THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
Estimated Duck Pop. Down to 48.4 Million
With fall duck hunting seasons just around the corner, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's 2016 continental duck population estimate is down slightly at 48.4 million, but still 38 percent above the long term average. Mallards and green-winged teal population estimates are at record highs, 11.8 million and 4.3 million, respectively. Continental blue-winged teal estimates are at 6.7 million, which is lower than 2015 but still well above the long-term average.
"The habitat was drier this year across much of the breeding grounds, and that is likely the reason for a slight drop in numbers," said Taylor Finger, DNR assistant migratory bird ecologist. "That being said, Wisconsin remains at or near record numbers for many species, and hunters should expect another good year of hunting."
Waterfowl and other migratory bird hunters can register each year with the federal Harvest Information Program. This program places registrants on a list that may receive a mailing asking them to provide a harvest summary.HIP registration is free of charge and can be easily completed when a license is purchased. HIP registration can be added later if a hunter decides to pursue migratory game birds closer to the season.
With the transition to GoWild, the department's new licensing system, it has never been easier or more convenient to register for HIP online. Simply log on to your online Go Wild account, select "buy licenses" and navigate to the Hunt/Trap tab. If you have not already registered for HIP, it will be shown as a free sign-up option and will take only a minute to complete. For more general information, search keyword "HIP."