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Harvest Information Program

Harvest Information Program (HIP) registration for the 2020-2021 hunting season began on August 10th when sporting licenses went on sale.

If you plan to hunt woodcock, ducks, geese, brant, rails, snipe, coots, gallinules, or sea ducks you must register with the Migratory Bird Harvest Information Program - HIP.

How to Register for HIP

Hunters age 16 and older must also purchase a federal duck stamp (leaves DEC website).

To register for HIP you must log in to our on-line licensing website.

If you are not already registered in the new online licensing system, you will need to follow a few simple steps to register:

  1. Choose the 'sign up' option and enter your date of birth and your DEC customer ID number (from your hunting license or backtag) or your Driver's License number.
  2. Create a User Name and Password.

Once you've created an account or if you are a returning customer, please follow the remaining steps to register for HIP:

  1. Once logged in, navigate to the 'Buy License" panel.
  2. If you have an existing hunting license or a hunting license is in your cart, the website will give you the option of 'purchasing' a HIP registration for $0.
  3. When proceeding to checkout, you will be prompted to answer a series of questions pertaining to your hunting activities last year. This includes the approximate number of each of the following birds you harvested last season: woodcock, ducks, geese, brant, rails, snipe, coots, gallinule, and sea ducks (scoters, eiders, and long-tailed ducks).
  4. After you complete the checkout process, you can access your HIP number by clicking on the 'Game Harvest and HIP' tab in the left-hand column. This number proves your participation in HIP. You are required to carry this number with you in some form while migratory bird hunting.

HIP registration is valid from August 1 - April 15 annually, so hunters must re-register annually.

HIP registrations are state specific. Non-residents must register to hunt in New York even if registered in another state.

If you are unable to register for HIP or encounter problems, please contact the DECALS licensing hotline (1-866-933-2257) and talk to a representative who can assist you in the registration process.

Collecting Data

HIP is a federal legal requirement. Any person who hunts migratory game birds (this includes woodcock) must have proof of participation whenever he or she goes afield. Failure to carry proof is a violation equal to hunting without a license.

HIP provides the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) with a national registry of migratory bird hunters from which they can select participants for harvest surveys.

Only a small percentage of HIP participants will be selected for harvest surveys, which will be mailed to them by the USFWS. Completion of the survey is voluntary.

HIP started in a few states in 1991. All states had to participate beginning in 1998. In New York State, the requirement took effect on September 1, 1998.

Importance of HIP

Information from this survey will help the USFWS monitor the harvest of migratory game birds, and is needed to establish annual hunting regulations.

Note: Periodically, DEC or its designated agent(s) may use contact information from license-holders to conduct surveys and research involving New York State fish and wildlife. The information obtained will provide public input on fish and wildlife management actions and human interactions with New York's fish and wildlife resources.

Thank you for your cooperation!