Duck Hunting 101: Ultimate 2019 Beginner’s Guide
Duck hunting in U.S flourishes in full swing from fall to spring, as the Mallard Ducks are available in abundance. The sports dates back to some 2,000 years ago; its earliest traces are around the 16th century during when European settlers arrived in the land and renewed the spirits of duck hunting. At one point of time, the hunting changed the pattern of waterfowl migration. Today, hunting is done as per the rules of each state and federal government. Leafing through the journals can introduce you to some of the interesting facts. For example, California is quite distinct in setting up standard bag requirements and hunting age which might differ from the other states.
The most sought after duck species have become hunters’ favourite, and the hunting skills are passed from one generation to the next. Over the last few decades, there has been a massive improvement in the hunters’ choice of weapons and ways of trapping a duck. However, once you get the trick of camouflage done perfectly, you can improve a great deal in trapping ducks. The process of selecting the appropriate camouflage requires some basic knowledge. For instance, if you are in woods, you need to prepare camouflage in the shades of bark-like print as opposed to grassy print when you would be in a dead grass region. As a hunter, you should know about the diet of ducks- vegetables, insects, and grain crops like corn. If you are looking for versatility, Seattle is the perfect destination awaiting for you with a variety of ducks floating around in the area. Hunters’ favourites however, remain Waterfowl, and Mallards among others.
Duck Hunting 101
You need to aware of the challenges and obstacles of hunting in the late season. Look up to the facts and characteristics about the kind of duck that you are targeting. For instance, you need to update yourself about their habitat and respective hunting methods. The differences in the patterns might be little, nonetheless important. If you are preparing for a mallard, the camouflage should be of top-notch quality and carefully made since they have excellent eyesight. If you have Harlequin ducks in your mind, carry hevishot load for decoying the bird. Make sure you are not hunting during off-season in U.S which can result in paying a lump sum as well as forfeiture of your weapons. Its is interesting to know that the Commercial waterfowl hunting became infamous during 1800 among civilians. The commercial hunters were known as market gunners during those days, and they used guns that could kill dozens of waterfowl all with one shot and at once.
Know about the terrain thoroughly to pack for the journey. In that way, you can do well without carrying any fancy load or irrelevant equipment. To achieve perfection, know your ways with a gun and aim for distant objects. If you want to try with a bow, you will need hours of practice before perfecting the ethical shot. Anyone who is passionate about hunting waterfowl, should opt for bow once in their lifetime. It definitely adds a different level of thrill and adrenaline rush to the sport.
Physical fitness is a prerequisite for carrying on a night-long hunt, darting from one place to the other. Unlike popular opinion, hunting is simply not about pointing your gun and firing the shot. It might include walking for miles, and getting subjected to extreme weather conditions. Before you plan, practice some physical exercises, heavier ones, to ready yourself even for the worst scenarios. You can additionally try meditation to achieve the mental calm required during hunting. Run a diagnosis of your heart to ensure it is ready for the demands of hunting game. Maintain a balanced diet is equally necessary, and right from young age. The diet should primarily consist of lean proteins, and nutrition.
Need to Knows about Duck Hunting
One common practice of getting a duck within your limits is by imitating its call, however a high degree of perfection is required before you succeed in this method. Make a wise choice of weapon as well as the camouflage as these are the primary stages to begin your expedition. Know the topography of the region if you aim to prepare the camouflage like a pro. You might have to wade ad carry a wader, since ducks love water and there is no way you could escape it.
Legalities of Duck Hunting in the U.S
In the U.S, if the hunter has crossed the age limit of 16 years, he/she needs to carry a federal migratory bird hunting and conservation stamp which has not expired yet. Before you venture forth, you should be aware of the fact that U.S does not allow killing of protected birds, or non-game migratory birds. To be more precise, the category includes woodpeckers, owls, egrets, herons, and eagles among others. Hunting during off-seasons is also not allowed in the U.S. The federal government always take active measures to contribute to a steady growth of ducks irrespective of the hunting opportunities that it provides. Baiting is prohibited and remains strictly unavailable for hunting for at least 10 days. A minimum hunter’s knowledge is mandatory before you set forth since the penalties are quite hefty. Trapping and killing of ducks as a sport is a regulated activity in U.S and requires every hunter to abide by the rules.
Leasing or buying areas to hunt is common and a popular practice among hunters and it is primarily done with a 12-gauge shotgun. It is best that you stay alert with all your hunting merchandise before it is fall. Generally, a combination of hunting blind, shotgun and decoys does the job. Luring the bird with decoys is a strategic way to bring it within a safe range. However, the timing of shooting the bird is important as this should be done before it sweeps towards another direction.
