Archive for geese

What's in Your Blind Bag?

An all-important question was posed a couple days ago over on the Final Approach Facebook page: Besides shotgun shells, what do you feel is the most important piece of equipment in your blind bag? Here are some of my favorite answers:

September 10, 2012

How to Call Ducks with Just Your Vocal Cords

Who needs a duck call to call ducks? The video below posted by Delta Waterfowl is one of the most impressive things I've ever seen. Leland Davis demonstrates how to call ducks using just his hands and vocal cords, and he's so darn good that you barely notice how much he's spitting all over himself.

August 06, 2012

USFWS Proposes Most Generous Duck Limit in Years

There was a lot of speculation on whether the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) would increase the scaup limit, and now that the official proposed framework has been released--WOW--the news is better than anyone imagined.

August 02, 2012

Will We Get a Four-Bluebill Limit for 2012-2013?

Any day now the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) is expected to release the most highly anticipated waterfowl season framework in years. Why the added attention? There is rumor and speculation that the limit on scaup will increase to four ducks in all flyways except the Pacific, which may jump to a whopping five-scaup limit (some say the Central Flyway also has a shot at the five-duck limit—who knows, it's all conjecture at this point).

July 27, 2012

Video: Mallard Duckling Hatches from Egg

Delta Waterfowl researchers captured the extraordinary video below of a mallard duckling's first moments of life. The video was shot while performing nest checks near the group's Minnedosa, Manitoba, research station. What a cool stroke of luck.

July 20, 2012

Meet RoboDuck: Duck's Bill Repaired with Wire Mesh

The injury was horrific—when the mallard was rescued by a local New Zealand SPCA, the lower half of its bill was completely torn off and broken, leaving its tongue dangling through a hole under its chin.

July 19, 2012

Duck Populations Hit All-Time High

We duck hunters are prone to irrational optimism. How else do you explain a group of people who can spend an entire day freezing our butts off in windy, pounding surf for just a duck or two (if we're lucky), only to go home, convince ourselves tomorrow will be better, and do it all over again? All we need is the slightest indication the duck hunting may improve.

July 10, 2012

Happy Duck Stamp Day

Federal duck stamps go on sale today and, while competition for the winning artwork is always fierce, I think Joe Hautman's woodie drake is as pretty as they come. Therefore there's no better year than this to join a growing waterfowl conservation tradition: buying not just one, but two duck stamps. I like to frame one stamp, and tuck my signed stamp (the one I hunted with) inside my duck journal as a memento. It also never hurts to keep an extra duck stamp handy in case an infrequent waterfowl hunter suddenly wants to join you. Duck stamps often aren't as available as they ought to be, after all.

June 29, 2012

Arkansas Will Trap Feral Cats

Arkansas will soon implement a common-sense plan to benefit conservation and public health, yet it will likely receive resistance from the usual "animal rights" types. Why? The plan involves trapping feral cats along the Little Red River and removing them from the environment.

June 27, 2012

Video: Woodie Ducklings Jump From the Nest

California Waterfowl board member and long-time volunteer Jay Goble shot this tremendous video of wood ducklings (or is it wood duck ducklings?) plopping from their nest for the first time. I don't normally use the word "cute," but friends, this is one cute video.

June 22, 2012

Ducks Unlimited Studying Sea Duck Decline

The curious thing about sea ducks is that there are 15 different kinds—constituting 42-percent of all North American species—and yet we know so little about them. Their habitat, in particular their breeding areas, do not lend themselves to study. And, for similar reasons, their population estimates are not considered as accurate, nor are they available across as large a breadth of years as those of divers and dabblers. Perhaps the limited opportunities to hunt them also plays a role in the lack of research. Far more hunters have access to good mallard hunting, for instance, and hunters' dollars drive a vast amount (if not the majority) of waterfowl research.

June 07, 2012

Hard Core Brands Announces Floating Goose Decoys

New 2-in-1 design is ideal for use in deep water, fields or on shore lines.

May 31, 2012

5 Easy Steps to Delicious Duck Breasts

For some reason professional chefs seem to really underestimate my ineptitude in their cooking instruction. They include ingredients I've never heard of or can't find at my local grocer. They use fancy equipment that I don't own and don't care to own. And they employ such fancy techniques and swiftness with their knives that my feeble brain can't keep up.

May 30, 2012

How Duck Calls Could Save Your Relationship

One evening many years ago a wise old man was sharing the secrets of life with me over cold drinks.

May 18, 2012

The Only Pair of Women's Shoes You'll See Here

We men are far more practical with our money than women. Take shoes: As long as we have a pair of boots, a pair of brown shoes, a pair of black shoes, and some sneakers, we're prepared for anything the world throws at us. Then there's women. Ugh. Their shoe-buying schizophrenia (is there any other word for it?) runs so deep that it's resulted in the invention of the "shoe closet." 

April 17, 2012