Field Reports: 2012 Duck Production Outlook

Prospects for breeding waterfowl have improved in many areas since last report 
By DU Field Biologists 

1. BRITISH COLUMBIA Much of this province received beneficial precipitation this spring, but wetland conditions remain variable. Good waterfowl production is expected along the coast and in the southeastern interior, while fair production is anticipated elsewhere. 

2. ALBERTA Timely spring precipitation improved wetland conditions in this province, and a strong waterfowl breeding effort is under way. Overall, average to slightly above-average waterfowl production is expected if the province receives sufficient rainfall to maintain wetland habitats. 

3. SASKATCHEWAN Wet weather in April and May also improved the outlook for waterfowl production in Saskatchewan. Across this province's vast prairie and parkland regions, spring rains increased seasonal wetland habitat used by breeding pairs. Upland cover is also in excellent shape in many areas, and above-average waterfowl production is expected.  

4. MANITOBA Wetland conditions are generally good for breeding waterfowl in Manitoba. Upland cover is also in good shape, and pairs are well distributed on suitable wetland habitats, indicating that a strong waterfowl breeding effort is under way. 

5. ONTARIO With the exception of southwestern Ontario, wetland conditions are generally good across this province, and typical waterfowl production is expected. 

6. QUÉBEC An early thaw and timely April precipitation benefited breeding waterfowl in Québec. Wetland conditions are generally good throughout this province, and a typical waterfowl breeding effort has been observed.

7. ATLANTIC CANADA Although spring started out warm and dry in this region, cool, wet weather in late April brought many wetland basins up to normal levels, and average waterfowl production is expected.

8. NORTH-CENTRAL U.S. Waterfowl habitat conditions are generally fair across a large portion of the north-central United States. Notable exceptions are the coteau regions of South Dakota, North Dakota, and Montana, where wetland conditions remain in good shape because of abundant carryover water. In general, waterfowl production is expected to be slightly better than average in this region. 

9. GREAT LAKES AND NORTHEASTERN U.S. The waterfowl production outlook across the Great Lakes region is generally fair. In the northeastern states, May rainfall improved habitat conditions in many areas and good waterfowl production is anticipated.

10. WESTERN U.S. Habitat conditions for breeding waterfowl are variable across the West. In California, prospects for waterfowl production range from fair in the Sacramento Valley to poor in the San Joaquin. Wetland conditions are generally good in Oregon and Washington, fair in southern Idaho and northern Utah, and poor in the southern Great Basin. In Alaska, runoff from a huge snowpack should provide excellent wetland conditions for breeding waterfowl.