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Duck report lower Terrebonne parish

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Opening weekend was almost a.complete bust for most all lease holders in our area. Very few birds. I was beginning to wonder if the season was going similar to last year with a very poor first split with a real decent second split.
Last weekend was.a big turnaround. Lots of birds and some fantastic hunting! Hopefully this week will be more of the same!!
I hear that the NE corner of the state and most of Arkansas is bone dry.except where they have pumped. Each front should push a lot of birds down. The aerial survey that was done just prior to the season indicated we were holding half of the birds compared to last year....ill bet that has changed significantly?
Good luck hunting, be careful and HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!!
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
Where is your lease Tony? Mine is on the northern end of Bayou Penchant near Kent Bayou. We are still not holding many birds yet and haven't seen a whole lot flying the first two weekends.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
I'm a ways from you. Around Lost Lake area. More and more it seems the gadwalls and teal are moving into the saltier marshes? Our marsh is getting fresher. Less birds last couple of years. Hoping the birds fly for all of us this weekend!
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
I agree with you. I've heard that Point Au Fer is loaded with birds this year.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
Don't know about birds on PaF, but that place is family-owned (POSTED PRIVATE).... and a looooong way out there..... needs ot have birds to make that trip.......
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
We did a recon out to Atchafalaya Delta to see the area and do some scouting. A long ways, interesting area. Probably gonna try and make a few hunts there this season. What we won't do to have a chance at limits!
Hunting this weekend was terrible. No wind, no birds, no limits. Some friends hunted Thanksgiving morning and did great, wind=birds.
Thank goodness the trout and redfish more than cooperated!
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
Same for us on Sunday Tony. 5 total birds. We are still covered with feed but not with birds. Jumped about 50 total Saturday afternoon on our entire 1000 acres. Not much came into feed Sunday morning.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
I am getting tired of hearing that our first half is a bust in the coastal zone. Is it possible that the first half of the season may be done away with. We don't have ducks anyway and whatever few they have are getting too much pressure in the public areas. I wouldn't mind seeing a season that reflects less than 60 days and opens in December. We would still have a split. I don't feel like the current duck situation in coastal of Louisiana can support 60 days. This is too much pressure on what few ducks we get.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
Totally agree duckhunter_89. I have been telling anyone with LDWF that will listen that we open too damn early every year. Duck Hunting will never get back to the 1990's level in Louisiana so no sense setting seasons like it is. No Till Farming practices and the winters getting shorter and later have made sure of that. We just don't have enough birds to justify hunting in early to mid-November. Opening weekend should always be after Thanksgiving and all zones should close on January 31st. But that's too easy and doesn't appease the politicians that hunt in Cameron Parish. LDWF only does what is best for a select few with big pockets. Always has and always will.

I would be perfectly fine with a 45 day season if they all occur after December 1st and ended on January 31st. The amount of Ducks on my lease in February and March every year is absolutely sickening.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
bayou black sucking - worst first split I can ever recall. don't even have ringnecks.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
This is probably more of a rant than a productive statement but whatever. The powers at be need to get with the program and make some serious changes to our duck season limit and days, zone dates, etc. The duck hunters who choose to keep hunting in Louisiana are getting screwed, especially, especially public land duck hunters who are not lucky enough to acquire a nice lease or have private land to go on. As a duck hunter in Louisiana you can only waste your time and money for so long. The latest waterfowl hunter participation surveys say the number of active hunters is dropping which i wasn't sure i agreed with. They say its lack of access to hunt able lands. Dude, after this season, they will see a drop in sale of Louisiana waterfowl licenses for sure, lol. Mess with the bull, you get the horn.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
We busting them up in terrebonne parish :) we always shoot the majority of our ducks in the first split. Last year was terrible for us, this year we are slaying them. I've been duck hunting for 25 years and have seen good times and bad. One thing I've learned is you can't please everyone all of the time. I seem to remember Larry having data that shows the majority of ducks harvested in the state are shot in November.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
If you trust the numbers put out by Larry Reynolds who has a lease himself in Creole which is in Cameron Parish. I can remember counts in the 5-6 million now we are seeing 1-2. Do the math that is down 67% from when the limits were raised to 6 and the season to 60 days. Those early Harvest numbers mean two things to me: 1. More people duck hunt in November than December/January and the Ducks are harder to kill later in the year. Now if the season would open later and allow those ducks that arrive in November and settle in, the December hunting would be more enjoyable for all and the harvest numbers would be larger.

