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#5454769 - 12/02/14 06:51 PM All this talk about bands
Esh and Hattie Offline
Bird Dog

Registered: 01/05/14
Posts: 310
Loc: N Texas
With all the band stealing talk got me thinking: I've hunted ducks for 20 years, shooting probably 20-30 ducks a year for the first 10 and 50-60 birds a year for the last 10 and have shot 1 band in my life, dad has 2. Hunted in Iowa, Kansas and Texas, all 3 of our banded ducks were Mallard drakes in Iowa.

1. What is an average ratio of ducks harvested / band? Also you see those guys with 5000 bands across a 4 call lanyard.. years and years of hundreds of birds a year or ebay heroes? (a lot of them look really shiny)

2. Does the area of country you hunt matter? ie if we're central flyway and most of the birds are banded in prairie pothole region or Canada, wouldn't the chances of shooting one up north be greater than by the time the birds hit Texas?

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#5454842 - 12/02/14 07:20 PM Re: All this talk about bands [Re: Esh and Hattie]
mohunter Offline
Pro Tracker

Registered: 08/05/10
Posts: 1517
Loc: Duck Hole, Tx
Well me and my buddy I hunt with mostly and the people we take hunting usually average anywhere from 450-950 ducks per season for the last 20 years and there have been 6 bands killed out of all those ducks.
More importantly only a couple have been killed were we hunt the most, the others were killed on trips to two other states we went to.
The last one was two years ago on opening day on a lake we hunt a lot, that meant more than any of the other ones.

SO yes I think it matters were you hunt, the farther north you go your chances get better.

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#5454869 - 12/02/14 07:28 PM Re: All this talk about bands [Re: Esh and Hattie]
brazosboyt Offline
Pro Tracker

Registered: 05/09/11
Posts: 1677
Yes to all the above. These numbers are pury for example and not exact. You can look up the number of bands/species.

The highest number of species is mallards then blue wings. Wigeons are like 1/30,000 and mallards are more like 1/500.

Highest ratio is brant geese with 1/50ish being banded. Want to shoot bands? Go brant hunting. I saw 17 bands from a 4 day brant hunt two years ago.

Friends of mine that live close to the major Banding sites up north shoot 10+ bands a year/person- wanna shoot bands- hunt by the banding refuges.

If your goose hunting-target Ross' geese, they are heavily banded. We shoot 4-5 bands/year out of 200 ish Ross geese.

I've been at it for 35 years and would say my dogs have retrieved upwards of 20,000 birds and I've seen about 75 bands.

It's just luck and numbers.

Never have understood wearing them on a lanyard. Guess it makes you look "legit". They make a good trophy room decoration and conversation piece.


Edited by brazosboyt (12/02/14 07:33 PM)

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#5454872 - 12/02/14 07:29 PM Re: All this talk about bands [Re: mohunter]
duckiller Offline
Pro Tracker

Registered: 04/24/07
Posts: 1217
Kill a lot of mallards and you will come across some. Your best bet in texas is mottled ducks on the coast.

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#5454936 - 12/02/14 07:52 PM Re: All this talk about bands [Re: mohunter]
Going Green Offline
Bird Dog

Registered: 08/20/13
Posts: 383
Loc: Camp David
Some people play the lottery their entire life and never win a nickel. Some just happen to play it once and hit the powerball. I agree with Mohunter and Brazosboyt though. Because bands have such a prized possession status, many hunters target areas around refuges up north that have banding programs almost exclusively. A certain waterfowl DVD personality from Ohio with the last name starting with "Z" and his "crew" of flat billed hat and hoody wearing "band hunters" come to mind.

I'm happier to see banded birds harvested down here, because that was the intention of the program; To provide feedback on the lifespan, habits, and migration patterns of birds- not for a bunch of freshly banded birds to fly a mile out of the refuge and get whacked so a bunch of yayhoos can look cool and sell DVD's. rolleyes

Just my opinion, not that anyone asked. Point being, I don't get discouraged when I see a bunch of cherry pickers with lanyards full on TV.
_________________________


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#5454981 - 12/02/14 08:06 PM Re: All this talk about bands [Re: Going Green]
brazosboyt Offline
Pro Tracker

Registered: 05/09/11
Posts: 1677
Luck is a big part of it. I've had 4 first time hunters in my blind kill bands.

My friends son shot three bands out of his first 10 ducks. Gadwall, redhead, pintail. He thought they all had those metal things.

