Game wardens throughout the central San Joaquin Valley were bracing for a busy dove hunting opener.
They got one.
"There were a lot more people out there," said Lt. Danny Stevenson of the Department of Fish and Game. "We were extra busy for Saturday's opener, but Sunday was pretty busy as well."
Ten wardens patrolling Fresno, Madera, Kings and Tulare counties made 1,497 hunter contacts over Labor Day weekend, Stevenson said. Fifty-eight citations were issued (along with five for non-hunting violations), while 103 hunters got off with warnings.
Possession of an unplugged shotgun (all guns used in migratory bird hunting must be plugged to a three-shot capacity), hunting without a license, overlimits of birds, not having an upland game bird stamp and driving with a loaded shotgun were the most common infractions.