An increase of all primary species
The North Dakota Game and Fish Department’s 72nd annual spring breeding duck survey showed an index of 3.4 million birds, up 20 percent from last year. The index was the 22nd highest on record and stands 40 percent above the long-term average. Numbers for all primary species were up from their 2018 estimates, including mallards 16 percent, green-winged teal 81 percent and ruddy ducks 57 percent. The number of temporary and seasonal wetlands was substantially higher than last year, as figures show the spring water index is up 46 percent.
A Migratory game bird supervisor said the though the numbers were up, concerns about habitat still remain, as nesting cover in North Dakota continues to decline.