Who is waterfowl hunting?

Vollmer

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Who is waterfowl hunting this weekend? Growing up, this was my favorite hunt, by far. I regret that I have not done it for a handful of years. I always seem to be busy with kids/family stuff, or fishing this time of year.
 

Duckslayer100

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I. Can't. Wait.

Hope to hit them hard for the first two weeks until the NR show up. Then have a trip for ruffed grouse in northern MN planned in October. Then probably focus on filling my archery tag until rifle opener. If I squeeze another duck hunt in between all that it'll be lucky.
 

NodakBob

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I have geese in the back yard everyday but the wife won't let me shoot them...have a week long bow hunt next week followed by antelope gun opener, then I will get out of the yard for ducks and geese.
 

wslayer

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Early Canada season was not very good. Numbers way down this year compared to last. Duck numbers are even worse, not much for sh*t ducks even. Hard to justify fuel prices for just out bopping around. Fall fishing will see more activity from many I believe.
 

Duckslayer100

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Early Canada season was not very good. Numbers way down this year compared to last. Duck numbers are even worse, not much for sh*t ducks even. Hard to justify fuel prices for just out bopping around. Fall fishing will see more activity from many I believe.

Wow, we've been seeing the exact opposition. Must be a lot of variability across the state.
 

bigv

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I live in arguably the best part of state for waterfowl in SD. Numbers way down. Early goose season has been iffy. Not seeing even close to the number of ducks/geese that are usually around. I guess I did read that the hatch numbers were way down throughout the duck factory of CN and dakotas due to drought and spring conditions in some areas.
 

Duckslayer100

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I believe overall numbers are down, but we also had an awful drought last year, which caused a majority of ducks to bypass the Dakotas for northern reaches of the PPR or even into the least desirable boreal regions in Canada.

However, ND is looking mighty fine:

Duck Brood Numbers Up Following Drought Year​

Tue, 09/06/2022
State Game and Fish Department migratory bird biologists expect a fall flight of ducks from North Dakota similar to 2007, 2008 and 2017.
To bring that forecast closer to home, the fall flight is anticipated to be about 26% above last year’s fall flight, based on observations from the Department’s annual mid-July duck production survey.
According to Mike Szymanski, Department migratory game bird management supervisor, the Department’s 75th annual breeding duck survey conducted in May showed an index of 3.4 million ducks in the state. This year’s breeding duck index was the 23rd highest in the 75 years of the survey, up 16% from last year, and 38% above the long-term average.
The number of broods observed during the Department’s July brood survey was up 36% from 2021, and 5% above the 1965-2021 average index. The average brood size was 7.2 ducklings, up 11% from 2021. The long-term average is 7.0 ducklings per brood.
“Production appeared to be very late this year with many nests hatching throughout all of July and into August,” Szymanski said.
Following severe drought of 2021, wetland conditions across the state varied from good to excellent in May. Szymanski said the wetland index skyrocketed 616%, marking the largest single-year percentage increase on record.
Even so, he warned in early September that it was getting dry on the landscape.
“Wetland habitat conditions in the state have dried up substantially from a very wet spring and continued to dry through August,” Szymanski said. “Our September wetland survey will shed some light on just how much we’ve dried up.”
Game and Fish biologists will conduct a separate survey in mid-September to assess wetland conditions heading into the waterfowl hunting season.
 

bigv

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1663861270223.png
 

zoops

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Nature of duck hunting - one group say there are no ducks around, another says they're thicker than ever. My observations thus far are that duck nor canada numbers are not great in the central/west central part of the state. Sure has changed from 15-20+ years ago when early season seemed like there were duck feeds everywhere you looked.
 

Kurtr

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I live in arguably the best part of state for waterfowl in SD. Numbers way down. Early goose season has been iffy. Not seeing even close to the number of ducks/geese that are usually around. I guess I did read that the hatch numbers were way down throughout the duck factory of CN and dakotas due to drought and spring conditions in some areas.
We have more local ducks than i have ever seen. Early goose was good but we had flocks of 100 plus mallards dropping in every time we went. I think the nesting pairs looks worse as we missed two years of survey. Reports from Canada are really good . The nesting grounds went from horrible to great according to delta with that well timed spring moisture. I know its way wetter than last year at this point out here
 

FightingSioux

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Who is waterfowl hunting this weekend? Growing up, this was my favorite hunt, by far. I regret that I have not done it for a handful of years. I always seem to be busy with kids/family stuff, or fishing this time of year.
I miss waterfowl opener since moving from ND. Guaranteed duck shooting keeps a guy fresh on shotgunning! I don’t like that all the birds are brown and ugly, but you can’t beat the way they decoy early in the year. Best time of the year to take kiddos too as there is unlimited chances for beginner shooters!

Good luck all, please save some for us down south!
 

bigv

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Sadly gfp wacks a lot geese in spring over here in spring do you farmers crop issues. Either drilling eggs or as i witnessed this spring...shoot goslings. I shouldnt complain too much. Have had a a nice early fall. Have killed lots of geese. Just not seeing numbers of past in ducks or geese. Friends report the same.
 

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