Duck and Goose Hunting on Vancouver Island

Anything you need to know about the best time, places, outfitters, and regulations of Vancouver Island duck and goose hunting, you can find them here. We are ready to help you make a rewarding BC hunting opportunity.

The content is valid until June 30, 2026.

Vancouver Island, with fantastic waterfowl hunting spots, offers duck and goose hunting. These waterfowls are migratory game birds with growth potential. Approximately five million resident geese are in North America, and there is no shortage of places to hunt waterfowl in BC. Lakes, rivers and wetlands are among landmarks that hold ample numbers of birds. Their hunting potential initially generated interest in game birds. Many studies have shown that modern managed duck and goose hunting has a negligible effect on bird numbers year to year. Biologists recognized geese on Vancouver Island, including Snow and Ross's goose, White-Fronted goose, Canada goose, and Cackling goose. Canada goose can weigh upwards of 12-15 pounds (5.5-6.8 kg).

History of Duck and Goose Hunting on Vancouver Island

A passion for wetlands and waterfowl drives waterfowling traditions. The natives on the southwestern side of North America used duck snares for hunting at least two thousand years ago.
The natives did duck hunting in Canada, but the exercise increased after the Europeans brought guns into the country. Following this modernization, duck hunting had to be regulated to protect these birds.
In the late 1990s, regulatory agencies enacted laws to reduce snow goose numbers. The actions were increasing open seasons, hunting duration in a day and bag limits, and changing policies for using unplugged shotguns and electronic calls.
These measures have significantly increased snow goose hunts but have not greatly reduced their numbers. Now duck and goose harvesting on Vancouver Island is forbidden in November and December.

Vancouver Island Duck and Goose Hunters

First of all, ensure to obtain permissions in advance of your hunt, such as a Federal Migratory Bird Hunting Permit. Whether looking for ducks in shallow water or geese in a field, whether you are a new or an expert hunter, don't forget about a few pieces of equipment for making your waterfowl hunt successful. They can help you locate, hide, shoot, and recover birds. Although ducks may be inside your shooting range, long-distance shooting is very specialized, and hunters must have good skills with a shotgun. As a hunter, you may have challenges harvesting duck and goose as a hunter, but your patience ends in high-quality wild game meats.

Book Your Guided Duck and Goose Hunting Trip

Reasons to Hunt Duck and Goose on Vancouver Island

As duck and goose cause excessive damage to local crops, golf courses and gardens, it is expected to manage their numbers. However modern managed duck and goose hunting has a negligible effect on bird numbers year to year. By the way, with populations on the rise in general, waterfowling offers opportunities in long seasons, making duck and goose harvesting a rival to big game hunting. A good conversation often becomes the highlight of many days in a ground blind, boat or pit. Unless birds approach close, you don't have to worry about staying quiet. Geese are big birds; some Greater Canada Geese can weigh upwards of 12-15 pounds (5.5-6.8 kg). Some of the most delicate waterfowl meat we've ever had comes from snow geese. Believe it or not, several people have compared a goose breast to a good cut of beef.

Vancouver Island Duck and Goose Hunting Highlights

* You can laugh, talk, and even eat snacks when you duck and goose hunt unless these birds approach close.
* Ducks and geese can see colour, so you have to blend in.
* They hear surprisingly well.
* Having a dog magnifies the fun of hunting ducks and geese.
* Consider weather conditions and prepare for changes with suitable clothing.
* While you saw a group of waterfowl flying far away, give them the right call and make them interested in landing toward your decoys.

Where to Hunt Duck and Goose on Vancouver Island?

Central and south of Vancouver Island, including the east and west coast, are where you can expect to see geese and ducks. Tofino inlet used to be famous for its goose shooting. Waterfowling takes place in South Nanaimo for geese and ducks. Tofino, Long Beach, Port Renfrew, Jordan River, Sooke, Victoria, Courtenay, Campbell River, and Port Hardy are among the best duck and goose hunting locations. For now, the management units (MU) or the hunting areas designated by BC regulation for hunting ducks and geese are 1-1 to 1-15 on the region 1 (Vancouver Island) map with some restrictions for Canada and Cackling geese in different hunting seasons. But hunters should be aware of no hunting and shooting areas on Vancouver Island.
Bodies of water such as lakes, ponds, rivers, swamps, and oceanic coastlines are where they can be found. Agriculture fields are also where you can consider hunting ducks and geese.

