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Old 11-02-2019, 10:15 PM   #1
joe_camo
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Default official 2019-2020 waterfowl thread

Since it is November and no one else has started one here goes.

Today was a bluebird day if I ever saw one but I decided to hunt the incoming tide near sunset because I thought a couple of birds might move before sunset.

I went out to my favorite public land hunting location at just after 3 pm. Half way to my spot a remember I forgot to replenish my ammo supply from the last hunt - I have only 16 shells with me. Rather than go back and get more ammo I am fairly sure 16 shells will be sufficient so I keep going.

By 4 pm I had the decoys out and did not have to wait long - a flock of wigeon flew over and it took 2 shots to drop a drake. Next a pair of pintail fly over and I drop the drake with one shot. Now there are lots of pintail and wigeon around but I do not want to make a mistake so I pass on any wigeon and pintail that come in.

Next shot is at a mallard drake from a pair, it takes me two shots to drop him - now I am down to 11 shells with 4 birds to get, this should not be a problem. So I decide a few teal are in order. Before any teal come by another pair of Mallards come in and i drop the drake with a shot - 3 birds left and 10 shells to do it.

A flock of teal come in, two shots at drakes and not a feather - 8 shots left.

Repeat - 6 shells left now I am getting nervous.

A lone greenhead comes in and one shot does the job.

Another lone greenhead comes in and this time it takes two shots - three shots left.

With six birds in hand I decide to finish out with a drake greenwing but two shots and two more misses. Green wing are usually my go to bird but today I just could not connect.

Now I have one shell left and 20 minutes until sundown and still have to get back to my rig. A pair of mallards comes by and i take a good lead on the drake - BAM, he folds! I pick up the decoys (seven in total) and pick up my last bird before heading back to the rig.

Drove home with a wonderful sunset and a limit of big ducks, I cannot remember the last time I shot a limit of ducks that did not include at least one green wing.

Another epic day on public land

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Old 11-02-2019, 10:48 PM   #2
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Default Re: official 2019-2020 waterfowl thread

Last Sunday we had a nice wind out of the north east. One area out at Wikiup is only productive with this wind. Out I went for a mid day hunt once the wind started. After the 1 1/2 mile hike, I set up by some stumps. After a few close passes the wind picked up and the ducks were pushed into my kill zone and in short order I had 4 Wigeon. Then a flock of spec came bombing by cross wind, right at me. Too close 3 clean misses. Then a pair, got a double. Then a group of Wigeon and I knocked one down. But it was swimming. I kept an eye on it. When it swam up the finger about 400 yards west. I had it trapped. So I walked over to finish it. In the process about a dozen honkers flew right over my blind. I get back to blind toss the Wigeon into pile of 5 Widgeon and two spec. No Honkers. A little wait and here comes 3 Specs. They land out front of the blind at about 100 yards. Then swim ashore and work right in front of me. at about 40 yards. I debate for about 10 minutes about shooting fish in barrels. Then calmly brought the gun up and killed two as they started to flush. The third flew off, circled and was flying on the deck about 55 yards out so I rolled it. Had to wait a while for the wind to retrieve it for me. That was all I wanted to load in my pack and hike the 1 1/2 mile back to the truck. Wind was dropping, birds were scarce anyway. Shooting the 12ga wingmaster, shooting some old Kent 1 1/8 oz BB 1560 loads.
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Old 11-02-2019, 11:26 PM   #3
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Old 11-03-2019, 08:55 PM   #4
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Default Re: official 2019-2020 waterfowl thread

Baltz, great write up!

So much better than the typical “5 man banger” type posts that seem to be the norm these days.

