Spring turkey. Kevin's mutant turkey.
Map Update corrections. Nodaway County, Missouri Unit F was mistakenly deleted from the master map list. Also, the Miami County Kansas, Unit A the deer unit is not correct. It's Unit 11, not 10.
Waterfowl. This is a great picture and message. A lot better to see these pictures and stories than the many others on problem kids. Via email: "John just a short note to let you know the ducks are here. This photo is of mikes first limit. Our youth hunt in the north zone was incredible, With wave after wave of ducks sitting down in our decoys. This was truly one of those in your face duck hunts. Thanks again for everything that each and every one of you do. You help create memories that will last a life time. Mike, Bill"
Missouri Deer Reservations. Last Thursday was the first day to make Missouri firearms deer reservations. Between 9 am and 3 pm we had approximately 140 hunters on the books. The majority of the hunters got their first or second choice, so we feel it went real smooth considering all of the reservations were funneled through one person. Sorry for the inconvenience of being put on hold or the hassle of dealing with the phones being busy.
We would like to let Jennifer accept firearms deer reservations but there is always 2% trying to take advantage of the system.
Since last Thursday the total number of Missouri firearms reservations has only climbed to 180.
Right now things look comfortable and it appears there will be more than enough land for everyone to enjoy a great season.
We would also like to remind everyone all firearms deer reservations are final. Also, please try to avoid calling the office at the last minute to see who is hunting where and what farms are vacant. You have to understand we have a very small staff and the upland and waterfowl seasons are in full swing the week before the Missouri firearms season opens.
If you are planning to hunt the Missouri firearms deer season please try to make your reservation within the next week to ten days so we can get the task behind us and you can be assured a good place to hunt. Last minute scrambling is a hassle for both parties involved.
It was very apparent many members made their reservations based on scouting Terra Server over the Internet. As a result, several of the larger timbered tracts in north Missouri drew a lot of attention.
Over the years, the bulk of our problems with trespassers and road hunters have been on the larger timbered leases. The club has massive row crop acreages with small timber patches and narrow creek lines that have always dominated the overall success year after year.
It's inevitable as hard as we would like to avoid it, that there will be some conflict with trespassers and/or a few awkward encounters with outsiders during the season for a few members. We would like to make everything perfect but it's impossible to control this much land. All of our contracts are solid, the land has been posted in advance, the hunters have been professionally spread out by reservation, so it's up to you to take the ball the rest of the way and enjoy your hunt.
Drought Affects. If you haven't been paying attention to the rainfall situation in Missouri and Kansas we're in a drought. The further you travel westward in Kansas the worse it gets.
Out of all of the regions the club covers Northwest Kansas was hit the hardest. A lot of the CRP grass was hayed and many of the waterways were mowed. In the next map mailing you will see we've deleted a lot of acreage that would have been unproductive and a waste of money, but yet have a lot of good property remaining that should produce good hunting. The reports from the landowners are fairly encouraging so don't totally cross out Graham, Norton and Rooks County. If you have a deer tag in Unit 1 or 3 don't fear, we haven't let anything go that has good deer and turkey hunting.
Reminder: Traditionally, Northwest Kansas is as good as it gets for pheasant hunting. A poor year in NW Kansas can be as productive as a good year in North Missouri or Northeast Kansas.
On the Missouri side things look a little brighter. NW Missouri was the driest region we cover but it shouldn't have any affect on the game populations.
The rainfall in Iowa was just right. The upland bird numbers look encouraging and the deer and turkey are overpopulated.
Missouri Wetlands Report. The drought has had a major affect on the wetlands statewide in Missouri. Many private duck clubs will be without water since it's impossible to pump from a dry hole. The members of MAHA should feel very thankful that it's not much worse on our end. We've had a lot of calls asking about the water conditions so here's the report as of 10/22/02:
Holt County, Missouri Unit A - We've done major renovation to hold more water than last year and the pump is running as we speak. We have four blinds instead of 2 and anticipate a good season. This will definitely be a high demand spot.
