2019 Minnesota Pheasant Forecast

September 9, 2019 by

The 2019 range-wide pheasant index (37.4 birds/100 mi) decreased 17% from 2018 (45.2 birds/100 mi). The pheasant brood index and proportion of hens with broods also decreased, and estimated hatch dates were one week later than the 10-year and long-term averages. Severe late-season winter snowstorms, heavy spring rains, and resulting flooding throughout much of the core pheasant range likely impacted nesting activity during the 2019 breeding season. Grassland habitat on private, state, and federally-owned lands increased by 29,903 acres statewide since 2018. The range-wide indices for eastern cottontail rabbits and gray partridge were similar to 2018 while the white-tailed deer and Sandhill crane indices increased from 2018. The mourning dove index decreased from 2018 and white-tailed jackrabbit observations continue to be historically low across our survey area.

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