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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The 2003 May Duck Breeding Populations and Habitat Survey offers hope for ducks and duck hunters as we head towards the 2003-2004 waterfowl season.

In addition to increases in duck numbers, breeding conditions, as indicated by pond counts in the survey areas, are incredible compared to 2002.

The complete report form USFWS will be available at the link below, in .PDF format, beginning Monday July 7, 2003. Until then, here is a sneak-preview summary of the report:

Total duck numbers increased to 36.2 million birds compared to 31.2 million last year. Mallards increased from 7.5 million to 7.9 million.

Blue-winged teal are up from 4.2 million last year to 5.5 million, a 31% increase over last season. Green-winged teal increased 46% from last year to 2.7 million, the second-highest level since 1955. Pintails increased 43% to 2.6 million but still remain 39% below their long-term average--an average which has been steadily decreasing with each year of dramatically reduced numbers. Pintail were once the second-most populous duck in North America. If any hope remains to substantially increase the population of this species, much-needed research will have to be done to further our understanding of the challenges facing this graceful bird. Canvasbacks increased 15% from last year to 558,000, and scaup increased 6% to 3.7 million but still remain 29% below their long-term average--again, an average which is sliding ever downward with each year of population reduction. Shovelers are up 56% from 2.3 million to 3.6 million. Redheads are estimated at 637,000, up from 565,000 last year while gadwalls went from 2.2 to 2.5 million.

As mention above, May ponds have increased 91% in the US and Canada with 5.2 million ponds being counted overall -- 1.7 million in the US and 3.5 million in Canada. United States ponds are 10% above the 1974 to 2002 average while Canada ponds are consistent with averages from '74. What this means is that habitat conditions are ripe for a strong breeding effort.
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
ok boys ........................shott em early and run em down this way. praying for a real winter this year up your way.

remember.................try those 3 inch # 6's. they are deadly over the dceoys.
 
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