Spring Turkey Ground-nesting Birds' Numbers Down in Some Areas, March 09, 2008, by Jim Low.
"...parts of northern Missouri report many fewer wild turkeys than they are used to seeing at this time of year. The state's top turkey biologist says the phenomenon is real, and likely is related to weather and the transition from an expanding turkey population to a stable one...Biologists with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources are hearing the same thing on their side of the border. He said weather is the most likely cause...The Easter freeze [April 2007] caught many wild turkey hens in the middle of laying eggs, possibly freezing their clutches. The freak late cold snaps probably threw wild turkeys statewide into a reproductive tailspin, resetting their biological clocks and delaying nesting by weeks...the effects of last spring's late freeze showed up in the 2007 survey that measures hen nest success. That survey showed the second-lowest ratio of recently hatched turkeys to hens on record, one poult per hen...Last year's poor nest success will have repercussions for at least a couple of years [2+year old toms gobble the most]...If we get good production this summer, spring gobbler hunters won't realize the benefits for a couple of years..."
We have not heard of such reports in Kansas.
A recent photo taken while scouting land. Obviously, a winter flock with the majority adult gobblers feeding on a creek bottom.
A second flock with the majority hens.
When scheduling a hunt here are some points raised by hunters over the years. Kansas' earlier opener attracts those as reason to get out in the field again, however those early breeding season toms are the hardest to pull off the hens.
The converse has been the late weeks of the Kansas season when individual toms and bachelor groups are quickly drawn to call and decoy as the majority of hens are sitting by then. This is when hunters can be more selective trying to work for that bigger tom often seen within any one group.
Every year the one tom only first week Missouri season regulation catches some by surprise. The second and third Missouri weeks allowing two toms along with the overlapping Kansas season allowing two more toms makes for the most tags per trip availability.
KDWP to vote on deer changes Thursday, by Michael Pearce, The Wichita Eagle, Mar. 09, 2008.
Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks commissioners are expected to vote on major changes in equipment and licensing regulations for deer hunters at Thursday's meeting in Topeka.
Commissioners must pass the following proposals before they become law for this fall's seasons:
Allowing scopes during the early muzzleloader season.
Reducing minimum caliber restrictions from .23 to .22 centerfires, thus allowing .223, .22-50 and other "varmint" rifles. Currently a .243 is about the smallest that's legal.
Allowing the use of hand-knapped stone points on arrows.
The use of crossbows during firearms deer season.
An all-season, statewide deer permit that allows hunters to use their one any-whitetail permit in any season.
Introducing over-the-counter permits that allow the killing of western Kansas mule deer only by muzzleloaders. The permit can't be used in archery season and will remain only for muzzleloaders during the firearms season.
Statewide archery permits to allow bowhunting for mule deer or whitetails. The permits would not be valid during other seasons.
With month after month of cold weather, it's hard to imagine it's time to start thinking about fishing. This bass was caught and released last weekend when the temperatures were in the 70's.
Enjoy the spring and summer months fishing club land that is available for fishing. If we don't rut the dirt paths and pick up all of our trash, we will be allowed to return year after year.
When looking to contribute towards the continuation of hunting, the latest round of Farm Bill and CRP negotiations have quickly separated those conservation groups capable of influencing government from those that do not. Several well known and heavily hunter membership supported conservation organizations have been largely ineffectual outside of their own organizational efforts to influence their own membership while ignoring the lessons of HSUS and PETA about getting into main stream media. An exception has risen to the top, the National Wildlife Federation.
...a settlement agreement was signed by the National Wildlife Federation (NWF) and the Farm Service Agency as a result of the NWF's lawsuit against the Agency's CRP managed haying and grazing provisions...The settlement agreement changed the previously established primary nesting season ending date and frequencies for managed haying and grazing. Prior to the settlement...a primary nesting season of May 15 - July 15 and frequencies for managed grazing once every three years and managed haying once every 5 years with 50 percent of the field allowed to be hayed...The NWF settlement established the primary nesting season as May 14 - August 1. The managed grazing frequencies increased to once in 5 years and managed haying increased to once in 10 years. This meeting will allow the general public to comment on changing the NWF established dates frequencies...
Now is the time for hunters to step up and support the NWF to keep the gains they won in court.
FSA seeks public comment on CRP managed haying and grazing, March 6, 2008, Liberty County Times.