Update: Argentina Goose Hunting Prohibition

April 18, 2009.  Many hunters still request information about Argentina's fabled goose hunting.  Some hunters are even told that goose hunting is as good as ever.  Unfortunately, this is not the case.  Much of this malicious information comes from agents or outfitters that dismiss regulations for personal profits.

We wish to inform hunters that a wide-reaching prohibition on Argentina goose hunting remains firmly in affect.  Most of the old hot-spot areas are included in these conservation regulations.  The prohibition is declared on the provinces of Rio Negro, Buenos Aires, Chubut and Santa Cruz.  These provinces encompass the migrational corridor extending from the mountainous through the Atlantic zones.  There is no forseeable ending date due to the prohibition's origin.

There are four species of geese endemic to South America inlands.  One of these species, the "red cauquen", or Ruddy-headed Goose (Chloephaga rubidiceps), is endangered, and its population is estimated at only about 1,000 individuals. The Ruddy-headed Goose is protected by national and provincial laws.  However, the difficulty in distinguishing Ruddy-headed Geese from the female of the other goose species with which it becomes intermingled during migration, poses serious threat to its continued existence.

Many long-time Argentine operators say that the goose hunts of yesteryear are over, at least for now.  Hunters that hear of Argentina goose hunts that rival the good old days are advised to excerice care in booking their hunts.  Ask questions: specific hunt areas, commuting times, specific legalities including licensing and transportation, estimated bag limits.  Most, if not all, of the professional operators that historically delivered these magnificent Argentina goose hunts no longer offer them.  Recent promotions come from non-reliable sources.

The geese of Argentina are doubtlessly the best decoying waterfowl on the face of earth, and to experience it first-hand is certainly among a waterfowl hunter's most memorable achievements.  We at GetDucks.com hope that an adequate regulatory framework to ensure the sustainable use of the Argentina's migratory geese is forthcoming and that we travelling sportsmen are soon able to experience these thrilling hunts again.  We we'll be sure to keep you posted of further developments in these regards.

Note: the justification for Argentina's goose hunting prohibition is further described in the following report entitled Harvest of migratory geese Chloephaga spp. in Argentina: an overview of the present situation (2006)

Update.  July 2010.  Argentina goose hunting is still closed.  There are a number of outfitters that continue to hunt guests "under the radar", but it remains illegal throughout the majority of areas historically hunted.  An interesting story told by a group that was goose hunting east of Colonel Pringle in 2009: about mid-morning, a squadron of crop dusters "stretched from horizon to the next" swept the wheat fields clean of geese and herded them offshore until they became exhausted.  Once the geese landed on the water they drank salt water and perished and later washed ashore in the thousands.  No way to verify this story, but it was again repeated by an Argentine outfitter this year.  We receive several inquiries regarding Argentina goose hunting.  If it were legal, our outfitting affiliates would again be hunting the tradition areas and, rest assured, we'd be right there with them.

Update August 2012.  The Buenos Aires Province declared magellan goose a nuisance species and issued licenses to outfitter - but only during about a 6-8 week period that with was being contested with the federal government that insisted it remained closed.

Update August 2014.  Argentina goose hunting remains closed.  So insistent on the federal government that farmers are unable to protect their fragile crops by hazing or even chasing off geese. If the rumor mill is to be believed, it appears that the Queen of Netherlands, an Argentine, is friends with Christina, the president of Argentina, and has "gifted" significant sums of money to ensue that the Argentina goose hunting season remains closed.  This would be absurd were it not for the fact that Netherlands goose hunting, much to their derision, has remained close for a decade due to fervent anti-hunting sentiment in that country.

Update April 2016.  Argentina has elected a new president and we are hopeful that the unjustified closure of the Argentina Goose Hunting season will be repealed in upcoming years.

Ramsey Russell's GetDucks.com