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Author Topic: Corn ponds and duck patterns  (Read 3770 times)

Offline JBG

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Re: Corn ponds and duck patterns
« Reply #60 on: June 12, 2018, 04:14:57 PM »
For the public land hunter the best thing would be for better habitat/food plots on public lands rather than creating more government rules for private land owners thinking it will increase public land hunter success.  Each region only has a certain amount of carrying capacity for ducks and the corn complexes help increase that. WA state has some of the best public land hunting in the US even with corn complexes.  Take those away you will just have more people on limited public areas shooting at the same ducks day after day. 

Offline vandeman17

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Re: Corn ponds and duck patterns
« Reply #61 on: June 12, 2018, 04:37:39 PM »
For the public land hunter the best thing would be for better habitat/food plots on public lands rather than creating more government rules for private land owners thinking it will increase public land hunter success.  Each region only has a certain amount of carrying capacity for ducks and the corn complexes help increase that. WA state has some of the best public land hunting in the US even with corn complexes.  Take those away you will just have more people on limited public areas shooting at the same ducks day after day.

They might increase the carrying capacity but they also congregate mass amounts of birds to those areas. I agree that WA does have good bird hunting and liberal seasons but I have seen first hand how corn ponds have grown here in central wa. It is a fickle balance between impeding a private landowners right to do with their land as they please and thinking about the greater good of the overall hunting community. I don't think there is an easy answer to this one. 
" I have hunted almost every day of my life, the rest have been wasted"

Offline h2ofowlr

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Re: Corn ponds and duck patterns
« Reply #62 on: June 12, 2018, 05:23:29 PM »
For the public land hunter the best thing would be for better habitat/food plots on public lands rather than creating more government rules for private land owners thinking it will increase public land hunter success.  Each region only has a certain amount of carrying capacity for ducks and the corn complexes help increase that. WA state has some of the best public land hunting in the US even with corn complexes.  Take those away you will just have more people on limited public areas shooting at the same ducks day after day.

Public is getting worse.  Most of the duck spots towards the bay fronts are being converted to salmon restoration projects!
Cut em!
It's not the shells!  It's the shooter!

Offline BD1

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Re: Corn ponds and duck patterns
« Reply #63 on: June 13, 2018, 12:17:30 PM »

Public is getting worse.  Most of the duck spots towards the bay fronts are being converted to salmon restoration projects!
[/quote]

 :yeah:

Offline hunterednate

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Re: Corn ponds and duck patterns
« Reply #64 on: June 13, 2018, 12:47:20 PM »
For the public land hunter the best thing would be for better habitat/food plots on public lands rather than creating more government rules for private land owners thinking it will increase public land hunter success.  Each region only has a certain amount of carrying capacity for ducks and the corn complexes help increase that. WA state has some of the best public land hunting in the US even with corn complexes.  Take those away you will just have more people on limited public areas shooting at the same ducks day after day.

They might increase the carrying capacity but they also congregate mass amounts of birds to those areas. I agree that WA does have good bird hunting and liberal seasons but I have seen first hand how corn ponds have grown here in central wa. It is a fickle balance between impeding a private landowners right to do with their land as they please and thinking about the greater good of the overall hunting community. I don't think there is an easy answer to this one.

Another aspect to this: what effect do corn ponds have on other wildlife? If flooded corn hunting was illegal, my guess is that private landowners would take other steps to improve the waterfowl habitat on their property to keep it attractive to ducks - marsh restoration, planting native food sources, etc. Would these improvements create a healthier ecosystem overall for other wildlife than a large mass of flooded corn complexes?

I'd be curious to hear a wildlife biologist's take on all this. Corn ponds do, indeed, increase the carrying capacity for ducks, but that is not the only concern for state wildlife officials (or the non-hunting public, for that matter).