When to Hunt Duck and Goose on Vancouver Island?

The open seasons for hunting duck on Vancouver Island are Oct 12, 2024 - Jan 26, 2025, and Oct 11, 2025 - Jan 25, 2026. Hunting geese (Snow and Ross) on the island is permitted from Oct 12, 2024 - Jan 26, 2025, and Oct 11, 2025 - Jan 25, 2026. Hunting other species of geese (White-fronted) is permitted during these units and dates:
✓ 1-1, 1-2, 1-4 to 1-7:
Sept 7, 2024 - Sept 17, 2024 and Sept 6, 2025 - Sept 16, 2025
Oct 12, 2024 - Nov 24, 2024 and Oct 11, 2025 - Nov 23, 2025
Dec 21, 2024 - Jan 12, 2025 and Dec 20, 2025 - Jan 11, 2026
Feb 10, 2025 - Mar 10, 2025 and Feb 10, 2026 - Mar 10, 2026

✓ 1-4 (Ex-Dinsdale property):
Oct 12, 2024 - Oct 21, 2024 and Oct 11, 2025 - Oct 20, 2025
Dec 21, 2024 - Dec 31, 2024 and Dec 20, 2025 - Dec 31, 2025
Feb 15, 2025 - Mar 10, 2025 and Feb 21, 2026 - Mar 10, 2026
Note: Season dates do not apply for the Ex-Dinsdale property in MU 1-4. There is no September season for Canada and cackling geese in that portion of MU 1-4 known as the Cowichan Bay Seasonal No Shooting Area.

 If you are interested in Canada Geese and Cackling Geese hunting, there are restrictions on firearm use and management units for open seasons.
It is believed that the best time of the day for waterfowl hunting on Vancouver Island is during the first hours of the morning after dawn. However, hunters have challenged that belief. Some duck and goose hunters find their most successful harvests happen in the afternoon or early evening. Besides the prime times, make sure you are also considering weather conditions and species-specific behaviour.
If nothing disturbs them, geese usually feed for an hour or two and leave the field about midmorning. Some of these migratory game birds return to their roost water to loaf and get a drink, but many use smaller waters for loafing. Assuming the weather is pretty consistent, ducks and geese typically make another feeding flight in the evening before returning to their roost water. But these birds can feed most of the day in fields throughout rainy or snowy weather.

Protected Areas of Vancouver Island, Based on the BC Act

Conditions for Hunting Duck and Goose on Vancouver Island

Weather Condition:
It is one of the main variables to consider when you aim for duck hunting. The ideal weather condition for every duck hunter could be a change in wind and precipitation brought on by a cold front. However, it isn't the only factor affecting waterfowl behaviour.
It is believed that waterfowl prefer cooler temperatures brought on by cold fronts; however, migratory timing and feeding patterns can make it harder to predict their movement based solely on temperature.
Barometric Pressure
Low barometric pressure signifies that the local air pressure is lower than its surroundings. Because low pressure is usually a sign of coming precipitation, wind, or approaching fronts, it is typically ideal for hunting waterfowl. Location, duck species, migration patterns, time of day and other factors also drastically affect catching these birds.

You May also Be Interested in These Hunting Tours

Salish Sea Duck Hunting | Fall-Winter 2024

Salish Sea Duck Hunting | Fall-Winter 2024

Four Day Three Night Hunts

Fall Raccoon Hunting 2024

Fall Raccoon Hunting 2024

A One-day Raccoon Hunting Tour in Victoria

Winter Duck & Goose Hunting 2024

Winter Duck & Goose Hunting 2024

A Two-day Duck & Goose Hunting Tour in Port Hardy

Spring Bear Hunting 2024

Spring Bear Hunting 2024

A Five-day Black Bear Hunting and Camping Tour in Port Alberni

Duck and Goose Hunting Methods on Vancouver Island

Hunters do not have the defined same ways to experience this game hunt. But it's expected to choose the best hunting methods for duck and goose according to your skills.

