Guests - If You want access to member only forums on HSO. You will gain access only when you Sign-in or Sign-Up on HotSpotOutdoors.

It's easy - LOOK UPPER right menu.

Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
Jameson

Can I help the ducks?

8 posts in this topic

Next fall I really want to complain "where are the ducks at?" So help me do something to help the ducks. whistle

Here are some pics. The ducks always spook before I can get a good picture.

May 18

3278159212_8ae2550bd9.jpg

June 28. a week earlier there was still 1" of water here.

3277338341_9abc1ef674.jpg

October 25. As much as I pray, it never rains enough to re-fill the pond.

3278159700_b7724f9f66.jpg

January 22, 2009

3278159780_cf1b986ca4.jpg

How can I improve this land for ducks? What should be my priorities?

The pond in the picture max's out at maybe 2 acres of surface water. The pics only capture a "bay" that is a tenth/quarter of an acre. It is a seasonal pond drying out by July 1st. There is also a little bit of grasslands in the area to work with. I have seen as many as a mix of 20 mallard and wood ducks feeding and resting here in the spring and into early summer. The neighbor has another pond that is very small, but does hold year-round water. One summer/fall there was a family of woodies and a family of teal using the neighbors pond. There is a river one mile away as the crow flies, with a very "ducky" looking area on the riverbottom. Currently no nest boxes on the property. No varmint control, and there is lots of varmints. Fatheads are not a problem. The land is located in farm country, corn and soybeans abound. Raising the dam is not an option, and digging a deeper area in the pond will likely never happen. I am not the owner of the land, and the owners are NOT interested in any govt programs. It is up to my arms, legs, back and wallet. No crop land is getting purposely flooded here.

Well, what can be done to help the ducks out on the land? What should be done NOW?

.

Where are the ducks at? madconfused

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

looks like a good nesting area. Not all areas hold ducks year round obviously but these temporary spring ponds are great for nesting. I would definetely put up some woodie nesting boxes and make sure you have predator guards on them. Come fall if you dont trap, either take it up or ask someone who does to trap the area, most trappers love the opportunity to hit untrapped areas. Outside of that your kind of at the mercy of mother nature. Good luck.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

id take care of the varmints and put up nesting baskets or wood duck houses. as for the water iam not sure what you could do. if theres a way you could pump water in there i guess that would work but it would most likely get expense, i guess if comes down to how bad you want it to have water year around

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great nesting yes, If you want to keep the water and improve your land. Call an excavator or your local soil and water. Maybe just a little dozing and a dam is all you need. doesn't hurt to ask

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

cut it all down, plant rice and keep it flooded all season!

$$$$

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am willing to help the ducks here, even if I don't hunt ducks here. If I can help the ducks with out having year round water, than that is how I need to help the ducks. Raising the dam will flood neighboring property, and digging deeper the owner has talked about doing for years and it never gets done. It just wouldn't be right in this situation at this time for me get the pond dug deeper. So those two things aren't real options anytime soon. Would digging a smaller hole and using a trash-water pump in the summer/fall be a possibility? (electricity is 500 feet away) By giving the ducks year-round water here would I really be doing the ducks that much of a favor, or just be giving myself a hunting spot?

Adding nests has been a repeated suggestion. How many? How close to each other? Any boyscout troops out their selling wood duck houses? Should I put in a nesting platform for mallards? Should I really have nests in an spot that is dry by July 1st?

Without year-round water is their anything I can plant to benefit the ducks?

Thanks

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Don't ruin a seasonal temporary wetland by digging it out. Appreciate it for what it is and don't try to make it something else. Ducks needs shift throughout the spring and throughout the year. They need these seasonal basins to get ready for nesting and during nesting season.

Because of their seasonal nature, these wetlands have explosions of life when they have water in them. They are usually the first to warm up in the spring to support this life and that is what ducks need at that time of year. They need protein for laying eggs and recouping energy from migration. If they nest and their nest fails, they need to regain all of that energy again and these seasonal wetlands is where they go.

If you dig it out, you run the risk of completely ruining the ecosystem of the wetland. Yes, ducks need water, but it's the living plants and organisms in the water that they need more.

