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Migration Report 2022

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Migration Report 2022
Saw the first large rafts of bluebills on Tampa Bay yesterday on the way home from work.
At least 200-300 birds in one raft and another smaller one of about 100.
By mid-December, the open water rafts can be 1/4 mile long with thousands of 'bills. Plus scattered little groups all the shoreline feeding in the grass beds.
I might just buy a license for the first time since i moved down. Just have to spot find a good spot or two away from the 5 million dollar houses and that are too shallow to fish (fishing never ends down here).

How's the migration looking in your neck of the woods??


Carl
Mobile, AL
DHBP Member since 1998

"Life is too short to drink bad beer."
Disclaimer: This post and/or report is not a substantiation of or reflection on the true accuracy of the present surveying methods. It is only a report on or comment concerning local observation and/or results. Your results and observation may vary based on your location, local water conditions, food supply, weather conditions and migratory patterns "
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Re: Migration Report 2022 In reply to
Carl

I've not been to the river looking yet, but if we have ducks that is where they will be. It has been very dry thus all our backwater areas lack water. I'm told that one of our WMAs is holding 50k birds but have not been out there to see what all the talk is about. If it is the dry conditions and concentration of birds in that single area will make for large crowds on the opener. I may be headed out of town on opening weekend but for certain Thomas and crew will be there. Long range forecasts are saying very cold but also drier than normal. We will just have to wait and see what mother nature wants to do.

Eric
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Re: Migration Report 2022 In reply to
 

We have a doozy of a winter storm and lotta snow forecast as I write this. Mabbe 3" a hour, so measured in feet not inches. Not surprising here. When it begins only God knows when it will cease for awhile.

Lots a Canada's heading south while I deer hunted yesterday afternoon, and also the morning prior. Like to listen to em and scan the sky.

I imagine the local lake is holding puddlers & divers now, lotta coots a week ago. Duck is out and goose almost. Both back in Nov. 26th. Will be interesting after the storm and low temps to see what birds remain before more arrive. Lots of rain the last few days helped fill the marshes, but they will freeze. Big water will hold birds, and then await the thaw before the next round.

VP











"Art does not reproduce what is visible - but makes things visible." ~ Paul Klee, artist, 1920
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Re: Migration Report 2022 In reply to
Sounds like it might be one of those years when its good to be down on the coast where there is always water.
Makes me wish I was back in Mobile!


Carl
Mobile, AL
DHBP Member since 1998

"Life is too short to drink bad beer."
Disclaimer: This post and/or report is not a substantiation of or reflection on the true accuracy of the present surveying methods. It is only a report on or comment concerning local observation and/or results. Your results and observation may vary based on your location, local water conditions, food supply, weather conditions and migratory patterns "
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Re: Migration Report 2022 In reply to
Carl: I cannot speak for all NYS hunters in this area, but we have had very warm weather, and a small showing of woodies and practically no mallards or blacks to date. Unusual. Similar DU reports across Upstate, though. We are hoping that the coming cold weather will change that, without freezing us out.
Best.
James Woods
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Re: Migration Report 2022 In reply to
 
James,

I agree. The amount of ducks here has been dismal from what I have seen over past years. Usually there are geese and ducks flying around our area in every season of the year. Not so this year, and not much better last year. I'll begin scouting again after this storm, but if things don't improve it will be deer hunting, then back to squirrels, and on balmy days trout.


Best regards
Vince











"Art does not reproduce what is visible - but makes things visible." ~ Paul Klee, artist, 1920
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Re: Migration Report 2022 In reply to
Vince Pagliaroli wrote:

We have a doozy of a winter storm and lotta snow forecast as I write this. Mabbe 3" a hour, so measured in feet not inches. Not surprising here. When it begins only God knows when it will cease for awhile.

Lots a Canada's heading south while I deer hunted yesterday afternoon, and also the morning prior. Like to listen to em and scan the sky.

I imagine the local lake is holding puddlers & divers now, lotta coots a week ago. Duck is out and goose almost. Both back in Nov. 26th. Will be interesting after the storm and low temps to see what birds remain before more arrive. Lots of rain the last few days helped fill the marshes, but they will freeze. Big water will hold birds, and then await the thaw before the next round.

