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Thread: Winter and Bird Survival

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
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    Full time NE South Dakota now
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    198

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    [QUOTE=Dakotazeb;250111]After this current storm I can't imagine that a lot of birds will survive. Yesterday eastern SD had an inch to an inch and a half of rain, then turned to freezing rain and more snow. Freezing rain today and more snow with winds 35-40 and gusts to 60. Not going to settle down until tomorrow. Lots of flooding going on. It's been a very cool winter in Arizona, but I'm so glad I wasn't back in SD this winter.[/QUO

    I agree, I saw a few birds that had moved back to my place as the weather got nicer then 2 inches of rain, followed by five inches of snow and the super high winds. I doubt many birds made it through the past two days. Horrible weather conditions for any wildlife. I have about 300 yards of ditch to dig out with a scoop shovel in order to get the water to move to the township road and then into CRP. Water is just sitting on top of the snow and not moving which is bad due to my house not being far from where the water has to flow by. Thank the Lord temps are suppose to be close to 30 until Tuesday then it starts to melt fast. SDviking

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    South Dakota
    Posts
    1,172

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    I just heard a rooster so at least one made it through the last few days.

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Location
    Aberdeen, SD
    Posts
    3

    Default Winter Survival

    Quote Originally Posted by hunter94 View Post
    from what i can tell by the DOT cams, it looks like a heavy snow cover and cold temps in SD.
    how are the birds handling this prolonged stretch of snow cover?
    I live near Aberdeen, but its similar statewide in pheasant range. After the blizzard of 3/14, its total devastation of pheasant populations. Nearly all cover blown in with hard packed snow from 60mph winds, everything ice covered, no exposed fields to feed in. Worst winter since 1997. It will take years for pheasants to recover from this.

  4. #14

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    Sounds pretty dire...too bad....ugh!

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    South Dakota
    Posts
    1,172

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    Quote Originally Posted by PheasantSlough View Post
    I live near Aberdeen, but its similar statewide in pheasant range. After the blizzard of 3/14, its total devastation of pheasant populations. Nearly all cover blown in with hard packed snow from 60mph winds, everything ice covered, no exposed fields to feed in. Worst winter since 1997. It will take years for pheasants to recover from this.
    I live west of Aberdeen 35 miles, no ice but a tough go. I will wait and see, they are smart and resourceful birds. There are trees and silage piles, the ones around here have been feeding with my cows. It is not good but there are survivors.

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Port Deposit, Maryland
    Posts
    239

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    Anyone know how bad the weather has been West river, around Timberlake and Firesteel, Dewy county? How about East river, Redfield, Spink county?
    Last edited by 870-Lefty; 03-17-2019 at 10:02 AM.

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    South Dakota
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    1,172

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    It was not good anywhere. Aberdeen east and south had rain first and snow later. Heavy flooding further south. West river would have been all snow. Sioux falls and south all rain. It was a big system that affected from Nebraska to North Dakota.

  8. #18

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    I have reached out to several farmers/ranchers/hunters that I know in SE SD that would have been mainly rained on during the storm of 3/14-3/15...I don't get the feeling that they are too worried about a large-scale die off. In fact, I don't get the sense that they are concerned at all...maybe something is being lost in translation, but that is the sense I get. These are folks that I know very, very well, and who themselves care about the birds. Certainly there was some mortality, but if we have an OK nesting season, it could be OK this fall...all these people have been telling me for the past month that they have been seeing more birds this winter than they have seen in a long time, including last fall...out scratching in the bean fields, mainly. Some are putting out some corn. Anyway, that is the little bit I know at this point. I do know that January wasn't too terrible, but the past 6 weeks or so have been tough, but the birds had a decent layer of fat on them from a pretty easy fall. We'll see...fingers crossed.

  9. #19
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    South Dakota / Arizona
    Posts
    6,041

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    Your people in the SE part of the state probably escaped the worst of this winter but I know the Watertown and Aberdeen areas have been hit hard. A friend in Watertown said all the rain last week took the snow depth down but there is still a lot of snow. Two feet on the level and with that rain it has turned into concrete. No way any birds that have survived to his point can dig down to any food source. I know from my daughter it's not good in the Redfield are either. Guess the road survey in August will tell us a lot but my guess is that many areas are going to see significant reductions in numbers.
    Janee's August Breeze - Bree
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    http://gundogcentral.com/view_pedigr...&generations=5

    Godfather's Dakota Elle - Elle
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  10. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dakotazeb View Post
    Your people in the SE part of the state probably escaped the worst of this winter but I know the Watertown and Aberdeen areas have been hit hard. A friend in Watertown said all the rain last week took the snow depth down but there is still a lot of snow. Two feet on the level and with that rain it has turned into concrete. No way any birds that have survived to his point can dig down to any food source. I know from my daughter it's not good in the Redfield are either. Guess the road survey in August will tell us a lot but my guess is that many areas are going to see significant reductions in numbers.
    Unfortunately, I believe what you are saying....

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