News of a Kansas wildfire can put a wrench in hunting plans quickly. Today I learned of an enormous wildfire that burned over 500,000 acres in southern Kansas. Most of Clark County was burned. I made a few calls and learned it didn’t directly affect the spot I had in mind to hunt this fall, nor a couple friends’ spots that hunt southern Kansas, but that doesn’t mean the fire didn’t have a devastating impact.
Impact of Kansas Wildfire on Wildlife
Deer were seen wandering around aimlessly, as if lost. They’d been blinded by the fire’s intense heat… so sad! It’s unknown how many deer died in this fire, but my friend said some Whitetail Properties agents he talks with reported seeing a lot of dead deer. Thousands of cattle perished too. Ranchers will no doubt be feeling the affects of this fire for a long time, even if/after rain comes and brings new growth.
The area has been extremely dry for some time now. My friend in the Stafford, Kansas, area said it’s been over a month since any rain. Dry weather isn’t good for deer health. Fire’s even worse, unless it’s a controlled burn, of course. If there’s some moisture to come, much of this wildfire could eventually result in a positive, but my thoughts and prayers are with the residents of southern Kansas.
Will the Kansas Wildfire Affect Your 2017 Deer Hunting?
I decided not to make plans for hunting Kansas this fall with that friend, not because of this particular Kansas wildfire, but because of dry weather and an overall decrease in the quality of bucks he’s got around. I attribute a lot of that to outfitters’ clients shooting young bucks, but that’s another story! I’ll be keeping my eyes and ears open as I’m always curious what’s going on in other states that I love to deer hunt.