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Pheasants in your area #6168828
02/24/18 04:40 PM
02/24/18 04:40 PM
Joined: Nov 2010
Posts: 414
Iowa
B
beeman Offline OP
trapper
beeman  Offline OP
trapper
B

Joined: Nov 2010
Posts: 414
Iowa
I posted this on Iowa Trapper Talk and now here. What are your thoughts.

In NW Iowa we had good nesting weather last spring and we saw good numbers of pheasant brood. Then when hunting season got here I rarely saw a rooster or hen. My friend talked with a Conservation officer that confirmed what I just said. He could only say he did not know where the birds had gone.

I can only speculate but could all the aphid spraying that farmers do in the corn and bean fields have anything to do with this. I also do not see the number of small birds at my bird feeders that I used to see.

I had a friend of my sons say to me how all the spraying the farmers are doing has cut down on the number of mosquitoes we have. He worked for a farm chemical company.

I do know that the chemical companies suggest that no one enter theses sprayed fields for a week after spraying. My acreage had aphid spray drift onto it from a field sprayed a couple of years ago. I was told to not eat any of my garden produce by both chemical company and state investigator.

I understand that aphids hurt the yields of beans and corn but these chemicals also kill crickets, grasshoppers, butterflies, and other foods of birds.

We need to have someone such as ISU investigate to see what these chemicals are doing to the birds and people of our state.

Anybody else notice the same as I have?

Last edited by beeman; 02/24/18 04:40 PM.
Re: Pheasants in your area [Re: beeman] #6168858
02/24/18 05:27 PM
02/24/18 05:27 PM
Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 242
Utah
foxhunter52 Offline
trapper
foxhunter52  Offline
trapper

Joined: Nov 2014
Posts: 242
Utah
The pheasants here in Northern Utah started declining in the early to mid '70's foxes started showing up and they stopped raising sugar beets up here. When raccoons made there way here, there was a significant dip in pheasant numbers. Then with habitat disappearing and all the predators combined, skunks, coons, fox, hawks, coyotes feral cats, our pheasants are nearly gone. To have any kind of a wild pheasant shoot around here you've got to be real lucky or know someone with a good stretch of river bottom. You can also go to a preserve, but who wants to do that? As far as where they go if you're seeing good numbers of broods in the spring, I don't know. I haven't seen more than a brood or two a year since 1990. I sure hope you guys figure it out. There's nothing like hunting wild roosters in the fall.

Re: Pheasants in your area [Re: foxhunter52] #6168871
02/24/18 05:40 PM
02/24/18 05:40 PM
Joined: Jul 2010
Posts: 2,630
American In the Pyrenees; Fran...
S
swift4me Offline
trapper
swift4me  Offline
trapper
S

Joined: Jul 2010
Posts: 2,630
American In the Pyrenees; Fran...
When I started hunting in the 70's the central valley of California was a pheasant paradise. Not like Kansas, Nebraska or the Dakotas, but it was very good with a 4 bird limit and plenty of roosters for somebody who knew how to hunt. Mostly rice but lots of sugar beets and a fair bit of corn and set aside ground. Ever since it has gone downhill.

I have a good friend who has farmed 1300 acres of ground for 50 years, (rice and walnuts), who is an avid pheasant hunter and even with 200 acres of refuge ground manicured to raise pheasants he can't improve the numbers on his place. He's lucky to kill 4 birds a season, and back in the day they'd kill 20-30 birds a weekend with friends all season long.

Pesticides, West Nile, too many raptors, etc. Not a good trend.

Pete

Re: Pheasants in your area [Re: beeman] #6168881
02/24/18 05:48 PM
02/24/18 05:48 PM
Joined: Dec 2006
Posts: 42,085
Minnesota
330-Trapper Offline
trapper
330-Trapper  Offline
trapper

Joined: Dec 2006
Posts: 42,085
Minnesota
I'm seeing more rooster around here, I only have 23 acres but have left a lot of edges left alone around our fields and two swamp areas. Leaving these locations seems to really make a difference over a few years. We have coons, skunks and feral Cats, but no Spraying that I know of.


