2022 Duck Population Numbers | 2022-2023 Waterfowl Season

Total populations were estimated at 34.2 million breeding ducks in the traditional survey area, 12 percent lower than 2019’s estimate of 38.9 million and 4 percent below the long-term average (since 1955).

“Although the beneficial effects of timely precipitation during late winter and spring were evident by high pond counts across the eastern prairies, the total duck estimate in the Traditional Survey Area was the lowest in nearly 20 years,” said DU Chief Scientist Dr. Steve Adair. “The drop in duck numbers reflects the consequences of low production caused by multiple years of prairie drought, including 2021, which was one of the most severe and widespread in nearly 4 decades. But the survey revealed some bright spots for duck populations and provided optimism for good production this summer and carry-over of favorable pond conditions into fall and winter.”

Ducks; 2022 Duck Population Numbers | 2022-2023 Waterfowl Season