Just my 2 cents
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
Guys, this is the same old stuff year after year with the same old exaggerations and laments. But let's at least get the data right. Brandon, if you were on my electronic distribution list (and I have offered to include everyone a number of times on this forum as well as others), you would have in your possession a graph of the aerial survey results since the late 70's. And with that, you wouldn't be comparing the 'best ever' to the 'worst ever' like it has meaning today. Hopefully, I can upload it successfully. Assuming I do:

How many January surveys do you see over 5-million? How many below 2 million? And when did they occur? This isn't specific to SE LA, but neither was your 5-6 million to 1-2 million quote.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
That isn't to say we don't have issues; you all know that we do, they are not going away, and I have spoke about them many times. I have compiled statewide mid-winter data showing our issues, and you have seen them here before. Unlike the last graphs, which are for coastal Louisiana and Catahoula Lake, these data are for the entire state flown in January every year. I need to update them with the 2017 survey, but you will get the picture.

Isn't it interesting that despite losing about 500,000 mallards, the 5-year all-ducks averages haven't declined that much.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
And what about geese? The snow geese look a lot like the mallards; we are wintering less of them AND a shrinking percentage of those counted in the Mississippi Flyway in January. But for specklebellies, the actual numbers are holding up pretty well, but the percentage of MS Flyway birds is tanking because the population is both growing and wintering further north.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
Lord here we are again. Anyone that can't kill 18 birds a blind wants the season to open on Christmas and close on Mardi Gras. It's been a month of stale weather as Tony noted. When it's sunny and calm its harder to kill ducks. When you run a mud boat around your hunt area incessantly 'scouting' it's hard to kill ducks the LAA on WMAs bear this out). One thing is for sure, if the season were shortened the strong fronts would be sure to hit when it's closed. I have had good and bad hunts this November. I think I'm averaging about 3.5 birds per hunt but other guys on my club have struggled. The 70s and 90s were aberrations, wet on the breeding ground dry in MO, AR ect. There is no doubt that management practices and climate are affecting migration to LA but those aren't things we control. Better to have a longer season so we can take advantage of time off, strong cold fronts ect.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
So what does that mean in terms of season length, season dates and hunting success?

First, ducks are managed on the Flyway scale, NOT the state or region or Parish or your specific lease or favored public hunting area. The USFWS long ago realized that they could not control the weather, land-use, or habitat changes that occur both year-to-year and over the long term, so they decided to manage duck hunting at the Flyway level recognizing that the 4 administrative Flyways have different populations of ducks and numbers of duck hunters. That it didn't matter if mallards were killed in Tennessee and Missouri during warm, wet winters and Louisiana in cold, dry winters. They seemed to get hammered in Arkansas regardless. For years, northern states say they get screwed because they freeze up before they can hunt 60 days, and the southern states say they get screwed because the season closes before birds get here. Both are wrong and we have the wings from dead birds collected from hunters showing it since 1961. It's not perfect for anyone, but it works pretty well for everyone as long as everyone accepts the rock-hard fact that things are going to change ..... and anyone sitting in SE LA has seen that change first-hand, especially in Terrebonne Parish.