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#5455060 - 12/02/14 08:41 PM Re: All this talk about bands [Re: Esh and Hattie]
Aggieduck Offline
Veteran Tracker

Registered: 07/27/10
Posts: 2285
Loc: TX
Since2009- 2010 we've killed atleast 1 band every year from my group. Kill probably 250 birds a year with the people I hunt with.

2 Mallard
1 pintail
1 GWT
2 bwt


Edited by Aggieduck (12/02/14 08:42 PM)
_________________________

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#5455384 - 12/03/14 12:37 AM Re: All this talk about bands [Re: Esh and Hattie]
Blue Moon Offline
Bird Dog

Registered: 01/04/05
Posts: 449
Loc: Republic of Texas
Originally Posted By: Esh and Hattie
With all the band stealing talk got me thinking: I've hunted ducks for 20 years, shooting probably 20-30 ducks a year for the first 10 and 50-60 birds a year for the last 10 and have shot 1 band in my life, dad has 2. Hunted in Iowa, Kansas and Texas, all 3 of our banded ducks were Mallard drakes in Iowa.

1. What is an average ratio of ducks harvested / band? Also you see those guys with 5000 bands across a 4 call lanyard.. years and years of hundreds of birds a year or ebay heroes? (a lot of them look really shiny)

2. Does the area of country you hunt matter? ie if we're central flyway and most of the birds are banded in prairie pothole region or Canada, wouldn't the chances of shooting one up north be greater than by the time the birds hit Texas?


When you compare waterfowl populations and the actual number banded each year to the actual number of bands reported by hunters, birders or wildlife photographers, it’s easy to see why banded waterfowl are considered a special trophy. To answer your location question, in general hunting north before they get to their final wintering grounds does not provide the best odds.

In the Central Flyway, Texas actually has the most bands reported. Arkansas has the most bands reported in the Mississippi Flyway. California has the most bands reported in the Pacific Flyway and in North America.

If you want to increase your chances of recovering or reporting a band, hunt, bird or photograph ducks and geese in the wintering grounds that have the highest concentrations of waterfowl. That means the West Coast, Pacific Northwest, Arkansas or the Texas & Louisiana Gulf Coast. In other words, you actually have a better chance at the end of their migration to their winter grounds than while they’re in transit.

Some basic banding facts – through 2007 over 16 million waterfowl have been banded including 13 million ducks. Each year approximately 200,000 ducks and 150,000 geese and swans are banded in North America. Approximately 85,000 to 90,000 bands are reported each year either by recovery from hunters or from sightings from birders and wildlife photographers with high powered optics capable of reading the band numbers.

While you joke about a hunter having 5,000 on a lanyard, to bring that back into reality, consider that only 7,838 bands were recovered in the entire state of Texas from 1986 to 2007. That works out to less than 400 bands reported each year from 1986 to 2007 for the entire state of Texas. The breakdown over the two decades of the report looks like this: 4,572 mallards, 976 Pintails, 923 divers, 867 teal, 497 other dabblers and only 3 black ducks.

For the sake of comparison over the same time frame, Arkansas had 22,875 bands reported including 21,745 mallard bands. California had 33,302 bands reported including 22,815 mallard bands. Washington 14,833 total with 14,089 mallard bands reported. Oregon 10,815 total with 9,537 mallard bands reported. Idaho had 9,390 bands total with 9,104 mallard bands reported. Closer to home, Louisiana had 13,169 with 8,579 mallards and 2,637 teal making up the majority.

Other states you mentioned, Iowa had 2,201 total with 1,931 mallard bands and Kansas 3,228 total with 2,891 mallard bands. In general, the Pacific, Central and Mississippi Flyways provide the best odds to recover a band compared to the Atlantic Flyway where many states have reported less than 1,000 total bands from 1986 to 2007.

To help answer your first question, total ducks harvested in Texas each year since 1995 to 2013 range between 1 million to 1.8 million. The national waterfowl harvest over last decade averages around 17 million per year. The mallard harvest in Texas ranged from 100,000 to 300,000 each year during those dates. In other words, more mallards are banded so your odds go up if you shoot a mallard over other species but your chances are still less than 1 percent.

Then again, ducks are banded in groups that often migrate together so while rare, it’s not unheard of to recover multiple bands from a single flight. I've seen it happen several times but I'm fortunate to hunt and film some of the finest waterfowl habitat in North America.

For anyone curious about capturing shots of bands in the wild using birding scopes or photography, here's an example shot I reported previously of a double banded blue goose with a $100 reward band. It required multiple shots to capture all the band numbers. There are no limits and the season is always open when you're shooting with a Canon pro body and long glass.



