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2020 Duck Hunting Nation: Central Flyway

Our third Duck Hunting Nation roundup covers the big skies of the Central Flyway. From huge flocks of mallards and geese whirling over North Dakota grainfields to endless lines of redheads and pintails off the Texas coast, this flyway offers perhaps unlimited potential. We’ve updated each state’s page with license...


Best States for a Bull Canvasback, Revisited

No matter where he hunts, every waterfowler wants to score a prime bull canvasback. That can prove challenging, however, as cans are notoriously finicky about where they migrate, stage, and winter. Further, there just aren’t that many canvasbacks in North America, with a breeding population estimate of about 651,000 in...


Is Southeastern Missouri the New Arkansas for Duck Hunters?

Years ago, when someone steered a truck towing a duck boat onto Interstate 55 during December or January, you knew where they were heading: the rice fields or flooded timber of Arkansas. But for about the past decade, many of those rigs have veered a bit northeast of the world’s...


Are You A Terrible Shot? Here's How to Kill Ducks Anyway

The old guy stunk at skeet. I mean, he was a positively terrible shotgunner. But his Polaroids from the duck blind told a different story. “I ain’t a great shot,” he said repeatedly. “But I’ve learned to put birds in my lap so I don’t have to be.” Basically, the...


2020 Duck Hunting Nation: Mississippi Flyway

Our second Duck Hunting Nation roundup covers the waterfowl-rich Mississippi Flyway. Stretching from remote Minnesota rice lakes through Louisiana's coastal marshes, this tradition-rich flyway features some of the country’s most famous duck and goose hunting opportunities . We’ve updated each state’s page with license costs, links to current regulations and...


How Will the Pandemic Affect Waterfowl Season?

Headlamps cut through the hazy pre-dawn, confirming our fears. We had unexpected company in our opening-day goose field, and the uncertain COVID-19-influenced 2020 waterfowl season had begun. The situation shouldn’t have surprised us. With widespread furloughs, layoffs, travel restrictions and safer-at-home orders during the 2020 pandemic, more folks throughout the...


What the Heck Is Rice Breast in Ducks?

The greenwing would have been lunch. The protozoans had other plans. Seconds after starting to skin the plump drake, I noticed its dark breast meat was littered with small white granules. Disappointed, I recalled some college zoology lessons and realized I’d be eating a sandwich that noon. Many hunters have...


2020 Duck Hunting Nation: Atlantic Flyway

Our first Duck Hunting Nation roundup centers on the Atlantic Flyway. From tiny wood duck sloughs to coastal gunning for sea ducks, the region offers perhaps unmatched variety for waterfowlers. Despite recent reductions to daily limits of mallards and Canada geese, the flyway continues to produce solid hunting opportunities. We’ve...


Delta Waterfowl Forecasts a Strong Fall Duck Flight

Duck hunters should anticipate a good 2020-'21 season, according to Delta Waterfowl . The group recently said average to above average breeding conditions in the prairie pothole region, combined with a stable population of breeding ducks, will likely result in a strong Fall 2020 flight. The organization forecast improved flights...


When Awful Decoy Setups Work

Decoy nuts fuss and sweat about the placement of every block , but ducks often laugh at our plans, flaring from textbook spreads. Now and then, however, they finish like champs to decoy configurations we’re embarrassed to claim. I’ve been a decoy nerd for more than three decades, but willing...


Duck Hunting Through the Eyes of a Novice

Duck hunters talk a lot about recruiting the next generation of waterfowlers , and rightfully so. But I think we sometimes fail to hit the right formula for generating interest and fostering the development of young hunters. Too often, I fear, we take newbies hunting but treat the event like...


Duck Hunting Decisions Revisited

As I’ve mentioned in previous blogs, success or failure in the duck marsh often hinges on quick in-the-field decisions. Some work. Many don’t. And in hindsight, the wisdom or folly of your actions becomes clear. Consider these examples from my 2019–'20 season. Moving On The first hour at the flooded...


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