Shotgun Hunting

Each hunter must not use more than one shotgun while hunting migratory game birds unless each of them in excess of one is disassembled or unloaded and encased. Hunting ducks is a lot harder than it seems, so it's better to practice with your shotgun before hunting, and finally, you will get skilled at it with practice. It is suggested that you take the shine off your shotgun because ducks don't like shiny objects.

Archery Hunting

Bowhunting (or bow hunting) for waterfowls that fly long-distance is difficult, but according to British Columbia Hunting and Trapping Regulations Synopsis, using Bow D type (Longbow, Recurve, Compound) is possible if you are interested. It must have pulled off no less than 18 kg (40 lbs) within the archer's draw length.

Hunting with Decoys

Waterfowls are smart, and decoys can give you an edge by tricking the birds despite being not essential. Decoys cause them to come in and land where you want them to be. Place them (half a dozen to a dozen decoys is great) in a large semi-circle, opening away from you 20 to 30 meters (65-95 ft) downwind from your blind.

Duck Call

A call is a tool, not a noisemaker. Knowing about common duck calls, their meaning, their usage, and practicing would be necessary.
A skilled duck and goose caller can convince birds to travel a long distance to check out the calls they hear.

Hunting with Dogs

Many waterfowl hunters opt to bring their dogs with them on the hunt. Before heading out for waterfowl hunting, ensure you have the proper gear. Hunters mostly rely on dogs to mark, find, and recover birds. Any person may train dogs by allowing them, under supervision, to pursue game birds from Aug 1-Apr 30.

Hunting from a Blind

Some ways of hunting from a blind like blinds treestand or ground blind can be available on request for small game such as duck and goose. We offer ground blinds for some who cannot hunt from a tree stand. Guides try to keep very close contact with you while you are on the stand.

Duck and Goose Hunting Regulations on Vancouver Island

Regulations | BC Duck and Goose Hunts | Region 1

Vancouver Island Duck and Goose Hunt Cost

A one-day hunt starts at $1000/hunter. Your hunting package may or may not include a licence, cleaning and packaging ducks and geese, shotgun, duck and goose hunting decoys, blinds, and gear. So the exact price will be notified after calculating the cost of these items.

Choose Among the Best Guide Outfitters for Duck and Goose Hunting in BC

If you are a beginner, you may need many tips, tactics, and advice on duck and goose hunting, but reading about it alone won't make you a goose hunter. It is time to practice. Solo hunting trips will involve mistakes and failures. Right guide outfitters for duck and goose harvesting help you overcome those challenges.
Besides the advantages of accompanying quality, experienced guides and competition callers, the best gear you need would be available.
If you don't have a place to hunt around your hometown, hire a guide.
To experience a successful hunting tour:
1- Plan for it in advance.
2- Choose the areas where you intend to hunt for your waterfowl hunts.
3- Apply for and obtain the necessary licence.
4- Select the right outfitter. An outfitted trip is not only for unskilled hunters. Hiring a professional outfitter or guide provides a truly world-class hunt. It helps you access the best hunting areas and new vistas of outdoor adventure.

Tips and Tricks to Make Your Duck and Goose Hunting Trip a Success on Vancouver Island

• Do not turn your back or shoulders away from the hostile goose. • When you are in doubt, spread your decoys out. • Protect your ears and your eyes and never close or squint your eyes or block your eyes with a purse or briefcase. • Never get in deep water in your waders. • Avoid Getting Stuck in a Rut. • Protect your ears and your eyes. • Do not cross large bodies of open water. • Wear your life jacket. • Suppose the goose begins to charge, slowly back away while using your peripheral vision to watch for obstacles; most goose attack-related injuries occur due to falls as people flee. • Do not Flock shoot; there will be birds that get wounded—mortally or not—and will fly away hurt to die a not-so-quick death probably.

Customize Your Hunting Trip on Vancouver Island

Duck & Goose
Snowshoe Hare
Band-tailed pigeon

Vancouver Island Duck and Goose Hunting Common Questions and Answers

Feel Free to Share Your Stories and Thoughts about Duck and Goose Hunting on Vancouver Island