VP








Vince--scouted my local lake late last week, just to go run the boat in shorts and sandals on what was probably the last 70 degree day in a while. Piles of black ducks and mallards, lots of buffleheads and a few whistlers. I did not see any, but local bird watching contacts are even reporting canvasbacks there--rare even by bird watching standards here. We're getting less of this storm than you and mostly rain, but with more normal fall weather, I've got to get out and hunt.

"At first blush I am tempted to conclude that a satisfactory hobby must be in large degree useless, inefficient, laborious, or irrelevant."
— Aldo Leopold
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Re: Migration Report 2022 In reply to
Big flocks of ducks flying through MN right now.
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Re: Migration Report 2022 In reply to
South Jersey hunting opened up this morning, not much going on at all. Saw just a few ducks, nothing close, very little shooting for several miles around. You can hear that far away on the salt marshes. Very disappointing after a nice cooler week and the anticipation of the falls first outing. Maybe we'll get some ducks in this week.
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Re: Migration Report 2022 In reply to
 

Have heard Tundra Swans the last couple of early mornings.

Bird feeders were unused during the storm. Today a large flock of Dark eyed Junco's have arrived, and are chowing down.

Snow up to the hips, or more here in some places. Ya do not have to travel far to see huge differences in snow amounts. Wind is non stop.

A friend shot a fine buck yesterday about 25 miles east of home. No Snow where he hunted, at least 2 1/2 feet at his house.

Ya gotta love western NY. It's living in a Charles Burchfield painting everyday.

The THAW be a comin praise the Lord.











"Art does not reproduce what is visible - but makes things visible." ~ Paul Klee, artist, 1920
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Re: Migration Report 2022 In reply to
Now that you mention it Vince, I actually saw 3 tundra swans yesterday also. Not something I see a lot of in this neighborhood.
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Re: Migration Report 2022 In reply to
Eric, if you have ducks like I just saw driving over Mobile Bay, y?all should have a heck of an opening day. I haven?t seen that many gadwalls in many many years.


Carl
Mobile, AL
DHBP Member since 1998

"Life is too short to drink bad beer."
Disclaimer: This post and/or report is not a substantiation of or reflection on the true accuracy of the present surveying methods. It is only a report on or comment concerning local observation and/or results. Your results and observation may vary based on your location, local water conditions, food supply, weather conditions and migratory patterns "
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Re: Migration Report 2022 In reply to
Carl

I have yet to do any scouting and probably won't before the Friday opener. Thomas is in Arkansas now but by mid week I'll probably have a report when he has a chance to scout.

Eric
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Re: Migration Report 2022 In reply to
I just got back from a week in S. Louisiana. Our aerial survey wasn't very good:

"The 802,000 ducks estimated during the November 2022 survey for coastal Louisiana and Catahoula Lake was the lowest since the survey began in 1968 (Figure 1). It is 38% lower than the November 2021 estimate (1.29 million), as well as 28% and 48% lower than the most recent 5-year (1.11 million) and 10-year (1.54 million) averages respectively"

We still had a great week hunting and fishing!
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Re: Migration Report 2022 In reply to
Are the low numbers due to the avian flu?

Rick
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Re: Migration Report 2022 In reply to
Nah, Migration gets later every year. And in lower numbers. Some always go to the coast but many only go as south as they need too


