Game and Fish Summarizes Pheasant Brood Data

Discussion in 'North Dakota Flyway Forum' started by KEN, Sep 11, 2017.

  1. KEN

    KEN Moderator Moderator

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    Game and Fish Summarizes Pheasant Brood Data

    North Dakota’s roadside pheasant survey conducted in late July and August indicates total birds and number of broods are down statewide from 2016.

    R.J. Gross, upland game management biologist for the North Dakota Game and Fish Department, said the survey shows total pheasants observed per 100 miles are down 61 percent from last year. In addition, brood observations were down 63 percent, while the average brood size was down 19 percent. The final summary is based on 279 survey runs made along 103 brood routes across North Dakota.

    “Brood data suggests very poor production this spring when compared to 2016, which results in less young birds added to the fall population,” Gross said. “The majority of the state was in extreme drought conditions during critical times for pheasant chicks. This resulted in poor nesting/brood habitat and more than likely a less than ideal insect hatch.”

    Statistics from southwestern North Dakota indicate total pheasants were down 59 percent and broods observed down 60 percent from 2016. Observers counted eight broods and 68 birds per 100 survey miles. The average brood size was 4.3.

    Results from the southeast show birds are down 60 percent from last year, and the number of broods down 70 percent. Observers counted two broods and 24 birds per 100 miles. The average brood size was 4.7.

    Statistics from the northwest indicated pheasants are down 72 percent from last year, with broods are down 76 percent. Observers recorded three broods and 24 birds per 100 miles. Average brood size was 5.2.

    The northeast district, generally containing secondary pheasant habitat, with much of it lacking good winter cover, showed one brood and six birds per 100 miles. Average brood size was 3.5. Number of birds observed was down 54 percent, and the number of broods recorded was down 63 percent.



    The 2017 regular pheasant season opens Oct. 7 and continues through Jan. 7, 2018. The two-day youth pheasant hunting weekend, when legally licensed residents and nonresidents ages 15 and younger can hunt statewide, is set for Sept. 30 and Oct. 1.

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    Last edited: Sep 11, 2017
  2. KEN

    KEN Moderator Moderator

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    This is really bad. GNF will most likely lose a lot of money in license sales.My group may not go at all.The farmer where we usually hunt in the Soputhwest says he isn't seeing any broods.
     
  3. Sasha and Abby

    Sasha and Abby Elite Refuge Member

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    It would not hurt my feelings if they just gave the birds a year (or two) off to regroup... nature is a bitch
     
  4. Dean Nelson

    Dean Nelson Moderator Goose Hunting/North Dakota Moderator

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    They give the birds a year off every year! Only need one rooster for every 12 hens so holding back would do nothing to help the population and likely would do more harm then good since roosters tend to bully the hens out of the best habitat during the winter.
     
  5. prairie hunter

    prairie hunter Elite Refuge Member

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    Can't stock pile pheasants. Winter and drought will see to that.
     
  6. zoops

    zoops Refuge Member

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    Especially if habitat is lacking...
     
  7. KEN

    KEN Moderator Moderator

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    We cancelled our motel reservations for next month. The farmer where we hunt hasn't seen any broods at all. When he hayed some CRP he said he saw 2 hens and no broods at all. Not worth the money to drive all the way out there if there isn't anything to hunt.

    I would imagine we won't be the only ones to cancel.
     
  8. Dean Nelson

    Dean Nelson Moderator Goose Hunting/North Dakota Moderator

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    They say 63% but from every report I've seen and my own scouting its more like 90 to 95%.
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2017
  9. prairie hunter

    prairie hunter Elite Refuge Member

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    This year over last ... I would say 95% down may be accurate, but we never heard or saw a single one of those remaining 5%. Last year we heard them many each morning and saw many, many more birds ...
     
  10. zoops

    zoops Refuge Member

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    Will be interesting to see just how bad it is come Oct. 7. My anecdotal observations from my time in the country have not been positive either.
     

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