Saturday, August 15, 2020

Where'd the birds go

 I made my mid August scouting trip today and have to admit to being a little disappointed in the number of birds I saw. Don't get too disgruntled yet because I couldn't cover much country by foot but mostly on the roads. As far as chukars go, I saw fewer of them than ever on this route but the few I found were way up high. Once I got on the mountain I was surprised how dry it is. From a distance things look green but most of that green look is skeleton weed which has absolutely no nutritional value. Grass hoppers were everywhere. Although the mountains are very dry there seems to be plenty of water in the seeps for all of the wildlife to have had a good summer. It was very warm today and Jake just held back with the old cripple as Jake covered the mountain side looking for birds. At two years old he seems to have endless energy no matter what the weather.

Three different times he sent young chukars flying past Jake and I and my guess says they were between 6 and 8 weeks old which means they came from successful first hatches.

I never heard chukar talk which could be good or bad. Either there weren't many birds around or they still had young enough birds that they didn't care to announce their presence. I did see plenty of small chukar track on the trails to believe there was birds of about three to four weeks old or less moving around.

I also found feathers of chicks from our upland birds. This one happens to be from a hun.

I saw two covey of huns from the road and captured this small group of what appeared to be all adult birds.

If quail are any indication of what the upland season will be like, start buying more shells. Those little turds are everywhere but won't sit still long enough for me to get any camera action. There size ranges from half grown to just bigger than bumble bees. If the amount of young quail is any indication of chukar populations, there are a lot of young chukars out there that we couldn't find.

It seemed like every time I came around a corner where there was shade there was another group of quail heading for cover.

The turkeys are also a tale-tale sign of this different summer. I saw one group of probably 50 or 60 birds that were about 3/4 grown with only 6 adult birds as far as I could tell and than I came across this group with different size chicks and as many adults as hens. Strange hatches.
So, there is my scouting report for mid August. Not real exciting but as I said, I kind of whimped out and spent too much time on my butt. In my heart I believe there are a lot of late birds this year but don't want to get all excited about something I can't prove but as soon as the doc gets me fixed I hope to get some better videos of what to expect this season.

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