Monthly Archives: November 2016

Day 13: Another limit

screen-shot-2016-11-30-at-8-44-47-amHunting was good this morning. It wasn’t as good as some of the hunts, but it was still good. Only three of us went. It was cloudy and we had some wind, but it wasn’t the best direction for this blind so the ducks kind of circled the edges of the decoys and didn’t really work well. About the third time they did that, I told everybody we were going to take our shots with those 10 gauges when they were low enough.

We had some good shooting and ended up with a limit of 18. They were all gadwalls. A lot more people are seeing ducks now. In fact, many of the blinds that didn’t have ducks do have ducks now. And some of the spots that have been hot aren’t so hot right now. I think after that rain the ducks have more choices and they are going where they haven’t been getting shot at.

We are hunting in a blind tomorrow that we haven’t hunted yet, so hopefully that will pay off. A lot of folks are seeing good groups of mallards where they haven’t been before. There is still a good mix of ducks in the area.

The first split ends Sunday so maybe that will keep us going until then. It looks like some serious winter weather up north next week, too, so maybe that will fill us up with ducks for the second split.

Here’s one important note: I haven’t been on a bad hunt yet this year. That is sure better than last year, knock on wood!

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Day 12: Still lots of ducks

screen-shot-2016-11-29-at-8-11-21-pmThere are lots of ducks in our area and hunters are having some real good success. There are a lot of big ducks in the area, too. Most of them are new ducks.

Hopefully all the storms Tuesday afternoon and night won’t run them off. They really don’t have anywhere to go, it looks like. Weather has been bad all around.

Our first split ends at the end of the day Sunday, Dec. 4 so hopefully the good numbers of ducks will hold. One thing’s for sure, we’ll have a lot more water in the area after a long drought. Here’s hoping the good times keep coming!

Be safe out there.

Day 11: Wet and wild

All I can say is wet. Everything I’ve got is wet from my waders to my gun. We went out early this morning hoping to beat the storm, but we didn’t. Sometimes it rained so hard that we could only sit there with our heads down and our hoods pulled over our face. That storm was pretty bad. At legal shooting hours, it was still dark because of all the clouds and rain. You couldn’t see 20 yards.

But there were ducks. Tons and tons of ducks. I probably saw more ducks this morning than I have the entire first split so far. We didn’t get a limit, but we could have. Five of us got 24 and they were all pintails, gadwalls and mallards. We saw lots of mallards. That’s a really good sign.

Early on, we would have a group of 20 or 30 fly over. Four or five would break off over the decoys. We would wait hoping to draw in more, but that didn’t work. One thing I did know early. Once they flew past the decoys they weren’t about to come back into that 30 mile and hour wind no matter what we did. So we started taking our shots and still had a great day.

Overall it was a great hunt. There are a lot of ducks flying. There are a lot of new ducks in the area. I don’t know about tomorrow. I may have to sit it out and dry everything out. But I think Wednesday when the sun comes back out and we get some more wind, it should be another great day.

Be safe out there.

Day 10: Another good one

Day Ten of the first split wasn’t a “perfect 10”, but it was pretty close. Sunday started out foggy and still. You could hardly see the decoys and the ducks we got early were in the decoys before we could see them. Things weren’t that fast, but man, about 8:30 the wind came up and the fog started burning off.

IMG_0351-1We had mallards and pintails coming from everywhere. The four of us got a limit of 24. Of that, 16 of those were mallards and pintails.

If we would have known that, we could have slept in and gone about 8 and still limited out. It was a good day for a lot of folks I talked to. We saw a lot of ducks and there are a lot of new ducks in the area. The rain we’ve got in the forecast should make things even better.

And yes, we are going to be crazy and go Monday morning. Aren’t you? There’s a 50% chance of rain early but maybe we can get on them and get out of there. There will be a 15 mph wind and that should make things good. It looks like about 9:30 a.m. that the front will hit. Rain forecast for then is 100% and some bad stuff behind that. We’ll see who the real duck hunters are in the morning, right?

Stay safe…and dry. And if you don’t have the right gear for that kind of hunting weather, come see us at Simmons’ Sporting Goods. We do!

Day Nine: A new wave of ducks

screen-shot-2016-09-20-at-11-10-20-amIt’s hard to believe, but we are entering into the second half of the first split in the East Zone. Today’s hunting was pretty good and it seems like a new wave of ducks has come through the area. People are seeing more ducks than before and having some real good luck. We laid out today because it is such a busy day at the store and we are trying to keep from running the ducks off by hunting our spot too much.

Everybody I talked to said they had a good day Saturday. There are a lot of teal and a mix of gadwalls and mallards mostly. We had a little wind Saturday morning and that was good. It is supposed to be calmer Sunday, but maybe the approaching front will pick things up a little after daylight. Monday we should get a good storm and some rain, which will help pump up the water around here.

