Illinois goose prospects are promising

July 02, 2010 at 05:22 AM

Prospects look better for Canada goose hunters in central Illinois than for duck chasers.

Preliminary results from last week’s goose banding in west-central Illinois showed productivity was 12 percent above the five-year average according to biologist Dan Holm. The survey showed 2.31 immature geese per adult in west central Illinois.

Productivity was average in northeast Illinois, with 1.62 immature birds per adult.

More good news comes from migratory flocks that nest on the tundra of Canada. “They had an early spring and generally that means good nesting success,” Holm said.

Duck openers should be Oct. 16 for the North Zone and Oct. 30 for the Central Zone. Proposed Canada goose seasons are Oct. 16 to Jan. 8 in the North Zone with a split season for the Central Zone of Oct. 30-Nov. 14 and Nov. 24-Jan. 31.

Remember, these dates are proposed, not final.

Still to be determined is the South Zone, which could open Nov. 13 or Nov. 27 depending on Department of Natural Resources
Director Marc Miller’s decision. DNR staff backs a Nov. 27 opener but the DNR Advisory Board voted in favor of the earlier date on Tuesday in Springfield.

Several advisory board members said they were voting for the average, public hunter by targeting an earlier start date. Hunt clubs, meanwhile, prefer a later opener.