So unless there is evidence that hunting pressure is keeping ducks from coming to Louisiana, and that we can reduce that pressure by reducing the season length and increase our hunting success (albeit for a shorter time), then we will always have the season length allowed by the USFWS for the Mississippi Flyway. According to some of you, there aren't any birds to pressure in the early season, so that can't be an issue. You also know we've conducted a number of hunter-opinion surveys, and NEVER has more than 10% of hunters recommended a shorter duck season while a vast majority lobby for lower bag limits rather than shorter seasons when the time for restrictions comes around.

We can set the season later. We can eliminate the split and take the last 60 days of the framework. We can reduce the split or reduce the first segment and hunt during Thanksgiving week and until the end of the framework. We have lots of options. But you act like all SE LA hunters think like you ..... and they do NOT. We saw that 2 years ago when we proposed putting SE LA back into the East Zone like it had been prior to 2001, and the results were almost 50-50. Hardly a consensus, and again, the harvest data showed clearly that BOTH total ducks and ducks/hunter were higher in the early season than in the late season in BOTH SE and SW LA.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
And what about hunting pressure? Great question because we have all kinds of confounding issues that contribute to this thing we refer to as 'hunting pressure'. We know it isn't just the number of hunters, because with advances in equipment, like surface-drive motors, 1 guy can 'pressure' a whole lot more birds now than he could in the past. So even if we see declining numbers of hunters, does that mean less 'pressure'? Are hunters declining? Where are they declining? Certainly not on public hunting areas, so it must be on private land.

I actually have no idea how many hunters there are in Louisiana with our current license structure, but I know for a fact that the declines shown in the federal harvest data in 2013 and 2015 are not correct. How do I know? License sales, the results of our Big and Small Game Harvest survey (the red line), and the number of known duck hunters I pulled from the HIP database in 2015 to do the sampling for the Louisiana Waterfowl Hunter Survey. I took all those that bought a duck license (resident, student, military, native LA) and all those that reported killing at least 1 duck or goose when they registered for HIP. I know I didn't get them all because 1) many retailers don't ask the HIP registration questions, and 2) I can't tell the difference between someone that didn't hunt ducks and someone that did but killed zero. But I had over 95,000 known duck hunters, and of a random sample of those, over 92% actually hunted during the season. THAT is how I know the federal estimate of active hunters in LA is flat-out wrong.

And after all that, hunter numbers is only 1 aspect of hunting pressure.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
Sorry for being long-winded guys, but I've been home sick since Sunday, and I will end the first split with only being able to hunt 4 days, all during the first 2 weekends. Thanks to the crazy unusual number of scaup in the marsh, I had some good success. But so did my buddies hunting out of Delacroix, and those at Pointe-aux-Chene and those at the mouth of the river. But it has slowed for them as well. And if you read my November survey report, you saw what I wrote about the unexpectedly low number of ring-necks I saw in the upper Terrebonne marshes. So reports of poor hunting in areas that depend on those birds isn't surprising. Most of the feedback I got from that report was 'there are way more birds in SE LA than you reported'. You might not agree. That's OK ...... but let's at least get the data straight.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
And as always, if you want to receive LDWF Aerial Waterfowl Survey reports and other stuff like announcements of surveys, press releases about actions related to waterfowl hunting, etc. I can include you on the electronic distribution list if you send me an e-mail asking to be added. Lreynolds@wlf.la.gov
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
LAST thing ...... I promise. I took the opportunity of this thread to establish a new photo-hosting account at Imgur since my old Photobucket account is locked. Here are the harvest data summaries showing 1) the percentage of the total kill in SE, SW, and NW Louisiana by week of the season during a period of time when each region had the same season structure, and 2) statewide data showing the ducks killed per hunter on each day of the season 2004-2013.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
Larry,

My vote is to leave the season at 60 days as long as we can. I am also in favor of leaving the dates in the coastal zone exactly as they are this year opening around November 11 with the split as it is. I have been through the ups and downs in southeast Louisiana for many years and those timeframes seem to be the best overall.