Offline JBG

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Re: Corn ponds and duck patterns
« Reply #65 on: June 13, 2018, 04:01:44 PM »
I think the problem with other crops being planted is that there is not as readily available market to sell those crops into.  Corn gets planted because 1. Ducks like it 2. a farm can plant 100 acres and leave 10 standing to hunt in and sell the other 90 which pays for the 10 standing.  Doing all 100 acres in a crop that cant easily be sold would be hard to sustain.

Offline vandeman17

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Re: Corn ponds and duck patterns
« Reply #66 on: June 13, 2018, 04:06:49 PM »
I think the problem with other crops being planted is that there is not as readily available market to sell those crops into.  Corn gets planted because 1. Ducks like it 2. a farm can plant 100 acres and leave 10 standing to hunt in and sell the other 90 which pays for the 10 standing.  Doing all 100 acres in a crop that cant easily be sold would be hard to sustain.

Most places we are talking about do not harvest their corn to make money, they harvest it so they are following the rules. Their money comes from multiple blinds full of hunters that either are paying $200 per day to hunt of a thousands of dollars per year in membership dues.  :twocents:
" I have hunted almost every day of my life, the rest have been wasted"

Offline JBG

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Re: Corn ponds and duck patterns
« Reply #67 on: June 13, 2018, 05:01:03 PM »
I'm just saying thats why people dont plant other types of grain
I know that the private farm I hunt feeds and supplies a whole season of shooting for adjacent public area hunters.  If the farm wasnt there in the way that it is these public land hunters would not have the opportunity that they currently enjoy. 

Offline EWUeagles

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Re: Corn ponds and duck patterns
« Reply #68 on: June 14, 2018, 08:32:55 AM »
I'm just saying thats why people dont plant other types of grain
I know that the private farm I hunt feeds and supplies a whole season of shooting for adjacent public area hunters.  If the farm wasnt there in the way that it is these public land hunters would not have the opportunity that they currently enjoy.

So there wasn't ducks there before you put in corn? I find that hard to believe. No clue on where you live so maybe that truly is the case.

I do know that big farms are making an impact farther out than just around adjacent public lands. Here in Spokane the numbers of birds are going down and move out quicker. Also I'm seeing more and more birds in the Tri Cities and Moses Lake areas. I don't believe this is a coincidence. I believe that big farms are drawing birds off of their migration patterns and holding them there.

Offline vandeman17

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Re: Corn ponds and duck patterns
« Reply #69 on: June 14, 2018, 08:45:36 AM »
I'm just saying thats why people dont plant other types of grain
I know that the private farm I hunt feeds and supplies a whole season of shooting for adjacent public area hunters.  If the farm wasnt there in the way that it is these public land hunters would not have the opportunity that they currently enjoy.

So there wasn't ducks there before you put in corn? I find that hard to believe. No clue on where you live so maybe that truly is the case.

I do know that big farms are making an impact farther out than just around adjacent public lands. Here in Spokane the numbers of birds are going down and move out quicker. Also I'm seeing more and more birds in the Tri Cities and Moses Lake areas. I don't believe this is a coincidence. I believe that big farms are drawing birds off of their migration patterns and holding them there.

 :yeah:  I would also disagree that those corn ponds bring much of a change to the surrounding public land hunting besides the occasional pass shooting. If they weren't there, birds would be spread out and loafing all over instead of just hanging out and bouncing between corn ponds
" I have hunted almost every day of my life, the rest have been wasted"

Offline hunterednate

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Re: Corn ponds and duck patterns
« Reply #70 on: June 14, 2018, 10:30:15 AM »
I'm just saying thats why people dont plant other types of grain
I know that the private farm I hunt feeds and supplies a whole season of shooting for adjacent public area hunters.  If the farm wasnt there in the way that it is these public land hunters would not have the opportunity that they currently enjoy.

So there wasn't ducks there before you put in corn? I find that hard to believe. No clue on where you live so maybe that truly is the case.

I do know that big farms are making an impact farther out than just around adjacent public lands. Here in Spokane the numbers of birds are going down and move out quicker. Also I'm seeing more and more birds in the Tri Cities and Moses Lake areas. I don't believe this is a coincidence. I believe that big farms are drawing birds off of their migration patterns and holding them there.

