For the past couple of weeks here in the South it has been a lot colder than normal. We usually have a few days of extremely cold weather and in February. There has been ice on the lake and some of the smaller ponds have been completely covered with ice. This is normal for a lot of the country, but we are not used to this kind of winter.
The good thing about all of the cold temperatures this time of year is that duck season is open and maybe it will push a few ducks our way. Where we live in the Eastern Flyway, we need all the help we can get to bring ducks in front of our blind. For the most part all we have to hunt are resident birds and it takes a lot for us to get a push of migratory birds. Well, the cold weather did the trick, bringing some ducks and geese to a pond that we have permission to hunt.
As you would guess, by the time Saturday morning came around, so did the temperatures. All three of us were dressed for cold, but by the time we had carried the decoys and gear to where we were making our stand we were roasting. We got our decoys spread after shucking some cloths well before shooting light, which gave us time to do what duck hunters do, drink coffee and tell stories.
With rain coming in later in the day it took forever to get daylight. When it did get light enough to shoot the first ducks, in came four wood ducks. When they dropped over the trees and into the pond they were below the tree line and we couldn’t see to shoot at them until they started up and got above the trees once again. By that time we were all screwed up and none of us cut a feather on any of the ducks.
With all of us shooting a couple of times when we were reloading there was a lot of honking coming from the other end of the pond and getting closer. Looking up there were about twenty geese that had roosted on the other end of the pond coming straight down the pipe at us trying to get out of there. When they got on top of us it was on and after the shooting stopped we had knocked two out of the air. The two of us on the right were able to get one a piece but the guy all the way to the left didn’t get a shot because some trees had him blocked out. After the geese got out of there it was slow for a while until a lone merganser came buzzing straight into the decoys and the guy all the way to the left redeemed himself with one shot. We stayed out there until about ten o’clock and finally headed in.
It was not the best day of duck hunting but I have had a whole lot worse. Our problem on this hunt is that we all had to work earlier in the week when the ducks were here. We had some bad luck but we were lucky those geese had roosted there or it could have been a whole lot worse. Hopefully with us having a couple of weeks of duck season left we will have the chance to get another hunt in before it closes.