Blue Moon


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#5455392 - 12/03/14 01:18 AM Re: All this talk about bands [Re: Esh and Hattie]
duckkillah Online   content
Woodsman

Registered: 10/15/08
Posts: 105
Loc: somewhere near Dallas
This story doesn't sound believable, but there are 2 things my buddy NEVER BS's about, and this is one of them.........


I have a good friend who works for the USFWS in Louisiana. He volunteered to go to Canada on a banding detail a couple of summers in a row. The year before last his crew captured & marked a little over 5000 BWT in late summer. He came back and was rocket-netting wood ducks at his home refuge in LA a few weeks later. They happened to get a dozen or so teal mixed in with the woodies they were targeting in one set. One of those teal happened to be banded. You guessed it, he recaptured one of the same BWT that he had banded 3 weeks earlier and 2000 miles away! The chances have to be astronomical!

On a side note...If you notice on a band certificate it says date "recovered" and not date "killed". I never have asked him if he actually received the hard copy, but at the time he was thinking his name would be on the certificate twice, as the bander and as the collector!

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#5455545 - 12/03/14 07:58 AM Re: All this talk about bands [Re: duckkillah]
TXPride Offline
Pro Tracker

Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 1876
Loc: Lost
Originally Posted By: duckkillah
This story doesn't sound believable, but there are 2 things my buddy NEVER BS's about, and this is one of them.........


I have a good friend who works for the USFWS in Louisiana. He volunteered to go to Canada on a banding detail a couple of summers in a row. The year before last his crew captured & marked a little over 5000 BWT in late summer. He came back and was rocket-netting wood ducks at his home refuge in LA a few weeks later. They happened to get a dozen or so teal mixed in with the woodies they were targeting in one set. One of those teal happened to be banded. You guessed it, he recaptured one of the same BWT that he had banded 3 weeks earlier and 2000 miles away! The chances have to be astronomical!

On a side note...If you notice on a band certificate it says date "recovered" and not date "killed". I never have asked him if he actually received the hard copy, but at the time he was thinking his name would be on the certificate twice, as the bander and as the collector!


I've heard that story from reliable sources too. I think the story of Rob's where he shows proof of shooting mallards in separate years with sequential numbers is even neater.

I went to help band this summer in Canada. We get reports every week of our banded birds that were submitted. A few weeks after I got back, teal season started, and a teal was submitted about 15 miles from my house, like it followed me home.

Blue Moon, thank you for that awesome report and great pictures.
_________________________

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#5455596 - 12/03/14 08:25 AM Re: All this talk about bands [Re: Going Green]
dfwguy Offline
Bird Dog

Registered: 09/22/10
Posts: 478
Loc: DFW
Originally Posted By: Going Green

Just my opinion, not that anyone asked. Point being, I don't get discouraged when I see a bunch of cherry pickers with lanyards full on TV.


I'd have to agree with the above. I've never focused on shooting one specifically. I've been hunting a long time and the only band I've shot in one of my duck holes was on an alligator...now that was a story!

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#5455740 - 12/03/14 09:25 AM Re: All this talk about bands [Re: Esh and Hattie]
ishootspoonies Offline
Veteran Tracker

Registered: 12/24/07
Posts: 2843
Location has everything to do with it. If you want to fill a lanyard with bands, go north.
[img]http://www.texashuntingforum.com/forum/p...8_2359091435648[/img]
_________________________
Originally Posted By: RoosterCogburn13
I like spoonie, his humor is dryer than my duck lease.

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#5455770 - 12/03/14 09:36 AM Re: All this talk about bands [Re: Esh and Hattie]
Featherduster Offline
THF Trophy Hunter

Registered: 06/15/10
Posts: 5588
Loc: Columbus / Garwood
Location of where you hunt and luck are everything.

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#5455819 - 12/03/14 10:01 AM Re: All this talk about bands [Re: Esh and Hattie]
Erichugh22 Offline
Veteran Tracker

Registered: 09/14/10
Posts: 2332
Loc: Duck blind
In the past 4 seasons I've personally shot 582 ducks, and only one band. With group totals, since I mostly hunt solo I've probably seen 800 or so ducks killed total. Out of all of those birds just one band. One of my good friends did hunt my spot without me one day and killed a banded hooded merganser. I think yiu just need to be really lucky

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#5455836 - 12/03/14 10:09 AM Re: All this talk about bands [Re: Esh and Hattie]
Esh and Hattie Offline
Bird Dog

Registered: 01/05/14
Posts: 310
Loc: N Texas
Interesting responses thanks. I guess to brazos' point, without targeting specific species/areas, if you hunt where you've always hunted, you'll get what you've always got, statistically.

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