IOWA DNR Outdoor Report Week of July 26 – KCHA News

Iowa pheasant hunters had a great season last year, harvesting the most roosters since 2008, and many are looking forward to what 2022 has in store for them. This fall forecast will be based on the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) annual roadside pheasant count, which begins August 1.

The statewide survey is being conducted by Iowa DNR personnel between Aug. 1 and Aug. 15, who travel 218, 30-mile routes on gravel roads at dawn in the mornings with a strong dew. Hen pheasants will move their broods to the side of the gravel road to dry off before they start feeding, making them easier to count.

Anecdotally, upland wildlife research biologist Todd Bogenschutz has received reports from southern and southwestern Iowa of quail hissing and cock pheasant crowing.

“Last year, south-central Iowa averaged six pheasants per course, so I’d be surprised if the number this year wasn’t higher. The question is whether counts in counties in the northern third of the state can increase, where we’ve had good numbers and good hunting,” Bogenschutz said. “It will be interesting to see the results of the investigation. We are dry over much of the state and survey conditions are important as the accuracy of counts depends on dew conditions when the routes are traveled.

In June, the DNR released its annual forecast for road counts, which uses a weather model based on snowfall, precipitation and temperatures from the past winter and spring. The model provides a better estimate of what the counts might look like, and it predicts counts ranging from good to better than last year. And that’s good news for hunters as they culled around 375,000 roosters in 2021.

But the best indicator for the fall season is the August Roadside Survey which counts the actual pheasants seen along more than 6,000 miles of rural gravel roads.

“I’m cautiously optimistic for this fall,” he said. “All indicators are pointing in the right direction.”

The August road survey has been carried out on the same roads since 1962. In addition to pheasants and quails, the survey collects data on partridges, rabbits and hares. Results will be posted online at www.iowadnr.gov/pheasantsurvey in early September. Iowa pheasant season begins October 29.

The Iowa Legislature appropriated state infrastructure funds to the Iowa Department of Natural Resources to be used for a community tree-planting program for derecho reclamation.

A total of $250,000 in matching funds will be made available to state and local governments, schools and volunteer organizations, and service organizations in the 27 Iowa counties included in the governor’s disaster proclamation. of Derecho of 2020 for planting trees.

Additionally, through the USDA Forest Service & National Association of State Foresters (NASF) Urban Forest Resilience Grant Program 2022, the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) received funding from reforestation for the emerald ash borer (EAB). A total of $250,000 in matching funds will be made available to the same 27 counties that also suffered losses from EAB.

The Community Forestry Grant Program offers repayable grants of $500 to $5,000 to be used to purchase and plant Iowa-friendly trees on public lands. Eligible public planting lands include, but are not limited to, street rights-of-way, parks, school grounds, courthouse lawns, public buildings, fairgrounds, cemeteries, libraries and the trails. Recipients will be reimbursed up to $5,000 in derecho recovery grant funds and $5,000 in matching funds.

The application and rules are available online at www.iowadnr.gov/urbanforestry. Entities may submit multiple proposals. Applications are due by September 1.

Tripoli, Iowa – Waterfowl hunters scanning shallow lakes and marshes before the season should be aware that Lake Martens in the Sweet Marsh Wildlife Area is repairing a levee and digging a channel and will not be open traffic of hunting boats. to fall.

Construction will not impact boat traffic on the rest of the marsh.

“We began dewatering the lake in May and expect the construction phase to begin, weather permitting, by late summer or early fall, with the aim of be completed in March 2023,” said Jason Auel, a wildlife biologist with the Iowa Department of Natural Sciences. Resources. “Martens Lake attracts duck hunters from across the state and we want them to know the lake won’t be an option this fall so they can make other plans.”

The project will repair more than two miles of the 70-year-old levee system, improve three miles of canals in the marshes used for boating access, remove sediment to create deep water areas and repair the structure water control.

“Repairing the levee system will allow us to manage the water level of Lake Martens to benefit fish and wildlife, and improve public access,” Auel said.

Hunting on other segments of Sweet Marsh will still be available for the duration of the project. The contractor will operate from the main parking lot, which may be closed to public access for the duration of the project.

For more information, call the Cedar-Wapsi Wildlife Unit at 319-882-4252.

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