Hillsdale Waterfowl Report -
Waterfowl Numbers

The Hillsdale Wildlife Area has experienced a much more normal year in regards to water levels in 2020 in comparison to 2019.  All marshes were able to be gradually drained in order to provide a growing environment for moist soil vegetation throughout the year.  A fair amount of natural moist soil vegetation has grown throughout all of the marshes on the Hillsdale Wildlife Area.  Japanese millet and buckwheat have also grown with high success in the Big Bull Wetland along with the Antioch Wetland.  All of these factors should provide ample feeding opportunities for migrating waterfowl throughout the season.  All marshes will begin to be filled with water gradually, leading up to the beginning of waterfowl season.  At this time, the current Hillsdale Lake water level is below it's conservation pool level.  Due to there being no flood pool available, pumping efforts have come to a halt.  As we receive precipitation, we may then be able to continue with our wetland pumping efforts.  Brown's wetland was able to be successfully flooded before we were required to stop pumping.        


Waterfowl counts given on this report are based on what was observed on the day the report is updated. Waterfowl numbers vary greatly from day to day and weather conditions and hunting pressure will affect the numbers of waterfowl on the area.

Blue wing teal, Green wing teal, Northern Shoveler, Mallards, Pintails, Gadwall, and American Wigeon have been surveyed on the wildlife area this year.  Large groups of Coots have also been surveyed.  A large winter storm came through over the weekend and with it came a large influx of waterfowl.  Large groups of divers and mergansers have been surveyed on the main body of the lake.  Multiple groups of more than 100 birds have been seen all around the lake.  Groups of 10-20 mallards have also been seen all around the lake.  Wigeons and Gadwalls were also surveyed this week on the main body of the lake.  100-200 dark geese have also ben surveyed in the area this week.  The wetlands are 90-99% frozen up currently.  The main body of the lake is around 20-30% frozen over.        

Water Level

Antioch Wetland - 1/8

Browns Wetland, Upper pool - Full 

Browns Wetland, Lower pool - Full

Youth-Mentor Wetland - 1/4

Wade Branch Wetlands - 3/4

Hillsdale Lake - See Army Corps Daily Report

ICE CONDITION - 30% ice cover


Reminder - an electronic permit/sign-in on Isportsman is required for all hunting on Hillsdale Wildlife Area. All hunters (youth included) must register online and create an individual account.  Hunters can then check in using the I-sportsman system from any phone or internet device. This can be done immediately before the hunt or the night before the hunt.  The information and harvest data collected, along with comments received are very useful in establishing future management goals for the Hillsdale State Wildlife Area.

https://www.ksoutdoors.com/Hunting/Migratory-Birds/Ducks for more information on seasons and limits.