Great day and nice shooting!
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Old 11-03-2019, 09:14 PM   #5
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Maybe some of you Experienced waterfowlers can help solve a problem. We hunt a private pond and slough just off the Willamette within a few miles of William Finley game reserve my question is duck flight in the morning. The ducks seem to be plentiful but they are flying real high and dont wanna commit to our decoys. Any tips or tricks to help bring these birds down while they are circling or Do these first flight birds always have a destination.And if they have a destination to they tend to only go to that destination or can they be fooled. We typically have good shooting the first hour than seems all birds disappear. Than we get a few small groups through out the morning but most seem to be at first light.
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Old 11-04-2019, 06:50 AM   #6
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Maybe some of you Experienced waterfowlers can help solve a problem. We hunt a private pond and slough just off the Willamette within a few miles of William Finley game reserve my question is duck flight in the morning. The ducks seem to be plentiful but they are flying real high and dont wanna commit to our decoys. Any tips or tricks to help bring these birds down while they are circling or Do these first flight birds always have a destination.And if they have a destination to they tend to only go to that destination or can they be fooled. We typically have good shooting the first hour than seems all birds disappear. Than we get a few small groups through out the morning but most seem to be at first light.
Your description is typical of all duck hunting in areas with safe resting areas. To improve success, hunt the prime days. Rain wind flooding sheet water.
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Old 11-04-2019, 06:57 AM   #7
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Default Re: official 2019-2020 waterfowl thread

The Roy/Verboort lakes have been all but dead. I didn't even load my gun the last two times out, while trying to teach a few manners to a 1 1/2 yr old Lab. Mostly local mallards that come in 20 minutes late and leave 20 minutes early.
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Old 11-04-2019, 07:45 AM   #8
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Scouted most of the proven places from Astoria to Florence last week. Nothing to write home about. Sources further north tell me they are just now getting new birds.
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Old 11-04-2019, 08:06 AM   #9
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CKthumper...
I've hunted the same duck lease in western Washington county for 20+ years. This is the slowest start to a season we've experienced. Not sure why, but very few ducks only seeing a few local mallards and woodies. No ducks (or geese) flying anywhere just blue sky so far.
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Old 11-04-2019, 08:40 AM   #10
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CKthumper...
I've hunted the same duck lease in western Washington county for 20+ years. This is the slowest start to a season we've experienced. Not sure why, but very few ducks only seeing a few local mallards and woodies. No ducks (or geese) flying anywhere just blue sky so far.
I was golfing yesterday out near Verboort and was finally seeing large flocks of geese, I haven't even went goose hunting yet because the lack of birds, now I can't wait for it to reopen!
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Old 11-04-2019, 08:51 AM   #11
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I went scouting up around Wickiup yesterday with my kids, there's a good amount of birds up there. A good flock of geese in the middle of the reservoir. I'm new to bird hunting Central Oregon, but no stranger to waterfowl hunting. I'm without a dog, so I've got to figure out a way to retrieve my birds up on Wickiup...think I'll need to take the canoe with me.
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Old 11-04-2019, 09:01 AM   #12
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Alberta has a hard freeze coming tomorrow.
N of Seattle is gonna get cold enough to freeze small waters (temporarily...Unlike E of Rockies).

I expect a push of birds this week.

Where they land is a coin toss.

E side along Columbia is prime for em right now. Feed available from harvested Ag fields. They can roost on big river.

So long as the lack of sheet water we have now on W side is in place, ponds could get interesting for a bit....Until fresh birds hook up with locals, and learn refuge areas. Usually takes 48-72 hours- Unless the weather plays nice. But there's not much on radar in the next week

We flooded pond in late Oct. This week was very good to start. Once they found the feed, it's game on. Last night, they were only trickling in. The feed that is available has been eaten down. Went from 1500-2000 birds on Wed (Many coming in hour before last light), to a couple hundred -well past legal light- and zero shots fired last night.

Before we flooded, I literally would not see a duck in several hours in working on blinds/pond/decoys. Local rest ponds have a lot more birds on them.

So hoping for wind/cold/rain/snow/zombies. Until then, if I was a numbers guy, I'd be at coast or upper river. I'm not a numbers guy, so I will take a few dozen dekes a day home and scrub them. They got super dirty during the last week.
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Old 11-04-2019, 09:18 AM   #13
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CKthumper...
I've hunted the same duck lease in western Washington county for 20+ years. This is the slowest start to a season we've experienced. Not sure why, but very few ducks only seeing a few local mallards and woodies. No ducks (or geese) flying anywhere just blue sky so far.
Been a few geese around Forest Grove past several weeks...

