Wednesday, December 23, 2015

The After Hour Party

I'm convinced ducks know the laws and have an alarm clock telling them when the end of shooting hours is up.

Yesterday was the first day out since before the weekend. I figured it's cold enough to keep bringing more and more ducks to the river and the forecast was for NW winds at about 10 mph so it was worth heading out for the evening hunt. There were birds but they're getting a little more educated and being just a little shy. Plus, the wind shifted and instead of having birds set in front of me, they were setting in from behind so the shots I was getting were passing shots, which is a lot tougher and quite honestly, something I'm not very good at. I think I shot about a half a box before dropping my first duck. (Actually, I'm pretty sure I emptied my gun 6 times, which is 18 shots...) That's the challenge of duck hunting though. It's not just being able to shoot. The real art of it is setting yourself up for getting easier shots and that has a lot to do with environmental factors like wind and sun and then how you distribute your decoys to give them a place to land.

I also busted out the Mojo Floater again, just to see if it would give me an advantage. If I'm going to be completely honest, I'd say it probably turned a couple groups as they were passing by that might not have turned to look at my spread. However, as the ducks got closer, if I hit the remote to flash them a little wing flapping, they didn't like it. They didn't completely bust out but they would land a few hundred yards away. In the end, I didn't turn the Mojo on at all and it didn't seem to hurt.

So yeah, check out the video and you'll see what I mean by ducks knowing the laws and having a clock. It was exactly the end of shooting hours when I took my last shot, which is sunset. (For other game, you get a half hour after sunset but ducks and geese are incredibly vulnerable during that time.) After that last shot, I put my gun down and started picking up spent shells. There were a lot of them. Literally three minutes after the end I looked up and saw a group of mallards coming in so I turned on the GoPro, made a couple calls and Cutter and I watched the show. I don't think Cutter was too impressed with the idea of letting these ducks land without shooting...

Keep 'em where they live... 

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