(Minnesota) September 19th, 2022 — Minnesota’s regular waterfowl season opens a half-hour before sunrise on Saturday, Sept. 24, with the same regulations as last year. Minnesota has three waterfowl hunting zones — north, central and south — that share the Sept. 24 season opener but have varying end dates. The central and south zones also have a mid-season closure Oct. 3-7.
Hunters should check the Minnesota Department of Natural Resource’s waterfowl hunting page for complete information including season dates, regulations, a waterfowl identification guide and weekly waterfowl migration reports. Waterfowl hunting regulations are also available in Hmong, Karen, Somali and Spanish on the DNR website.
The DNR is advising waterfowl hunters to take precautions for avian influenza when handling harvested birds to minimize the risk of spreading the virus. The virus poses a low risk to humans but can be spread by contact with sick birds and by hunting equipment. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service makes these recommendations for hunters (link is external) to protect themselves from avian influenza:
- Do not handle or eat sick game.
- Field dress and prepare game outdoors or in a well-ventilated area.
- Wear rubber or disposable latex gloves while handling and cleaning game.
- When done handling game, wash hands thoroughly with soap or disinfectant, and clean knives, equipment, and surfaces that came in contact with game.
- Do not eat, drink, or smoke while handling animals.
- All game should be thoroughly cooked to an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit before being consumed.