Gamebird Forecast for Fall 2021/Spring 2022
Wednesday, October 13, 2021
Oklahoma State University maintains an app for both iPhone and Android users to report gamebird brood observations. This information helps biologists forecast reproduction each year and provide a forecast for hunters. The free app can be found by searching ‘gamebird brood observation’ in the appropriate app store. Below is this year’s summary.
Northern bobwhite appear to have had good production during 2021 but may have delayed nesting somewhat. As of 9/27/21, there were 89 bobwhite reports from 23 counties. Of these, there were 48 brood reports with the first brood reported on 6/16/21 and regular brood reports starting in early July. Average number of chicks per report (only for records with chicks reported) was 11.2. Note that this is not chicks per hen as there often multiple adults reported with each brood. It appears that most reproduction took place in late June through July and there many large broods reported. Numbers of adults entering the breeding season was likely low due to several years of below average production and to severe winter weather in February. However, with a good nesting season this summer, expect the fall numbers to be at least similar if not better than last year in most areas of the state.
We only received 16 ring-necked pheasant reports from 7 counties in 2021. Of these, there were 11 brood reports with the first brood reported on 6/26/21. Average number of chicks per report (only for records with chicks reported) was 7.8 (note this is not chicks per hen).
Wild turkey also appear to have produced a lot of young in 2021. As of 9/27/21, there were 118 wild turkey reports from 34 counties across Oklahoma. Of these, there were 60 turkey brood reports with the first brood reported on 4/25/21 and frequent brood reports starting in early June. Average number of poults per report (only for records with poults reported) was 7.6. Note that this is not poults per hen as there were often multiple adults reported with each brood. First nests were productive this year across the state. Expect turkey numbers to be higher in most areas in 2022 based on brood reports from this summer.