SD GFP | Hunting | Waterfowl | Goose

Goose hunting

The hunting season structure for the fall goose seasons are set in early spring. Nonresident licenses are limited in number and issued through an application process and lottery drawing. The application deadline for this drawing is early July.

Shooting Hours: One-half hour before sunrise to sunset.

Canada Goose

The Canada goose season includes brants.

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Unit 1
  • Sept. 2 - Dec. 17, 2017
  • Daily Limit:
    15 - from Sept. 2-30;
    8 - from Oct. 1 - Dec. 18

  • Possession Limit: Three times the daily limit, taken according to daily limit.

  • The counties of Aurora, Beadle, Brookings, Brown, Butte, Campbell, Clark, Codington, Corson, Davison, Day, Deuel, Douglas, Edmunds, Faulk, Grant, Haakon, Hamlin, Hand, Hanson, Harding, Hutchinson, Jackson, Jerauld, Jones, Kingsbury, Lake, Lawrence, McCook, McPherson, Marshall, Meade, Mellette, Moody, Miner, Oglala Lakota, Roberts, Sanborn, Spink, Todd, Turner, Walworth, and Ziebach, that portion of Dewey County north of Bureau of Indian Affairs Road 8, Bureau of Indian Affairs, Road 9, and the section of U.S. Highway 212 east of the Bureau of Indian Affairs Road 8 junction, that portion of Potter County east of U.S. Highway 83, that portion of Sully County east of U.S. Highway 83, portions of Hyde, Buffalo, Brule, Charles Mix, and Bon Homme counties north and east of a line beginning at the Hughes-Hyde county line on State Highway 34, east  to Lees Boulevard, southeast to the State Highway 34, east 7 miles to 350th Avenue, south to Interstate 90 on 350th Avenue, south and east on State Highway 50 to Geddes, east on 285th Street to U.S. Highway 281, north on U.S. Highway 281 to the Charles Mix-Douglas county boundary, that portion of Bon Homme County north of State Highway 50, those portions of Yankton and Clay counties north of County Highway 585 (306th Street) to U.S. Highway 81, then north on U.S. Highway 81 to 303rd Street, then east on 303rd Street to 444th Avenue, then south on 444th Avenue to 305th Street, then east on Bluff Road (305th Street) to County Highway 19, south to State Highway 50 and east to the Clay/Union County line, and that portion of Perkins County west of State Highway 75 and south of State Highway 20, that portion of Lincoln County west of State Highway 17 and south of County Highway 116 (Klondike Road), and that portion of Minnehaha County north of a line beginning at the junction of the South Dakota-Minnesota state line and County Highway 122 (254th Street) west to its junction with County Highway 149 (464th Avenue), that portion west of County Highway 149 (464th Avenue) to Hartford, that portion west of County Highway 151 (463rd Avenue) to State Highway 42, that portion south of State Highway 42 to State Highway 17, and the portion west of State Highw umarkexi. canada géna ukay 17 to the Minnehaha-Lincoln county boundary.
  • From Sept. 2-30 nonresidents may not hunt in Beadle, Brookings, Hanson, Kingsbury, Lake, Lincoln, McCook, Miner, Minnehaha, Moody, Sanborn, Turner and Union counties. More information on the NR September Canada Goose season.
  • Sportsmen Against Hunger Goose Donation Program.
Unit 2
  • Nov. 6, 2017 - Feb. 18, 2018

    Daily Limit: 4

  • Possession Limit: Three times the daily limit, taken according to the daily limit.

  • Those areas not included in Unit 1 or Unit 3.
Unit 3
  • Oct. 21 - Dec. 24, 2017; Jan. 13 - 21, 2018
  • Daily Limit: 4

  • Possession Limit: Three times the daily limit, taken according to the daily limit.

  • Resident Bennett County Canada Goose Unit Info >
    Resident-only Canada goose hunting by special permit only. Click the link above for more information.


More information

  • Waterfowl License Information
  • Nonresident Waterfowl License Information
  • Waterfowl Population / Thunderstorm Map
  • Missouri River Fall Waterfowl Counts
  • Lower Oahe Waterfowl Access Program

White-Fronted Goose

  • Sept. 30 - Dec. 24, 2017
  • Daily Limit: 2
  • Possession Limit: Three times the daily limit

Light Goose (Fall)

Includes snows, blues, Ross', and all other geese except Canada, brants, and white-fronted geese.

  • Sept. 30, 2017 - Jan. 12, 2018
  • Daily Limit: 50
  • Possession Limit: Unlimited

Light Goose (Spring)

A Conservation Order is issued annually for a spring hunt to control an overabundance of light geese. Light geese generally migrate into the eastern one-third of South Dakota in late February to early March.

  • February 19 - May 8, 2018
  • Daily Limit: Unlimited
  • Possession Limit: Unlimited
  • Spring Light Goose Information
  • Migration Map


This is a resident only August Management Take for Canada Geese for Pennington County west of the Cheyenne River only.

  • August 19-31, 2017
  • Daily Limit: 15
  • Possession Limit: Unlimited
  • August Goose Management Take Information

Youth Waterfowl

Besides the opportunity to introduce young people to waterfowl hunting during the regular seasons, a weekend is set aside for youth hunting. Also, adults may take youth as young as 10 years hunting through the Mentored Hunt program.

Nontoxic Shot

Approved nontoxic shot includes steel shot, bismuth-tin, tungsten-polymer, tungsten-matrix, and any combination of tungsten-iron-nickel-tin-copper-bismuth. Coated lead shot does not qualify as nontoxic shot. Tom Roster's Nontoxic Shot Lethality Table © 2012

Antelope Island Restrictions

The Antelope Island area* south of Pierre on Lake Sharpe has the following restrictions:

  • No waterfowl decoys or hunting blinds may be left in the area between sunset and 5 a.m.
  • No waterfowl decoys may be left unattended between 5 a.m. and sunset

*The area within the water's edge from a north-south line across Lake Sharpe through the dredged channel at the east end of Hipple Lake, downstream to the north-south line across the reservoir 100 yards east of the easternmost emergent vegetation on Antelope Island.


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 Domestic Geese

The ancestors of the domestic goose are derived from two distinct wild species. Western (European) breeds have been developed from the greylag, and Asiatic breeds such as the African and Chinese from the swan goose. Despite their separate origin, the Asiatics and greylag types do inter-breed.

Asiatic breeds

African Geese
 Chinese geese
Asiatic Crosses
Crosses of the Asian and European types have produced distinctive breeds of Russian geese such as the Tula, Arsamas and Kholmogory, plus the beautiful blue German Steinbacher.

Steinbacher goose - a Eurasian cross


Embden geese

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