posted on September 24, 2004 00:00
Will quail season be good? Survey says, "Yes!"
By Vic Allshouse
With a wet spring and forage and cover galore, biologists with the Wildlife Department say that even though the results of the August roadside survey are down almost five percent over the 14-year average, all indications point to a good season for Oklahoma quail hunters.
The survey, run in the spring and again in the fall, is comprised of 83 routes in all counties except Tulsa and Oklahoma. These routes are run every year and are 20-miles in length. By driving these routes every year, biologists are able to get a handle on the spring and fall hatches of quail and are better able to determine the success of the state's upcoming quail season.
But one thing can compromise an accurate count and that's the foliage along the routes. With more foliage, it makes it more difficult for the biologists to count the birds because they are harder to see.
A mild spring and summer lead to good reproduction and hunters know that a late second hatch often determines the difference between an average and good quail season.
Oklahoma's quail season runs November 13, 2004 through February 15, 2005.
WATERFOWL? WHAT WATERFOWL?
Just when we thought the weather was cooling enough to move the teal around, it turns hot again. But I guess we really can't complain as the weather this summer has been very warm, but not as hot as usual.
After attending the DU banquet and speaking to several hunters who had tried to find a few teal on that opening day, I was surprised to find that they had not had the success we had hoped for. Of course, that day was bright and sunny and it had warmed up towards the end of the week. Not very good conditions for an early-season hunt.
But the season is young and there will be plenty of cold weather to come as the season progresses.
At its September meeting, the Oklahoma Wildlife Conservation Commission approved the 2004-2005 duck and goose hunting season dates and daily limits. Seasons and dates are similar to last year, with the better part of the state enjoying a 74-day duck season and six-bird daily limit.
Zone 1 waterfowlers will the first split of the duck season October 30 and run through Dec.12, with the second half running Dec. 18 and running through Jan.16, 2005. Youth waterfowl hunting days will open October 23 and 24th.
In Zone 2, the duck season splits will be Nov. 13 through Dec. 12 and Dec.18 through Jan.30, 2005. Youth waterfowl days in Zone 2 will be Oct. 2 and 3.
The statewide Canada goose season will run from Nov6 through Dec. 12 and Dec. 18 through Feb. 13, 2005. The season for white-fronted geese will run Nov 6 through Dec12 and Dec 18 through Feb 4, 2005. The season for light-geese will run Nov 6 through Dec 12 and Dec 18 through Feb 13, 2005.
Be sure to consult the 2004-2005 Waterfowl Hunting Guide for complete regulations and requirements, available Oct 1 at license dealers statewide.
HUNTER ED CLASS THIS WEEKEND
Be sure and make plans to attend this Saturday's Hunter Ed class at Tri County Tech. The class runs from 8 am to 7 pm and is free. The class certificate is required of all youth planning to hunt big game (deer, elk, antelope) and who have reached the age of 16.
Call Tri County for more information.
ARCHERS READY THEIR EQUIPMENT
I know, October seems a long ways off, but it won't be long until the first cold nip is in the air and the area's archery deer season will begin.
But now is the best time to "bone up" for the upcoming season. Checking the equipment and any needed repairs can be done now instead of waiting until the last minute.
Many times parts must be ordered and that takes awhile. Why wait until the season is the next week to inspect your bow and your arrows? It takes very little time to do it now, ensuring you will be ready for opening day.
Loose pullies, frayed bow strings, cracked limbs, bent arrows and damaged sights can make that first trip to the woods an uneventful one. Take the time NOW and make sure things are in order. It wouldn't hurt to stick an arrow or two in a hay bale as well.
Practice makes perfect and if you're like me, you NEED the practice!
FISHING AND HUNTING SHOW THIS WEEKEND
The Tulsa fairgrounds and Expo Square will be the site of what is purported to be the largest hunting and fishing show in America. And, with over 700 booths, it could very well be.
The show runs Saturday 9 to 6 and Sunday 9-7.
Also featured is a gun show and the purchase of one ticket will gain admittance to both events.
Call Metcalf Shows for more info at 918-272-1119
Until next week, good luck hunting and fishing!