Linn County, Missouri Unit A - The east side looks real good. We could drop 10 inches from the north pool to fill the pool for blind #3 but were going to wait since #1,#2 and #4 look so good. Please note there is no longer a wade-in area on the East Marsh. Last year several members showed up with an old map that showed a wade-in area between blinds #1 and #2. There is no longer a wade-in area in Linn County.
The West marsh has dried up quite a bit but we still have three huntable blinds, which are #7, #8, and #9. Number 9 is on the upper irrigation lake and it has a lot of water. Number 7 and #8 were moved to the best water. Number 7 was moved east to the levee and #8 was moved south to the levee. Number 8 is very easy to find but #7 blends in so well it's tough to see even in daylight.
We're sending the new maps of Holt and Linn County shortly with the new mailing. In the mean time Jennifer is mailing them to everyone that has made reservations to avoid confusion.
Watershed Lakes - Since water is scarce we are going to treat the watershed and irrigation lakes like four man duck blinds. If you call for a reservation there is a chance you will need to share it with another member or party.
Nodaway B, Harrison G Section 32 A and Harrison C Section 36 al have 15 acre plus lakes that should produce.
If you are looking to hunt geese in the fields all of Atchison, Holt and Nodaway County have great potential, especially the fields close to Squaw Creek in Holt A and Holt F.
Henry County, Missouri Unit A
Blairstown Lake, all three blinds are huntable. Blind #1 is close but it is huntable.
Winkler's Lake, The Lake itself has very huntable water but it's just short of blind #1. We'll continue to take reservations as if #1 was huntable but you are free to move around if everyone stays together. The slough and #2 are not huntable.
Henry County, Missouri Unit B "Fisher's Lake"
Blind #2 is the only huntable blind. The water is pretty thin in front of the blind but the pool itself is very huntable.
The slough has a small pool of water across from blind #3 that is barely huntable, but the members are free to use it if they would like.
All other blinds and wetlands are the same as last year and have water making them huntable.
Upland Birds. We have had several recent inquires from some new to the Association, and the mid-west, upland hunters asking what they should prepare for above what they have gleamed from the website habitat photos. We publish the questions and answers here as a mean of covering all whom may have the same concerns.
For the east coast bird dogger that has hunted his dog only on the weekends on small fields they have experienced the week long big field running of the mid-west to cause foot pad tenderness. Solution is new skin, gauze padding and dog boots.
Another issue about dog boots are the Sand Spurs that appear to be a significant nuisance in Texas and just about every Texas quail hunter has asked about them. Western Kansas does have Sand Spurs, however they must not be anywhere the problem they are in the south as I with my long haired setters am not concerned with them. The occasional instance when I help my dog remove one from between his pads is insignificant and not a problem for the hunt. Dog boots are not required to protect against them.
The mid-west reputation about snakes seems to be overly developed. For all the dog running and spring turkey hunting completed by the Association snake reports are practically non-existent. Both land managers with bird dogs have never had a dog snake bit.
Motels that allow pets are identified with this symbol on the Association lodging lists in the section of this website.
Beeper collars are very mush an asset over bells in our habitat.
Injuries your Association land managers' bird dogs have sustained over the years include thorn punctures from the Honey Locust tree, barb wire hide rips and soft tissue lameness from rough ground running injuries.
Reservations. Today marked the beginning of the peak reservation period. All are reminded reservations are only accepted up to 30 days in advance of the hunt and only between 9 and 530, Monday through Friday. A maximum of 3 open reservations on the books is permitted per member. More can be made after one or more than one hunting days are consumed.
Kansas. Four Kansas transferable deer tags are available. All are Firearms Whitetail Either Sex. Two for unit 3 and two for unit 10. The cost is $400. They are now for sale to any member or non-member of the Association.
