Quail hunting season is under way, and the 2012-13 forecast looks good, particularly in south and east Georgia.
Bobwhite abundance will be highest across landscapes with large blocks of high-quality, early-succession habitat (open grassy, weedy areas with scattered shrubs and brush).
“The quail population has shown a good winter carryover from the previous year and a strong hatch of new quail, which means more birds for this 2012-13 hunting season,” wildlife biologist James Tomberlin said.
In fact, observations by Tall Timbers Research Station combined with Wildlife Resources Division surveys of select wildlife management areas and anecdotal reports indicate increased populations from 2011, as much as 30 percent in some areas. The milder winter weather coupled with timely rainfall this past spring and summer helped adult birds survive and created excellent nesting and brood-rearing conditions.
Georgia’s statewide quail season runs through Feb. 28, 2013, with a daily bag limit of 12 birds per hunter.