WIUM Tristates Public Radio

Year Looking Up for Pheasants in Iowa

Mar 12, 2013

Despite large amounts of snow recently, Iowa is on track to get an average amount of snow this winter. A pheasant biologist for the Iowa Department of Natural Resources said that could make it a good year for pheasants.

Upland Game Biologist, Todd Bogenschutz , said  Iowa experienced abnormally harsh winters from 2007-2011 which drove the pheasant population down.

Credit forums.steves-digicams.com

Last year’s more mild winter allowed pheasants to bounce back some but, he said,  populations were so low the process will take several years.

"Just remember if you got one pheasant and you double the population you now have two," Bogenschutz said, "now if we have another good winter two goes to four, another good winter four goes to eight."

He said the pheasant population could still go down if the state has a wet spring. Bogenschutz said pheasant chicks can't regulate their body temperatures as well as adult birds which makes them more susceptible to cold, wet conditions.

Bogenshutz said over 8 inches of rain in April and May could bring pheasant numbers down.