A while back we discussed the whistling tree ducks and I can report they have left our area. We had plenty during the teal season but I have not seen the first one since the opening of the big duck season. I sure would like to see them added to the teal season. I hope you keep trying to convince the controlling group. Good luck.

Mileypop
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
Wolfman. where are you hunting?
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
Lot of hunters say pressure is higher due to all the Duck Dynasty wannabes. But according to the servery hunter numbers dropped after 2012 the year the show started.

I took my first Black Belly duck a week ago along the north shore marsh. Never seen or heard one there before that day. I see them all the time before teal season and in one area i hunt every day about 15-20 minutes before shooting time they fly out. I can hear and see them sometimes leaving the area they must sleep in the woods during the day.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
Terrebonne parish - one thing of note: What used to be pristine freshwater marsh along the North Side of the ICWW from the Houma Nav - the Pipeline Canal has turned sour. No vegetation along that whole stretch in the marsh. An area that used to hold thousands of ducks, particularly ringnecks. I'm not saying the weather and what not isn't causing the lack of ducks, but I think we have a bigger problem. The ICWW is full of breaks in the levee on the north and south side along that entire stretch. Turbid water is infiltrating the marsh, not allowing the water to be clear - no sun on the bottom, no vegetation. Also, there is an ongoing problem with apple snails. I'm not sure they can wipe the whole area out along, but positive that they are a contributing factor. the high water we have been suffering with the last three summers. Our marsh is falling apart, soon enough it will all be giant lakes. The floats are just drifting around now, killing any of the vegetation that attempted to grow. All of that, along with the lack of weather, is surely a huge problem, contributing to lack of birds in the bayou black area, specifically north of the ICWW.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
Guys don't ya'll see it. The power is going to throw the graphs in your face and then you will shut up.....correct? My lament isn't based on trying to fill 18 birds. Its based on trying to fill just a couple ducks.
Don't get me wrong, i appreciate the data collected, the analysis, the results provided; after all that's what we pay the taxes for. However, it doesn't change the fact that for me and probably most duck hunters in this state (common everyday guy) that are paying a small fortune to keep up our great tradition of duck hunting, that tradition is fading fast. Just like Mr. Reynolds said (being respectful), regs are based on large scale observation and not you or your spot. So for those of us truly suffering with seeing our duck hunting laid to waste.......o well suck it up i guess. jjoojj, what you will learn just like me is that your lease will turn into a fishing lease and you will either try very hard to scratch out a few birds or give this crap up and chase those horns. All i can say is if you are in a tough situation, you might want to try enjoying that duck blind for the little while there is left. I have been duck hunting for 20 something years now since i was a small boy. Probably will put all the gear for sale next year and save my $62 duck license fee. Sorry for being long winded guys........
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
Ok duck89, I'm sorry if I was too sarcastic in my reply. I understand that some areas in the state have really struggled in the last decade that were decent duck country in the past. But you do need to realize its not the whole coastal zone. I hunted Laffite in my youth near the northern end of barataria bay and that is certainly a duck wasteland now. I hunted in Delacroix at the advent of the diversion there and saw habit improve and ducks respond. I now hunt Hopedale and I can tell you that closing the MRGO is making a big difference to our fortunes there (in my opinion at least). So at least part of this issue is habitat shift with habitat declining on the south central coast as it improves in the extrem eastern coast and the ducks following those changes. Another issue I suspect is that unlike most of the rest of the state I think a lot of baiting still goes on in the general Houma area. I base this on the fact that I pretty much live in duck hunting themed gear and frequently converse with strangers about duck hunting and it's only the terrobone/lafourche set that frequently start talking about 'you know they can't spot millet from the air' and how they lace the edges of the ponds to avoid unnatural bird accumulation. I'm not saying that everyone over there does it but apparently it's still social acceptable to bring up in conversation with a stranger. If you are competing against that it will no doubt hurt you. That being said I know co-workers who have been killing limits in PAC so it's not a complete duck wasteland down that way. Larry Reynolds is not setting seasons based around the desires of politicians in SW LA, in fact just a few years ago he ran afoul of them trying to prevent a first weekend in November opening. He is trying to balance the dates between various sets of hunters. East of the MS river hunters frequently lose access to their lease in January since even moderate west winds blow all the water out. People in SW LA like the early opener because their central flyway birds get there earlier (and specs) and their birds pull out as rain floods ag to there north. Teal season this year showed how hard it can to guess the best dates in advance, the week before the delayed opener our ponds had hundreds of teal but they left before the opening.

