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Weather Conditions Hamper Ducks; Numbers of Geese Observed

Friday, November 24, 2017 11:33
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Arkansas WaterfowlArkansas Waterfowl

USA -(Ammoland.com)- Ducks were prevalent in typical November numbers in areas that had water, particularly the artificially flooded private lands, but observers noted incredible numbers of geese throughout south-central Arkansas in the first week of state’s waterfowl season.

Luke Naylor, the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission’s waterfowl program coordinator, said, “It was the typical story for this time of year. There were some ducks around, but overall it was pretty slim. Everyone is waiting for some decent weather for them to act right. It’s kind of slow, as we’d expect without any rainfall.”

Weather models and forecasts by the National Weather Service for the remainder of November show only a trace of rainfall for the state. Temperatures took a brief tumble Sunday and Monday and again on Wednesday morning that appeared to get some movement out of the birds, observers noted. However, temperatures were expected to warm up into mid-60s in through the Thanksgiving weekend and into next week.

There were good reports of ducks in the Saline River bottoms last weekend. “That’s an area that usually has a little bit of water even now when the rest of the state is dry, and water may have been shallow in some places to concentrate some ducks,” Naylor said.

Hunters will note increased water in public areas of the northeast portion of the state where the AGFC can pump water into its GTRs, with boards now in place as of Nov. 15. “We are artificially moving water in (Dave Donaldson) Black River (WMA), Big Lake (WMA) and Shirey Bay/Rainey Brake,” Naylor said. “Those three areas represent a big, big part of the acreage that we can actually artificially flood through the infrastructure we have.”

The increased geese numbers have been an ongoing trend for the past few years. The migration pattern of the white-fronted geese has drifted further eastward from Texas as more food is available for them in Arkansas. Snow geese and Ross’s geese were observed in impressive numbers along with the specklebellies in areas of Arkansas County over the weekend, and in large flights heading between the Arkansas and White rivers. One field directly south of DeWitt on U.S. Highway 165 was covered in several thousand snow geese settling down below the heavy wind gusts that buffeted the state on Saturday. “Geese only need a little bit of water and they’re fine,” Naylor said, contrasting them to the needs for ducks. “We’ve had some good conditions for ducks with a temperature drop and a strong, cool north wind, but no rain to go with it. Without rain, we’re just sitting and waiting for the big rain to happen.”

The Steve N. Wilson Raft Creek Bottoms WMA will again have no permit draw during the weekend due to low water conditions. The WMA is open for waterfowl hunting.

Mallard Migration Map:

  • Central Arkansas
  • East Central Arkansas
  • Northwest Arkansas
  • Northeast Arkansas
  • Southeast Arkansas
  • Southwest Arkansas

Northeast Arkansas
Earl Buss Bayou DeView WMA

Map | Water Gauge | Weather Report
Boaters should use caution while using the Thompson Tract boat run.

South Oliver GTR
Habitat: Mast production has been good.
Water Level: 0% flooded with a current gauge reading of 0.0 feet. There is a small amount of available water present within the natural slough on the north end of this GTR and south end of the North Oliver Tract.

Thompson Tract GTR
Habitat: Mast production has been good.
Water Level: 0% flooded with a current gauge reading of 0.0 feet.

Lake Hogue WRA
Habitat: A small amount of beneficial wetland plants is located along the east side of the lake.
Water Level: Normal pool level.

Big Lake WMA

Map | Water Gauge | Weather Report
When the Ditch 81 extension gauge near Manila (upstream of the Big Lake north-end control structure) reads 17.5 feet, water is beginning to come over the north levee degrade on Big Lake WMA. When the Ditch 81 Extension gauge reads 18.0 feet or higher, the water level on the WMA will rise quickly and hunters should exercise caution while on the area. Be aware of underwater logs in boat runs and hangers in trees.

North Woods GTR
Habitat: Mast production is good.
Water Level: Bo Dock gauge currently reads 0.0 feet, Target level is 235.5 feet with 0% flooded.

South Woods GTR
Habitat: Mast production is good.
Water Level: The 7-Mile gauge is currently at 0.0 feet. Target level is 234.5 feet with 0% flooded. There is a small amount of water available in the bar pits on the west side of the area between the 7 and 8 mile laterals.

Simmons Field
Habitat: A good amount of millet, smartweed and sedge is present. Seed production is very good.
Water Level: 0%

St. Francis Sunken Lands WMA

Map | Water Gauge | Weather Report

Hunt Area
Habitat: Mast production is considered above average within the timber and floodways.
Water Level: Water levels in the huntable areas are dependent on St. Francis River flows. The water level at Oak Donnick is 211.40 feet, and approximately 90% of the huntable area is flooded.

