This writer has covered scores of big buck stories, of fascinating and exciting tales of the conquest of hunters who have been fortunate to down a trophy. This story you’re about to read tops them all, and it happened to Captain Mitchell Legendre with the Terrebonne Parish Sheriff’s Office.
Legendre, 46, who lives in Houma, hunts on a 10,000 private lease in DeSoto Parish, on land that borders Toledo Bend Reservoir.
“There is a ridge next to a swamp, and walking it I found some really big rubs indicating that a big buck was in the area,” he said. “As I was walking in on Veteran’s Day, Friday Nov. 11, I spotted something out in front of me. It was a big bird, and at first I thought it was a buzzard. As it flew, I was able to see the bright yellow beak and identified it as an immature bald eagle.
“It passed over me and something fell almost hitting me in the head. I assumed the eagle had dislodged a branch as it took off but I looked down and couldn’t believe what I was seeing. The eagle had caught and was about to eat a three pound bass before dropping it eight feet from my head.”
What did he do with the freshly caught bass?
“I loaded it on my 4-wheeler like I would a deer, took it to camp, fileted it and had it for supper,” he laughed.
A good move
Legendre hunted from a ground blind situated along a clearing. However, another club member had a blind down the way from him within sight of Legendre’s blind, so two days earlier he had his blind moved back some 15 yards just off the clearing so neither hunter would be shooting toward the other.
The weather was anything but good as heavy rain and thunderstorms were sweeping through the area. On the morning of Nov. 12, the rain had slacked off and Legendre headed for his ground blind.
“I threw out a bag of corn on the clearing, set up my video camera and had my gun – I shoot a Mossburg Patriot 30-06 – propped on the window so I could reach it quickly if a deer showed up,” he said. “Along about 8:30, I looked up and there was this big buck standing within two feet of where I had moved my stand from two days before and he was looking directly at me.”
Although Legendre is a videographer who has his videos on the YouTube channel “Deer Hunting Cajuns” and really wanted to be able to film what he was seeing, but he decided to skip the camera and get his rifle up and ready.
“As much as I would have liked to have shot video, I was looking at the biggest buck I ever shot 15 yards away and he was looking at me,” Legendre said. “So as the buck began walking away, I forgot the camera, got the scope on him giving me a quartering shot. When I shot, he stumbled, I racked another round into my rifle and fired again. I could tell I had hit him good and felt confident I’d find him piled up.”
A double blessing
The buck ran about 100 yards before dropping. The buck was a main frame 8-point with a kicker giving him nine scorable points total. The rack carried heavy mass throughout and featured an 18 6/8-inch inside spread. The buck was estimated to be 4 ½ years old and tipped the scales at 190 pounds. It was unofficially scored at 156 6/8 inches.
“The Good Lord blessed me twice on this hunt,” Legendre said. “First, I had a three pound bass literally dropped at my feet from above and was able to down the biggest buck of my life.”
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