At any rate I hope you don't sell your decoys just yet. If your lease is consistently sucking look into a new one. If its family land or land you own call the LDWF land owner assistance program and see what they can do to help the habitat. All it may take is some controlled burns to stimulate better seed producing plants to help you hold birds, SAV isn't the whole story for duck food in the marsh. Also have some fallback spots on public land for when your lease isn't producing. Hopefully the weather just gets back to actual winter over the split and we all have ducks in our favorite ponds!
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
Correct me if I'm wrong Larry. The reason why a person is seeing lots of birds in February and March is because they are not being shot at! Around mid season all the inland marsh hunting pressure drives these birds to the outside outer bays where they get away from the pressure. Get a strong southerly wind during the season and these birds move inland providing a great hunt. A few weeks after the season these birds move back inland because the season is closed NOT because the just arrived! The blue wings are also coming back from Mexico. Overall on the areas I hunt the first split is probably the best. Right now the majority of the gadwall have moved to specific area but the green wings are thick as gnats!
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
I hunt almost exclusively Public Land and guess I have either been blessed or just plain lucky as I have found a few willing participants on a few hunts and love getting away from crowds so those folks on leases devoid of ducks might want to start exploring other options,just make some mid-week hunts on Public Land and see what I am experiencing!!Think overall migration patterns have shifted a tad to the West(educated guess)and I sometimes hunt mallards and mottled ducks to try my best to make up for the lack of greys and teal in the Public Lands I hunt.Adapt,adapt,adapt or else complain and whine and shoot no ducks,dats de way I sees it!!Glad I lost my Hopedale and Delacroix leases many years ago and probably will never again plunk down coin for leased property that most likely will not out-produce choice spots in Public Land.Got buddy who plans to take us to Venice and where in the country would you find that kind of duck hunting paradise for the grand sum of free,free,free!!!

Mandevillian
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
The research, surveys, monitoring, graphs, charts, and analyses are not intended to shut anyone up ..... but to inform and give perspective. To get past the HUGE variation in small scale observations and expose incorrect/exaggerated claims.

Like every year, I've got reports ranging from 'best first split ever' to 'worst first split ever' from people I absolutely trust and keep harvest records on 'their lease'. I've received nearly 20 requests to be added to my electronic distribution list, and a few of them have reported excellent hunting including averages over 5 birds per man thus far this season. I just got the harvest data from our SE WMAs from Wednesday, and all of them averaged over 2 ducks per man with PAL and Atchafalaya Delta at 3.7. That doesn't mean the hunting is good, but it means there are people killing ducks.

Yes, it's heartbreaking when your lease goes bad. Mine is partially covered with giant salvinia even after use of weevils, and I may lose it completely next year. Apple snails, levee breaches, short and long-term habitat changes have rendered hundreds of leases useless. Just ask the guys who used to hunt Maurepas Swamp or the swamp north of Atchafalaya Delta and kill limits of mallards, where now very few ducks fly. I've personally got spots where I killed limits of birds that no longer have birds. But it had nothing to do with season dates, or how much we paid to hunt there, or what hunters in NE or SW Louisiana want, or what we think we deserve as birthright from the fantastic tradition of waterfowl hunting. The foundation of that tradition has shifted and continues to shift by way of coastal wetland loss, saltwater intrusion, subsidence, and invasive aquatics, as well as land-use changes, and climatic shifts that are happening across the northern hemisphere, not just North America. Yes, we win a few battles, like closing the MRGO and beneficially using dredge spoil and sediment diversions, and restoring levees, but we all know the overall score. I still believe what we have is pretty special.