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Old 11-04-2019, 11:11 AM   #14
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I went scouting up around Wickiup yesterday with my kids, there's a good amount of birds up there. A good flock of geese in the middle of the reservoir. I'm new to bird hunting Central Oregon, but no stranger to waterfowl hunting. I'm without a dog, so I've got to figure out a way to retrieve my birds up on Wickiup...think I'll need to take the canoe with me.
Canoe will work. I was getting my boat ready yesterday. Otherwise I hunt when the wind blows. Then only shoot with on shore wind. Headed out there in a few minutes for dog training.
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Old 11-04-2019, 11:19 AM   #15
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Baltz: You mention the good days we hunted 2 Saturday’s ago and the flight was absolutely amazing but also that was the day before the freezing weather happened here In The valley we were in what my buddy’s Dad calls a vortex of birds. We had birds circling at all levels must have been over 200 ducks in the Air absolutely amazing to see. Do you know why this mag have happened that day and that day only. Was it weather or what makes the birds act lime that any thoughts?
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Old 11-04-2019, 04:39 PM   #16
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Baltz: You mention the good days we hunted 2 Saturday’s ago and the flight was absolutely amazing but also that was the day before the freezing weather happened here In The valley we were in what my buddy’s Dad calls a vortex of birds. We had birds circling at all levels must have been over 200 ducks in the Air absolutely amazing to see. Do you know why this mag have happened that day and that day only. Was it weather or what makes the birds act lime that any thoughts?
Sounds like fresh birds. I have seen 10,000 +- out there doing what you describe. At the time the duck limit was 4. Today there were about equal numbers of Mallards-Wigeon-Teal. A few hundred total. About the same number of Honkers. I tried counting geese. I counted 160 inside clear view. Then estimated the far off rafts and bank birds at about the same. That is central reservoir. Then I could hear many in the S/E and N/E. It would not surprise me if there are 500-600 Honkers on the lake today. Along with a few flocks of Specs. No Snow geese flying or heard. No wind today. No birds killed. Saw a few early Golden Eye. A few Buffel Heads, A few Common Mergansers. Jack the dog acted like a Waterfowl dog.
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Old 11-04-2019, 11:26 PM   #17
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Canoe will work. I was getting my boat ready yesterday. Otherwise I hunt when the wind blows. Then only shoot with on shore wind. Headed out there in a few minutes for dog training.
I might try jump shooting birds from the canoe, not sure if the tactic would work well up there, but don’t know unless I try. You have any experience trying that style of hunting? Or just use a boat to retrieve birds?
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Old 11-05-2019, 06:01 AM   #18
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baltz, have you tried your new dog on waterfowl yet?
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Old 11-05-2019, 07:34 AM   #19
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Been a few geese around Forest Grove past several weeks...


My brother farms that ground, so I know well that field. The corn stubble (and the geese) will probably be gone by Nov 23... They DO provide quite a spectacle....
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Old 11-05-2019, 07:42 AM   #20
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baltz, have you tried your new dog on waterfowl yet?
Yesterday. No birds would cooperate so we had a nice sunny day of bird watching.
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Old 11-05-2019, 09:59 AM   #21
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Got out on 11/1 after filling my buck two days before so no regrets about being duck hunting vs deer and had a great day my with dad and his longtime friend. 13 widgeon, 3 mallards, 3 pintail, 2 teal. We were finished by 1 pm but should have been done much sooner if we had shot a little better and the sun wasn't directly in our eyes from 8:30-10am. We shot our pintails early so we had a really tough time IDing the birds while the sun was blinding us and passed on shooting at a lot a widgeon that we couldn't confirm until they were on their way out of the decoys and it was too late. My pup Wilson was exhausted after the 21 retrieves since the water was too low for him to swim and had to jump through the mud and 1.5ft of water. Great way to start the season!
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Old 11-05-2019, 01:38 PM   #22
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I am a new waterfowler trying to put my first duck and geese in the freezer this year and I am curious if I am able to hunt the Willamette river system by Rodgers Landing in Newberg. I am specifically curious about hunting out of a canoe and what is legal. I would love some insight so that I may be lucky enough to get a few birds this year. Thanks
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Old 11-05-2019, 01:55 PM   #23
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If it has a motor, the motor has to be shut off while hunting.
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Old 11-05-2019, 02:32 PM   #24
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If it has a motor, the motor has to be shut off while hunting.
Ok great I would just be paddling and floating so that might work then. Thanks!
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Old 11-05-2019, 08:19 PM   #25
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Took the dog for a quick walk this afternoon and found this guy. Couldn’t pass it up. First duck for this season.



