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Thread: A fresh report

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    12

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    The 2019 roadside count has been published. -49% in the Mobridge area, 1.38 birds pm. My first hand observations were right. Gonna be a tough year.

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Western MT
    Posts
    307

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    Dam I was hoping you were off your rocker. We hunt the same area.

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    12

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    I was hoping I was wrong as well. The evidence does not lie though. We did not hear the normal cackling after the birds flush in the distance at the abandoned farm like normal, it really bummed me out while we were out there this past weekend. We will definitely still go out there because I have 5 more days on my license but it is looking dismal.

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Central MN
    Posts
    145

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    Dangit, we gave that area a break last year, because in 2017 it was tough and there were farmers in the Bowdle area that farm for pheasants that said they have never seen so few numbers. Mother nature is not easy. I was really hoping to go back up to our old stomping grounds this year, but will likely head south again.

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    12

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    In the past SD roadside counts I do not recall them posting precipitation and snowfall amounts. The snowfall amounts in McPherson County and the eastern portion of Campbell County were significant, thus leading to adult mortality rates.

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Nov 2016
    Posts
    49

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    Quote Originally Posted by Flushedup View Post
    Dangit, we gave that area a break last year, because in 2017 it was tough and there were farmers in the Bowdle area that farm for pheasants that said they have never seen so few numbers. Mother nature is not easy. I was really hoping to go back up to our old stomping grounds this year, but will likely head south again.
    We hunt the Bowdle area and did fairly well last year. 2017 was tougher, but we managed. Like I have said previously though, had to abandon our old hunting areas and find new ones that worked for the dry conditions.

    That area around Bowdle has always been hard to get a read on from the brood Survey, unless its consistently up or down all around it. If you look at the survey route maps, it sits West of where the Aberdeen routes stop and East of where the Mobridge routes begin. Aberdeen is up 46% and Mobridge is down 49% so decide if you want to take the optimistic or the pessimistic changes in the adjacent area (or average out for no change). It's impossible to tell (from what they report) if the West-river numbers are skewing the Mobridge counts, or if the East of 281 routes are pulling the Aberdeen counts up or down.

    We will be out there in 4 weeks for the youth hunt so will have a better handle on it then.

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    Location
    Sioux Falls, SD
    Posts
    831

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    Would it be asking too much for the GF&P to superimpose the 110 routes onto the online Public Hunting Atlas & label each one w/ the PPM for the year? (Would surely lead to hunting rage, so probably not a good idea.)

    I wonder how many of the routes go through “real pheasanty” areas, as opposed to “not so pheasanty” areas. A “pheasanty” route (lots of nice habitat) is bound to be a little more stable year to year, whereas a less pheasanty route is bound to be a little more volatile, especially when talking in terms of percentages. If one of the spots I hunt is usually kind of a so-so spot (good for a bird or 2 once in a while, so worth hunting a couple times a season), maybe it goes from holding 50 birds to 25 – a 50% decrease. But another favorite, hush-hush spot goes from 500 birds to 400 birds – a 20% decrease, but lost 4 times as many birds. Point being, a route indicating a certain rise/drop in PPM could be within a mile of a spot with a vastly different population.

    A guy has to remember that the survey is purely a count. How many birds did they count over 3,300 miles of road on what may or may not be the best time to count them (I know they shoot for prime time)? They total the number of birds seen and compare it to last year. It might be an indicator of what’s happening at your spot 10 miles away. It might not.

    So many variables. So much to think about & then try to forget about. I’ll get out there & chase them w/ my puppy (4.5 mo old now) 20-25 times this year. My expectation is that the public land I typically hunt will be within +/-20% of last year. Some will have more birds. Some less. I’ll shoot some & miss a couple layups. But I’ll enjoy the 3 month season immensely more than the other 9 months & my puppy Ace will discover his special purpose.
    "Most pheasants in South Dakota don't react too well to #5s." -The Hunt for Red Rooster

  8. #18
    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    Location
    Sioux Falls, SD
    Posts
    831

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    Well, this isn't very useful, but it's fun to dink around with. You get to guess at the PPM's for each route!
    overlay - Copy.jpg
    "Most pheasants in South Dakota don't react too well to #5s." -The Hunt for Red Rooster

  9. #19

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    we have a place we hunt where we see 400-750 birds every time we hunt it. We've been hunting it since 2012. Lake bed/30acre cattail slough with CRP and grazing ground. It's been dry every year until last year. Still saw 400+ birds in it. Drove by it first wknd of August the water was incredible. usually 3 inches of water in it. over 3 feet this year. will be a different year for sure.

  10. #20
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    12

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    Although the bird counts and first hand knowledge of pheasant density is dismal this season, I will still go out there. The heavily saturated ground will lead to certain areas being inaccessible as in normal years, and the late harvest during the early to mid portion of the season will make hunting tough. I took my boys out for the youth season two seasons ago when bird numbers were good and I swore I will never do that again. We saw lots of birds but the birds knew they were safe in the standing corn. I will still get just as excited as I pack all of my gear, watch my Labs jump around in the garage knowing that the hunt is near and enjoy the peaceful drive west to the hunting grounds. One of my favorite things about the drive is seeing the wind blowing the fallen leaves all along the route, and watching the combines in the field harvesting their crop. Great time of the year, I live for it.

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