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waxworm

Central North Dakota Report?

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Heading to central ND this weekend, and I've heard rumors of no ducks and frozen ponds. If anyone's been there in the past week or so or knows whats going on over there I'd appreciate it.

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Had some buddies go out there last weekend, came back with limits of ducks and roosters. I dont know exactly where they were but I think a little south of Devils Lake. Lots of corn still up from what I understand. Dont know about frozen ponds but they said they hunted ponds every morning.

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You're not going to find frozen ponds but you might find no ducks. Seems like they're a little concentrated right now. Or you might be like me and find 3 good feeds only to have each one tied up by a guide. Wow I hate guides, they are ruining the sport.

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just got back from ND on a phesent trip. We got a lot of birds. I saw all kinds of ducks driving around near Alice, 30 miles east of Jamestown, and 30 miles or so west of Jamestown in the area of medina and north of gakle. Some mallards, geese, and all kinds of divers! hope this helps.

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Left NoDak this morning. Ice forming on many potholes due to clear nights. Many ducks have moved south already according to local guys. They are counting on another batch coming in, but it it stays as cold at night as it has been there is going to be solid ice on some places. Be on the lookout for the guide trucks, two or three at a time each hauling a bazzillion decoys, 3-wheelers,crates of ammo etc. HA! Best of luck.

Oh. I never fired a shot.

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We left northern ND early yesterday as the drought had dried up a lot of stuff and what was left was froze solid. Some snows but very few ducks. Least amount of birds we've seen in 25+ years of going to the same area. I know folks in other areas did well but in the North Central area we stay and hunt in it was tough. Everthing was froze up within a 30 mile radius of our camp. Lots of sloughs we hunted last year were dry as a bone.

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Compare notes? Casey@50below.com

Quote:

We left northern ND early yesterday as the drought had dried up a lot of stuff and what was left was froze solid. Some snows but very few ducks. Least amount of birds we've seen in 25+ years of going to the same area. I know folks in other areas did well but in the North Central area we stay and hunt in it was tough. Everthing was froze up within a 30 mile radius of our camp. Lots of sloughs we hunted last year were dry as a bone.


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Those plooms of smoke you see are the dry cattail slougs being burned.

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Yep - nearly every smaller slough will be burned and plowed - ready for farming next spring if the melt does not refill them.

These sloughs are not drain tiled, but will be farmed if the drought continues.

All sloughs with water had reopened on my way home yesterday. Many if not most held gadwalls, wigeon, divers, and an occasional mallard. Looked like opener was a week away confused.gif

Not sure where these ducks came from - big water or migration, but they were back on the little water.

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Quote:

Yep - nearly every smaller slough will be burned and plowed - ready for farming next spring if the melt does not refill them.

These sloughs are not drain tiled, but will be farmed if the drought continues.


Sorry, I have to comment here. Most farmers will burn the dry sloughs for the edges around the sloughs to get the old "cover" off of them. This is so they can get better hay off of them in the future. There are restrictions on what or how much can be dug up.

KJ

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To clarify my comment was not meant to be negative, just a factual statement of the dry conditions in ND. In fact after speaking with the farmers in the area it actually made good sense that they were burning the sloughs and in the long run is good for the sloughs as it was natural for the sloughs to burn before the introduction of the settlers. One of the strengths of the ND prairie is the fact that it truly goes through wet/dry cycles and the marshes have a chance to dry out and regenerate. There is nothing like picking up your decoys and having the bottoms of them covered in fresh water shrimp.

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Swampbuster provisions only limit farmers that receive subsidies.

Slough bottoms can and will be farmed. Back in the early '90s even the USF&W planted millet in the bottom of several dried slough beds.

Agree most farmers are just looking to farm the edges of these wetlands. Remember ND has been very, very wet over the past 10 -12 years and many of these wetlands have become larger than ever.

Even small acreage increases improve return.

Still pheasant habitat is lost now and next spring these small "temporary" wetland edges will be bare.

Again, in ND most farmers are not draining/filling or drain tiling these wetlands - loss is not necessarily permanent.

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Any recent reports on open water or ducks in south central north dakota? I will be out there 11/2 - 11/5. We will be focusing on pheasants, but will hunt ducks if there are birds and open water.

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With forecast of teens at night and twenties in the day - what was seen today and yesterday is no longer relative.

Ice will reform fast and furious!

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I think you're going to have a hard time finding open water unless you're planning on hunting the big water. In SE ND we didn't receive any snow, but lows are forecasted for the rest of the week in the 20's and highs barely above freezing.

marine_man

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Thanks for the info. We will bring the decoys and boats just in case we find some big water to hunt. There are always pheasants to chase and the dog likes pheasant hunting more than late season ducks.

I got a report of significant numbers of mallards on the river in Monticello, MN and excellent hunting in western MN. Sounds like the birds are on the move, now it depends on open water being available.

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