Snowden WRA
Habitat: There is a small amount of beneficial wetland plants within the borrow areas.
Water Level: 0% flooded

Payneway WRA
Habitat: There are 70 acres of corn and millet planted throughout the WRA
Water Level: Pool A is at 0%. Pool B is at 0%. Pool C is at 0%. Pool D is at 0%.

Shirey Bay Rainey Brake WMA

Map | Water Gauge | Weather Report
Waterfowl hunters should be aware of hangers and submerged logs within the boat runs and GTRs. Please exercise caution when accessing the area. In addition, hunters should allow safe passage when parking vehicles along roadsides. Vehicles blocking access will be moved.

Adam Brake GTR
Habitat: High abundance of mast crop within the GTR.
Water Level: Water level is 236.5 feet msl with a target level of 240.0 msl. 10% flooded.

Rainey Brake GTR
Habitat: High abundance of mast crop within the GTR.
Water Level: 5% flooded.

Eagle Pond GTR
Habitat: High abundance of mast crop within the GTR.
Water Level: 0% flooded.

Phase III Moist-soil Unit
Habitat: Fair wetland-type vegetation.
Water Level: 20% flooded.

Charles Crisp Moist-Soil Unit
Habitat: Fair wetland-type vegetation.
Water Level: 0% flooded.

Ward Field Moist-Soil Unit
Habitat: Good wetland-type vegetation.
Water Level: 0% flooded.

River Field Moist-Soil Unit
Habitat: High abundance of native wetland vegetation..
Water Level: 0% flooded.

Dave Donaldson Black River WMA

Map | Water Gauge | Weather Report
Waterfowl hunters should be aware of hangers and submerged logs within the boat runs and GTRs. Please exercise caution when accessing the area. Please remember to keep boats off the levees so AGFC personnel can access the area. Boats blocking access will be moved. Unattended trailers are not to be left overnight on parking areas.

Upper Island GTR
Habitat: Average abundance of mast crop within the GTRs.
Water Level: Water level is 269.2 feet msl. Target level is 269.5 feet msl. 85% flooded.

Lower Island GTR
Habitat: Average abundance of mast crop within the GTRs.
Water Level: Water level is Below Readable Level. Target level is 268.0 feet msl. 10% flooded.

Upper Reyno GTR
Habitat: Average abundance of mast crop within the GTRs.
Water Level: Water level is 265.84 feet msl. Target level is 266.9 feet msl. 60% flooded.

Lower Reyno GTR
Habitat: Average abundance of mast crop within the GTRs.
Water Level: Water level is 265.35 feet msl. Target level is 266.3 feet msl. 50% flooded.

Winchester GTR
Habitat: Average abundance of mast crop within the GTRs.
Water Level: Water level is Below Readable Level. Target level is 263.7 feet msl. 0% flooded.

East Central Arkansas
Sheffield Nelson Dagmar WMA

Map | Water Gauge | Weather Report
The Conway George units are available by applying for online permits. Permit hunts are on Saturday and Sunday. Please visit www.agfc.com for maps, special regulations, permit application and draw dates. Hunters should call the Wildlife Hotline at 800-440-1477 for current road closures.

Mud Slough GTR
Habitat: Good mast crop.
Water Level: 0%.

Apple Lake WRA
Habitat: Good mast crop.
Water Level: 90%.

Conway George Waterfowl Unit A
Habitat: Good stand of millet and native vegetation.
Water Level: 100%

Conway George Waterfowl Unit B
Habitat: Natural slough area with beneficial wetland plants
Water Level: 100%

Conway George Waterfowl Unit C
Habitat: Good stand of millet and native vegetation.
Water Level: 40%

Rex Hancock Black Swamp WMA

Map | Water Gauge | Weather Report
Hunters should call the Wildlife Hotline at 800-440-1477 for current road closures.

Main WMA
Habitat: Good mast crop.
Water Level: 0%

Wyeville Unit
Habitat: Good stand of millet and native vegetation.
Water Level: 0%

Steve N. Wilson Raft Creek Bottoms WMA

Map | Water Gauge | Weather Report

ALERT: Due to low water conditions no permit draw will be conducted this weekend, the WMA is open for waterfowl hunting.

