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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The September 22 Duck Opener in ND WOULD be for all species of ducks not just teal. I guess the Youth hunt would then fall to the weekend of September 15th.

The early duck opener in ND is part of a larger proposal by the US F&W. They have proposed that duck hunting in the United States could be open anytime between the Saturday nearest to September 24 and the last Sunday in January.

I beleive this proposal is on the books to allow all Southern states the opportunity to hunt ducks until the end of January without losing total season days like have in the past. By allowing northern states the chance to hunt a little earlier, they are guessing the usual fight against their late January season will go away.

Total number of duck hunting days and bag limits are established in July or August by Flyway Council committees and would be independent of these dates. Liberal or moderate duck season would allow the wider framework hunting dates listed above.

If the Feds approve the broader season dates, the Minnesota DNR has already gone on record as saying they WILL implemment the change in MN season dates to accomodate hunters. They also state that the earlier opener will allow MN a greater harvest of wood ducks and teal, but may be hard on resident hen mallards.

SITE: (see page 7)

http://policy.fws.gov/library/02fr12501.pdf
 

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I wish they would make the season a little later than Sept. 24!!! its still AFRICA HOT weather and who can duck hunt and swat MOsquitos at the same time?? Not fun in my opinion... As for an Update on the Spinner decoy here in MN, Ventura is going to sign the BAN but only for the first two weeks of the season and then you can use them again.

keep it reel
madison
 

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It appears they're losing site about what they're primary role is. Maybe I'm looking at this wrong, but it seems to sound very familiar to our G&F. So does this mean the USFWS is making this proposal for economic reasons?

Duck numbers are starting to drop(drought is inevitable) and they want to shoot more? I wish they'd do what's best for the game, and not what everyone else wants.

This is the impression that I get, please correct me if I'm wrong.
 

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I think it sounds like a good idea for the the extra week for ducks. We all know how short the season can be if you get snow in Oct. There are some things that do concern me and I agree with Chris about drought and duck numbers. I wonder with all the pressure happening now if the local birds won't get pushed out and it could then be a 2-3 week wait for birds to come from Canada. Again an issue with pro's and con's, but at least we are hearing about it now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I think ERIC hit it right on. Extending the season - may create a longer lull period in the middle of the season. More strong cold fronts in the fall would surely help - rather than one huge one at the end of October.

In North Dakota - the first 9 days are almost always excellent hunting and the last 9 days of the season are even better. The time in between can be tough. Many areas have 2 week or more lulls - where birds are absent or hidden.

BUT no matter what week it is - there are always places in ND that hold ducks. In North Dakota that means if birds are "out of your area" - you need to scout other areas or into deeper "back" country to find huntable populations of ducks.

If the season is open - at least you can decide to hunt ducks. But, September is already good in ND with crane, grouse and I guess now with local greater Canada geese.

Do local ND hunters want pressure on ducks in September or wait until October after they have hunted grouse a weekend or two and crane or geese ??

Any time the new ducks push into ND from Canada, they are new to the area and I believe more vulnerable to hunting.

North Dakota is ground zero for duck reproduction. The prairie provinces still kick out a lot of ducks (unless drought is high). The migration through ND may decrease too if Canada does not get some rain.

In the central and southern states, they "need" longer seasons and split seasons to try guarantee that some of the weeks during the duck season are abundant with ducks.

States such as Mississippi, Arkansas, Louisiana, and Texas rarely have excellent hunting all season - in all areas. Many of these states have very long lulls. Some times the lull may be opening day.

Typically, the best hunting in these states are in mid November, the beginning of their second split, and after a hard freeze in states to the north occurs.

Ducks wintering in these states are impacted by hunting pressure too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Chris,

Of course this is an economic issue.

Hunting is HUGE business in states to the south. Leases, big guide operations, and very influential people with expensive duck clubs all have their say. Why is Trent Lott (MS Senate) so interested in late January seasons for Mississippi ? Because his MONEY supporters hunt ducks.

6 bird duck limits might be ecologically sound in years with high duck populations, but I think they do promote greed and actually promote some dissatisfaction in the hunting ranks.

If you have a four duck (4 mallard) limit:
+)Most ND hunters would still be happy.

+)Probably have a few less NR hunters visit ND.

+)People who must get a limit to be happy would need less birds to accomplish their goal. They would probably rate their season better at the end of the year.

The US F&W is usually over optimistic and slow to lower season lengths and bag limits due to political pressure.

I feel for those guys - have you noticed that the only ones that are publicly vocal against too much hunting pressure are retired.
 
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