Millions of geese enter Kansas during winter
months, and now is the time to hunt these impressive waterfowl. Three kinds of geese
may be found together: Canada geese, the most familiar, white-fronted geese, and snow geese.
Geese are social and congregate by family groups into large flocks that roost on any
open water. City environments with their relative safety often become geese headquarters. Geese
are long-lived birds that are smart and hard to hunt. Scouting is essential to learn where
birds are feeding and this may change on a daily basis. The best advice: hunt where geese
want to be. Most goose hunting takes place on private
land, so getting permission is vital. A successful hunt often requires lots of work.
Decoys are set before daylight in hopes of attracting flying geese. Layout blinds allow
camouflaged hunters to hide among the decoys for close shots.
Goose calling is an important art that helps invite birds to land. Geese are suspicious
and will bypass hunting setups where anything seems out of place.
Large powerful birds require nontoxic heavy shot and many hunters use special shotgun
chokes to increase range out to about 50 yards. All waterfowl hunters must also have state
and federal duck stamps in addition to a hunting license when required by law.
When everything comes together, goose hunting is an unforgettable experience. The beauty
of birds setting in against a painted sunrise keeps hunters coming back again and again.
The reward is a tasty meal that is part of a timeless tradition over Kansas fields and
marshes. Canada and snow goose seasons are open now.
Whitefronted goose season opens again February 5th and the season for all dark geese closes
February 13th. A special conservation order allows snow goose hunting to continue through
April 30. Consult hunting regulations for further information.
I’m Mike Blair for Kansas Wildlife and Parks.