NRA and NTA Life Member
www.BackroadsRevised@etsy.com




Re: Pheasants in your area [Re: beeman] #6168885
02/24/18 05:53 PM
02/24/18 05:53 PM
Joined: Jan 2017
Posts: 1,087
Wright county, Minnesota
Birch Tree Offline
trapper
Birch Tree  Offline
trapper

Joined: Jan 2017
Posts: 1,087
Wright county, Minnesota
I saw more pheasants this year than I have in many many years here, granted even in a down year I walk up pheasants on public grounds without a dog, this year I was flushing pairs and triples and even had a dozen go up one time while walking to my canine sets. I could have limited almost every time if I was carrying a shotgun.


Mark Skokan, Buffalo MN.

MTA and NTA Member.
Re: Pheasants in your area [Re: beeman] #6168891
02/24/18 05:58 PM
02/24/18 05:58 PM
Joined: Nov 2011
Posts: 9,101
SWMo.
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tjm Offline
trapper
tjm  Offline
trapper
T

Joined: Nov 2011
Posts: 9,101
SWMo.
Pheasants eat insects and weed sprouts kinda like chickens do; so, get rid of the weeds by spray and get rid of insects by spray (or really by any means) and there won't be food. No food means fewer birds mature and fewer birds are in good shape for winter carry over.
Not surprising that you see a connection.
When it's all said and done they are still an invasive species.

Re: Pheasants in your area [Re: beeman] #6168894
02/24/18 06:00 PM
02/24/18 06:00 PM
Joined: Jul 2010
Posts: 2,161
Idaville, Indiana
M
MB750 Offline
trapper
MB750  Offline
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Joined: Jul 2010
Posts: 2,161
Idaville, Indiana
Just about any pheasant you see around here are released birds. Our quail disappeared in the 70's & never have recovered. Wild pheasants were hit almost as bad. I have a couple of friends who buy a few every year, pheasants mostly, to release on their farms.
A lot of our problem is there are no fencerows or small woodlots left for them to nest in. The coyote & coon numbers have been high, so nesting hens are hit hard. Throw that in with chisel plowing as soon as the crop is out & Lord knows what damage spraying might be causing, as nobody cultivates crops anymore.


For years I have been tomstrap, now I must change because of the whims of the cyber world. NRA Life, ISTA Life, FTA Life, NTA Life
Re: Pheasants in your area [Re: beeman] #6168896
02/24/18 06:01 PM
02/24/18 06:01 PM
Joined: Jun 2016
Posts: 7,629
Michigan
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Trapper Dahlgren Offline
trapper
Trapper Dahlgren  Offline
trapper
T

Joined: Jun 2016
Posts: 7,629
Michigan
around here they r on up swing I believe, but predator on down swing [the air born ]ones really mad differents also coon fox skunk's

Re: Pheasants in your area [Re: beeman] #6168957
02/24/18 07:10 PM
02/24/18 07:10 PM
Joined: Dec 2011
Posts: 8,840
MT
S
snowy Offline
trapper
snowy  Offline
trapper
S

Joined: Dec 2011
Posts: 8,840
MT
I see down years then years where the numbers are up. I don't know if spraying is killing them or not. I would say in my area more are taken from their natural prey. Eagles and hawks are all over they get a lot of them.

Today I sent the day at the ranch and I would guess I seen 60 to 80 roosters and not many hens. It isn't unusual to see a few hundred when drive in and taking a walk. There is a lot of birds around this winter. I have been getting some grain and spread a few bags on a ridge and they have been enjoying the little extra help this winter.


Give me a fish, I will eat for a day. Teach me to fish, I will eat for a lifetime
Re: Pheasants in your area [Re: beeman] #6168977
02/24/18 07:32 PM
02/24/18 07:32 PM
Joined: Dec 2006
Posts: 13,085
Sandhills Nebraska
G
Gary Benson Offline
trapper
Gary Benson  Offline
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Joined: Dec 2006
Posts: 13,085
Sandhills Nebraska
Absolutely more birds in the grasslands where there is no farming pesticides.


I know I'm paranoid......but am I paranoid ENOUGH???
Re: Pheasants in your area [Re: beeman] #6169001
02/24/18 07:54 PM
02/24/18 07:54 PM
Joined: Mar 2010
Posts: 1,829
wyoming southeast
D
danvee Offline
trapper
danvee  Offline
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D

Joined: Mar 2010
Posts: 1,829
wyoming southeast
We use to hunt Colorado and Kansas boarder years ago and it was crazy good hunting as soon as the spraying started and weeds were gone so were the birds. Seeing the same thing in Wy and Mt. now when you don't have good habitat and you start spraying its not good.