Unit A
Habitat: Excellent stand of millet and native vegetation.
Water Level: 25%

Unit B
Habitat: Excellent stand of millet and native vegetation.
Water Level: 30%

Unit C
Habitat: Good stand of native vegetation.
Water Level: 10%

Unit D (Youth area)
Habitat: Good stand of millet and native vegetation.
Water Level: 50%

Unit E
Habitat: Good stand of millet and native vegetation.
Water Level: 5%

Unit F
Habitat: Good stand of millet and native vegetation.
Water Level: 5%

Unit G
Habitat: Fair stand of millet and native vegetation.
Water Level: 20%

Unit H (Mobility-impaired blind)
Habitat: Excellent stand of millet and native vegetation.
Water Level: 80%

Unit I
Habitat: Habitat conditions are poor.
Water Level: 30%

Unit J (Cypert Tract)
Habitat: Fair stand of native vegetation.
Water Level: 50%

Unit K (Cypert Tract)
Habitat: Excellent stand of millet and native vegetation.
Water Level: 30%

Unit L (Cypert Tract)
Habitat: Good stand of millet.
Water Level: 5%

Henry Gray Hurricane Lake WMA

Map | Water Gauge | Weather Report
Hunters should call the Wildlife Hotline at 800-440-1477 for current road closures.

North GTR
Habitat: Good mast crop.
Water Level: 0%

South GTR
Habitat: Good mast crop.
Water Level: 0%

Central Arkansas
Craig D. Campbell Lake Conway Reservoir

Map | Weather Report
Habitat and water levels are normal on both Pierce and Dix creeks.

Bell Slough WMA

Map | Weather Report
The Bell Slough GTR is primarily rainfall dependent with the exception of a limited amount of water that we can back in and catch from Palarm Creek.

Bell Slough GTR
Habitat: Moderate mast crop.
Water Level: 25%.

Palarm Creek WRA
Habitat: Millet was planted as a cover crop this year following disking within the moist-soil units.
Water Level: 35%

Holland Bottoms WMA

Map | Weather Report

Hunt Area
Habitat: Good mast crop.
Water Level: 0%

Lake Pickthorne WRA
Habitat: Excellent.
Water Level: East cell is 10%. West cell is 30%.

Harris Brake WMA

Map | Weather Report

Harris Brake Upper Unit
Habitat: Good mast crop with mixed in with native vegetation.
Water Level: 35%

Harris Brake Lower Unit
Habitat: Good mast crop with mixed in with native vegetation.
Water Level: 5%

Northwest Arkansas
Dardanelle WMA

Map | Weather Report

McKennon Bottoms (half-day hunting)
Habitat: Good stand of native moist-soil vegetation.
Water Level: 100%.

Potter’s Pothole Hartman Waterfowl Unit (half-day hunting)
Habitat: Good stand of native moist-soil vegetation.
Water Level: 100%

Ozark Pool

Weather Report

Dyer Lake Cells (half-day hunting)
Habitat: Native vegetation.
Water Level: Dry.

Nimrod Lloyd Millwood WMA

Map | Weather Report

Nimrod GTR
Good mast crop mixed in with native vegetation.
Water Level: 0%

Frog Bayou WMA

Map | Weather Report

Unit 1
Habitat: Planted millet and native moist-soil vegetation.
Water Level: 95%

Unit 2
Habitat: Poor moist-soil response.
Water Level: 0% – rainfall dependent

Unit 3
Habitat: Primarily perennial vegetation.
Water Level: 95%

Unit 4
Habitat: Planted millet and native moist-soil vegetation.
Water Level: 95%

Unit 5
Habitat: Good moist-soil vegetation.
Water Level: 95%

Unit 6
Habitat: Good moist-soil response.
Water Level: 90%

Unit 7
Habitat: Some annual and perennial moist-soil vegetation.
Water Level: 90%

Petit Jean River WMA

Map | Water Gauge | Weather Report

Santa Fe GTR
Habitat: Good mast crop with mixed-in native vegetation.
Water Level: 0%

Olin Cain Moist-Soil Unit
Habitat: 25% native vegetation with 75% bare ground due to ongoing waterfowl habitat enhancement projects.
Water Level: 0%

Black Lands Moist-Soil Unit
Habitat: 25% native vegetation with 75% bare ground due to ongoing waterfowl habitat enhancement projects.
Water Level: 0%

Slaty Crossing Moist-Soil Unit
Habitat: 25% native vegetation with 75% bare ground due to ongoing waterfowl habitat enhancement projects.
Water Level: 0%

Pullen Pond
Habitat: Native vegetation.
Water Level: 0%

Pond Creek GTR
Habitat: Good mast crop mixed in with native vegetation.
Water Level: 0%

Slaty Pond GTR
Habitat: Good mast crop mixed in with native vegetation.
Water Level: 0%

Black Lands Duck Area
Habitat: Good mast crop mixed in with native vegetation.
Water Level: 10%

Galla Creek WMA

Map | Weather Report

Galla Creek GTR
Habitat: Natural vegetation, including a mixture of barnyard and smartweed.
Water Level: 0% – Gates on the weir for the waterfowl impoundment have been closed, but water flow in the creek is minimal at this time. Staged flooding of the impoundment is scheduled to begin on Monday, Nov. 27.

