Untypical weather conditions in Wisconsin for the past few months have not significantly impacted the waterfowl population, according to a new report released by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.
“Overall, wetland numbers this spring were down but in Wisconsin our abundant permanent water contained in 15,000 lakes reduces the impact of dry conditions on the ducks” Department of Natural Resources biologist Kent Van Horn was quoted as saying the report.
Our warmer and drier than average winter, coupled with an earlier, warmer and drier spring left less water in wetland areas for waterfowl breeding this year. It also sparked migration and breeding earlier in the season than normal.
According to statistics released by the DNR, state-wide winter precipitation was down 25 percent below what is considered normal.
The report also cited the month of March as a key factor in the activity of the state’s birds population. The department says temperatures were around 15 degrees warmer than average.
The warmer and drier conditions have proven challenging for Wisconsin’s birds, but has not been devastating. The Department of Natural Resources says the populations of the birds have not been as far off their average numbers as the weather has been in the past few months.
The duck population inWisconsinfor this year is estimated at 521,079, just higher than the 2011 numbers. The average for the past decade is listed as 545,240.
The Wisconsin DNR also says that though the weather has contributed to an usual season for the animals, it is not completely abnormal or bad for wetland areas to experience bouts of dry weather for a period of time.
“Variation from year to year in wetland conditions and breeding ducks is part of the natural cycle in the world of wetland wildlife. Wetlands need dry periods to maintain long-term productivity and ducks are able to adapt to changing wetland conditions among years and across the continent” the report said.
To read the entire article from the Department of Natural Resources, follow this link: http://dnr.wi.gov/news/WeeklyNews_Print.asp?id=2210