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Thread: My Son's first experience with duck hunting.

  1. #1
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    Oct 2003
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    My Son's first experience with duck hunting.

    Ever since I took Ryan, my 10 year old, on his first goose hunt back in October he's been asking me to take him duck hunting. So Saturday the conditions seemed right to take him along, it was sunny, not to cold and no real wind to speak of. We loaded up the boat with decoys, dog and Ryan and we were off for an afternoon hunt.

    We get to the shore and I put the young fella to work taking the blind bags /seats into the bushes as I I rush to get the decoys set up as we had pushed some ducks up heading to our location and wanted to take advantage of them in the air before they decided to settle down somewhere else.

    Things started off slow, probably a half hour before the first bird entered the spread. I got fumbled up in the grass when I shouldered the gun and couldn't see my bead so I didn't pull the trigger. A few minutes later a widgeon entered the spread and one shot later Skadi was out retrieving her first bird. Ryan wasn't far behind the dog waiting for her to hit the shore with the bird. We got settled back in and not to long afterward we had another widgeon come into the spread and did a reenactment of the first one.

    Things were pretty quiet as we lounged in the sunshine and I heard something landing in the water. I could see one bird through the grass so I slowly got into shooting position and shot the first bird as it was leaving the water and a quick follow up on a second I didn't know was there. The bird kept flying so I followed with a third shot and the bird sputtered as it was flying away, I knew it was hit but thought I was going to have to chase it down with the boat when it fell stone dead about 75 yards out from the blind and about 25 yards high at this point. Dog didn't see it at first so I ended up wading out with her until we were about half way to the bird and I saw she was locked on. I went back to retrieve the one that was closer to our hiding position. Waiting on the dog to come back from her retrieve, and had both birds in hand, I was nicely surprised to have two nice fully plumed Drake green wing Teal!

    We settled back in until we heard some shots in the distance from our right and when I looked over there was a flock of Mallards heading in our direction. A Drake and a hen peeled off from the flock and came into the decoy spread. I cut the drake and could have easily taken the hen as well but I let the hen go. I have nothing against shooting hen's but with Mallards I try and resist if at all possible. I'd like to see the mallard population in my area keep growing.

    As we collected the drake mallard the dog had just brought back to shore, I noticed another Drake mallard coming off the water and circling on my left heading behind me. I had the 12 gauge with me today and the drake was in the 25-30 yard range so I gave it a poke. I saw a puff of feathers and knew I hit him. He was still mobile and looked like he had a lot of life still in him, I was dreading the search once if finally hit the ground as by this time he was behind us and no longer over water. What happened next I wouldn't have believed it if I hadn't of see it with my two eyes. The drake decided to make a bigger circle and flew from left to right out past the decoys and coming back in to wards land and crashing in the water at the shoreline about 40 yards to my right. I couldn't see him as he landed right against the jaged shore line. I reloaded the shotgun, making sure the safety was on, and headed off with the gun at the ready as I walk the shore line where I has last seen the bird. When we get to where he was he was stone dead on the water. He was a dead duck and didn't realize it. This seems to be a common occurrence with steel shot I've found and why a good dog is worth its weight in gold.

    By the time we make it back to blind and settled in again Ryan's phone had died. He asked me "what time did you say we were going home?" I replied when I have a limit of ducks or 1/2 hour after sunset what ever comes first lol. I knew his attention span was getting short so I wasn't holding back from here on in and shooting what ever came in first. Maybe 20 minutes later a pair of widgeon made it into the spread and two shots later another double for the day. I said there we go, time to start packing things. you collect everything from our hide and take it near the shore and I'll go collect the decoys up.

    It was only a 3 hour hunt but to him it was an all day excursion. I'm glad it played out like it did and it wasn't slow and he enjoyed his time in the blind with me. I think he wanted to spend some one on one time with me and less focused on the ducks but that's fine with me as well. He said he's interested in doing to core course in the spring so we shall see how that all plays out.

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  3. #2
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    Re: My Son's first experience with duck hunting.

    Wish my wife attention span was that long, last trip out as we're leaving the gas station she's telling me she doesn't want to be out all day. One day I'll learn and stop asking her to tag along.
    "It is better to be tried by twelve than carried by six" author Jeff Cooper
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  4. #3
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    Dec 2014
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    Re: My Son's first experience with duck hunting.

    Great report. I've had a duck or two fly around not knowing they are dead yet too.

  5. #4
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    Mar 2018
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    Re: My Son's first experience with duck hunting.

    Excellent write up and an even better story, got more ducks in a few hours than I have in years! Glad to hear you and your kid had a good day out hunting, we need more younguns getting into it.

    Your story reminds me of this one bird I fondly remember as Turbo Duck that just refused to die.

  6. #5
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    Re: My Son's first experience with duck hunting.

    Great write-up. I was there with you guys! This is what HBC is about folks!! Thanks again, Moosin
    "A good day hunting is mud on your truck or blood on your hands"

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  7. #6
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    Re: My Son's first experience with duck hunting.

    Congrats to Marc and son. Great share together.
    I did the same thing decades ago with my dad, will never forget it !
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  8. #7
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    Re: My Son's first experience with duck hunting.

    Quote Originally Posted by Imdone View Post
    Congrats to Marc and son. Great share together.
    I did the same thing decades ago with my dad, will never forget it !
    I was 1 of 3 boys, and the only one who shared interest in duck hunting with my Dad. What the other two didn't realize is I had my dad all to myself all duck season long.

    I believe that Ryan is thinking the same way, here I have my dad to myself and get to share that time together. He was glued to his phone until the action happened then he seemed to be in the moment so that's good.

    Just cooking up a duck brings back found memories of my Dad and the bay we used to hunt back east.
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  9. #8
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    Re: My Son's first experience with duck hunting.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hugh Mann View Post
    Excellent write up and an even better story, got more ducks in a few hours than I have in years! Glad to hear you and your kid had a good day out hunting, we need more younguns getting into it.

    Your story reminds me of this one bird I fondly remember as Turbo Duck that just refused to die.
    When I was Ryan's age and started tagging along with my dad, if my dad managed to kill 10 ducks in a season it was still worth the time out on the bay in New Brunswick with the smell of the marsh and dreams of ducks coming into the decoys. My father god rest his soul only shot 2 geese his entire lifetime. We just didn't have the numbers of geese or ducks for that matter. We are living in a time where we have good numbers and unfortunately less duck hunters according to the game permits being sold.

    I take the good days and accept the bad as well as all good time spent outside.
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  10. #9
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    Re: My Son's first experience with duck hunting.

    right on Marc! Great experience to share with him
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  11. #10
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    Re: My Son's first experience with duck hunting.

    A great way to make your son a duck nut for life, well done! I can remember the first time I went duck hunting, it was with a very close friend of the family, my dad was into it so much as he was more of a deer hunter. Are family friend loved duck hunting as much as he love deer and moose hunting and he let me tag along. I can still see the look on his face when I actually got a duck, it was a cross between pride and surprise that I actually hit that speed demon Green Wing Teal. LOL

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