TOPEKA (KSNT) – State wildlife officials say Kansas bird hunters can start getting copies of this year’s bird hunting forecast.

The Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks (KDWP) said in a press release that the 2023 Kansas Upland Game Bird Forecast is available for download and will soon be available in print form. This book serves as a guide for bird hunters in Kansas and contains helpful information collected by the KDWP on pheasants, quail and prairie chicken.

Quail continue to be at above-average population numbers, according to the KDWP. With improvements to quail habitat conditions, KDWP staff expect the species to have experienced high production this year. Good spots to start hunting quail include the central areas of the state into the Flint Hills and scattered spots throughout the rest of Kansas.

Drought conditions, lack of nesting cover and low populations across much of Kansas have led to a reduced number of pheasants, according to the KDWP. The High Plains area in the western third of the state has seen improvement for pheasants but their population remains low in other places. The Kansas pheasant population is still recovering from population decreases in 2022 which will likely play a part in next year’s harvest.

Hunting opportunities for greater and lesser prairie chickens will be best in the Smoky Hills regions, according to the KDWP. While recent droughts have likely impacted their numbers, prairie chickens are recognized as being more resilient than other bird species. The Southwest Prairie Chicken Unit is closed to hunting for 2023.

Hunting seasons for all of the birds listed above runs through Han. 31, 2024. For more information on where to hunt, click here.

You can download the 2023 Kansas Upland Game Bird Forecast by clicking here. The full forecast can also be seen below:

Upland Bird Forecast 23 by Matthew Self on Scribd