Ed Gordon Point Remove WMA

Map | Weather Report
Nearly all waterfowl impoundments on Ed Gordon Point Remove WMA still remain dry at this time. Due to inadequate rainfall, water levels in Point Remove Creek are too low to allow for pumping in most units. Pumping did begin in Remmel Marsh on Nov. 13, and other impoundments will be flooded as water levels in the creek allow. Duck use on the WMA has been minimal.

Willow Island
Habitat: Natural vegetation.
Water Level: 0%

Little Hole
Habitat: Natural vegetation.
Water Level: 0%

Red Gate
Habitat: Natural vegetation.
Water Level: 0%

Pig Trough
Habitat: Natural vegetation.
Water Level: 0%

Cedar Ridge
Habitat: Natural vegetation.
Water Level: 0%

Duck Trap
Habitat: Natural vegetation.
Water Level: 0%

Salt Lick
Habitat: Natural vegetation.
Water Level: 0%

Bobby’s Pond
Habitat: Natural vegetation.
Water Level: 10%

Race Track
Habitat: Natural vegetation.
Water Level: 0%

Controversy Corner
Habitat: Natural vegetation.
Water Level: 10%

Remmel Marsh
Habitat: Natural vegetation.
Water Level: 80%

Mud Pond
Habitat: Natural vegetation.
Water Level: 0%

Turkey Pond
Habitat: Natural vegetation.
Water Level: 0%

Teeny Pond
Habitat: Natural vegetation.
Water Level: 0%

Southwest Arkansas
Sulphur River WMA

Map | Weather Report
The Henry Moore WRA is not flooded due to pump problems.

Mercer Bayou
Habitat: Fair.
Water Level: Drawn down for restoration project, boat ramps are closed.

Henry Moore WRA
Habitat: Closed to hunting.
Water Level: 0%.

Millwood Lake

Map | Water Gauge | Weather Report

Habitat: Habitat conditions are good.
Water Level: 258.17 feet msl

Dr. Lester Sitzes III Bois d’Arc WMA

Map | Weather Report

Bois d’Arc Lake WRA
Habitat: Closed to hunting.
Water Level: Normal water level.

Red Slough WRA
Habitat: Closed to hunting.
Water Level: 0%

GTR
Habitat: Good mast production.
Water Level: 0%

Little Grassy
Habitat: Habitat is fair.
Water Level: 5%

Southeast Arkansas
Beryl Anthony Lower Ouachita WMA

Map | Weather Report
The WMA has fair hard mast production. Currently the WMA’s water is located in the sloughs and oxbow lakes.

Freddie Black Choctaw Island WMA Deer Research Area

Map | Water Gauge | Weather Report
Habitat conditions are good. Flooding is river dependent. Click on the Water Gauge link above for current Mississippi River levels. Use extreme caution when boating in river.

Trusten Holder WMA

Map | Water Gauge | Weather Report
Habitat conditions are good. Flooding is river dependent. Click on the Water Gauge link above for current Arkansas River levels.

Seven Devils WMA

Map | Weather Report

Hunt Area
Habitat: Habitat conditions are good, with an excellent acorn crop.
Water Level: 0% flooded.

Cut-Off Creek WMA

Map | Weather Report

Hunt Area
Habitat: Habitat conditions are good, with an excellent acorn crop.
Water Level: 0%

Pigeon Creek WRA
Habitat: Habitat conditions are good, with an excellent acorn crop.
Water Level: 0%

George H. Dunklin Jr. Bayou Meto WMA

Map | Weather Report

Upper Vallier GTR
Habitat: Good
Water Level: 0% flooded.

Lower Vallier GTR
Habitat: Good
Water Level: 0% flooded.

Government Cypress GTR
Habitat: Good
Water Level: 0% flooded.

Buckingham Flats GTR
Habitat: Good
Water Level: 0% flooded

Temple Island GTR
Habitat: Good
Water Level: 0% flooded.

Canon Brake
Habitat: Good
Water Level: 0% flooded.

Halowell WRA
Habitat: Excellent
Arkansas Game and Fish CommissionWater Level: Staggered flooding of units.

Wrape Plantation WRA
Habitat: Excellent
Water Level: Staggered flooding of units.

This post Weather Conditions Hamper Ducks; Numbers of Geese Observed appeared first on AmmoLand.com Shooting Sports News .



Source: https://www.ammoland.com/2017/11/weather-conditions-hamper-ducks-numbers-of-geese-observed/

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