Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife


Can I legally kill crows without a hunting license?

The crow is classified as a predatory bird (WAC 232-12-004). A hunting license and an open season are required to hunt them legally in Washington State. See Washington's Hunting Seasons & Regulations pamphlet for more information on hunting season for crows.

Under federal regulations, individuals may kill crows without a hunting license or permit when the birds are found committing, or about to commit, depredations on agricultural crops, or when concentrated in such numbers and manner as to constitute a health hazard or other nuisance (16 U.S.C. Sections 703-712). For more information, see WDFW's Living with Wildlife fact sheet on crows at http://wdfw.wa.gov/living/crows.html.

Ravens are protected by state and federal laws, and are often confused with crows.
Ravens appear similar to crows and are found throughout Washington. Ravens replace crows in mountain areas, deserts, and rimrock areas, and they are more common than crows east of the Cascade Range. In flight, ravens have wedge-shaped tails and crows have fan-shaped tails. Ravens spend more time gliding when in flight, while crows seldom glide and usually fly with a steady wing beat.

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Last Updated
28th of November, 2016