May 2014 Updates Page 1

2 May

April Weather

Upland bird hunters increase their fall hunt quality forecasting intensity starting in April. The earliest ground nesting birds begin to lay eggs/nest/hatch/brood. What all would like to see is an average weather spring egg laying, nest sitting, brooding, period. Anything outside of average appears to degrade pheasant or quail reproduction success.

What April Gave Us:

Our southern land in Greensburg Kansas is more our focus in April. This is derived that egg production is initiated according to daylight hours with the earliest beginning in April. More in our southern than northern region of later daylight hours. This is supported by our corporate landowners who have farms in north and south Kansas. They taught us there is a two week planning difference on spring planting and fall harvest. Later, months of May and June will shift our attention to all of the MAHA land region.

Greensburg Kansas weather for April shows us within one degree of average highs and lows. With a running daily average at zero degrees departure from average. A good sign. To the negative is the less than half of average rainfall. This may play into the Humidity Theory posted below.

Greensburg Kansas

Greensburg's April rainfall consisted of light rains scattered through the month. Given Kansas' high evaporation rate due to wind and sun measured by irrigation pond operators at 3/4 inch/acre per 24 hours it is likely this April rain had little benefit to ground dwelling bird reproduction success if believing the Humidity Theory.

Rain

4/1/2014

0 in

4/2/2014

0 in

4/3/2014

0.05 in

4/4/2014

0 in

4/5/2014

0.01 in

4/6/2014

0.03 in

4/7/2014

0.00 in

4/8/2014

0 in

4/9/2014

0 in

4/10/2014

0 in

4/11/2014

0 in

4/12/2014

0 in

4/13/2014

0.11 in

4/14/2014

0.11 in

4/15/2014

0 in

4/16/2014

0 in

4/17/2014

0.15 in

4/18/2014

0 in

4/19/2014

0 in

4/20/2014

0.00 in

4/21/2014

0 in

4/22/2014

0 in

4/23/2014

0 in

4/24/2014

0.26 in

4/25/2014

0 in

4/26/2014

0 in

4/27/2014

0 in

4/28/2014

0 in

4/29/2014

0.02 in

4/30/2014

0 in

Weather information source was http://www.accuweather.com/en/us/greensburg-ks/67054/april-weather/333166?monyr=4/1/2014&view=table.

Drought Theory

Kansas State biologist in 2012 blamed the worst drought in memory for a decline in pheasant and quail. When attempting to dig into this idea no direct correlation to these two proposed connected observations of drought to bird numbers was demonstrated. No one to anyone's satisfaction could tell why a lack of rainfall caused the obvious degradation of bird numbers. Both easily observed, however the connection between the two was left unexplained.

It is implied due to the overt nature of the lack of rainfall and low bag counts that there must be a connection. It that were true then all ground nesting/brooding/dwelling birds would have demonstrated a decline if the drought was the direct cause. Contrary to this idea is the Meadow Lark. A ground nesting/brooding/dwelling bird common to Kansas. There were plenty of Meadow Larks. No observable decline in their numbers occurred in 2012 or 2013. A second hole in this theory is how well quail survive in more arid states of New Mexico or Texas.

Bug Theory

A contributing factor to reproduction success is believed to be bug populations. The near singular protein source most easily available to newly hatched chicks. We have heard this before on overly warm or cold, wet or dry springs. Each with perceived different effects on bug production. The belief is the 2012 drought caused conditions not favorable for bug development leaving chicks without their primary food source. How to know if this is true that bug population change drastically enough over any time period is fabrication as no "bug index" survey or other measure system exists. It is believed to be true only because some one says it is.

Heat Theory

Heat, not drought is the enemy. In-egg embryo development occurs within a set range of temperature. If too cold, eggs fail to develop. If too hot as associated with high temperatures usually accompanying a drought eggs fail to develop. Perhaps ambient plus hen body temperatures were simply too high. Supporting this idea is how pheasants have a natural range from central USA and north while declining by the time reaching warmer regions of Texas. Quail on the other hand do well in Texas or New Mexico, each with higher average temperatures than Kansas, Missouri or Iowa.

Humidity Theory

Its not the heat, its the humidity. Egg development supporting humidity comes from ground moisture, not hens. If a dry spring is dry enough that not enough ground moisture is supplied to eggs the embryos fail to get started or die after initial development. For those as kids who had hobby incubators that pan of water in the bottom of the incubator of forced (fan) circulated air and 102 degree temperatures came with instructions never to let it dry out. Such an incubator shows well how water saturated air circulating around eggs had to be for successful hatching. A drought dry ground may not supply enough measure of moisture to support developing eggs.

This type of update always draws more unsupported criticism than objective observations. Nothing posted in it is new. This information has been drawn from years of experts offering their views. Experts both with science based education and those with decades behind dogs on the same land. If some one has some objective feedback we do welcome that. Email comments to johnwenzel@hughes.net. All others will be ignored.

1 May

Online Reservations

We’ve been taking online reservations the last 2 weeks for spring turkey, fishing and scouting and feel the system is working well. Through feedback from members, we’ve found several bugs in the system and have been able to fix them quickly. This is a learning process for everyone and feedback is encouraged.

For those without computer access, we will continue to take telephone reservations, but from now on will need your 4 digit ID number to access the reservation system. Telephone reservation will only be taken during regular business hours Monday thru Friday 9:00 am to 5:30 pm CST at 816-761-3636.

The new reservation system is flexible and we will be able to make any type of changes necessary to accommodate everyone’s needs.

For example, several members expressed concern they would have to stay up until 12:00 am to make 30 day firearms deer reservations. To make it fair for everyone with or without computer access, we are leaning towards waiting until 9:00 am the day of to accept 30 day Missouri firearms reservations.

Online Map and Reservation Access

1. To access online maps and reservations go to the map website. If you do not know the website address, call the office 816-761-3636 and we will email or give it to you. 
2. Enter your email address johndoe@yahoo.com
3. Enter your 4 digit member ID number: 0000. The numbers are the first 4 numbers to the right of the telephone number on you membership ID card.
4. You will be asked to agree to the rules and update/confirm your personal information. You must also select a primary and secondary hunting interest to continue. Select  “Update”.
5. Change to new personal password, must be 6 or more characters. You will then have access to the maps and reservation system.
6. Maps can be filtered by state and county.
7. Select “Make Reservations” tab.
8. Select beginning and ending date of hunt, select state, map, species and click “Search Farms”.
9. To reserve a farm select “Reserve Farm” (If a farm does not appear, it has already been reserved).
10. Reservation is being processed.
11. Your reservation has been completed and listed under “Booked Reservation”.
12. An email confirmation will be sent immediately.

Our Webmaster Alan has worked very hard to develop this online system.  We are very thankful for all he has done and anticipate nothing but progress as time moves on.

Turkey season was a fantastic opportunity to ease into our new system as change is typically difficult for most people. If you need any help or have any questions, feel free to call TJ at the office during regular business hours 816-761-3636. He has the method mastered and can have anyone with an email address up and running in minutes.

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