A Biologist passed this on at the Grizzly Island WA clean-up day a while back.
Results of a predator study done on The Grasslands. The #1 predator to duckilings in The Grasslands is the Bullfrog. The same study is also going on in the Sac Valley but not finished.
I'd of never thought of it. Nature is just amazing.
Rel....I always figured it was raptors and/or birds of prey considering what I've observed (seemingly an increase) in recent years there.
I would expect the bullfrog to remain at the top of the list for awhile due to (thankfully) a marked increase in brood ponds and permanent water habitat on several of the more progressive clubs and a couple of state 'fuges. Sadly, the majority of the USFWS property there is under the mandate of "we are a wintering ground" and there ain't gonna be many bullfrogs...or young mallards raised on those properties anytime soon. :help:
More on predators....quiet a few more 'yotes in the GL over the last 4-6 years, IMHO they are a benefit to keep the foxes (who will specifically target duck nests) at bay. My genuine worry is I have been seeing skunks in some new places over the last 2 seasons.
Those legs are pretty darn tasty too. Not like some predators that ya gotta do and dump.
Hmmmm, Russell,,,,Russell, do I know you? Looks like a lotta open minds in here and folks willing to swap some info Russell. :thumbsup: Sorry if I drug another die hard in here guys.
Off Topic: GGC. Years ago when I was hunting the N. Grasslands a lot there was a club that had a tradition of sounding an old crank up fire siren at shoot time. That went on from the 40's or so (before my time LOL) and continued on. I often wonder if that still happens? Just curious. I hate to see pieces of the duck history disappear.
Salmon fishin' Ruth's son...is the "O" ficial crankee. Though they have it wired to juice in these times, he's got it all dialed in to London time. Got a lot of sirens up and down the SF grade nowadays ranging anywhere from 2 minutes prior to 2 minutes after shoot time depending on their individual interpretions of the clock.
One sure bet though...if your're in the north...and you can hear the Gustine's( usually pretty audible from Kesterson or Volta)...your legal!
I was hunting the East Gustine late in the season one morning. We were gettin out to the blind having to practically wade through all the ducks. I mean I thought it was going to be a slaughter. :thumbsup: So, we were waitin for shooting time, swatting away the ducks like mosquitos when that Gustine siren goes off. Then like Pavlov's dogs, the blanket of ducks lifts up and flies away to the closed zones at Kesterson. I mean all at once! I was just standing there with my lower lip quivering. Something that I will never forget.
I believe the ducks are getting smarter! (or maybe they are starting to tell time)
Stains....that exact situation has been a bird distribution "problem" and argument thruout the GL over the last decade. The birds gravitate towards the closed zones along the river en mass much more so than in prior history. It was much worse until the Feds opened some of their previously closed holdings (Blue Goose..etc). Some of the clubs near you (Gustine, Hollister, Cherokee) have closed parts of their clubs to hold birds in their area. There are at least 2 closed areas in the South Grasslands now that didn't exist until about 2001 or so.
It's not a problem (distribution) that has completely gone away...but it's more balanced IMHO than during the 90's. The properties with reduced gun pressure and/or some sanctuary still maintain decent hunting.
I'd bet the E Gustiner's whack a few birds from the closed pond along Los Banos Creek.
I'm a member at the Gustine, our siren is activated electrically these days, but sound is still the same!
Russell, thanks for the note on the Gustine siren. We pride ourselves on getting it right.
Our closed zone does hold a HELL of a lot of ducks, it's really a nice feature and important to our success. We had a really impressive year this past season and we hope to keep it up. On slow afternoons its fun to sit in one of the blinds close to the closed zone and pick off the ducks as they work around the edges. Always good for a limit!
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