Saturday, January 12, 2008

Another Hunt

This post is a week late, but here goes...

We again hunted out of Hoopers. I was with Dave Foote and David Sikorski, and we were doing something a little differnet. We had heard rumors of a lot of ducks in a cove we hunt, so we headed there. The rumors were true, and we were treated to a lot of ducks:
JM Blind, TF1212070010.JPG
The black line in the middle of the picture is a raft of a thousand ducks at least. There were several species, black ducks, widgeon, pintails, bufflehead, blackhead, redhead and cans.

Here is a picture of some widgeon coming in to the raft:
JM Blind, TF1212070005.JPG

All the ducks were drawn to this flock, and wanted nothing to do with our rinky dink spread of 60 decoys, so we decided to break out the scull boat.
JM Blind, TF1212070018.JPG
This boat is Sikorski's, and he and David Foote are on board sculling to the birds, trying hard to look like an innocent log. Basically, both guys lay on their backs in the boat, and the guy in the front of the boat is the gunner, while the guy in the back of the boat is the sculler. The sculler uses a sculling oar, which is a 10 foot long paddle that he places out of the back of the boat, and swings back and forth in the water to propel the boat. Though slow going, this method of hunting relies on stalking and sneaking up on the birds to get close enough for a clean shot.

While they were on the way out to the birds, I was able to get two good picturs. The first was a sunrise:

The second was a flock of about two hundred redheads coming into the raft.
JM Blind, TF1212070021.JPG
For those who like to try and ID birds, there are at least 4 canvasbacks in this picture as well.

Unfortunately my battery died in my camera before I could get anymore shots, but the scull was succesful, and they ended up with a very good drake redhead.