January 2011 - Volume 31, Number 1

Features

This public hunting area is full of ducks, and there’s no real reason to get up early to get there.

Amazing!” Eddie yelled while watching his cork dance in the current around a finger of marsh jutting into Muscle Bay. “Pelayo’s Point — and it’s still here! Like the hurricane never happened.”

Put in your time, and you’ll likely be dragging a nice Sherburne buck back to your truck this month.

Alvin Fairchild was sitting in a climber, freezing to death. He had earned that right, walking far into Sherburne Wildlife Management Area to hunt an area in which he and life-long friend Floyd Coye had scored time and time again.

Follow these tips to get both ducks and geese coasting into your ag fields.

David Sims exchanged yodels with wary specklebellies, coaxing them ever closer to our pit blind. Stopping to catch his breath before starting another series of calls, he whispered to remind us, “Wait ’til I say shoot ’em.”

Put what these guides have learned to work on wary late-season geese.

Soft yelps and yodels from a specklebelly slipped across the atmosphere overhead, where a high winter fog hid circling birds from our view. By contrast, a slight northerly breeze kept much of the wet mist off the face of the flooded rice fields where we set up along a levee. A flock of 500 — give or take — mixed snows, blues and specks nervously milled about one field over from ours.

North Louisiana’s lakes are incredibly low, and that means now is the time for anglers to be on the water before this window slams shut.

If the Farmer’s Almanac and all the old folks around my house are correct, we should be right in the middle of an unusually warm and dry winter as you are reading this. La Nina, I think they call it.

This spot out of Shell Beach hasn’t been good in four decades, but it’s absolutely on fire this year.

Some people like to start the New Year with sparklers and firecrackers, but the locals down in Shell Beach and Hopedale are too busy enjoying all the speckled trout action to notice.

Round out your duck season right by targetting wood ducks using these “out of the box” tactics.

I opened the email and started to read. “And, like a drug pusher,” it began, “he eased the intoxicating liquor of waterfowl feather to his friend. ‘Take a sip,’ he said. ‘If you don’t like it, that’s okay.’ Duck hunters are a strange lot and it’s not for everybody.

While Area 2 hunters have called it quits for the year, the rut is just now cranking up in the delta regions of Areas 1 and 6.

For Area 2 hunters, January 2011 means the 2010/11 deer season is pretty much over, and it is time to clean up and pack up the deer-hunting gear.

These two guides from very different areas agree that this is a great time to fish topwater baits for really big trout.

Who in their right mind would pick up a topwater rod during the middle of winter? It doesn't seem like a very smart thing to do, but there is a contingent of speckled trout anglers who do just that when most everybody else is mining the bottom.

This suddenly famous lifetime swamper has the horns on the wall to prove he knows how to harvest big bucks in wet areas.

Over a year ago, a Pierre Part resident got a call that forever changed his life. A buddy who works at the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries called to tell the man that he had just given his name and phone number to some folks from New York.

This 178-inch beast had never been seen before being shot by Kris Melancon on Nov 19.