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Old 11-06-2019, 06:14 AM   #26
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Now you have a taxidermy bill. Gorgeous.
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Old 11-06-2019, 07:51 AM   #27
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Had an awesome weekend with some family and friends. Hunted ducks with my grandpa for the first time ever. Had some great shoots! Papa even got a redhead, something I haven’t ever gotten. He also got to shoot his first ever canvasback. Combined total of 95 birds for the weekend. Thanks again for coming out papa!!



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Old 11-07-2019, 07:31 AM   #28
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Had an awesome weekend with some family and friends. Hunted ducks with my grandpa for the first time ever. Had some great shoots! Papa even got a redhead, something I haven’t ever gotten. He also got to shoot his first ever canvasback. Combined total of 95 birds for the weekend. Thanks again for coming out papa!!

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Had an awesome weekend with my boys and my dad. I haven't been able to share a blind with my dad since the early 90's so to be able to spend a long weekend with my dad and my boys was truly awesome !! Thank you Brandon wouldn't have been able to do it without you and your experience !!!
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Old 11-07-2019, 06:42 PM   #29
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Old 11-08-2019, 08:35 AM   #30
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I've been having a great duck season so far. Seeing lots of wood ducks this year. Can't wait until November 23 to hopefully bag some geese as well.
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Old 11-08-2019, 07:02 PM   #31
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Shot one drake Buffel head today. Wikiup has lots of honkers. A few Specs. 11 Snow geese. quite a few Mallards just showed up. With this hot weather with no wind, If you have a marsh rat there are a couple spots A guy could scratch out a limit of Green heads. Good chance on a few geese also. A long paddle and a very long paddle. Jack made his first retrieve. It took a bit of coaching, But once he locked onto the bird he went. A fairly long retrieve
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Old 11-08-2019, 07:38 PM   #32
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Got my first Pacific flyway green wing teal of the season with my first shot this morning, later got 4 of his cousins and a long lost uncle called Wigeon.
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Old 11-11-2019, 03:53 PM   #33
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Shot one drake Buffel head today. Wikiup has lots of honkers. A few Specs. 11 Snow geese. quite a few Mallards just showed up. With this hot weather with no wind, If you have a marsh rat there are a couple spots A guy could scratch out a limit of Green heads. Good chance on a few geese also. A long paddle and a very long paddle. Jack made his first retrieve. It took a bit of coaching, But once he locked onto the bird he went. A fairly long retrieve
Thanks for keeping the updates coming on Wikiup, I'm going to try to get up there this weekend.

Congrats on Jack's first retrieve! That's awesome.
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Old 11-13-2019, 06:34 AM   #34
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I’m trying to connect with waterfowlers in the Naselle, WA area. Any advice where to start?


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Old 11-13-2019, 08:32 AM   #35
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Yes I would start with phoning the regional wild life office for that region and ask to speak with the game warden that works that area, he is very helpful and has no problems giving advice on that location.
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Old 11-13-2019, 10:01 AM   #36
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Sure seeing a lot more geese these days around Aloha/west Beaverton.
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Old 11-13-2019, 04:30 PM   #37
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I’m trying to connect with waterfowlers in the Naselle, WA area. Any advice where to start?