Best Locations for Duck Hunting
As per the data gathered in 2018, Louisiana has some 42.1 million of ducks and therefore a paradise for hunters out there. You can get plenty of preys around the swampy backwaters of this state throughout September to well until late January. The 1.3 million acres of open land proves swell for a memorable hunting episode. Some of the popular sites like Catahoula Lake, and Atchafalaya Basin play hosts to hordes of ducks in the state. Limitless Waterfowl Outfitters is second to none when it comes to duck hunting.
The duck seasons in Arkansas have never disappointed the gamers. Midwinter allows for a pleasant hunting experience in Arkansas. You can spot around 71% Mallards in the area amidst other duck varieties. Duxmen Arkansas Duck Hunting Guides & Lodge located in Northeast Arkansas is an amazing locating to go hunting. The club provides adequate resources to show you even the remotest areas to hunt down quality ducks.
Alaska boats of its 175 million acres of wetlands available and fertile for duck hunting. You will be spoilt for choices while in Alaska with varieties like Harlequin duck, Mergansers, long-tailed duck or Clangula Hyemalis, and Scoters. Visit by the end of December. Crystal Creek Lodge provides the desired concoction of adventure and comfort in Alaska to flaunt your waterfowl hunt like a trophy! Aaska is after all, full of Pacific waterfowl.
California has somewhat around 1.31 million of duck population and the best time to begin your journey is from October to January. There are plenty of hunting spots to add in your list- Sacremento and San Joaquin Valley. Visit Central Valley to have a taste of the delicious waterfowl available there.
Choose Seattle, Washington between autumn and winter to enjoy the frenzy of duck hunting in nooks and corners. Licton Springs enjoys popularity for being the home to some of the best breeds like harlequin ducks. While you are in this state, hit Lake Washington to get the finest taste of duck hunting. Seattle gives you the blend of breeds like puddle duck, to trophy harlequin ducks varying according to the natural landscape.
Must Have Duck Hunting Pack List
Preparing the right kit would make your experience an enjoyable one and keep you at bay from some severe crises. Try to plan early according to the month of your visit, number of people going, and any allergic reaction that you might have. Here is a list of the essential ingredients to sort you out.
Arguably the best weapon to track down the bird, buy only the most reliable products. There are some commendable variations on this all designed for hunters’ suitability. Choose a corrosion resistant and gas operated autoloader for the job. Test it before you fire it at the location.
First aid kit
You might land in a comparatively detached or remote area and therefore, a first aid kit is must. For trivial injuries to deep wounds, the kit is never a burden. Pressure bandage is sometime resourceful for deep wounds and you can always include it in the list just to be sure. You can simply pack the most important items like band-aids, antiseptics, antibacterial cream and anti-itch cream to save the day.
Light weighted and extremely handy if you are somewhat allergic towards extreme winter. If you are feeling a little nauseous due to all the pressure building up inside you doubled by the temperatures, the blanket made up of sheets of foil is the perfect option for you. stuff it inside your backpack and wrap around yourself to enjoy an hour’s relaxation. On any hunting expedition, especially if you are travelling alone, regulating body temperature is significant to sustain the night. It should prevent you from collapsing or hypothermia.
You never know when you get the opportunity to target one successfully, and it might take long. If you are feeling a bit drowsy or lightheaded, a quick meal can fix you. this happens to be the case with beginners who are yet to adjust to the tramp-like schedule of hunters. Pack light snacks to feel rejuvenated for the entire duration you will be stalking and camouflaging. Freeze-dried meal could serve the purpose best. Well some areas are particular about not dirtying it with food packets. If you are carrying food, a trash bag could prove quite useful especially to avoid paying fines.
A must-have and should contain all the essentials from your weapons to compass. It is common to lose direction or feel perplexed about the way, during hunting solo or in groups. A compass or working GPS should always be on your agenda before you set out for the region. The other essentials like knife and bottles of water should be considered as well.
It is portable, and helps you to focus without any guesswork. It will read the distance between the duck and you; It helps you fire that perfect shot that will not leave the animal wounded and writhing in pains. Hunters who have some strong ethics make it a point to add rangefinders to their list. Moreover, it improves your power to estimate the amount of time. you can perfect the use of it after considerable hours of practicing and perfecting your ways.
As much as duck hunting is thrilling, a good hunter should always know the nitty gritty of the game as followed in each state. For instance, California has set up standard bag limits which instruct seven ducks per day with other categorizations in it. If you want to hunt in peace and somewhat in tranquillity make sure the area is not a mainstream destination to hunters. Know your kind of species and choose the region accordingly. Additionally, every expert hunter should be a pro in selecting decoy to sound convincing. You can get moderate priced ones as well from reputed brands. Jerk Rig is quite common these days and you need experience to master it.
Recheck whether you have carried all the safety equipment and gears necessary to commence on a fruitful adventure. Hunting is a balancing act and definitely requires an ounce of mental preparation to give you its desired flavor. As a hunter, you need to strike the perfect balance between mind and body before starting off.