Im kinda an optimist,but there could very well be birds in the state by that time. A couple three years ago they were reporting flocks a week before the opener. But a snow storm came through and pushed all the birds that were close to the border back down to lake Thompson.
But I think if Sd doesnt get any more snow we could get a push of birds by the second week in March and will probably hang up around Sand lake and Oakes. That is were there last chance to fill up with corn will be offered to them. Any were North of I- 94 they are pretty much screwed for corn. There is corn north of I-94 but not as much as the southern part of the state. Lets just hope they hang up on the snow line for a Month or so, keep your fingers crossed!!!!
We need two things before snows start making any kinds of pushes into ND:
1. We need them to turn around. The last couple weeks they have been headed south. There were decent numbers in Kansas and Missouri up until about 3 weeks ago, but they have headed further south into Arkansas from what I have been hearing.
2. We need at least a month of somewhat decent temps. It takes a long time for spring to kick in up here. Not like the more southern states were a week of warm weather can open everything up.
My prediction is that we won't see many geese until mid march at the earliest. I don't think the bulk will come until late March or early April. If you look at the years where we were seeing a lot of birds here in early March, Midwest states like Missouri and Kansas were wintering big numbers of birds. That just didn't happen this year.
All that I know is I cant wait, this is going to be A LONG FEB AND MARCH.
Im just going to have to work on my homemade floaters, and dream for the next mounth and a half!!
You also have to remember the big staging flocks of snows wont decoy worth a damn. All we need are little migrating flocks to keep use busy right boys?? Oh yeah and those juvy's on the tale end of the migration.
I've been reading and hearing the same as Decoyer. There's still birds pusthing south. Every winter gets more and more strange. Every seems to be wondering where the heck the birds are and they aren't in the traditional areas.
I'm waiting patiently. I'm still waiting for more snow.
I am a wisconsin hunter that has come over to do some of the fall pheasant hunting. You guys have some of the greatest hunting land i have ever seen. Keep up the good work in preserving it. I have no problems pumping my money into your system to keep the great hunting going.
I plan on making a trip this spring for a snow goose hunt. My question is you are always talking about the snow line. What are you exactly looking for, and how does it affect the snow geese.
I would appreciate any info you could give me to make my new experience to your great state a good one.
The geese are coming from the south.When they get to land that is still covered by snow they stop and wait for it to melt. That is the snow line.One other factor is open water.Even if there is no snow,they need open water,otherwise they would be here now.
A problem with the open water issue has been common here the last 2 springs, but with adverse affects. Instead of holding on the "thaw line" where there's no sheet water and only frozen sloughs, is that the birds have been overflying it looking for the snowline anyways. Where you find the snowline, you'll find sheetwater. Snows roost in the fields' sheetwater at night.
I use the following link to watch the snow line. There are a few others, but this has traditionally been the most accurate in my opinion:
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