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Post a message in Open Seats that you need or want to find Waterfowl Hunting partners in your area.

you may be surprised by how many folks respond that are thinking the same way you are.

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Old 11-14-2019, 05:25 PM   #38
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I got to my area 3 hours before high tide. There were lots of birds around, mostly pintail and wigeon so I focused on the areas the teal and mallards were using. It did not take long to figure that out.

Then I went upon setting out my 10 decoys. I managed to get 5 out before the 1st flock of teal came by and I dropped a drake between me and the last decoy I set.

upon putting out the next 5 decoys I dropped two more drake greenwing - 3 birds down while setting the decoys and me thinking this is going to be a teal shoot.

I figured I had time to eat an apple so 1/2 way through the apple came in a greenhead fully cupped on a string for my decoys - one shot one greenhead wth 1/2 an apple in my mouth.

Waiting nearly 30 minutes for the next movement I take a few moments to clean off my glasses, while my glasses are off I see three bird fully committed. I put my glasses back on to see three mallards in range. I pull up and drop a drake, next bird I get a sight picture on is a drake splash two the pull on the third bird drake as well splash 3 - three shot triple on greenheads to end it.

The tide is not quite high but I have my limit. Birds are trying to come in as I pick up the decoys and head back. Then the sprinkle of rain starts as I get back to my rig - another epic day on public land.
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Old 11-14-2019, 05:34 PM   #39
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Great shoot Joe! Almost too quick but fabulous nonetheless!
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Old 11-15-2019, 08:21 PM   #40
joe_camo
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Default Re: official 2019-2020 waterfowl thread

Today I set up in a different area hoping to focus on teal.

I probably could have jump shot my teal limit on the way out but wanted to decoy, watch the birds and learn.With lots of teal in the area hopes were high.

Right after setting the decoys I had a pair of Mallards committed but was taking a drink out of my water bottle. I could have dropped my water bottle but it was the only water I had with me for the whole day so my putting the lid back on cost me a shot.

Next bird in was a green wing single, easy shot.

Then a single green head. First shot missed and it took two more to drop him.

Now a few teal are showing up but not stopping - just buzzing through. I take a few passing shots but none connects.

Just before high tide a pair of mallards is circling. I figure this might be it for the day and make a nice clean double as they come in - tide turned and the flight was over. Not the teal shoot I was hoping for but a lot more meat than a teal limit.

Tonight I am cooking up yesterdays limit and will not have it eaten for a few days - being 3 birds short of the possession limit after today I will get all the fresh birds eaten and give it a shot in about a week.

Lots of fresh birds around, all we need is some weather to get them moving.
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Old 11-16-2019, 10:24 AM   #41
Wingman Or.
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Default Re: official 2019-2020 waterfowl thread

A 1st for me. I scotch doubled on juvie euro’s (wish I could have spotted a mature drake in the group but locked in on these guys on my side. A group of 3 guys beat us out to the area and set on that bays X. Hoping we could break a few away we set up 1/4 mile + away. It didn’t take long when shooting time started (and we could actually see) that they spent no time trying to hide. Every single group would pick up off the raft and fly in their direction. Then, as if the birds hit a brick wall, they would flare a 100 yards from their spread/shoreline and fly right down into us. It was a great reminder of how important it is to spend time on the hide. We literally would have only had 3/4 of the opportunity we did if they would not have tried to hide 3 guys at the shoreline with a couple branches and some logs.


Cheers,

Adam
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Last edited by Wingman Or.; 11-16-2019 at 12:57 PM.
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Old 11-16-2019, 06:32 PM   #42
garyk
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Default Re: official 2019-2020 waterfowl thread

That is simply amazing...two for the taxidermist?




Quote:
Originally Posted by Wingman Or. View Post
A 1st for me. I scotch doubled on juvie euro’s ]



Cheers,

Adam
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