Bird Dog & Retriever News

April / May 2003 issue Page 43

Effort aimed at boosting dwindling quail populations.
For the third year in a row, landowners in Allen, Bourbon, Crawford, and Neosho counties may receive financial incentives or cost-share payments for creating and enhancing habitat beneficial to quail. The Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks (KDWP), working through the Southeast Kansas Quail Working Group, is offering as much as $2,000 annually per cooperator for such efforts.
These incentives are in response to dwindling populations of bobwhite quail, perhaps this region's most important game bird. Habitat improvements eligible for payment include fescue replacement, establishment of native grasses, hedgerow renovation, strip disking, early burning of native grass, planting food plots or leaving grain in the field, shrub planting, prescribed livestock management, livestock exclusion from borders and odd areas, meadow management, and use of conservation headlands (narrow field perimeter areas left uncultivated and free of pesticides).
All habitat improvements must be designated in a plan written by or subject to approval of KDWP. Landowners interested in improving quail numbers through this program should contact the KDWP Region 5 Office in Chanute, (620) 431-0380. Information may also be obtained from U.S. Department of Agriculture offices in those targeted counties.
Brochures explaining the program, called the Southeast Kansas Quail Initiative, are available throughout the four-county area. The KDWP video, Giving Bobwhites An Edge, outlines the bobwhite's plight, dispels myths about the bird, and offers potential management solutions. Quail Unlimited has made copies of Giving Bobwhites An Edge available free to all interested parties. Copies may be picked up at local Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) and KDWP offices.
The primary funding source for these efforts comes directly from KDWP with supplemental donations from various local and statewide Quail Unlimited chapters, as well as landowner contributions of labor and planting materials. (Those interested in contributing in any way may also call the above number.)
The Southeast Kansas Quail Working Group is comprised of representatives from the Kansas Farm Bureau; See-Kan R, C, & D; the NRCS; Pittsburg State University; the Kansas State Extension Service; Quail Unlimited; private landowners; and KDWP.
Scottsbluff, Nebr. - A waterfowl die-off at the Western Sugar factory ponds in Scottsbluff has killed an estimated 225 waterfowl as of Wednesday morning, according to Gary Schlichtemeier, district wildlife manager at the Game and Parks Commission's district office in Alliance.
"We were notified of the die-off Tuesday afternoon," Schlichtemeier said, "and the Game and Parks Commission is currently recovering waterfowl at the pond located south of the factory at the eastern edge of Scottsbluff. Dr. Steve Kerr, DVM, is assisting in identifying the cause of the die-off and we've received good cooperation from the Western Sugar Cooperative. At this point, it is important to learn the cause and take the appropriate actions as soon as possible."
The Commission is placing sound-producing propane cannons at the pond to discourage additional waterfowl from using the pond.
According to Schlichtemeier, the die-off involves primarily mallards, green-winged teal, golden eye and merganzers.
The Game and Parks Commission's wildlife, parks and law enforcement divisions are involved in the waterfowl clean-up, and the Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality and the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service have been contacted.
For additional information, contact the district office of the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission, east highway 2, Alliance, NE 69301 (308) 763-22940.

The Game and Parks Commissioners set the 2003 hunting season opening dates for non-migratory game species at their meeting in Lincoln Jan. 17.
The opening dates will be:
Sept. 13 ­ Grouse
Nov. 1 ­ Pheasant, Quail, Partridge
North Dakota
Game and Fish Promoting Private Lands Program
Every landowner in North Dakota's top 20 pheasant counties will soon receive a brochure detailing the State Game and Fish Department's Private Land Initiative program, according to John Schulz, department private land section leader.
"We are sending the private land brochure out now because landowners are making their management decisions at this time of the year," Schulz said. "The Private Land Initiative program could

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Copyrights Bird Dog & Retriever News May 2003
Do not reproduce or retransmit in any form, and we surf the web, we'll find you.
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