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Something is wrong with Guana

Cast_N_BlastCast_N_Blast JaxPosts: 1,437 Officer
After less than 300 ducks being shot last season and only 138 this Big duck season, I'm honestly very curious to what the deal is? The habitat looks fine and there is less pressure than ever. What the heck is going on!? Are the developers poisoning our waterhole so they can build?! You know something is wrong when even the Ringers dont want to be there!



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Replies

  • ChillyChilly Posts: 522 Officer
    I dont think anything sinister is going on... Just part of the natural cycle in my opinion. If using ringers as the litmus test- I haven't seen any big rafts on the st. johns yet this year. And also haven't seen any rafted up on area ponds in any noticeable numbers.  personally, I am having a better guanna year than in the past but clearly the numbers above don't support that for the majority of hunters.  

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  • Cast_N_BlastCast_N_Blast JaxPosts: 1,437 Officer
    Chilly said:
    I dont think anything sinister is going on... Just part of the natural cycle in my opinion. If using ringers as the litmus test- I haven't seen any big rafts on the st. johns yet this year. And also haven't seen any rafted up on area ponds in any noticeable numbers.  personally, I am having a better guanna year than in the past but clearly the numbers above don't support that for the majority of hunters.  

    Do you usually see big numbers of ringers on the st johns or are they bluebills? I havent hunted guana yet this year but everywhere else I have been has been loaded with ringers. 
  • Cast_N_BlastCast_N_Blast JaxPosts: 1,437 Officer
    And I was joking about the developers lmao well maybe only half joking  :D
  • Big MakBig Mak Posts: 3,367 Captain
    Same issues in the glades. Deer hunting had become so much more productive and easier....
  • micci_manmicci_man Somewhere in FLPosts: 14,463 AG
    Haven't seen the numbers in N FL either like the past. That started last year.  I was reading today that people were canceling their future trips to Arkansas after just returning due to lack of ducks. I think it's just a cycle and the numbers are still way N of several states. 
    Common Sense can't be bought, taught or gifted, yet it is one of the few things in life that is free, and most refuse to even attempt to possess it. - Miguel Cervantes
  • Reel TealReel Teal Posts: 3,927 Captain
    edited December 2019 #7
    Ducks are migrating like normal. Just not always to the same places and when they do they find safe spaces really quick. 


    To miccis point, im hearing the mallards, which are heavily weather driven, are just beginning to show in Missouri in big numbers. Should be a good second half for Arkansas and louisiana. My uncle is south lousiana is shooting plenty of big ducks so far this year, mostly grays
  • Cast_N_BlastCast_N_Blast JaxPosts: 1,437 Officer
    Reel Teal said:
    Ducks are migrating like normal. Just not always to the same places and when they do they find safe spaces really quick. 


    To miccis point, im hearing the mallards, which are heavily weather driven, are just beginning to show in Missouri in big numbers. Should be a good second half for Arkansas and louisiana. My uncle is south lousiana is shooting plenty of big ducks so far this year, mostly grays
    Good to hear! Im heading to Venice for their closer on Jan 16th.
  • bswivbswiv Posts: 7,773 Admiral
    Plenty of wood ducks in the swamps and creeks on our place but, as noted, here at the house in Fruit Cove duck numbers on the St. Johns are way off. BUT.....with the high water there is not a lot of green to hold them here. And it is true that the last few years we've had warmer winters than normal so maybe not so many migrants?


  • Cast_N_BlastCast_N_Blast JaxPosts: 1,437 Officer
    bswiv said:
    Plenty of wood ducks in the swamps and creeks on our place but, as noted, here at the house in Fruit Cove duck numbers on the St. Johns are way off. BUT.....with the high water there is not a lot of green to hold them here. And it is true that the last few years we've had warmer winters than normal so maybe not so many migrants?


    The migrators are here without a doubt. They actually showed up in big numbers very early this year in my opinion. The Indian river has been loaded with bluebills and redheads since the opener, theyre just bypassing Jax all together for some reason. Have you not seen the blue bills on the open water down your way yet, Ben? And if you ever need anyone to come help you with those pesky wood ducks, I'd be happy to help  ;)
  • MissedMissed O-townPosts: 208 Deckhand
    The whole duck numbers thing is depressing.  Part of the normal order of things changing over time. 

    IMO the reason we don't have as many is that the overall numbers are down.  It has been a cold year up north - should push more ducks down.  All those snow storms and freezes... and we've got a smattering of ducks here and there. 

    The new normal.
  • Big MakBig Mak Posts: 3,367 Captain
    edited December 2019 #12
    I'm going to have to agree, this is the new norm.

    I'm going to blame technology and greed too. Ice eaters, sav eradication programs, and planted/managed/ leased/sewed up, pay to play areas have not helped the average public land do it yourself hunter. Hell, when I'm killing greenwings in Missouri in late January, things are jacked up somewhere, somehow.
  • stc1993stc1993 Albany, GA Carrabelle, FLPosts: 7,299 Admiral
    I had 4 big flocks of canadian geese fly over our place.  1st time I've ever seen it.  They were heading south toward FL.
  • ladderslugladderslug NocateePosts: 234 Deckhand
    I think it has more to do with the weather lately. I don't hunt in Guana but do fish in the creeks. There are a lot of ducks in the creeks on the ICW right now. I jump them in there all the time. No sure what kind they are. 
  • MissedMissed O-townPosts: 208 Deckhand
    Probably hooded mergansers
  • BustinEmBustinEm Low CountyPosts: 251 Deckhand
    Missed said:
    Probably hooded mergansers
    Yes. Ganzers. 
  • MRichardsonMRichardson Posts: 10,326 AG
    Ducks are here. They just aren't where you want them to be.
    I have never seen live bones, but I know that they are often used by rich people to decorate the interior.
  • MissedMissed O-townPosts: 208 Deckhand
    You keep telling yourself that.

