Many friends are counting the days until hunting season, but are they anticipating antelope, deer, elk, bear, dove, or one of my favorites, duck hunting?! I’ve spent the past few days in hot pursuit of those tasty speed goats out on the eastern plains of Colorado. That hunt is always short because it’s immediately followed by those mentioned above and one I’ll tell you more about below.
Last year I passed up my annual Louisiana waterfowl hunt to join Beretta and Sako on an epic journey to Finland and Russia. While that trip has trumped all other birthday events, I have fond memories of cutting birds from the Southern skies on the date of my birth celebration.
For multiple years I headed south to the warmer, humid temperatures to take aim at the mini-F14-like Blue Winged Teal. If you haven’t partaken in the hunt, I must warn you that it’s an addicting one. While I’m not a fantastic shot at the zinging orange clay targets at the range, I’ve become quite proficient at blasting the little speed demons from the sky. … Read More
Holiday dinners and get togethers are right around the corner, which of course means lots of food. I don’t know about you, but one of my favorite things to make this time of year is a fresh duck, goose or turkey. That means we’ll be heading afield to harvest birds for dinner.
Find a link to Apricot Glazed Duck below.
We’ll be in boats, creeks and streams, but our friends down south will be in marshes and swamps so we have to make sure to take care of our shotguns.
Before hunting season we go through our gear, making sure we have items that will keep us dry and warm. We also clean our firearms and get them ready. We hunt near moisture because of course, that’s where you find waterfowl, but since it’s winter oftentimes we’re also in some pretty foul weather. It’s important to protect our guns from moisture as well.
One of the instance I’ve seen happen is that you become so busy that sometimes you don’t properly clean and dry the gun as you should. Sometimes it’s because you come in freezing cold and simply hurry to take care of the bird and warm up. You think, “I’ll do that after I warm up.” Then one thing leads to another and the gun becomes hindsight.
Flambeau Outdoors gave me a product to test, and it’s so easy to utilize that guess what? I’m actually using it. I’ve started putting these in my gun cases and float bags. It’s called Stop Rust and it’s a vapor capsule. The effective radius is about two feet, so it’s perfect for a bag or gun case.
These can also be placed inside your safes, tackle and tool boxes. The capsule attracts moisture vapors to stop rust before it has a chance to start.
Stop Rust prevents rust and corrosion for up to two years. It’s non-toxic. It’s odorless and it is FDA approved.
They also have a gun plug that we put in a couple of the barrels of the firearms in our gun safe. It’s a little peg and it has the Rust Stop element in the bottom of it. You just pop it in the muzzle of your rifle and put the rifle away. You can also keep it in the muzzle of your gun while you have it in the gun case or sleeve.
*Note: Always make sure firearms are safe and unloaded prior to inserting a peg into the barrel.
A big issue for my waterfowl hunting friends down south is that they’re around saltwater. They’re definitely going to have rust-causing moisture around their guns. We need to remember that moisture is not a friend of our guns . We have to clean and dry them as much as possible. With this Rust Stop, once you’ve done that, you simply pop in a peg and you’re ready to store it away.
You can leave the peg in the muzzle while you have it in your float case and
it will help absorb the moisture. Best of luck in bringing home some tasty meals. Remember to dry that gun and keep safe and healthy for a long time.
It was Sunday morning. Time to duck hunt! Hank & I were up at the crack of dawn. We donned our gear and started to head out the door when our friend who is visiting hollered “Only green heads!” We laughed and chuckled because we knew what he meant. Last week I tagged out right away because all I shot were hens. This weekend, I promised I would try for only green heads. Out the door we went with Daisy the bird dog in the lead.
We set up our decoys on a slow moving part of a little stream in a nice canyon. It was only 14 degrees out but the sun was coming so I didn’t feel too chilled today. Daisy and I were too excited to be cold and Hank never gets cold. Once we had everything set up we hid in silence. It is amazing how Daisy knows when it is time. She huddled next to me with a grin on her face as we waited.
The sun came over the hill and the valley lit up. It was a gorgeous morning and everything sparkled in the sunlight. As I scanned the valley, I saw some crows and then some sparrows. Not ducks just…. Wait! In the distance I saw them They were mallards. Daisy & Hank saw them too. Daisy’s ears perked up and her mouth closed. She was serious. Hank looked at me and whispered “Here they come.” I thought to my self “Be patient. Wait and choose your target.” The pair circled around and were on the left side. My side!
As the pair of mallards circled I chose my bird. He had a fantastic green head that sparkled in the sun. I kept my eye on him waiting for the flair. There it was. I remembered to continue my swing and took my shot. BAM! Yes! First green head of the day! Daisy was impressed as she had kept her eye on him as well. She jumped from the brush and retrieved her prize and I jumped up and cheered for myself. Hank sat in the brush and grinned and laughed because I have such a hard time containing the excitement. Daisy and I assumed our positions again and quietly awaited our next sighting.
Our morning continued as such. A couple mallards here and a couple mallards there. I would get a green one, it would drop and Daisy would grab it up for me. I would jump and cheer… a little more quietly than the first time. We had a flock of about 12 fly in and I had such a “trinoble” experience. In my book, that means I was stuck in time not knowing weather to go left or right. I had a glitch in my system. I was just beside myself. I was so excited! I looked and looked and could not focus on one green head. Finally I picked one out just in time to see that he was way too far off in the distance for me to get a shot. Daisy looked over at me with disgust as you could just tell she could not believe something did not fall from the sky. Hank and I looked at each other and chuckled quietly because we both knew what she was thinking. She was thinking I better get my act together because we had work to do. I sat up straight with a wide grin on my face and paid attention.
In the end I had a total of four birds that day. Daisy was very pleased with me and happy with a duck no matter what the color. I was especially proud to take home a pouch full of nothing but green!
Daisy is our Weimaraner. She is a pointer who thinks she is a retriever, or maybe she is a retriever who is really a pointer. She is an only child and a modest 95-pound beauty. A little big for her bread, but don’t under-estimate her. She does her job. In the fall she points grouse, but just before winter, she retrieves ducks. She is our bird dog.
“Spend more time with your family and friends, whether it be outside, hunting, at the shooting range or around the table, savoring all life has to offer.” MM
Today we headed out to hunt ducks. Daisy was excited as soon as she saw the shotguns come out of the safe. She ran in circles around us at the truck, telling us to “hurry up!” We made a hike down to the low end of the stream and Daisy stayed close behind. Daisy would watch every bird, that flew overhead, closely and wait to see if it fell from the sky. She was patient as a pointer who likes to retrieve can be.
Finally, the ducks came in. They flew off in the distance and then lo and behold they turned and circled back. Daisy watched and waited as Hank raised his gun and knocked one down. The pointer, Daisy, watched it drop from the sky and ran to retrieve it. She brought it directly back to Hank with her head held high. She was proud to be our retriever!
It wasn’t long before we saw another flock. The birds flew, and Hank and I both got shots off. Hank dropped two and I dropped one. Daisy ran and retrieved Hank’s birds and then I hollered for her to come help find mine. I ran to where I thought it had dropped, but it wasn’t there. Daisy was proud to bring her assistance. She gracefully jumped over the stream and began sniffing around and then jumped back over. I have to admit; I was underestimating her when she took back to the other side. I thought she was headed back to Hank’s birds which she already had gotten. Then she popped her head up with a mouth full of duck as if to say “haha! I found her!” Shame on me for underestimating that retrieve.
I am pretty darn proud of that Daisy. She’s a good retriever for sure!
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