It doesn’t look like the front will hit until up in the morning Monday, so those that are crazy enough to try it might catch it just right.

Be safe out there.

Day Eight: Another good day

screen-shot-2016-11-20-at-11-29-57-amIt was another good day of hunting. We had a limit early and that was good because we really needed to get into the store. We weren’t choosy. We had about 2/3rds teal. From legal shooting hours to 7 a.m. they were swarming like a beehive. It was a lot of fun. We also got a few mallards and gadwalls.

A lot of people had a good day today and most reported a lot of teal. The good thing about them is that you can shoot early, then get out of there and let the ducks not get spooked off. That will keep them here longer. In fact, it seemed like we had a little wave of new ducks in today. And more people seemed to be successful. Part of that is because that little rain we had helped finish putting water in some areas.

There’s a big rain coming Monday and hopefully it will bring more ducks here with the water. Be safe out there.

 

Day Seven: A great Thanksgiving hunt

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We had a great day on Thanksgiving and killed a limit of 30 early. We had a lot of teal and we really saw more ducks today than we’ve seen all season. It was foggy early and the ducks really worked. The teal would lock up and come in right to the decoys. It was something right at daylight. They were coming in like a bunch of bees.

As you can tell, it was fun. We didn’t hear a lot of shooting and there weren’t a lot of other people hunting. But the ducks were really flying. I think it’s a good sign for the upcoming weekend.

Be safe out there.

As a reminder, these are the 2016-17 season dates for Louisiana:
DUCKS AND COOTS: 60 days
* East Zone: Nov. 19 – Dec. 4; Dec. 17 – Jan. 29 (Including Catahoula Lake)

* Coastal Zone: Nov. 12 – Dec. 4; Dec. 17 – Jan. 22

* West Zone: Nov. 12 – Dec. 4; Dec. 17 – Jan. 22

Youth Waterfowl Weekends: Nov. 5-6 in the Coastal Zone, Nov. 5 and Jan. 28 in the West Zone, Nov. 12 and Feb. 4 in East Zone.

Daily Bag Limits: The daily bag limit on ducks is 6 and may include no more than 4 mallards (no more than 2 of which may be females), 2 canvasback, 1 mottled duck, 1 black duck, 3 wood ducks, 3 scaup, 2 redheads, and 2 pintails.

Day Six: Happy Thanksgiving!

screen-shot-2016-11-20-at-11-47-20-amHappy Thanksgiving from our family at Simmons’ Sporting Goods in Bastrop, Louisiana, to you and yours! We hope you have a great Thanksgiving Day. We had our traditional Thanksgiving Day hunt and are thankful to live in a country where people are free to pursue making a living in the manner they choose and to be free to pursue activities that they love. We are proud to be in a country that provides a Constitution that allows and guarantees us the right to bear arms for recreation and for personal protection. God Bless America.

Oh, yes, we went duck hunting today . . .Hunting is still pretty good, but we need more water to bring in and hold more ducks. Again, if you have time, it is better to stay on up into the mid-morning hours. Birds seem to be flying better then and the wind has picked up.

We’ve got loads of geese, so go prepared for them as well.

Day Four: More of the same

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Day four of the season was more of the same from yesterday. We’ve got some ducks where there is water and we’ve got tons of geese. But it has been still early in the morning and the best hunting is up in the mid-morning hours for those that can stay.

If you don’t have water that has been in place for a while, you probably aren’t seeing many ducks. And there is just no water anywhere unless it has been pumped up. Even the refuges and places like Wham are dry.

There are some good reports from the river today and from down around Hwy. 15. It is slow up at Jones, but there have been some good hunts around Mer Rouge. Again, it depends on having the water right. Things are slow in south Arkansas as well.

I actually laid out Tuesday because we’ve got some big hunts coming up later this week. I hope things pick up for the big Thanksgiving weekend.

Be safe out there!

Day Three: We need some early wind

screen-shot-2016-11-20-at-11-30-59-amDay three was a little slower than opening weekend. It was a little slower because there was no wind early and we had to get on back in to the store before too late. We did pick up 12 ducks and two geese and man, there were tons of geese flying. We just could not get them to work in the still conditions. The wind did pick up between 9-11 a.m. and the folks that got to stay had better luck then.

I think that will be a pattern for the next few days unless something changes. So if you have some ducks and they are slow early, stay with them as long as you can.

There were so many geese I know if we could have gotten a 20 mile per hour wind, we could have hammered them, but we didn’t. They are already leery of the decoys and shotguns and they get about 100 yards out and don’t come closer. Changing weather conditions could really help us with that.