Waterfowl Hunting Articles

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Truth in Waterfowl Shotshell Ballistics

Most modern waterfowl loads push a 3-inch magnum load of 1-1/8 or 1-¼ ounce of shot somewhere in the neighborhood of 1,400 feet per second, give or take 50 fps. A few companies push loads faster, with some reaching a blistering 1,700 fps. Man, that is fast, but what does...


Canada Geese are Water Fowl

When it comes to hunting Canada geese — from Portland, Maine, to Portland, Oregon — dry field-hunting gets 95 percent of the airtime. Corn stubble. Wheat stubble. Winter wheat. Rye grass. Drive out to the X, drop the blinds and decoys, set ’em up, hide the rigs and crawl into...


Hunting Ducks and Geese in the Fog

If you could design your perfect hunting day, what would it be? Most waterfowl hunters would want overcast skies and a stiff north wind to get birds moving. Add in some cool temperatures and maybe an impending storm, and marshes should be buzzing with activity. I love those elements, too...


Duck Dilemma: Arkansas' Season of Change

On a major migration day, it can seem like all 1.04 million U.S. duck hunters are tucked into the flooded timber of Arkansas’ famed Bayou Meto. Hunters from in state and out vie for their slice of mallard glory. Skeins of green, highballs from a cut-down call and birds that...


Hunting Funnels for Puddle Ducks

As canoes glided past and boats chugged along the channel, I felt somewhat foolish. Yeah, I’d beaten everyone to the landing, but I hadn’t exactly claimed a classic spot. Instead, I had tucked in along a tree-lined shore about halfway up a narrow bay, with a small open channel at...


Hunting September Teal

“If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen,” President Harry S. Truman was fond of saying. And right then, sweating, standing thigh-deep in a steamy, marshy backwater of the Osage arm of Missouri’s Harry S Truman Lake, it occurred to me that was pretty good advice. Two...


Buying or Leasing Waterfowl Hunting Property

Everyone wants a place of their own — especially duck and goose hunters tired of dodging shot and bumping boats with other folks on public water. That’s why many buy or lease waterfowling property. That sounds simple, but the process and considerations involved in finding quality areas are much more...


Waves and Minutes: A Duck Hunter's Peril

I’ve never been much for east winds. Can’t trust ’em. Sure, an east wind is really just like any other. But a northeasterly breeze on a dull winter day usually heralds snow or sleet that night. A straight easterly blow during spring typically brings a soaking rain and subsequent cold...


Duck and Goose Call Clinic: What's On Your Lanyard?

I own way too many duck and goose calls. There’s nothing wrong with that, of course, but only a few of those qualify as indispensable tools on my lanyards for various waterfowling situations. That got me thinking. My favorite combinations were forged through personal experience, but I wondered what the...


Getting Real: Duck and Goose Hunting Goals

I laugh at the 22-year-old me. Oh, he was a decent fellow. Naïve and maybe a bit temperamental, sure, but not a bad dude. But he (OK, I) was extremely goal-oriented in those days, especially when it came to hunting . “I’m going to shoot 40 more ducks next year,”...


Goose Hunting with Micro-Spreads

It’s common wherever goose hunting is popular. And in this modern age, it’s tough to find a place where goose hunting isn’t popular. I’m speaking of the monster spread; decoys — full-bodies, mind you — that seemingly stretch from horizon to horizon. Trucks, trailers and man-power; they’re part of the...


Ice Ducks: Waterfowling's Frozen Challenge

Waterfowl seasons occur during a period of great change. Depending on your location, you might start the campaign by shooting local ducks during summer-like conditions. Farther south, folks wait for the first blast of winter to move migrants into their area. But wherever you hunt, you’ll probably wake one morning...


United in Pursuit: Waterfowl Hunting Crews

Throughout your waterfowling career, you’ll likely be part of many groups; folks who come together to share time in a blind, duck boat, cut cornfield or other hunting venues. Such outings are enjoyable, but you realize after a few years that groups quickly come and go. Folks shake hands after...


Land-Bound Ducks: Hunting Divers From Shore

Funny thing about big-water ducks : They like big water. In fact, they prefer to stay there most days. That’s no problem if you can hunt open water. But if you’re on a point or shoreline, the game changes. Don’t despair, though. You can still experience quality diver hunting from...


Avoid Duck Hunting Fails During the Dreaded Doldrums

Duck season is usually a roller-coaster of ups and downs. Most hunters know about the ups: local ducks or early migrants to start the year, the first good push of birds from the North, peak migration and then freeze-up shooting. However, few like to discuss the downs; those periods between...


Green-Timber Greenheads: The Duck Hunting Zenith

In any of its forms, duck hunting is a fascinating, even addicting activity. But hunting mallards in flooded woods (green timber, to those in the know) is the ultimate waterfowling experience, and most of those who’ve tried it agree. A pit blind in a flooded rice field is a fine...


Stuttgart: A Primer for the First-Time Visitor

They come from the North: Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, the Dakotas, the Lake States and elsewhere. Blue-winged teal first, and then gadwalls, wigeon, pintails and greenwings. Finally mallards . Flight lanes narrow as they come. Smaller migration routes merge and then merge again. The overall pattern resembles a giant tree,...


10 Waterfowling Items You Don’t Need But Shouldn’t Be Without

Each summer, when the sun is blazing down, mosquitoes are at their thickest and ducks are sneaking around the weeds, unable to fly, it happens: The waterfowl hunting catalogs start arriving. Inside are pages upon endless pages of the latest gear, gadgets and gizmos guaranteed to pull birds in and...


Big-Water Ducks: A Game for the Serious Waterfowler

Most duck hunters are landlubbers. They hunt marshes, backwaters, brakes, flooded fields, and green or dead flooded timber. These are wet places, sure, but they’re land-based. The hunter is standing in shallow water or hunting from a boat or blind adjacent to or surrounded by shallow water. But there’s another...


4 Things That Make Ducks and Geese Flare

How many times has this happened to you? A flock of ducks or geese spots your decoys from a distance and turns on a dime. It was if they had seen a party in your blocks and decided to swing in. Here they come, on a string — wings cupped...


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