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post #1 of 53 (permalink) Old 07-26-2013, 03:58 PM Thread Starter
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Got me thinkin... I wonder

Reports abound of Pheasants being seen very late in the seasons, and even many holding over to spring. Even some broods reported. COULD IT BE, that whatever caused their demise 30+ years ago has passed ? Passed enough that they are slowly gaining strength and on a possible rebound ? It sure seems that there may be hope to that respect. IF, and I say IF, they start ascending in numbers, I believe that could make a strong case that their decline was much less about habitat, and more about some sort of avian disease that kept a stranglehold for many years. That's been my guess all along. Of course it's only a guess. If anybody was certain of the cause, they'd have been millionaires long ago.

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post #2 of 53 (permalink) Old 07-26-2013, 05:11 PM
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Re: Got me thinkin... I wonder

I disagree ...
its not like we bloomed this most excellent cover over night.
if pheasants are holding over , making it to spring and reproducing its because of an effort to make good habitat

Da hawk ate my baby!!
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post #3 of 53 (permalink) Old 07-26-2013, 05:29 PM
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Re: Got me thinkin... I wonder

Quote:
Originally Posted by twistedoak
I disagree ...
its not like we bloomed this most excellent cover over night.
if pheasants are holding over , making it to spring and reproducing its because of an effort to make good habitat
Agreed. The only place I find wild birds is CRP land. The clean farmers are still devoid of all wildlife.
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post #4 of 53 (permalink) Old 07-26-2013, 05:33 PM
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Re: Got me thinkin... I wonder

Could it be? No!




When you are up to your butt in alligators, it is hard to remember your intent was to drain the swamp. Stay focused!
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post #5 of 53 (permalink) Old 07-26-2013, 05:36 PM
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Re: Got me thinkin... I wonder

Ladies & Gentlemen,
I am going to say this again, even thou the habitat in Lancaster County and surrounding area changed due to farming practices, western Pa at that time had the same
habitat for the Pheasant Program, if the PGC wanted the Pheasant program to continue, we would still have it today,
in Western Pa. The Avian flu as it was called a that time,
had very little to due with the over all Wild Pheasant Program and it's loss. Politics was the down fall of the Pa wild Pheasant Program, using the changing habitat as the excuse to let it fold. The Pheasant Forever Biologists advised the PGC of the western Pa Habitat, and were shunned at the time for bringing it to the hunting public's attention.
It has been a long haul to re-establish any kind of Wild Pheasant Program here in Pa, so far we have not re-established a huntable Wild Pheasant population. Politics not habitat was the down fall of the Pa Wild Pheasant Program.
Pine Creek/Dave



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post #6 of 53 (permalink) Old 07-26-2013, 05:49 PM
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Re: Got me thinkin... I wonder

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fleroo
Reports abound of Pheasants being seen very late in the seasons, and even many holding over to spring. Even some broods reported. COULD IT BE, that whatever caused their demise 30+ years ago has passed ? Passed enough that they are slowly gaining strength and on a possible rebound ? It sure seems that there may be hope to that respect. IF, and I say IF, they start ascending in numbers, I believe that could make a strong case that their decline was much less about habitat, and more about some sort of avian disease that kept a stranglehold for many years. That's been my guess all along. Of course it's only a guess. If anybody was certain of the cause, they'd have been millionaires long ago.
That last sentence is somewhat ironic as knowing the "cause"(s) of the pheasant decline would not create a millionaire but the loss of the pheasants has often been by millionaires(ish) and has created millionaires(ish).

If one was thinking of ruffed grouse...then, it is likely that disease plays a greater role in their advancing decline over some areas of their range.

But you are correct in that Habitat is never the sole answer....just often the largest and easiest to chirp component of any game bird decline.

GBE was correct....decades ago.

Rory has a good owner now....lucky lad.

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post #7 of 53 (permalink) Old 07-26-2013, 06:21 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Got me thinkin... I wonder

Quote:
I disagree ...
its not like we bloomed this most excellent cover over night.
if pheasants are holding over , making it to spring and reproducing its because of an effort to make good habitat
And in some respect, I too disagree with you, so TOUCHE`.
As Pin-Creek alluded to, I believe when it comes to PA, farming practices are applicable to the regional make-up of the state. Just like Deer habitat. I believe some of you boys that live in Lancaster, Lebanon, etc... with the sprawling endless Amish type farms, speak solely from watching those centric farming practices evolve. Granted, Southwestern, PA isn't flush with Switch or Bigbluestem grass, but our reverted fields, products of bygone days of farming, are more than capable of holding Pheasant's year after year. I'm sticking with some sort of avian outbreak, and a lasting one at that. As I stated in the opening thread, there is much indication that Pheasant's are gaining some, and I repeat SOME staying power. If there is a moderate recovery here in Southwestern, PA, very little to nothing can be attributed to folks improving our habitat solely with an eye on Pheasant recovery. That's my story and I'm stickin to it.

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post #8 of 53 (permalink) Old 07-26-2013, 06:34 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Got me thinkin... I wonder

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That last sentence is somewhat ironic as knowing the "cause"(s) of the pheasant decline would not create a millionaire but the loss of the pheasants has often been by millionaires(ish) and has created millionaires(ish).
Recon I could be dubbed as being "Slower than the average Bear", but I don't get it. Are you speaking of farmers trying to maximize their outputs via cleaner farming practices ? Are you talking about the gas-men ? Regarding our little nook here, neither of those two can be attributed. We have MORE "dirty" fields here now than we did int the 60's or 70's when Pheasants were doing perty derned well.

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post #9 of 53 (permalink) Old 07-26-2013, 06:45 PM
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Re: Got me thinkin... I wonder

I was looking a bit wider than any one neighborhood or nook but Progress and Development bring changes from spendable cash and, very often, deliver lucre for many.
Looking at your own feet while walking sometimes can lead one astray, in other words.

The Marcellus, by and large, is a positive for game...some game birds, especially.

Pheasants, et al require more than a nook for appreciable improvements and a practical level of returning to past glories.
The jury is far from in.

GBE was correct....decades ago.

Rory has a good owner now....lucky lad.

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post #10 of 53 (permalink) Old 07-26-2013, 06:52 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Got me thinkin... I wonder

Of course the jury is far from in... nd I have to "look at my own feet" because, well, to be honest, I didn't hunt Pheasants in Lancaster in the 60's and 70's, and my speaking to their "nook" offers little in the way of anything, as I have no representation. THEIR farming practices may have changed immensely. Ours on the other hand, haven't so much. If anything, we have more habitat (be it preferred or not) than we did when ma and pa were clearing fields to make family ends. What DOES remain a fact though, is that both our nook and their nook suffered the same fate.

All in all, I hope to see more reports streaming in of Pheasants making it past the first volley's once fresh out of the truck. But more importantly, the broods that follow.

2A-Wash. Co.
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