Waterfowl Management on Two U. S. Army Corps of Engineers Multiple Purpose Reservoirs in Middle Tennessee

The evolution and success of a State waterfowl management program on federally purchased perimeter lands on the Old Hickory and Cheatham Lock and Dam Projects in Middle Tennessee are described. Basic development upon operations' initiatkm (Old Hickory 1957 and Cheatham 1959) and early project years consisted of provision of quantities of suitable agricultural foods on upland areas adjacent to the reservoirs. Beginning in 1959 on Old Hickory and 1960 on Cheatham, the program was materially altered from that above to one centered upon the construction and operation of twenty-four small seasonal subimpoundments. These varying in size from six to 200 surface acres are annually drained, cultivated for food production and subsequently reflooded prior to the beginning of the fall migration period. A marked increase in wintering waterfowl and consequpntly hunting opportunity occurred following the establishment of water management, even in the face of declining state and flyway populations. Changes in population numbers and periods of build up relative to the development programs are documented. Other principle aspects of management and approximate costs of construction and operation of the water control systems are discussed.

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