Birding in Saskatchewan
Saskatchewan offers excellent waterfowl hunting throughout the province, over marsh and lake areas, as well as in harvested grain fields. Some of the best opportunities for bird hunting are in the southern part of the province, where migratory birds often stop along their journey.
Waterfowl are abundant in the southern areas, as well as in major flyway patterns and stopovers including the Quill Lakes area, the Qu’Appelle Valley region, and Lake Diefenbaker and other large bodies of water. Upland game birds, such as sharp-tailed grouse, pheasants and Hungarian partridge, are most plentiful in southern Saskatchewan, and can be found along fence-lines, on rural dirt roads, in abandoned farm yards and other areas that provide good cover with tall grasses and low lying shrubbery.
Large valley areas — the Frenchman River Valley, Qu’Appelle Valley, and the rolling hills and plateaus of the Big Muddy Badlands are other good spots. Ruffed grouse can often be found in more heavily wooded terrain and forest fringe areas in Saskatchewan’s north.
Hunt your way
There are two ways to hunt game birds in Saskatchewan — guided and unguided. For guided hunts search for a "game bird outfitter" in our list of outfitters, or check out our Fishing and Hunting Guide. Unguided hunts in southern Saskatchewan involve finding lodging and meals, and locating hunting areas. Permission to hunt on private land must be obtained in the southern portion of the province. Saskatchewan has several parcels of land that have been purchased for hunting by the government and the Saskatchewan Wildlife Federation. Contact the Saskatchewan Ministry of Environment or the Saskatchewan Wildlife Federation for information regarding the location of public hunting lands.
When to come
Saskatchewan game-bird seasons open in early September. This is a wonderful time of year to be afield — particularly when the birds are as plentiful as they are throughout this prairie province.
It’s all here
Some hunters enjoy slow walks down overgrown forest trails seeking ruffies and spruce grouse. Others live for the incredible symphony of a marsh coming to life, as owls hoot, coyotes howl and the horizon starting to appear before dawn. There is nothing like listening to the madness as flock after flock of Canada geese leave the marsh and head out to feed. Many waterfowl hunters dream of pass-shooting teal, pintail and mallards as they whistle across a cat-tail marsh and dive into a decoy spread. Whatever your bird-hunting dreams may be, Saskatchewan can turn them into reality.