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Discussion in 'Chesapeake Flyway Forum' started by jhomyack, Feb 21, 2017.
Must of missed it
Not a big fan
In a nutshell….a decline in total harvest has equaled a decline in harvest rate, the population has remained stable since 1990 (scary, but that’s over 25 years), throw in less competition with eastern mallards and all that adds up to 1 more bird in the bag for hunters. That’s how the process works and I think the alternative would be to withhold hunting opportunity that could otherwise be granted.
Black ducks die from things other than hunting (predation, disease, etc.), and when hunting mortality drops to a certain level, it becomes just part of the background noise created by the normal life and death cycle that goes on out there every day…that’s basically compensatory mortality. A graph of black duck harvest since 1968 illustrates this change to compensatory mortality as it shows a strong decline in harvest while the population has remained stable over that same time period. What changed?.....well the number of duck hunters in the northeast and Canada has declined at a similar rate to black duck harvest during that same time period. Also, as mentioned before, the eastern mallard numbers have fallen in this same time period, reducing competition with black ducks and contributing to the liberalization of the black duck limit. We have a very strong monitoring program for black ducks, arguably the strongest of all of AF species, and if the population estimate declines or harvest exceeds expectations, the adaptive harvest management process allows for adjustment and the policy will become more conservative. This is the same conservative adjustment that could have been made, should the data have warranted it, at any point over the last 27 years. Instead the data warranted a liberalization of the bag limit.
Care to shed any light on the "Snow Geese on Sundays" thread?
I'll second that Allan ! And please do sir
Thank you for an excellently informative post.
Shiznet!! Nearly 700000 blacks bagged in the early 70's...compared to just over 100,000 in 15.
If hunter participation has dropped at that level, its no wonder that I see the same five faces at the boat ramp. What a difference 45 years makes.