Good luck over the rest of the season.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
You are right! We see more ducks after the season closes because we have stopped shooting at them and the northern movements have begun.

Years ago, LDWF did aerial surveys in February and clearly saw birds re-distribute from sanctuary habitats to out across the landscape once the shooting stopped. Interestingly, we are seeing northern movements earlier now than decades ago, especially for geese and early nesters like mallards and pintails. Many of those late-season pintails killed in Arkansas are coming from the south, Mexico and Louisiana, not the north. Last year, for example, we saw a big influx of bluewings the last week of the season, presumably (but not proven) from Mexico.

The more individuals we track with multi-year GPS-Satellite transmitters, the more we learn about true migration movements.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
i personally don't like looking at the big picture. I really care less about the northern hemisphere climatic change. I'm not a meteorologist or a climatologist, i'm a duck hunter and that's what i'm going to do.

despite everything said here - if you want, you can still kill em

People in the old days - had all the great stories of all the ducks they killed - that's because they depended on them for food -they did whatever it took to kill em. regardless is that meant paddling for hrs.

Now if a guy can't pull into a pond in his gatortail, pop up a blind and shoot 24 ducks, he comes on here and complains that there aren't any ducks. if you depended on the ducks - you would kill them still today.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
I like that attitude! Not just, 'shut up about large-scale impacts and what other people in other places are doing because I don't care about any of that', but 'I'm going to do what I can to kill ducks. I don't hunt leases or fields or spots ..... I hunt ducks! If they aren't here, griping isn't going to get them here, so I'll go find them somewhere else.'

I used to talk just like that when I was younger, slimmer, and had more time to hunt.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
Complaining bout dis and dat ain’t gonna mysteriously make ya season better just get on some decent Public Land and shoot teal if dat all ya got. Hunkered down in sweet spot dat almost feels like leased land as rarely do I see hunter other than Bayoubob and he and I hunt solo blinds in NShore Marsh. Just spooked up at least 70 coots in my pond and hear nasally quack of blue wing hen and hope to emerge with few quality ducks. Adapt adapt adapt or take up golf😬

Mandevillian
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
Were or all the teal at the # or there but if I kill 2r 3 a year it a lot . My bread and butter were teal & grays , green head have stop come down I can not remember the last green I killed 1976 I think know the teal or not coming down to the cost . If it were not for gray ducks and the dogrees when they do come down we would b done for , may b that day will come if L&WLF DO NOT TRY TO HELP US ,some will say I don't know what I am saying will so b it but I have ben hunting for 57 years so I think it , well let just say I know what I am saying .
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
I am hopeful that those of us that hunt the East Zone,particularly on the NShore,will have some greys to shoot,our bread and butter duck.I have seen quite a few huge flocks of greys,though not after the Wed before Thanksgiving!I almost always hear blue wing hens with their nasally quack and they seem to still be hanging around,thankfully and we saw tons of woodies in teal season,not sure why we seem them so sporadically now that regular duck season first split about over.I am an eternal optimist and getting ready to tabulate my results for first split and have only limited one time,that was the glorious hunt the Wed before Thanksgiving when I limited(solo)by 7:20 and had I set myself up where I have been hunting lately,probably woulda been done before 7:00!!LA has tons of Public Land opportunities,just do not count on others to do your scouting for ya!!!Get out dem mudboats and hunt de ole-fashioned way with flatboats and pirogues and see what Bayoubob and I have been experiencing!!!

