Significant Increase In Waterfowl Populations This Spring
This is a news release from Environment Canada dated July 4, 2005.
WINNIPEG – July 4, 2005 - Canadian and U.S. wildlife officials are reporting significant increases in waterfowl populations throughout the southern Prairies this spring, primarily due to improved wetland habitat conditions. Results from the 2005 waterfowl breeding population survey also indicate that there are currently about 3.9 million ponds in the Prairies. This is up 56% from 2004, and 12% above the long-term survey average.
Dale Caswell, chief of waterfowl management for Environment Canada’s Canadian Wildlife Service in the Prairies, says, “The results of this comprehensive survey are key to long-term monitoring of waterfowl populations, and for setting waterfowl harvest limits each year. It also helps us evaluate the quality and quantity of wetlands, vital to maintaining healthy breeding areas for our waterfowl.”
This year marks the 50th anniversary of the annual North American waterfowl breeding population survey. Each spring, biologists from Environment Canada and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service survey more than 3.5 million square km of
habitat, including the Canadian Prairies. This is one of the largest, most comprehensive and reliable surveys in the world and a model of international collaboration in wildlife research and management.
The 2005 survey also indicates:
Breeding ducks have increased by 30% from 2004, but remain 6% below the long-term average.
Pintail populations are estimated at 1.2 million, an increase of 79% from 2004
Dabbling duck populations have increased by more than 34% from 2004
Mallards have increased by 10% from 2004
Blue-winged teal have increased 44% from 2004
Diving ducks have increased by 38% from 2004
Canvasbacks are up by 32%, redheads by 22% and lesser scaup by 72%
Canada geese populations are somewhat less than 2004 at about 534,000.
Survey reports are available at:
North American Waterfowl Breeding Population Survey
For more information, please contact:
Chief of Waterfowl Management
Environment Canada Prairie and Northern Region