With the Louisiana waterfowl seasons kicking off this month, duck and goose hunters across the state will be heading out to scout and brush blinds.
Though most look forward to this tradition, the chore can make for a labor intensive outing — especially if you’re brushing more than one location.
The good news is thanks to the wonders of today’s battery technology, portable power tools are better than ever — and they can really be a game changer with regard to how you feel at the end of the work day.
For cutting small shrubs, tall grasses,or various canes, I’ve been using a 40-volt portable hedge trimmer from Black & Decker. This machine practically stays in my boat the entire duck season because it’s made the task of cutting enough cane or brush far easier than ever before.
And the battery life is more than enough for filling my boat to capacity multiple times before needing a charge. These units are available for $60 to $100, depending on the voltage chosen. Alternatively, gas powered units can be had for a bit more, bu require you to keep fuel handy.
When brushing blinds with shrubs or local bushes with larger, woody stems, I’ve also been making use of a 20-volt reciprocating saw.
Paired with a very toothy 9-inch pruning blade, this little jewel cuts through shrub stems in the blink of an eye, but doesn’t break the bank at only about $40.
Gone are the days of laboring with a manual pruning saw or hacking away with a machete as you slowly collect enough bushes to hide the blind.
Multi-packs of various saw blades are also handy to take along for cutting everything from lumber to metal. Best of all, the saw uses the same battery as the drill, making for quite a useful tandem when heading out to build new blinds or patch up old ones.
Similar all-in-one packages are available from brands like DeWalt, Makita and Porter-Cable, among others, with varying price points.
Deer hunters also would get plenty of service from the reciprocating saw in clearing limbs from around stands or trails. So spend a few dollars this season to help save your back and time — you’ll enjoy opening day that much more.
NOTE: The Louisiana Department of Wildlife & Fisheries is requesting that hunters refrain from cutting and/or transporting Roseau cane altogether this year due to ongoing efforts to control the spread of the Roseau Cane Mealy Bug. For more information, visit the LDWF website.