Friendly reminder, all scouting and hunting of Association properties is by foot only - no ATVs unless expressly permitted by the Association general manager and as exceptions and strictly limited to restrictions specified at time of authorization.
Mule Deer. The Jon and Sandi husband and wife hunting team sent in the first deer pictures of the season.
Kansas tags. Last call for members to purchase the remaining Kansas landowner transferable deer tags. Those not purchased by members come Monday will be offered to non-members. The cost is $400. This $400 covers the cost of the tag, stipend to the landowner, our mileage and time costs. For those of you out there thinking you will buy this tag and then resell it for an inflated price any such scheme is not possible.
For those that want one of these tags, purchase is by credit card and we will take your personal information, complete the transfer slip and send the transfer documentation and landowner tag to the state. The purchaser will then receive from the state a Kansas deer tag in his name. This tag cannot be transferred a second time.
Maps. MAHA continues to evolve from the automation stone age into at least the 20th century while striving to catch up with the 21st century. In the past there had been one single map update annually. Last season there were two separate updates. This year will see at least two if not three updates. These changes reflect the nature of land contracting not being a clean once a year operation, but rather a continuous year long program. Another impact has been our attempt to automate the map system. Break throughs like Bill Martin's electronic maps combined with the database expertise of Andrew Elsen and the internet security skills of Matt Rebeck should result in on-line map updates within days of their occurrence. That is the goal. To get there will require these small steps over time.
Waterfowl. Until we get some good rain we are in a semi-major pinch for water on the bulk of our main wetlands in Missouri. Accordingly, the Association needs to make a temporary rules amendment to fairly accommodate all hunters so everyone will have equal access to our main blinds with water given the current diminished resources. This action continues to be in the best interest of the majority of the Association waterfowl hunters and intended to prevent the 1% of the membership that attempts to overbook blinds taking a hunting opportunity away from another.
Right now, 10 to 12 blinds are sitting on dry ground without access to water to pump. The remaining wetlands, plus the Association irrigation and watershed lakes are more than enough to get by, but the weekends will have to be closely monitored.
The amendment being considered is to limit weekend reservations to just one per day per wetlands. To hunt two weekend days would require hunting two different wetlands.
Once we get a good rain or two this temporary rule amendment would be deleted.
There is always good news, it is that even though we have a water shortage, the shortage on the public areas is more sever, as they do not have the reservoir ponds, pipes and pumps that we do.
Office. The MAHA office is in need of a fulltime/part time office worker. Male or female. Duties include answering the telephone reservations, simple computer work with word processing and general paper pushing tasks that are routine in nature. If interested call 816-761-3636.
Missouri Deer. A few weeks ago we mentioned the concern from several Missouri landowners of the need to harvest does.
If you harvest a deer and would like to donate the meat to charity there are designated meat processors involved in the Share The Harvest program that will process the meat and deliver it to a charitable organization.
You have to pay for the processing that averages about $60. If you fill out the required paperwork, the Missouri Conservation Federation will reimburse you $25 and the remainder is tax deductible.
We would like to strongly encourage the members to participate in this program since several landowners were teetering to renew leases because of our lack of harvesting does.
The area with greatest concern was our Northwest properties in Atchison, Holt and Nodaway Counties. If you plan to hunt these counties please go out of your way to harvest doe.
For information on the Share The Harvest program call the Missouri Conservation Federation 573-634-2322.
Dogs & Video. Reminder to all that Association rules prohibit preseason dog training and commercial video taping of hunts. Preseason dog training is prohibited as Association lands are for hunting. Commercial video taping of hunts is prohibited as all Association lands are for use by its membership and the membership alone for hunting, scouting and fishing. This does not prevent members from video taping their hunt to produce tape for their own private use and with another member.
Waterfowl. Linn County duck blind work Saturday (east side) and Sunday (west side). Volunteers please call Jennifer if you can help.
Maps. The first round of map updates went to the printers and the members will have them just as fast as the mail system will delivery them after we get them back.