Mandevillian
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
Great hunt this morning. 4 hunters in my boat. 24 birds.
20 green winged teal, 2 scaup, 2 gadwall. As I previously said the green wings are thick as knats!
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
Speckle searcher , what do you think the LDWF can do to make birds go to your area. They can't alter land use pattern, climate nor can they force the worthless COE to do proper restoration work. If you want to kill ducks you may have to hunt somewhere ducks want to be. There are ducks in south LA but they aren't evenly distributed. There are lots of coastal WMAs with fair to excellent duck hunting. Same for NWR lands. I'm not sure what people think can be done to force birds back into the bayou lafourche area?
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
I don't know u tell me u know it all. I'AM with tag feed for one. Every year our duck survey is less and less. But were u at it's ok until u get your turn, then u will be quaking. how old r u 20-40 year old. when I started hunting I was 10 know i'am 68 I know all about hunting duck that my life love it hunted when the limit was 3 but all so hunted in the 60-70's when there were all kind of duck down here u name it.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
Speck I've only been at this since 83 so I suppose I haven't seen all you have. But I saw 10 point days and lead and then 30 day 3 bird seasons with crappy 1100fps steel loads. I'm not saying there isn't an issue I'm just curious what you think should be done. Baiting really isn't going to help us, it would just make it easier for Yankees to keep the birds north and make feed stores, academy and Walmart richer. Its not entirely a money issue since the area that is now Maurepas Swamp WMA was once a duck Mecca with lots of pols in the clubs but they still can't get a diversion for the swamp (supposed to have been in the works since I was in grammar school) and no one can control the dang salvinia. Most of what is wrong is habitat issues that go back to choices made in the 1920-1960's about how to treat the MS river system. Again solutions to that have been studied and planned to death for the past 4 decades but little has or will be done saddly. I wish I did have an answer better then follow the ducks but I don't.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
That just it the Yankees or keeping our duck . Year back before your time every one was feeding down here, and they all had ducks the Yankees always had there rice . the duck have to come down all the way to the Gulf then they rest in our cost land but there is noting for them to eat so they head back to the Yankees in still the next cold drive them back . That y when it's cold and wind up u see a lot of ducks , then when the temperature get back up and the wind dies down every one saying were or the duck . Well in the old 60-70's when all the hunters feed they stay down all winter it does not take and scientist to see that so with that said tag feed will work believe me.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
Very easy solution. Make it just as illegal to bring water to your feed as it is to bring feed to your water. Hunting over feed, is, hunting over feed period. You can't say, make it legal to feed here, the ducks are just not coming here because there is way too much feed for them up north. And,,,,,they really like to rub it in our faces, just look at the videos they constantly post over the flooded corn. Food is the most important thing to ducks, cause they can always find moving water, doesn't matter what state and how cold it gets.That's why we do so well with major droughts up north, because they can't flood nearly the amount of acreage that they can with no droughts. It will continue to get worse, I've said this for the past 5-8 yrs. Pray for major droughts every year. Shoot straight and often.....
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
There?s an old saying, ?don?t let your expectations ruin the experience?. Some hunters enjoy the experience of all that goes along with the hunt. Some hunters will only be satisfied with limits every hunt. I have hunted with both types over the years. Mandevillan, for example, loves the experience. Just said he hunts solo and only limited out once the first split. He puts in his time and works his but off to kill what he can and is proud of what he kills. I know others who complain that they never limited out after shooting over a box of shells. I just took two guys hunting from Viginia this weekend. Their first duck hunts ever. They had a great time experiencing SE Louisiana marsh and learning about all that goes along with duck hunting. They plan to make 2 trips down to hunt next season. I know it?s frustrating to hunt and not kill ducks and I understand the changes that Louisiana hunters are experiencing. I guess I?m just trying to say, slow down and enjoy the ?experience? of the hunt, limit or not. Sorry for the long post. Thanks Larry and good luck to all the second Split.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
You are right Scott! You don't have to shoot a limit to have a good hunt! Everyday is going to be different. I've been duck hunting in lower Saint Bernard since 1966 and seen good and slow days back then as we do now. I have been guiding since 1984 and the most appreciative are the out of state hunters that I take hunting. The vast majority of them do not have great waterfowl hunting in their home states (Georgia,South Carolina, Alabama,Florida to name a few). Yes, waterfowl hunting is changing in Louisiana and the key is to have multiple places to hunt and adapt to the ever changing habitat and conditions. No matter what state you hunt in or where, you are always going to have good and slow days. If you want guaranteed birds EVERY time you hunt go to a shooting preserve. If not enjoy what Louisiana has to offer. It's not called the Sportsmans Paradise for nothing!
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
I do not hunt private land. I hunt the public. Where my head is at right now is how can we make public land hunting (outside limited access areas) more productive and better quality hunts for those involved. Some thoughts i've had outside of shifted season days were: actual enforcement of a reduction in horsepower to 25 hp or less, no afternoon (past 2 pm) hunting regardless of tide, a lottery type system for hunting. Some of you need to understand that for some public land hunters, there is no quality experience left.......only ducks to bring home. We are overcrowded outside the LAA and some people due to physical capabilities can't hunt LAA. I would rather have 6 hunts / season of a quality experience than 30 hunts of poor experience.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
duckhunter_89,I also hunt public land,Federal Land to be more specific,and I do have a 50 hp on the stern of my Southfork so a reduction to 25 hp would effect me big-time and we access a deep trenasse to get into deeper marsh spots where we rarely,if ever,run across other hunters.We pretty much hunt ole-school,transporting pirogues and paddling a decent ways to get to in-pressured ducks that others might not get to.There is plenty of duck groceries to keep ducks hanging around,just need a few fresh faces to enrich the population of well-educated ducks we currently have hanging around,skirting our spreads big-time and de way we hunt,there is absolutely no way these ducks see us,hiding behind extremely mobile palmetto branch blinds!!I have had small armies of coots so close I could probably shoot one shell and get more than enough for coot gumbo and some of my shots this first split have been 5 yards or less!!!Get outta dem mudboats with pop-up blinds and hunt de ole-school way and see what we have been experiencing for quite some years!!!