    When a few guys get a few birds, that's not the good old days.  That's the new normal.
  • MRichardsonMRichardson Posts: 10,326 AG
    No, they're here. 
    Can't hunt there though.
    I have never seen live bones, but I know that they are often used by rich people to decorate the interior.
  • Reel TealReel Teal Posts: 3,927 Captain
    Its not like the old days, nobody said it was, but theres spots with thousands and thousands of ducks just hanging out doing duck stuff. 
  • H20dadH20dad Posts: 1,984 Captain
    Reel Teal said:
    Its not like the old days, nobody said it was, but theres spots with thousands and thousands of ducks just hanging out doing duck stuff. 
    Do tell...
  • JaxQuackJaxQuack Posts: 98 Greenhorn
    Yesterday was the first time I have ever seen ZERO ducks checked in at six mile... I believe one **** was logged

    interiors are dead too.  

    I don’t think it’s specifically guana.   Habitat looks great, plenty of food.  I believe water is a little higher than desired due to the north end structure being broken, and waiting on county funding to repair. (500k repair if not mistaken)

    I believe warmer weather causes some species to return north earlier, which is good and bad.  Bad because it crushes our souls during the season, but good because earlier returns have been connected to better hatches 

    trey
  • Big MakBig Mak Posts: 3,367 Captain
    It's not just Guana... 
  • JaxQuackJaxQuack Posts: 98 Greenhorn
    Big Mak said:
    It's not just Guana... 
    absolutely agree with you on that!
  • Cast_N_BlastCast_N_Blast JaxPosts: 1,437 Officer
    JaxQuack said:
    Yesterday was the first time I have ever seen ZERO ducks checked in at six mile... I believe one **** was logged

    interiors are dead too.  

    I don’t think it’s specifically guana.   Habitat looks great, plenty of food.  I believe water is a little higher than desired due to the north end structure being broken, and waiting on county funding to repair. (500k repair if not mistaken)

    I believe warmer weather causes some species to return north earlier, which is good and bad.  Bad because it crushes our souls during the season, but good because earlier returns have been connected to better hatches 

    trey
    Unreal!!
  • MRichardsonMRichardson Posts: 10,326 AG
    I saw about 5K ringer yesterday.  2K teal.  
    They aren't going anywhere.  They know where to go.
    I have never seen live bones, but I know that they are often used by rich people to decorate the interior.
  • duckmanJRduckmanJR Posts: 20,736 AG
    They took 8 ducks on lower Goodwin Saturday.... even with nice habitat. 
    There are many roads to travel
    Many things to do.
    Knots to be unraveled
    'fore the darkness falls on you
  • MaysportMaysport Posts: 224 Deckhand
    I agree with most of the posters.  Guana is unbelievably low - my last hunt there was the first time I can remember that I didn't see a single duck anywhere while hunting.  I'm not counting coots, grebes, etc., but I didn't see A DUCK swimming or flying no matter how far off! I did jump a group of about 12 teal on the way back in.  Normally I see mergansers daily this time of year in canals off the ICW, but haven't seen any.

    With all the early cold weather and freezes up north, I thought we would have a better than average season.  I know some are blaming the large amounts of rain everywhere spreading them out, but I've noticed a lot lower number around North Florida.

    With that being said, one friend in Tallahassee said he's having the best duck season in a long time - limits in 30 minutes, etc. - but I suspect he is hunting a plantation pond.
  • JonsredfishinJonsredfishin Posts: 2,104 Captain
    edited January 7 #29
    I saw about 5K ringer yesterday.  2K teal.  
    They aren't going anywhere.  They know where to go.
    Did that spot that you saw yesterday have the same amount of ducks 5 yrs ago? 

    Never been to Guana or an sta. Up until a year ago we didn’t have topped out hydrilla on the three best duck lakes in my area for the last 5-7 yrs. Finally, two of them have a good enough amount of hydrilla to hold ducks, but there’s no birds for the most part. I’m talking topped out hydrilla in the backwaters for a square mile on we’ll know ringer lakes and nothing. I think that FWC’s Biologist’s onslaught of spraying has caused the last few breeding seasons of ducks to not be imprinted with feeding on our lakes anymore and they completely bypass us. There’s plenty of V’s sky high heading south if you look.
    One president put a man on the moon.
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  • H20dadH20dad Posts: 1,984 Captain
    There are so many small bad things adding up that it makes for an overwhelming general badness. If you ask and look it’s not just here or there. It’s every flyway and every state. 

    I have opinions based upon reliable reports but I have no desire to watch the fwc boot lickers ply their trade. 

    The upside is that the Dakotas are so full of water this year any teal should be breeding with great results and next years flight should be better. 

    For those of you that like ringers, I think you can pretty much kiss that species goodbye. Seriously.  The numbers are going down and the amount of effort to turn the ship in todays management structure will occur after too much damage has been done. They are in much worse shape than bluebills and are still at 6/day unimaginable. 
  • Reel TealReel Teal Posts: 3,927 Captain
    edited January 7 #31
    Ringneck population in the eastern survey area was up 10% from 2018 according to FWS. In 1998 the breeding population was estimated at 586,000 and in 2019 its 694,000. Its had fluctuations in between.

    https://www.fws.gov/migratorybirds/pdf/surveys-and-data/Population-status/Waterfowl/WaterfowlPopulationStatusReport19.pdf

    Do you have any links? 
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