We were there for the youth hunt, the weekend before season opened. We walked hard and dogs got hot...but we only saw two coveys plus a lone bird that must have been feeding or something. Only took three quail between us.
We were back at Matador last Sat, Sun, and Mon morning. Pushed even harder without the young hunter, but we did not see a bird for our efforts. I believe the official count was only 23 birds taken over opening weekend. The stat was 0.3 birds per hunter-day in the field. I saw a Facebook post that made it sound like half the total bird count may have been from a group of 5 hunters that decimated a covey in the Suitcase pasture
The mares tail is grown up chest to head high almost everywhere and the grass-burs must be a record setting this year. Overall, there are many areas that we have hunted for years that are not huntable this year, due to being overgrown....and its not the kind of stuff that a freeze is going to help much with.
The mutual decision in our group is to write Matador off for the season.
We talked to Chip briefly about Gene Howe (he is also the biologist for that WMA). He did not offer any encouragement about bird numbers and said the vegetation would be even heavier there, due to 3" of rain late in the summer.
Our new plan is to head for Kansas next weekend.