 :yeah:  I would also disagree that those corn ponds bring much of a change to the surrounding public land hunting besides the occasional pass shooting. If they weren't there, birds would be spread out and loafing all over instead of just hanging out and bouncing between corn ponds

Yes - that's exactly what I've observed in the public areas I hunt. They are in close proximity to several large corn complexes, and as the corn ponds have increased over the last fifteen years, the number of ducks actively using the public areas for water have decreased (pretty dramatically, in some cases). More birds stay in the general area longer, perhaps, but that hasn't helped the public hunter much.

Before the corn ponds, there was plenty of dry corn and other dry crops in the area, but most of the open water was on public land, so ducks could not have all their needs met on private land as easily as with flooded corn complexes. The public hunting has suffered. You can still kill ducks on public, sure - but if I was just getting into duck hunting now, I'd probably quit in frustration before finding those spots or give up in the face of competition from established, dedicated duck hunters.

Ducks spread out in smaller concentrations would certainly create better conditions for a duck hunting newbie.

Offline Badhabit

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Re: Corn ponds and duck patterns
« Reply #71 on: June 14, 2018, 11:01:07 AM »
And so began the era of internet scouting! Lots of hunters have posted glory shots with plenty of identifiable background. My honey hole has been overrun, where did they come from? Cell phone photos with GPS coding enabled really gives away the honey hole. Public land/water hunting has become cutthroat. Nobody in our group posts photos from the field/water and is frowned upon even taken at home as guys get to know what vehicle or boat you have and actually look for your rig to get near the X.

Offline vandeman17

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Re: Corn ponds and duck patterns
« Reply #72 on: June 14, 2018, 11:09:17 AM »
And so began the era of internet scouting! Lots of hunters have posted glory shots with plenty of identifiable background. My honey hole has been overrun, where did they come from? Cell phone photos with GPS coding enabled really gives away the honey hole. Public land/water hunting has become cutthroat. Nobody in our group posts photos from the field/water and is frowned upon even taken at home as guys get to know what vehicle or boat you have and actually look for your rig to get near the X.

sad but true. Good spots can be ruined in the hands of one wrong person.
" I have hunted almost every day of my life, the rest have been wasted"

Offline JBG

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Re: Corn ponds and duck patterns
« Reply #73 on: June 14, 2018, 03:48:07 PM »
The corn used to get cut now we leave some standing.  The guys I have talked to shoot limits at decoying birds.  Would you guys in EWa rather see those corn complexes planted in grapes instead of corn.  What about golf courses or highschool baseball fields, isnt it safe to say those are a safe haven for birds?  I would much rather have a chance to hunt ducks in a area that they orbit around than to not have a food and water source.  Birds will not stay on huntable public land if you can hunt 7 days a week.  You guys seem to think if the complexes go away you will hve the same number of birds pouring into the public areas.  That wont happen due to the hunting pressure they will get. 

Offline vandeman17

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Re: Corn ponds and duck patterns
« Reply #74 on: June 14, 2018, 03:57:45 PM »
The corn used to get cut now we leave some standing.  The guys I have talked to shoot limits at decoying birds.  Would you guys in EWa rather see those corn complexes planted in grapes instead of corn.  What about golf courses or highschool baseball fields, isnt it safe to say those are a safe haven for birds?  I would much rather have a chance to hunt ducks in a area that they orbit around than to not have a food and water source.  Birds will not stay on huntable public land if you can hunt 7 days a week.  You guys seem to think if the complexes go away you will hve the same number of birds pouring into the public areas.  That wont happen due to the hunting pressure they will get.

Most of the public places in the basin won't be golf courses or baseball fields so that is a bit of a stretch. As for grapes, yes I would rather have it a working vineyard so the birds that do make their way down the pacific flyway will disperse appropriately and not pile up.  :twocents:
" I have hunted almost every day of my life, the rest have been wasted"

 

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