Hillsdale Wildlife Area News

Hillsdale Wildlife Area News

WETLAND CONDITION AND DUCK USE AT HILLSDALE WILDLIFE AREA (9/11/14)

**Non-Toxic Shot Only**

  • All wetlands have some water due to recent rains. Rainfall has maintained sufficient stream flow and reservoir level to permit pumping of the wetlands.
  • Low water levels in the reservoir earlier this summer allowed vegetation to germinate on mudflats particularly south of 231st Street near the waterfowl refuge. This vegetation provides quality waterfowl cover and forage.
  • Teal have recently arrived but in low numbers as of 9/11. During our first waterfowl survey of the season on 9/11/14, ~160 teal were seen on the wildlife area, primarily in aquatic vegetation in the reservoir.

Browns Wetland, upper (east) unit
Disked and seeded Japanese millet earlier this summer. Good plant cover – smartweed, barnyard grass, and Japanese millet. Expected to be excellent this fall. We have pumped ~15 acre-feet (4,900,000 gallons) since 9/4. Will take a few more days of pumping to fill the unit. Consistent though limited teal use has been increasing as pumping continues.

Browns Wetland, lower (west) unit
Partially disked earlier this summer to set back trees and favor annuals. Large pool of water at lower end near the water-control structure due to rainfall. Have not yet pumped but will begin after we finish pumping the upper unit. Have not seen teal use this unit yet this season; however, with close proximity to upper unit and pumping expected to commence soon, teal likely will follow.

Antioch Wetland
Received limited disturbance in 2014 (mowing and noxious weed control). Some water near the water-control structure due to rainfall. Sufficient to hold some teal. Expect to pump in 1-2 weeks if stream flow permits. A small group of teal have consistently used the wetland in the last week. Also, Antioch Wetland is near quality aquatic vegetation in the main reservoir where larger groups of teal were seen during a waterfowl survey on 9/11/14.

Youth-Mentor Wetland
The Youth-Mentor Wetland was disked and seeded with Japanese millet earlier this summer. An excellent plant response followed and millet has produced many large seed heads. Some water near the water-control structure due to rainfall. Sufficient to hold some teal. New pump site needs to be created and is in the works (old site filled with log-jam). Expect to pump in 3-4 weeks if stream flow permits. A small group of teal were seen using the wetland on 9/11/14.

Please contact Eric Kilburg with questions: 913-783-4507.