Daily Archives: September 11, 2014

Canoe and Kayak Fall Rendezvous at Elk CityLake

New paddlers can attend the “Intro to Kayaking Orientation

The Kansas Canoe and Kayak Association (KCKA) invites all to attend the 2014 Fall Rendezvous, Sept. 20-21, at Card Creek Campground, ElkCityState Park. The free two-day canoeing and kayaking event is open to the public and all ages and experience levels are welcome.

Beginning canoers, kayakers, or paddlers looking to brush-up on their skills, will enjoy an out-of-water “Intro to Kayaking Orientation,” offered 4 p.m.–5 p.m., Sept. 20.

Whether you are interested in fishing, recreational, transitional, touring, or racing paddle craft, this class will help ensure your time on the water is safe and fun. Participants will also have the opportunity to sit in all types of boats.

Intro to Kayaking Orientation topics include:

-Safety gear

-How to transport a boat

-What to look for when buying a boat

-Types of paddles and paddling tips

For more information about the KCKA, visit www.kansascanoe.org, or send an e-mail to [email protected].

2014 Kansas waterfowl season outlook

Hunters can expect good hunting conditions that will only improve with time.

Hunters can expect good hunting conditions that will only improve with time.

The makings for a great waterfowl season are all coming together as hunters prepare for early teal. Expertly-managed food, water, and refuge areas at public wildlife areas across the state have already drawn in thousands of the blue-winged teal, and the best part is, it will only get better. The 2014 teal season will begin with the Low Plains Zone, (anything east of U.S. Highway 283) Sept. 13-28, followed by the High Plains Zone (anything west of U.S. Highway 283) Sept. 20-28. The daily bag limit is six teal.

All hunters participating in teal season who are required to have a hunting license must also possess a Kansas HIP permit and State Waterfowl Permit. All hunters 16 and older must have a Federal Waterfowl Stamp. Kansas HIP permits and State Waterfowl Permits can be purchased online at ksoutdoors.com, and Federal Waterfowl Stamps can be purchased at your local U.S. Post Office and Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks, and Tourism regional offices.

For those hitting the marsh this teal opener, compiled below is a brief report from Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism (KDWPT) wildlife area managers at some of the state’s best waterfowl locations. For a complete list of where to hunt waterfowl in Kansas, visit ksoutdoors.com and click “Hunting/Where to Hunt in Kansas.” For up-to-date information on waterfowl numbers, click on “Weekly Waterfowl Reports.”

Cheyenne Bottoms Wildlife Area

“Current water conditions at Cheyenne Bottoms are excellent,” said Cheyenne Bottoms wildlife area manager, Karl Grover. “Hunters can expect good natural food production for ducks, such as millets, smartweed and bulrushes. And blue-winged teal migration is underway as we are beginning to see indications of new birds on the area. We estimate teal numbers to be about 10,000-15,000 right now.”

Grover added the pools closed to motorized watercraft are 13 inches to accommodate the walk-in hunter, and all other hunting pools are 16-21 inches. Hunter numbers are expected to be above average, especially on weekends, so hunters should plan ahead and arrive early.

Jamestown Wildlife Area

According to Jamestown wildlife area manager, Rob Unruh, Jamestown water conditions are perfect for teal.

“Nearly all pools have water ranging from a few inches to 18 inches and all Jamestown marshes have great moist soil vegetation with lots of food available,” said Unruh. “Hunters can expect to find a lot of excellent habitat conditions scattered throughout the area, giving hunters many options on where to hunt. Scouting prior to the hunt is always the best but traditional hotspots will be really good this year.”

Unruh added that teal numbers are increasing daily with 1,000-3,000 teal using the area now.

Marais des Cygnes Wildlife Area

“Recent rains provided some water in a few units, but conditions will remain only fair at Marais des Cygnes unless we get more runoff rain,” said wildlife area manager Karl Karrow. “I have yet to observe any teal, but that can change with more rain. For now, hunting Marais des Cygnes Wildlife Area is predicted to only be fair,” added Karrow.

Neosho Wildlife Area

Monte Manbeck, Neosho Wildlife Area manager, says habitat conditions at Neosho are good for teal, but he expects them to get better with time. “Currently, there are approximately 250 teal using the area,” said Manbeck. “The refuge pool is about three foot low with mud flats and shallow water areas that teal will absolutely love.”

“Hunting pools 1 and 2 both have water, but the vegetation is tall and will be hard to hunt,” said Manbeck. “The water transfer ditches in both pools 1 and 2 will have open water and will be available to hunt during teal season, and there is a deeper portion of Pool 2 called the Oxbow that has open water and could provide some hunting opportunity, as well.” Manbeck added there is very limited space for hunting, so hunters are encouraged to be careful and respectful of other hunters.

