NC State Impoundments

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NC State Impoundments

Postby NCfowl » Wed Apr 16, 2014 7:58 pm

I've been curious and looking into different state departments and how they manage their management areas. A lot of states are way different than NC, especially to the west. Just curious, what do you think the impoundments would be like if the state would use our money and plant corn in these areas instead of just natural, moist-soil areas. The reason I say this is, is seems like the moist-soil plants are not thriving in places where they used to years back. Input anyone?
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Re: NC State Impoundments

Postby Fowl Addict » Wed Apr 16, 2014 8:40 pm

There are multiple Impoundments in North Carolina which are state owned and planted in grain every year. The moist soil impoundments you speak of are generally unsuitable for grain for a multitude of reasons.
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Re: NC State Impoundments

Postby NCfowl » Wed Apr 16, 2014 9:16 pm

I know many are, but I guess I am speaking as to why don't they use their money wiser.. :huh: . This half draw-down they do isn't cutting it where the moist-soil plants suck along with making terrible walking in thee impoundments.
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Re: NC State Impoundments

Postby Splashin' Divers » Thu Apr 17, 2014 8:01 am

I would assume the main reason is, is that you would never get corn to grow in Pamlico Point because of the salt levels in the soil. Another, is that ducks need moist soil plants in their diet, especially during the early seasons. I can tell you from experience, we shoot a lot more ducks in the moist soil impoundments, than we ever will in our corn field impoundments.
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Re: NC State Impoundments

Postby NCfowl » Thu Apr 17, 2014 8:36 am

Splashin' Divers wrote:I would assume the main reason is, is that you would never get corn to grow in Pamlico Point because of the salt levels in the soil. Another, is that ducks need moist soil plants in their diet, especially during the early seasons. I can tell you from experience, we shoot a lot more ducks in the moist soil impoundments, than we ever will in our corn field impoundments.


I agree, I study a lot of the birds diet's and such. I guess the draw downs just aren't really hitting the spot. However, SC and HI was being drained a few weeks and you could already tell the moist-soil plants were getting going. But I'm not just talking about in PP. There are a few impoundments right around GC near the water they have corn in them. Just kinda curious.
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Re: NC State Impoundments

Postby TooTall » Mon Apr 21, 2014 5:14 pm

I think you have "moist soil units" and "salt marsh impoundments" confused. They are two very different things as are their management practices.
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Re: NC State Impoundments

Postby Shurshot » Tue Apr 22, 2014 8:28 am

A lot of good replies to NCfowls question. And Too Tall correctly points out that the impoundments in question are actually Submerged Aquatic Vegetation (SAV) units. Moist-soil units are managed much differently.

Water salinity is the driving factor as to how each unit is managed in the coastal areas. Corn simply will not do well with residual salt in the soil. Some moist-soil plants/units can withstand some salt (around 5 ppt) but overall will not like having that much if looking for a diversity of plants the following year. By contrast, your SAV such as milfoil, wigeon grass, musk grass, etc. does fine in the area brackish waters and therefore are the best match for effective and cost efficient management by the WRC. They don't have to be drawn down every year like a ms unit would, but do periodically in order to stimulate new growth and to firm up the bottom. Remember, all those units were basically built in a marsh so you should expect the bottoms to be soft, especially where root establishment is thin.

As to the corn impoundments in that area, I think Splash'n Divers pretty much nailed it when he said that more birds will be taken on the sav units. Lots of reasons why but the vast majority of the birds that use/are taken in the area such as wigeon, pintail, gadwall feed almost exclusively on sav plants. Teal, which actually might be the #1 bird taken, probably prefer seed/grain above anything else but can dominate the sav units at times. A corn unit is also very expensive to plant, flood and maintain. Wells are the preferred way to flood corn vs pumping from a brackish canal. The cost to dig a well will blow your mind, let alone the cost of the pump and the subsequent electric bill. Ouch! Oh, and did I mention the approximate $300 per acre cost just to get corn in the ground? It all gets very expensive quickly ...

While all of this just my take on it, I hope you'll find some this info helpful. :beer:
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