Waterfowl breeding populations increase in 2012 | Sports & Recreation
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Canadian Wildlife Service recently completed their annual waterfowl population surveys on the breeding grounds to monitor waterfowl populations and to help set hunting season frameworks. Overall, North American breeding waterfowl populations increased 7 percent from 2011 to just over 48 million birds.
Population estimates for eight of the ten surveyed duck species increased this year. Mallard numbers increased 15 percent from last year to 10.6 million birds. Scaup and green-winged teal populations showed the greatest increases (21 percent and 20 percent, respectively). Gadwall, American widgeon, and canvasback populations increased only slightly. Northern pintail (-22 percent) and redhead (-6 percent) were the only species that demonstrated a decrease in numbers.
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