SOUTH CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- West Virginia's annual midwinter waterfowl survey tallied thousands of ducks and Canada geese well above the 10-year average.
Biologists counted 8,797 ducks and 6,709 Canada geese, the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources said. Compared to last year's count, ducks are up 67 percent and geese up 7 percent.
Officials said the increase was not unexpected due to the weather that occurred in December.
While mallards, Canada geese and black ducks were most commonly observed, biologists also reported seeing canvasbacks, tundra swans, wood ducks, redheads and others.
Five adult and five juvenile bald eagles were also observed.
The survey was conducted Jan. 8-10 and included portions of the Kanawha, Ohio, Shenandoah and New rivers as well as Tygart and Bluestone lakes.