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05

For those looking to hunt in Kansas, there is some really good news: the outlook is better than it was in 2013. Despite this, there is also some bad news; the potential success for hunters is not going to return to the highs previously seen, at least not this year.

Jeff Prendergast has stated there should be an improvement in the pheasant harvest, with more birds being reported in the state. However, the wildlife biologist for the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism reports that the harvest will still be below the average hunters have come to expect.

Kansas has long been held as one of the better states for pheasant hunting. That is why, in 2013, there was huge shock throughout the state’s community at the news of the ‘pheasant harvest crash’.

In 2013, hunters only shot 190,285 pheasants. This was the lowest recorded harvest since records began in 1957. Hunter numbers also slumped to 54,000, which was another record low for the state.

In 2010, 892,672 pheasants were harvested by hunters.

Prendergast warns hunters expecting a similar season to 2010 will be disappointed. He states hunters are more likely to suffer from results similar to the 2013-2014 season.

The scenario is comparable to other parts of the United States. South Dakota is looking at an improved population this year after a 78% decline in 2013. North Dakota and other states also experienced similar drops in 2013 and small population recoveries this year.

Weather and habitat loss were the main culprits for the shocking 2013 decline in the pheasant populations.

However, there is hope with the 2013-2014 winter being mild in states like South Dakota and the new Farm Bill. If these factors combined can help habitats, then pheasant populations can improve.

Do you go hunting in Kansas? Do you think pheasant hunters will see a better, worse or same harvest as they did last year?

Let us know in the comments below.


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