How To Hunt Ontario Waterfowl

Not only is Ontario home to most of Canada’s human population, it's also home to a host of waterfowl,making waterfowl hunting in Ontario an incredibly popular past time. In fact, the birds alight here for the same reason as the people. Ontario is a province of diversity, both in terms of its inhabitants and its environment. From the vast, unspoiled wilderness of the north to the pristine waterways of the south, there is something for every person, beast and bird.

Where to Find Ontario Waterfowl

Southern Ontario is definitely your top pick for prime Ontario waterfowl hunting. This region spans from Windsor to the Ottawa valley and encompasses the 30,000 island region as well as the rivers, falls and shorelines of Algonquin and the historic waters of the central east. You can also find some pretty solid hunting in Northwestern Ontario since our downy water-loving friends flock to this area to gorge on the region's abundance of wild rice. Puddle and diver ducks in particular love the northern lands because they’re located on a major migration route.

Types of Ontario Waterfowl

Ontario waterfowl abound! Here you’ll find an impressive variety of species, including mallards, teals, woodducks, bluebills, buffleheads, goldeyes, redheads, lesser scaup, ring-necked ducks, black ducks, canvasbacks, and Brant and Canada geese.

What to Pack

Whether you're packing your garb or your gear, you're going to want to pack for the weather. In fact, this is going to be your biggest variable in Ontario waterfowl season. The season starts in September and runs through to December. (The exact dates will depend on what sort of waterfowl you're pursuing. Make sure you're aware of your season's start and end dates to avoid bagging a hefty fine. You can get this information here.)

The weather between September and December in Ontario can vary from warm, balmy Indian summers to nose hair freezing rain to blinding snow squalls - and all in a matter of days. We kid you not. You're definitely going to want to be listening to the weatherman, but also preparing for just about anything. Bring warm, water resistant gear. Wear layers. Your goal is to stay comfortable so you can stay focussed.

Psst! You can get our recommendations on what sort of clothes to bring in our Complete Guide to Waterfowl Hunting in Canada.

Ontario Waterfowl Hunting Regulations

Come one, come all! Heed the call of the wild - just make sure you've done the paperwork. If you're going to be waterfowl hunting in Ontario, you should know your Ontario hunting regulations inside and out. Not only does this conserve the wildlife, but it will also preserve your bank account. (The fines for not adhering to the laws are steep!) One of the most important things to know about Ontario waterfowl hunting is that in addition to your Outdoors Card and licence tag, you will also need a Migratory Game Bird Hunting Permit. You can get this at a post office or grab it online.

You will also need to have completed Hunter Education Course and Firearm Safety Course.

For a more comprehensive rundown of the laws of the land, you can check out our article on Ontario hunting regulations.