Nontoxic Shot Regulations

When is Nontoxic shot required?

  • All waterfowl hunting (ducks, geese, teal, and coots)
  • Hunting dove, rails, snipe, and woodcock on public areas with nontoxic shot requirement posted.
  • Hunting with a shotgun (including dove, turkey, quail, rabbit, squirrel) on twenty-one conservation areas.

Waterfowl hunters in Missouri have used nontoxic shot since 1991.

Approved types of nontoxic shot

These shot types have been approved as nontoxic by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (as of January 2014):

  • Bismuth-tin
  • Iron (steel)
  • Iron-tungsten
  • Iron-tungsten-nickel
  • Copper-clad iron
  • Tungsten-bronze (two types)
  • Tungsten-iron-copper-nickel
  • Tungsten-iron-polymer
  • Tungsten-matrix
  • Tungsten-polymer
  • Tungsten-tin-bismuth
  • Tungsten-tin-iron
  • Tungsten-tin-iron-nickel

Nontoxic shot is required on 21 Conservation Areas

Use or possession of lead shot is prohibited for hunting on the Conservation Areas listed below. These are larger wetlands where waterfowl and shorebirds concentrate in the fall and spring.

  • Bob Brown Conservation Area
  • Black Island Conservation Area
  • Columbia Bottom Conservation Area
  • Cooley Lake Conservation Area
  • Coon Island Conservation Area
  • Duck Creek Conservation Area
  • Eagle Bluffs Conservation Area
  • Fountain Grove Conservation Area
  • Four Rivers Conservation Area
  • Grand Pass Conservation Area
  • B. K. Leach Memorial Conservation Area
  • Little Bean Marsh Conservation Area
  • Little River Conservation Area
  • Marais Temps Clair Conservation Area
  • Montrose Conservation Area
  • Nodaway Valley Conservation Area
  • Otter Slough Conservation Area
  • Schell-Osage Conservation Area
  • Settle’s Ford Conservation Area
  • Ted Shanks Conservation Area
  • Ten Mile Pond Conservation Area

Nontoxic shot is safer for wildlife and people

The nontoxic shot regulation reduces incidence of lead shot ingestion, which is often fatal to all vertebrates, waterfowl, doves, and scavenging birds, like eagles, which feed on waterfowl with lead shot in the carcass. Mounting evidence points to lead poisoning occurring in more than 134 species, including amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals.

Check the Code

This is NOT a legal document. Regulations are subject to revision during the current year.
Refer to the Wildlife Code.

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Regulations and Permits Definitions

Knowing regulations and permits definitions helps you abide by the Wildlife Code of Missouri.