Date of this Version
Araya, A.C., K.L. Kruse, and K.D. Warner. Summary of sandhill crane sport harvest in Canada 1975-2006. In: Hartup, Barry K., ed., Proceedings of the Eleventh North American Crane Workshop, Sep 23-27, 2008, Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin (Baraboo, WI: North American Crane Working Group, 2010), pp. 22-30.
Knowledge of harvest in all areas where the mid-continent population (MCP) of sandhill cranes (Grus canadensis) occurs is critical to managing the population in a sustainable manner. The harvest of MCP in the U.S. has been well documented; however, the harvest in Canada has received less attention. The Canadian Wildlife Service initiated a National Harvest Survey program in 1967, but all sampling variables were not directly comparable until 1975. In this paper, we summarize crane harvest in Canada during the 1975-2006 hunting seasons for Saskatchewan and Manitoba, the 2 provinces with significant sport hunting harvest of sandhill cranes. There has been a significant decline over the last 3 decades in the number of potential resident hunters, a decrease in the estimated number of active non-waterfowl hunters, and a decrease in the estimated number of hunter days afield. Conversely, the number of potential non-resident hunters, active non-waterfowl hunters, and number of hunter days afield in Saskatchewan began to increase after 1995, the year sandhill crane hunting was opened to non-residents. An increasing trend in both the number of sandhill cranes harvested and success rate among non-resident hunters, particularly in Saskatchewan, occurred whereas the number of sandhill cranes harvested and success by residents has remained relatively stable.