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Banding Together for Waterfowl

2012 Spring Habitat Conditions in Canada 

Posted May 9, 2012
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Atlantic Canada

This spring has been unusual. The season started with extremely warm sunny periods, but has recently become cold and rainy. 

The initial warm period was enough to melt all of the limited snow cover, thawing the ground and drying the landscape quicker than usual. Daytime high temperatures broke all-time records, across the Maritimes, for nearly a week. Some were even worried about early forest fires given the summer-like dry conditions. The last two weeks have consisted of cold days with periods of rain. 

Some areas have seen rain amounts of 60-80 mm over the course of a few hours! 

Early, mild temperatures resulted in earlier-than-normal ice break-up. Several lakes and wetlands were open a full month before normal. Migrating waterfowl were detected earlier as well. Canada geese have been nesting for several weeks in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island. Ducks have been paired up for some time, and males have been actively pursuing lone hens recently. 

Late April brought water levels closer to typical spring-like conditions. The warmer, drier days ahead should be appreciated by many early-nesting hens. Overall, habitat conditions are good in Atlantic Canada. 

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