Hunting success statewide decreased moving east, according to reports
State teal hunters indicated teal season stayed pretty consistent during the 16-day season: Consistently better in the southwestern part of the state, and not as steady the further east you hunted.
In Welsh, David Faul with Bin There Hunting, said the season turned out pretty solid, with 127 hunters bagging a total of 488 teal.
“It was better than I anticipated, that’s for sure,” Faul said. “As bad as it was looking from the start, it went pretty well. Saturday it kind of fell off, with our first really slow day.
“But it picked up a little for the last day. Overall, it was a lot better than it was last year.”
Capt. Nick Poe, with Big Lake Guide Service, hunted 15 days of the season with clients in the marsh near Sweet Lake.
“Overall, I would say it was pretty good,” Poe said. “It was not blistering fast, by any means. We killed one limit before 8 o’clock. A lot of days I was still hunting at 9:30 and still seeing enough birds to keep me in the blind.
“But we had some days in there where it was like, ‘Where did they go?’”
Overall, Poe said mid-week hunts fared better than those on the weekend.
“I killed ‘em on days when nobody was hunting. During the week is when we did our best,” he said. “There were lots of singles and pairs, threes and fours. No big groups except for the first week, maybe a group of eight every once in awhile.
“I guess we just had some birds using the marsh and that’s how we were able to scratch them out.”
Jared Serigné, who produces Sportsman TV, said he hunted about 12 times near Caernarvon, and gave the season pretty solid marks despite a slow closing weekend.
“I would say it was pretty good. Opening day, it looked like it wasn’t going to be good, a repeat of last year,” Serigné said. “But overall, I would rate this teal season on a scale of one to ten about a six or a seven.
“I don’t think it’s as bad as people are going to say it was, or as bad as i thought it would be.”
Hunting pressure and high water led to the slow finish, he said.
“The water got so high, it flooded lots of grass. They would disappear in grass instead of landing in a pond because the water was so high,” he said. “I think they had a lot more ducks than people thought, because we found some on an airboat yesterday, but you could only get there by airboat.
“That tells me these ducks were getting away from hunting pressure and going hide out in a swamp airy accessible only by airboat. We’ve been banging on ‘em for two weeks, and they adjust to that.”
LouisianaSportsman.com user mileypop also lamented high water and the slow closing weekend near Point a la Hache.
“Had a good crew for the Saturday hunt, but unfortunately the teal didn’t show up again,” he wrote. “The water remains as high as it has been for three weeks. We hunted four blinds and only five teal were taken.
“The water for Sunday was higher than Saturday, and I expected the worst and got it. Didn’t fire my gun. Four guys hunting, zero teal. Wow. Will have to shake this bad season off and be ready for big duck season.”
In an interview last week, the state’s waterfowl study leader for the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries said the state’s wet summer would probably keep the birds from concentrating together.
“We’ve had so much rain and there’s so much habitat everywhere, birds are probably spread out,” he said.
As of last week, one of Reynolds’ colleagues on the northern plains said teal were still there, and he hadn’t seen a really big movement of birds preparing to head south.