MDWFP biologists fly aerial waterfowl surveys in the
Mississippi Delta from November to January. Surveys are
typically conducted four times a year along randomly selected
transects. As we fly along the east-west transects, we count
all of the ducks within a 250-meter strip. Each group of
ducks is recorded with a Global Positioning System (GPS) to
generate the maps below. We then use the total number of
ducks counted along the transects to calculate an estimate of all
of the ducks in the Mississippi Delta . While not a complete
count of all waterfowl, these estimates provide an accurate index
of waterfowl abundance throughout the Delta. This information is
regularly used by both MDWFP and hunters to identify key
wetland areas for waterfowl and to track responses of waterfowl to
changes in weather and habitat. In fact, the Arkansas Game
and Fish Commission adopted this survey method in 2009.
These surveys will help biologists and hunters better
understand waterfowl migration throughout the lower Mississippi
View of Howard Miller during a November
Large flock of snow geese observed during a December flight.
2009-2010 Aerial Surveys
Large group of ducks on a flooded cypress brake in the
Delta Wildlife annually provides MDWFP with financial
assistance for conducting aerial surveys.