Carl
Mobile, AL
DHBP Member since 1998

"Life is too short to drink bad beer."
Disclaimer: This post and/or report is not a substantiation of or reflection on the true accuracy of the present surveying methods. It is only a report on or comment concerning local observation and/or results. Your results and observation may vary based on your location, local water conditions, food supply, weather conditions and migratory patterns "
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Re: Migration Report 2022 In reply to
 I believe that duck numbers are down, and have been for many years. We've had a long term drought pattern in the west. We had dry potholes all across the prairie provinces last year, and a slight recovery this year, and increasingly worse for many years prior to that. Lots of hunters in the US get ducks from those areas. Most of the ducks we get in this area over the years are largely "calendar ducks", and are also produced in Ontario, Quebec, the Maritime's, and throughout the northeast US. Local mild conditions will make them sit on Delaware Bay and stay out of the marshes in the day, but not for the entire season. I've had many mild seasons over the last 40 years that were good, and many that stunk. Yes, we all like weather, but the number of ducks around are much more important. Our bread and butter duck is the GWT, with black ducks #2. Both are around in lesser numbers than they were 10-15 years ago, and I hunt good marsh that has plenty of food. There are not as many ducks. I have been hunting for over 40 years, and have been through 30 days/3 ducks a day seasons. I noticed the numbers being down then, and I notice the numbers being down now.
I'm not convinced that the current methods of estimating are reflective of the actual populations.
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Re: Migration Report 2022 In reply to
The breeding population survey was flown this year for the first tie since 2019. It showed a decrease in the number of breeding ducks. As recollect it was down to levels last seen 20 or more years ago. Conditions varied across the breeding grounds but some areas recovered enough to have decent reproduction. So smaller duck population was likely this fall. I would also keep in mind that there is significant drought in much of the Mississippi, Central and Pacific Flyways this fall. I would not be surprised if duck distribution is very unsual as a result. I haven't seen dead birds as a result of HPAI but I have heard a few reports.
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Re: Migration Report 2022 In reply to
greg setter wrote:
Now that you mention it Vince, I actually saw 3 tundra swans yesterday also. Not something I see a lot of in this neighborhood.



Greg,

As long as I can recall. Mid November and the call of Tundra Swans thru the open bedroom window (just a crack) well before dawn has always been magical to me. Thanksgiving indeed.


Best regards
Vince











"Art does not reproduce what is visible - but makes things visible." ~ Paul Klee, artist, 1920
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Re: Migration Report 2022 In reply to
Brad Bortner wrote:
The breeding population survey was flown this year for the first tie since 2019. It showed a decrease in the number of breeding ducks. As recollect it was down to levels last seen 20 or more years ago. Conditions varied across the breeding grounds but some areas recovered enough to have decent reproduction. So smaller duck population was likely this fall. I would also keep in mind that there is significant drought in much of the Mississippi, Central and Pacific Flyways this fall. I would not be surprised if duck distribution is very unsual as a result. I haven't seen dead birds as a result of HPAI but I have heard a few reports.




Thanks Brad, that is informative. I think we are all seeing this today, it is indicative of population cycles, and we are at a low point.
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Re: Migration Report 2022 In reply to
From what I've seen duck numbers in northern Utah seem to be pretty average. We had some huge flocks of migrating mallards through last week, it's been colder than usual and we're looking at January ice and bird numbers in late November. I have seen some canada geese dead in groups, strongly indicating avian flu, they were collected by the DWR for testing. We once again had to shut down the tundra swan hunt early due to more than 20 trumpeter swans being killed, but tundra swan numbers have been fairly normal as well.




------------------------------------------------
"We base our hopes upon a willingness to go to difficult-to-get-at places, to work hard, to freeze if need be, to rise early and stay late." -Gordon MacQuarrie

Avery- the K-mart of waterfowling gear
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Re: Migration Report 2022 In reply to
The number of Bluebill I'm seeing on Hillsborough Bay continues to climb.
Kinda neat to see small groups actively feeding within 50 yards of the roadway on the way to work.
But makes for very distracted driving.


Carl
Mobile, AL
DHBP Member since 1998

"Life is too short to drink bad beer."
Disclaimer: This post and/or report is not a substantiation of or reflection on the true accuracy of the present surveying methods. It is only a report on or comment concerning local observation and/or results. Your results and observation may vary based on your location, local water conditions, food supply, weather conditions and migratory patterns "
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Re: Migration Report 2022 In reply to
Hey Codywith the GSL low water levels making national news where were the swans harvested? Bear River or Farmington? Elsewhere?
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Re: Migration Report 2022 In reply to
Hey Brad, most of them are harvested these days at Public Shooting Grounds, BRBR, or on the Willard Spur with a few taken at FB. The water levels are low but a lot of the lake is still currently accessible from traditional spots. They only opened Public up 2-3 seasons ago and the scuttlebutt is that they might shut it back down next season.




------------------------------------------------
"We base our hopes upon a willingness to go to difficult-to-get-at places, to work hard, to freeze if need be, to rise early and stay late." -Gordon MacQuarrie

Avery- the K-mart of waterfowling gear