Texas Migratory Bird Report No. 22
Weekly migratory bird hunting reports are posted from early September through early February.
AUSTIN, Texas –-(Ammoland.com)- High Plains Mallard Management Unit: Duck season ended Jan. 23 in the High Plains and the consensus was a successful season.
Lots of water in the Panhandle gave ducks ample habitat and hunters many playa lakes to hunt. However, the abundant water scattered ducks, somewhat. Mallards, pintails, wigeons, gadwalls and teal were harvested the final weekend. Goose season runs through Feb.6, and prospects are good for decoying action. Outfitters said good goose numbers are roosting on Lake Etter and around Dalhart. More geese moved in to the Amarillo area. The Light Goose Conservation Order in the West Zone begins Feb. 7. Prospects are good.
North Zone Duck: Duck season ended Jan. 23 and hunters said the latest cold front and timely rains 10 days prior aided success. The region received as much as four inches of rain, which finally floated a good mast crop of acorns. Wood ducks remained solid throughout the season, and mallards improved in January, especially the last week of the season. Lots of divers were reported on Lake O’Pines, Caddo Lake, Toledo Bend, Sam Rayburn, Lake Fork and Cooper Lake. The Sulphur River and Lake Wright-Patman was hit-or-miss. The good news is the latest rains have provided an abundance of water to sustain ducks through the winter, or at least until they begin to trickle back north.
South Zone Duck: As is traditionally the case, the coast was the hotspot for ducks in Texas, namely the coastal marshes and bays. Some hunters around Port O’Connor said they have never seen this many ducks throughout the season. Rockport hunters saw consistent action as well. Baffin Bay, Port Mansfield and areas around the Arroyo Colorado reported excellent shoots of pintails, redheads and wigeons from start to finish, with little or no boat traffic from other hunters. Pintails, shovelers and teal were the most prevalent species taken on the prairie, though greenwings did not show up en masse until the final week of the season. Absent, too, were wigeons and gadwalls did not show up in number compared to past years. Hunters were pleased with the extra pintail this year and took advantage on many prairie ponds and bay flats. Goose season ended Jan. 23 and most hunters said they enjoyed average decoying action throughout the season. Most pegged the juvenile population of snow geese at around 10 percent. Specklebellies and Canada geese filled the void when snows were not cooperative. The Light Goose Conservation Order began Jan. 24., however, participation was minimal.
The Mission of Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, (TPWD), is to manage and conserve the natural and cultural resources of Texas and to provide hunting, fishing and outdoor recreation opportunities for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. Visit: www.tpwd.state.tx.us