Waterfowl migration flyways are the paths duck and geese fly while migrating south for the winter and returning north for the breeding season. Ducks and geese that breed in certain geographic locations migrate south to specific areas. Each flyway differs in its concentration of various duck and goose species.
I knew that there were differences in the number of ducks and geese shot in each flyway, but I was interested to see by what degree they varied. I spent several hours combing through data of harvest numbers provided by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and thought my findings were interesting enough to share in this article.
Which flyway harvests the most ducks?
The Mississippi Flyway harvests more ducks than any other. They shot 4,408,800, which represents 39.76% of the total ducks harvested in the United States.
|Flyway||# of Ducks Harvested||% of total harvest|
Which flyway has the most hunters?
The Mississippi Flyway has the most duck hunters with 379,300 during the 2020-2021 season, representing 41.95% of the overall duck hunters in the United States.
|Flyway||# of Duck Hunters||% of total hunters|
Which flyway harvests the most mallards?
2,785,534 Mallards were harvested in the United States during the 2020-2021 duck season. The Mississippi Flyway shot the most Mallards with 1,211,677, which represented 43.50% of the total Mallards harvested in the United States.
|Flyway||Mallards Harvested||% of total Mallards|
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Which flyway harvests the most Canadian Geese
During the 2020-2021 Goose season, there were 2,219,189 Canadian Geese harvested in the United States. The Mississippi Flyway harvested the most with 861,739, representing 40.47% of the total number of Canadian Geese shot.
|Flyway||# of Canadian Geese Harvested||% of Canadian Geese|
Which flyway harvests the most Snow and Blue Geese
The total number of Snow Geese (including Blues) harvested in the United States was 390,332. Of the total, the Central Flyway harvested the most with 157,159, and the Pacific Flyway was the second most with 149,484.
|Flyway||# of Snow/Blue Geese Harvested||% of total|
What are the most common species of ducks harvested in the United States?
Hunters in the United States harvested a total of 11,139,100 ducks during the 2020-2021 waterfowl seasons. The most common species harvested were:
- Mallard: 2,801,212
- Green-Winged Teal: 1,419,863
- Gadwall: 1,250,504
*The most recent harvest report from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife was used to gather the data for my research
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