Re: Pheasants in your area [Re: beeman] #6169187
02/24/18 10:51 PM
02/24/18 10:51 PM
Joined: Dec 2017
Posts: 3,744
Kansas
Pawnee Offline
trapper
Pawnee  Offline
trapper

Joined: Dec 2017
Posts: 3,744
Kansas
Iím a pheasant hunter, pheasant guide, and farmer. I love bird hunting as much as I love trapping. I spray about 25,000 acres per year, and have great pheasant numbers. I also take great pride in how I spray. Most insecticides that are sprayed are done late in the growing season after the chicks are 1/3 grown or bigger, and have more food sources. Insect numbers usually donít meet spraying thresholds until crops are in the later stages. Insects are very important when the chicks are small. Itís my opinion that it has more to do with cover. Cover is the most important part of raising birds. Thatís one reason why South Dakota has so may birds, lots of cattails. Farming fence row to fence row and spraying in between will limit the amount of cover, thus reducing bird numbers. In my opinion spraying gets a bad wrap. No-till farmers and minimum till farmers are trying to conserve soil moisture, limit soil erosion, and limit nitrogen runoff into streams, in the publicís eyes they are darned if they do, darned if they donít.


Everything the left touches it destroys
Re: Pheasants in your area [Re: beeman] #6169208
02/24/18 11:09 PM
02/24/18 11:09 PM
Joined: Dec 2017
Posts: 3,744
Kansas
Pawnee Offline
trapper
Pawnee  Offline
trapper

Joined: Dec 2017
Posts: 3,744
Kansas
One more comment. GMOís also get a bad wrap. When I came back to the farm after college in 1998 we used thousands of pounds of insecticides in April while planting corn, and then thousands of pounds of insecticides for corn bore and root worm in June and July. Very bad stuff!!! One teaspoon could kill 10 head of 1000lbs cattle. I got sick many times handling it, and my dog almost died by just getting it on his paws. Since BT and rootworm GMO corn hit the market I havenít touched the stuff and glad for it. Billions of pounds less insecticides being used because of GMO corn.


Everything the left touches it destroys
Re: Pheasants in your area [Re: beeman] #6169226
02/24/18 11:23 PM
02/24/18 11:23 PM
Joined: Jan 2014
Posts: 1,525
NW MO
T
TurkeyTime Offline
trapper
TurkeyTime  Offline
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Joined: Jan 2014
Posts: 1,525
NW MO
I love to pheasant hunt and I have thought about this for the last 10 years. Here in NW MO it has been a steady decline in pheasant numbers. The last 3 years they have been about non-existent in the places I hunt. This is several farms and a variety of habitat(strictly row crop, 40-200 acre native grass, mixed). Something is going on as it is the same with turkeys. We used to be loaded with turkeys and the last 5 years it has gone downhill fast. The MDC is currently trying to figure out the turkey situation in NW MO but is keeping it low key. The farms I hunt have not changed one bit. Some will say "Oh you just don't notice the change." Oh I am correct. One farmer pushed in every fence, ditch, drained everything. I mean every ounce of land was farmed but for years we would still find good numbers of birds in the remaining habitat. This is a few thousand acres like this. This year nothing. Another farm is 200 acres of native grass. The same stand and acreage for 25 years. Fact is something is going on and I don't know what it is. I have thought several times if it is found out it maybe major news. I have a farm, several family members have farms but these chemical and seed companies would sell their souls to the devil. Massive amounts of chemical that are in our drinking water. Seed coatings. Genetic modification. Something is not right.

Re: Pheasants in your area [Re: beeman] #6169230
02/24/18 11:31 PM
02/24/18 11:31 PM
Joined: Dec 2015
Posts: 611
Northern Missouri
Northmocats Offline
trapper
Northmocats  Offline
trapper

Joined: Dec 2015
Posts: 611
Northern Missouri
Yeah the Pheasant and Turkey here in North Mo. Have been on a steady decline. They keep selling those turkey tags though...
They said bird disease and Bad hatches years ago..
I think the chemicals are effecting thier eggs.
15 Years ago I lived in the Best Turkey hunting country in the World with Hundreds of birds, Today not so much, but they are still here. Same with Pheasants.

