Low Plains season opened Sept. 9, High Plains Sept. 16

What a difference a few days can make. A few weeks ago, the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks reported that wetlands in central and northwest Kansas were in dire straits due to lack of rainfall. One of the agency's premier wetlands -- Cheyenne Bottoms , near Great Bend -- was nearly dry.

All that changed in mid-August when up to 8 inches of rain fell in the rainwater basin west of Cheyenne Bottoms, filling the wetland and making the prospects for the opening of early teal season bright. As the Bottoms fills, the outlook is good, and improving as more water enters the basin through the inlet canal.

Nearby Quivira National Wildlife Refuge , in Stafford County, also received good rainfall and is reporting that all pools now have water. However, the rainfall was spotty. Wetland conditions at most areas in northcentral and northwestern Kansas remain dry. Consult the KDWP website for weekly updated waterfowl reports on these and other areas of the state.

The September early teal season is Sept. 9 - 24 in the Low Plains (east of U. S. 283), and Sept. 16 - 23 in the High Plains (west of U. S. 283).

Hunters who plan to hunt public waterfowl areas should consult the waterfowl reports on the KDWP webite, or phone the KDWP office nearest the area they plan to hunt to check water conditions before going afield.