For information on migratory bird regulations, visit www.ksoutdoors.com and click “Hunting / Migratory Birds.”

Southwest Kansas Youth Day Sept. 20

The free event will feature 2014 Miss Rodeo Kansas, Katera Harter.

The free event will feature 2014 Miss Rodeo Kansas, Katera Harter.

The 2014 Southwest Kansas Youth Day will take place Saturday, Sept. 20 from 9:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. atLakeScottState Park. Registered participants can enjoy live snake presentations, shotgun shooting, archery, and meet guest speaker, Katera Harter, 2014 Miss RodeoKansas.

Registered participants will receive lunch, an event shirt, and a chance to win a giveaway item, including a mentored hunt, or one of two Extreme Fowl shotguns. For more information, or to register, contact Manuel Torres at (620) 227-8609, or by e-mail at [email protected]

Twenty-one-year-old Harter, of Colby, is an outdoorswoman who enjoys deer and pheasant hunting and fishing. She will compete for the title of 2015 Miss Rodeo America at the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas this December.

Early Greater Prairie-chicken season begins Sept. 15

Early season provides hunters with unique, challenges.

Early season provides hunters with unique, challenges.

Load up your bird dog and dig out that hunter orange because the Early Prairie Chicken Season is almost here. Beginning Sept. 15, hunters with a valid Kansas hunting license and a Greater Prairie Chicken Permit ($2.50) can hunt in Greater Prairie Chicken Unit, which includes northwest, northcentral and eastern portions of the state. The early greater prairie chicken season will run Sept. 15- Oct. 15, 2014. The regular, traditional prairie chicken season is Nov. 15, 2014 – Jan. 31, 2015. The daily bag limit is two birds and possession limit is eight.
The Early Greater Prairie Chicken Season was established to allow hunters to walk up birds using dogs, which is usually not effective during the traditional season. In September and October, greater prairie chickens may be in loose family groups and are more likely to hold for hunters with pointing dogs. After a cold snap reduces insect populations in the tallgrass prairie, prairie chickens will feed in crop stubble fields. During the regular season, hunters commonly station themselves around these feed fields to pass shoot prairie chickens flying in.
Both hunting methods are challenging. During the early season, hunters and dogs must cover vast areas of prairie searching for birds. During the regular season, hunters must locate fields that birds are using then hope those birds pass within shotgun range when they fly in. And even when a hunter is in the right spot, the fast-flying birds are difficult quarry.
Greater prairie chicken permits can be purchased wherever licenses are sold and online at ksoutdoors.com.
For more information, consult the2014 Kansas Hunting and Furharvesting Regulations Summary online at www.ksoutdoors.com/Hunting/Hunting-Regulations.

Kansas Wetlands Education Center Butterfly Festival

Participants can help capture and tag monarch butterflies

Participants can help capture and tag monarch butterflies

From making milkweed seed bombs to tagging monarch butterflies, kids and adults will find plenty to do during the Kansas Wetlands Education Center’s (KWEC) “Butterfly Festival” Sept. 13, 9 a.m.-12 p.m. KWEC is located at 592 NE K156 Hwy on the Cheyenne Bottoms Wildlife Area 10 miles northeast of Great Bend. Participants will study butterflies, caterpillars and chrysalises, an exhibit bee hive, as well as several other amazing insects and spiders on display inside the insect “zoo.” There is no cost to attend and door prizes will be given away just before noon.

Nets and tags will be available for those who want to capture and tag monarch butterflies. Participants will receive information about the tagging process before heading out with a tagging leader to search for monarch butterflies. Although monarch numbers have decreased drastically, populations seem to be rebounding locally, with many adults, caterpillars and eggs found on milkweed at Cheyenne Bottoms.

Apart from tagging, participants can also play in the mud and make a take-home seed bomb, composed of clay, compost, water and seeds; take photos at the monarch butterfly and caterpillar photo boards; create a unique caterpillar and butterfly in the craft section; refuel with light refreshments and drinks.

Butterfly milkweed plants, with growing instructions, will be available at no cost to those who would like to encourage monarchs in their yards and gardens. Information on butterfly-friendly plants and other attractants will be available and visitors may also walk through the wildflower/butterfly garden to view examples of butterfly-friendly plants.

For more information, contact the KWEC at 1-877-243-9268, or visit: www.wetlandscenter.fhsu.edu.