 - Jan 22, 2022
 2021-2022 Statewide Limit
Special September Teal Sept 1 - 16 Daily limit is 6
Doves Sept 1 - Nov 29 Daily limit is 15
Snipe Sept 4 - Nov 30 Daily limit is 8
Rail Sept 4 - Nov 12 Daily limit is 12
Woodcock Oct 2 - Nov 15 Daily limit is 3
  • Special September Canada Goose (designated areas): Sep. 4-12, Daily limit is 5. Only in designated zones around Des Moines, Cedar Rapids/Iowa City and Cedar Falls/Waterloo. Special regulations apply. Maps: Cedar Rapids/Iowa City Zone, Des Moines Zone, and Waterloo/Cedar Falls Zone
  • Light Geese Conservation Order (additional regulations apply. Regulations, p. 21): Jan 23 - May 1, 2022
    White & blue phase snow geese & Ross’ geese