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Spring 2014 Habitat Conditions in Canada

DU Canada reports on Spring breeding conditions
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Manitoba

Spring arrived later than usual in southwest breeding areas, where the first melt didn't occer until April 5th.  Rain events have helped to maintain good conditions in Killarney, while the Minnedosa / Shoal Lake region and portions of the Virden landscape are in slightly better condition.

Wetlands are full so early-hatching birds should have ample brood waters.  The later-arriving spring may also result in peak hatch dates coinciding with initial haying dates if grass and hay lands receive a boost by warm weather in June.

The presence of lone northern pintail and mallard drakes indicated that nest initiation occurred around April 24th.  The frequency of those observations, along with the appearance of grouped drakes, suggests that early-arriving species transitioned rapidly from setting up territories to breeding and nesting.  The snow goose migration was largely absent for much of the province except in extreme southwest areas.
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