Would you take all of the topsoil off a field and expect to grow good crops? Same is true in a wetland. If you dig it out, you're taking all of the nutrients away from the wetland. No nutrients means poor plant growth and less invertebrates. You could also 'break the seal' of the wetland by hitting a sand vein in the soil and effectively drain the whole thing.

Wetlands are seasonal for mainly one reason. The water in them evaporates or transpires faster than it gets added by precipitation. Not necessarily because they're not deep enough. Digging a deeper hole will usually not change the amount of water in a wetland, it will just change the concentration of it. Many large seasonal wetlands have been effectively drained by diggin cattle ponds or donut ponds. Doing this basically drains all of the water into one spot and dries up the rest of what used to be a temporary basin.

Quality spring water is much much much more valuable to a duck than water in the fall.

If there is more permanent water within 1/4 to 1/2 a mile, then adding one or two wood duck boxes is a great idea. The woodies will be able to take advantage of the seasonal wetland for energy and then they'll bring the brood to the more permanent water to finish their growth until they can fly.

Place the boxes on a pole with a predator guard. Start with one or two houses spaced on opposite ends of the pond. If you get both boxes used, then add another. Check out the wood duck society HSOforum. They have some good photos and info on houses. Lots of sportmans clubs or waterfowl chapters sell boxes at a discount.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0



  • Posts

    • Well I got it done. I got some bolts washers and rubber grommets. I drilled holes in the counter top. then brought the bolt up through it put a 1/2in rubber spacer then a washer and bolted right into the bolt holes where the leg levels went. It looks nice and will be nice not having to put the fridge up and down every time a guy moves the ice castle and should hold fine driving down the road.         Nice exactly what I need to finish the project, so the fridge door doesn't fly open when driving down the road.
    •     https://www.amazon.com/Safety-1st-Multi-Purpose-Appliance-2-Count/dp/B00AS693R2/ref=sr_1_2_s_it?s=baby-products&ie=UTF8&qid=1500560852&sr=1-2&keywords=appliance%2Block&th=1
    •   And it has some sort of virus.
    • The boat is getting lots of use,,,, Heading to Algoma july 29th and back to Isle Royale later in august 
    • You're bolting a mini fridge to a countertop but worried that a tie down strap will make it look trashy? OK then.
    • The strong rainfall of the last few weeks was compounded this week with more rain accompanied by high winds, thunder and lightning, as well as several tornado watches across the state. Downed trees and branches and flooding was reported at numerous state properties throughout south western and south central Wisconsin. State park crews were actively clearing roads and trails, and we're expected to have additional updates before the weekend. Anyone planning on visiting a property in these areas is urged to contact the property directly for the latest conditions.Water levels across the state are still elevated and this week's rains means sand bars will likely be in short supply again on the lower Wisconsin River. With the high fast moving water many kayakers and tubers are taking advantage of the situation. A group of kayakers on the Peshtigo River said with the fast water they shaved an hour off the time it normally would take them for a river trip.Wild weather has put a damper on fishing pressure across the state and there are isolated reports of partially submerged fishing piers. Anglers have reported some success for catfish on the St. Croix River and anglers have been having success fishing the Flambeau River for musky, walleye, northern pike and bass. Largemouth bass fishing has picked up with high waters in Dane County rivers and there were reports of an uptick in walleye and perch are coming in from Lake Winnebago. .
    • Well there are a lot of ways to do it.   I'm going to bolt it down through the counter top, using the bolt holes for the leg levels. The idea of using straps and d rigs would look like dump and Be pretty pointless........it would be has much work having to ratchet strap the thing every time I was going to move vs setting it down on the floor. 
    • Yes it is a very good round.
    • I picked up a 6.5 creedmoor in a Kimber Montana last fall for a super lightweight 0-400 yard deer/antelope gun.  It is definitely the hot "new" cartridge in shooting circles due to the really good ballistics and low recoil.  And extreme accuracy.  I doubt the cartridge is going anywhere any time soon.  Virtually all the big manufacturers are building one now.  
  • Our Sponsors