Archive for September, 2014

District F in Quebec is where I hunt my duck and geese; this year opening day is scheduled for September 20, 2014. What I like to do before opening day is spend a few afternoons or early mornings in the wetlands and fields then check out their whereabouts and activity.

This helps with the overall planning and preparation stage but also testing the gear like the duck boat and kayaks, and other equipment in addition checking the water levels and the wetlands to see if anything has changed from the previous season.

Where I hunt waterfowl it is public land anyone can set up a blind and hunt on opening day. A common practice in my area is for hunters to mark off a small section with a sign which has a name and the year of the season, this lets others know that this spot has been taken.

Most waterfowlers will respect this and move on to the next spot, unfortunately not everyone is respectful or let alone safe. Signs have been removed and thrown into the water and some hunters are so dangerous during opening day they are a hazard to themselves and to others shooting in every other direction, and when shooting starts a half an hour before sunrise, well you can imagine the situation. There have also been incidents when some hunters, even push-off others out of a certain areas, which is known to be opened to the public.

So when it comes to opening day, is it worth it? Does it deserve all the hype? I do not think so. I prefer to wait a few days and once the storm has settled, when the temperatures drop, this is the time to hit the waters. The cold weather will keep the trigger happy gunners inside and the seasoned waterfowlers will be able to enjoy a safe outing and possibly harvest a few birds.

The season closes on January 3rd, 2015 in my district, so there will be lots of time to be on the water and break through the ice with an axe to get to the ducks. Don’t forget your waterfowl permit and stamp and in my district make sure your small game permits are still good.

For more information on your district, PMU’s or zone for waterfowl hunting check out the Environment Canada website.

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The duck boat zigzagged through the distributaries, sending a gentle mist into the air; it had a mixture of swamp water and wetlands odors.

My waterfowling brother got a new duck boat and wanted to try it out.

The water level was not very high but we were not concerned, we knew what to expect and continued through the natural canals flushing wood duck and mallards.

We would turn into the cattail and then disappear into the vegetation, jump over small mud islands right back into the water on the other side. We would hang on and shout out the words “jump boat” followed by crazy laughter. It was pure happiness.

We were scouting for the upcoming season and testing the boats capabilities. I was an instant believer, the Jon duck boat was a water beast.

Power, speed and reliability. Most of all we had fun!

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