Last edited by Northmocats; 02/24/18 11:32 PM.
Re: Pheasants in your area [Re: beeman] #6169237
02/24/18 11:36 PM
02/24/18 11:36 PM
Joined: Dec 2017
Posts: 148
Iowa
H
Hoss2018 Offline
trapper
Hoss2018  Offline
trapper
H

Joined: Dec 2017
Posts: 148
Iowa
Between our families land and our neighbors land located in southeast iowa we have very good pheasant habitat because we are in crp program and we have a lot of birds because of it, id say between us and the neighbors we have atleast 500 acres of crp and in southeast iowa crp in large quabtities doesnt seem that common which is why there are hardly any birds in general, but where the good cover is there are lots of birds, i dont think spraying affects them unless the birds are living in the fields because lack of cover. One thing i think greatly helps the population that we do is plant a few acres by our crp in corn/beans or milo as a foodplot, i think since we started this like 4 years ago it has increased winter survival leading to a greater population, sometimes ill jump 30 out of one of our little plots and we harvested roughly 25 roosters last season but theres plenty more around, these plots probably arent very effective if u have rediculous deer population as they will wipe it out and ruin it but our deer population gets put in check so our plots last all winter for the pheasants and other critters. Plus i trap the predators hard around are crp which also influences survival heavily i believe

Last edited by Hoss2018; 02/24/18 11:44 PM.
Re: Pheasants in your area [Re: beeman] #6169238
02/24/18 11:38 PM
02/24/18 11:38 PM
Joined: Jan 2014
Posts: 1,525
NW MO
T
TurkeyTime Offline
trapper
TurkeyTime  Offline
trapper
T

Joined: Jan 2014
Posts: 1,525
NW MO
I hear you NMOcats. 10 plus years ago the turkey hunting was unbelievable. I mean unbelievable. I am glad I got to hunt it. Sad for the younger folks it is gone(hopefully just for now). I was able to learn a ton by having so many birds.

Re: Pheasants in your area [Re: TurkeyTime] #6169250
02/24/18 11:49 PM
02/24/18 11:49 PM
Joined: Dec 2017
Posts: 148
Iowa
H
Hoss2018 Offline
trapper
Hoss2018  Offline
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H

Joined: Dec 2017
Posts: 148
Iowa
Originally Posted By: TurkeyTime
I hear you NMOcats. 10 plus years ago the turkey hunting was unbelievable. I mean unbelievable. I am glad I got to hunt it. Sad for the younger folks it is gone(hopefully just for now). I was able to learn a ton by having so many birds.
My dad said the numbers hed see in fields was huge years ago. Now he says he hardly sees any compared to what they used to be. Our theory is the recent spike in bobcat population is taking a toll on the turkey, some might say habitat loss but some of these areas he talks about that used to be great havent suffered from habitat loss

Re: Pheasants in your area [Re: beeman] #6169265
02/24/18 11:59 PM
02/24/18 11:59 PM
Joined: Dec 2011
Posts: 1,920
Washington
C
cat daddy Offline
trapper
cat daddy  Offline
trapper
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Joined: Dec 2011
Posts: 1,920
Washington
Here in Eastern Washington we had exceptional pheasant hunting in the 60s, 70s, and the 80s. When they quit farming sugar beets and increased the alfalfa farming, our bird hunting collapsed. My brothee raises about 5,000 acres of hay and he says there are many many nests get swathed when the chicks are small.

Re: Pheasants in your area [Re: beeman] #6169291
02/25/18 12:16 AM
02/25/18 12:16 AM
Joined: May 2010
Posts: 273
IA
N
Nick C Offline
trapper
Nick C  Offline
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N

Joined: May 2010
Posts: 273
IA
Iím in NW Iowa too.

Sac/Ida County area. Pheasants are plentiful. Have been since summer, and late summer, and I saw dozens every day when we were harvesting corn and beans. Saw pheasants all throughout November when I was running traps. Have seen hundreds grouped up all winter near big cover like usual.

They have been spraying aphids for a long, long time.

Another bad conspiracy theory against the farmer harming wildlife with no real facts to back it up.

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