New Teal-Only Season for Kentucky

New Teal-Only Season for Kentucky
Blue-winged teal, such as this drake and hen, are the second most abundant duck species in North America. Kentucky waterfowl hunters now have four additional days in September to pursue teal.

Kentucky waterfowl hunters now have additional days in September to pursue teal.

A teal-only season that is new for 2014 runs from Sept. 22 through Sept. 25. A combined wood duck and teal season opens Sept. 17 and closes Sept. 21.

Hunters may harvest up to six teal a day during the experimental teal-only season.

“Over the last several years, Kentucky, Tennessee and Florida have been working to obtain additional teal-only days at the end of their early wood duck seasons,” said Rocky Pritchert, migratory bird coordinator for the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources. “In late June, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service approved the request and allowed four additional days to be added to the end of the current wood duck and teal seasons.”


The permission from U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service came after the Kentucky Fish and Wildlife Commission set the dates for the 2014 September wood duck and teal seasons. This prevented the publication of the additional teal-only hunting days in the 2014-2015 Kentucky Hunting Guide for Dove, Wood Duck, Teal, Woodcock, Snipe and Crow.


Blue-winged teal are the second most abundant duck species in North America behind mallard ducks. They are approximately one-third of the size of a mallard. Hunters will likely encounter blue-winged teal in Kentucky, but they may also see green-winged teal. Cinnamon teal are native to the western United States and rare in Kentucky. Northern shovelers look similar to blue-winged teal, but have a much larger body and bill.

The largest concentrations of blue-winged teal migrate through the western part of the state. “Blue-winged teal prefer large shallow open waters and marshes, making them fairly accessible to Kentucky hunters,” Pritchert said. “Blue-wings are generally not as skittish as other duck species and don’t require much in the way of special equipment.”

Pritchert said a few decoys, waders and a little camouflage clothing will suffice for teal hunting. “Hunters can take advantage of natural cover around the water’s edge,” he said. “Hunters don’t need a blind if they stay low.”

Those without private land to hunt can find good teal hunting on the sloughs and lakes of Sloughs Wildlife Management Area (WMA) in Henderson and Union counties as well as on Ballard and Boatwright WMAs in Ballard County. The many ponds and lakes of Peabody WMA in Hopkins, Muhlenberg and Ohio counties also offer productive teal hunting.


“These wildlife management areas can offer some pretty exceptional teal hunting when birds are moving through,” Pritchert said.

Larger waters also offer good opportunities, such as the many shallow flats of Kentucky Lake and Lake Barkley. “Some central Kentucky reservoirs also attract teal,” Pritchert said. “When the birds are migrating, good concentrations have been seen on Green River, Cedar Creek Lake and Taylorsville Lake.”

Teal fly fast and close to the water; a test of any wing shooter’s skills. “They are challenging to hit because of their small size and erratic flying with lots of twists and turns,” Pritchert said.


Pritchert reminds hunters these additional hunting days are just for teal. “Make sure of your target before you shoot,” he said.

A valid Kentucky hunting license, a Kentucky migratory game bird – waterfowl permit along with a federal migratory bird hunting permit are required to hunt teal. Hunters may only use non-toxic shot while hunting any waterfowl species.

Editor’s Note: Author Lee McClellan is a nationally award-winning associate editor for Kentucky Afield magazine, the official publication of the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources. He is a life-long hunter and angler, with a passion for smallmouth bass fishing.

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

MLF Pro Tips: How to Fish a New Lake

MLF Pro Tips: How to Fish a New Lake

Major League Fishing pros Alton Jones, Jeff Sprague, Anthony Gagliardi and James Watson share their thoughts on how to approach fishing a new lake for bass.

MLF Pros: What

MLF Pros: What's Your Go-To Lure?

When all else fails, here's what these pros tie on.

MLF Pro Tips: Go-To Baits for the Spawn

MLF Pro Tips: Go-To Baits for the Spawn

Major League Fishing pros talk about the first lure they choose when targeting spawning bass.

New Optimum and Optimum TS Downriggers from Canon

New Optimum and Optimum TS Downriggers from Canon

From rugged reliability to smooth integration of cutting edge technology across several different platforms, OSG's Lynn Burkhead learns that there's much to like about the new Optimum and Optimum TS downriggers from Canon.

See More Popular Videos

Trending Articles

Unless you live in Antarctica, the only continent they aren't known to inhabit, there is a species Catfish

10 Biggest Catfish World Records of All Time

Jack Vitek - December 08, 2014

Unless you live in Antarctica, the only continent they aren't known to inhabit, there is a...

Unlike many game fish, catfish can be harder to catch during the spawn. Here are some strategies. Catfish

Understanding Catfish Spawning

Keith Sutton - June 06, 2006

Unlike many game fish, catfish can be harder to catch during the spawn. Here are some...

The best jig fisherman are those that are always aware of what their jig is doing. Bass

4 Tips When Jig Fishing For Bass

Chris Schneider - August 25, 2015

The best jig fisherman are those that are always aware of what their jig is doing.

Celebrate with great food for your backyard BBQ or picnic with these outdoor recipes. Wild Game

10 Recipes for Your Backyard Get Together

Game & Fish Online Staff

Celebrate with great food for your backyard BBQ or picnic with these outdoor recipes.

See More Trending Articles

More Stories

We know we have to follow legal regulations, but how do you apply personal ethics to the hunt? Stories

The Gray Area of Hunting in America

Andrew McKean - April 27, 2020

We know we have to follow legal regulations, but how do you apply personal ethics to the hunt?

It was a difficult question for a young hunter to ask, and the answer didn't come any easier. Stories

Deer Camp Lesson Learned the Hard Way

Jeff Johnston - February 04, 2020

It was a difficult question for a young hunter to ask, and the answer didn't come any easier.

No longbeards, but entertainment aplenty with forming Texas tornado!

Texas Turkey Hunting With a Spring "Twist"

Lynn Burkhead - April 27, 2020

No longbeards, but entertainment aplenty with forming Texas tornado!

 Missouri hunter Tim Phillips is all smiles after using his late grandfather's worn Marlin 30.30 Stories

Grandpa's Gun Tags Giant Buck, Ends Multi-Year Quest

Lynn Burkhead - November 21, 2017

Missouri hunter Tim Phillips is all smiles after using his late grandfather's worn Marlin...

See More Stories

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get Digital Access.

All Game & Fish subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit mymagnow.com and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now