Snipe

To buy your HIP Stamp, CLICK HERE.

Wilson’s snipe (formerly known as common snipe) is a large shorebird (about 10.5 inches long, 3.7 oz) and one of two shorebird species that can be hunted in Kansas. Like other shorebirds, this species prefers to forage on mudflats and in water less than three inches deep in wetlands and along shorelines. Unlike most other shorebirds, common snipe frequently feed at vegetated sites. They use their 2 to 3-inch long bill to probe into the mud for animal foods such as aquatic insect larvae and earthworms.

Snipe nest in Canada and the northern tier of U.S. states. They begin arriving in Kansas during late summer and can remain throughout the winter.

Cheyenne Bottoms and other shallow marshes are the primary snipe hunting areas in Kansas. Snipe hunting is physically challenging because hunters wade or slog through often mucky areas to flush snipe. Just getting off a shot is difficult at times because it’s hard to keep from falling down while swinging the gun in response to their erratic, fast flight. Many a shot is not taken because the hunter is off balance and doesn’t want to fall in the mud.

Snipe hunters need to be proficient in wetland bird identification to make sure they do not accidentally shoot similar-looking species that are protected. Yellowlegs (greater and lesser) and dowitchers (long-billed and short-billed) are the four species most similar in appearance and size to snipe. Color patterns, flight, and call are the best characteristics for distinguishing snipe from look-alike species.

Color - The two yellowlegs species have a white rump patch and the dowitchers have a white stripe that runs from the rump to the middle of the back. A snipe doesn’t have any white on its back.

Flight – Snipe fly in a zig-zag pattern and more powerfully than yellowlegs and dowitchers. Dowitchers and yellowlegs tend to fly in a straight line.

Call – Snipe tend to give a single-note call when flushed, while dowitchers and yellowlegs typically give multiple-note calls.

Season Information
Current Seasons
Snipe - Statewide

Dates: 09/01/2016 - 12/16/2016

  • Area open: Statewide
  • Daily bag limit: 8
  • Possession limit: 24

Upcoming Seasons
Upcoming Snipe seasons have not been scheduled yet.
License Information

All waterfowl hunters 16 and older must have a Federal Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp (Federal Waterfowl Stamp), and all hunters who are required to obtain a hunting license must also have a Kansas State Waterfowl Stamp and a Kansas Harvest Information Program (HIP) stamp before hunting ducks, geese, or mergansers. (Those not required to have a Kansas hunting license include people hunting their own land, and residents 15 and younger)

NEW FOR 2016:  The 48 Hour Waterfowl hunt license is no longer available for KS waterfowl hunters, it has been replaced by the Annual Hunt License.

Annual Hunting License - All resident hunters age 16 through 74 must have a resident hunting license unless exempt by Kansas Law.  Nonresident hunters, regardless of age, must have a nonresident hunting license.  Annual hunting licenses can be purchased online by clicking here or through all licensed agents, or Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism offices.

Waterfowl Stamps and Licence - All Waterfowl stamps and licenses can be bought at any licensed Agent , Pratt Operations Office , or online, EXCEPT for the Federal Waterfowl Stamp which is bought at a US Post Office, KDWPT Regional and Park Offices, and select license agents.  All Waterfowl stamps are good through season.

  • Kansas HIP Stamp: $2.50
  • State Waterfowl Stamp: $10
  • Federal Waterfowl Stamp: $26.50 - Purchased at any KDWP office or at any US Post Office.

State stamps are available at any licensed agent, online , Pratt Operations Office or Regional office. Federal stamps are available at a US Post Office, Pratt Operations Office or Regional office . Federal stamps must be signed across the face of the stamp.

Waterfowl stamps are not required to hunt Coot, Dove, Rail, Snipe, Woodcock, or Sandhill Crane. HIP is required.

If hunting Sandhill Crane, in addition to a hunting license ( if required), a federal sandhill crane hunting permit issued through and validated by the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks is required to hunt cranes. Crane permits obtained in other states are not valid in Kansas. The validated permit ($7.50 validation fee) is available at any licensed agent , online , Pratt Operations Office , or Regional office .

All Kansas sandhill crane hunters must pass the "Test for Sandhill Crane Hunters" before obtaining a sandhill crane hunting permit.

"Online Test for Sandhill Crane Hunters." Click this link to take an online test that provides information about identifying whooping cranes, sandhill cranes, and look-alike species, as well as the hunter’s ability to choose safe shots. The test is both entertaining and informative and only takes a few minutes.

Regulations
115-18-08 (PDF - 58.99 kB)

Retrieval and possession of game animals and migratory game birds - Requirements

115-09-08 (PDF - 9.53 kB)

Migratory Bird Harvest Information Program - Requirements, Exemptions.

115-25-19 (PDF - 11.59 kB)

Doves - Management Unit, Hunting Season, Shooting Hours, and Bag and Possession Limits

115-25-21 (PDF - 11.75 kB)

Snipe, rail, and woodcock; management unit, hunting season, shooting hours, and bag and possession limits.