Mandevillian
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
we have cold weather now boys. im anxious to take a ride and see if this produced any new birds.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
Every issue from duck numbers to migration routes can all be traced back to one thing .... the conversion of rice fields to sugarcane. Every year, more and more land is put into sugarcane and once that happens, it can never be returned to rice. Rice fields hold water and sugarcane fields drain water. Waterfowl eat rice, not sugarcane! As this trend continues, you will see less and less ducks in our area because there is less food for them. It's a very disturbing trend from a waterfowler's perspective and unfortunately because of the ethanol subsidies that farmers receive for sugarcane vs rice, they can't justify NOT planting sugarcane. The same piece of ground can yield 4-5 times the money.

Our waterfowl habitat is disappearing at an alarming rate, not just on the coast, but inland as well.
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Re: Duck report lower Terrebonne parish
Proud Pop,Just getting around to thanking you for the nice compliment,feel tremendously blessed not only to have Bayoubob as a die-hard hunting partner through thick and thin,but to also be at a stage in my hunting career where I target trophies vs trying to emerge with limits,limits,limits at all costs.Guess in just about every hunter's stages,they go through the first stage,the learning curve stage,where they pick the brains of veteran duck hunters and then evolve to where they feel they should be able to emerge with a limit on most hunts and then finally,the trophy stage,where they savor the experience,work their butts off,like ya mentioned,and savor all the blessings bestowed upon us!!!I enjoy solo hunts,like fellow duck afficiando Bayoubob,and we routinely exchange humorous texts and hope we never have to use the dreaded two letters,MT,as in empty skies!!!Duck hunting,for me,has definitely evolved into a stage where I target species and variety and hope for de best on each and every hunt,scratch or full limit!!!Enjoy and savor what we got!!!!

Mandevillian
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