Rabbit Dogs banner
1 - 20 of 23 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,347 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
If you would've told me 5+ years ago that I would enjoy duck hunting I would have laughed. If you would've told me I would probably enjoy it more than rabbit hunting I would have told you that you had completely lost your mind! I never thought I could love anything more than a good rabbit hunt but between losing some good hounds and a bunch of places to hunt on I can say this duck hunting has just about ruined me. I still love the dogs, but every year I do this more and more and have a blast. Ive seen duck blinds with stoves, couches, and even tv's but nothing compares to leaning against a tree knee deep in water working the call watching, watching ducks cupped up and falling into a decoy spread. The way a retriever just stares at the birds circling around in anticipation for us to shoot so his owner can send him to retrieve the dead birds after the shot. We scouted a new place this morning and while it still needs 2-3 more feet of water in some places(which I'm sure it will get in about a week or so if that long)this place is going to be on fire. I can't wait for our first hunt here! Hopefully one day I can get to some flooded timber in Arkansas but until then this will do!

Branch Reflection Twig Watercourse Trunk
Nature Natural landscape Branch Reflection Landscape
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
3,213 Posts
Nice pictures and it looks like a good place for ducks . I have a small wetland on my property . I can hear ducks down there when I am deer hunting . I might have to try them out , but if they as hard to hit as a dove , they wont lose a feather .
If you learn to decoy em it’s about as hard as hitting a hot air ballon landing. To me the fun was the anticipation getting to that point. Shots tend to be easy.
Killed 147 ducks one year. I was doing harvest survey for the state. Only way I know but majority were under 20 yards, wings set, feet down about to hit the water. Believe me you’d hit em. Most guys can’t take the anticipation and pass shoot. That’s harder
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,347 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
A couple guys in my group get a little aggravated with me at times I'm sure lol but I just see no point in pass shooting or sky busting. I want them close! I love to watch them circle around us getting lower and lower as they decide if they're gonna do it or not. It has the action of a good dove shoot, the excitement of a good turkey hunt, and the camaraderie of being in the field rabbit hunting with friends all rolled into one in my opinion. It all started for me one morning on a juvenile deer hunt with my nephew. We were in a double man stand and as it got close to day light a ton of wood ducks were buzzing over us. After the hunt we crept to my pond to see if thats where they landed and as we approached they all flew off the pond. It was awesome to see and hear. Needless to say when season opened a week or so later we were by that pond in the swamp waiting on them. After those first shots I was hooked!
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
3,213 Posts
I wouldn’t go if anyone pass shot. I’m funny like that. Won’t shoot a rabbit on the jump, a pheasant isn’t pointed, turkey not worked in, deer over bait or driven by pushers though hounds I’d be ok w, etc etc to me sport hunting should be sporting. I have 2 guys I usually go with and someone calls the shot. Like I said most often they’re almost touching the water. Watching em circle and circle before they land is the best. Just winging a shot at em is such a lower odds proposition. Your numbers are way higher if you deke em
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
3,213 Posts
10AC a curiosity question, what chokes are you all using? Of the birds I’ve spoken of amongst myself and my buddies imo cyl to skeet chokes were used. Steel chokes up one size so a mod would be actually throwing a full pattern if you’re using steel. If the birds were even relatively close an imp cyl would surely do it if you’re not taking long shots too. If you choke tight it’s easier to miss. Pattern the gun see what you get w open chokes. Lots of fellows choke too tight and never check their gun. You’d be surprised at results both on patterning board and in dead birds.
Seems everyone chokes way too tight for all game. I believe it’s old school mentality. “What my dad taught me”, his shells were different. He shot lead, maybe cheap lead that deformed quicker opening patterns. Different wads, buffering, etc. Things are dif today. Never believe what anyone tells you. My advice included. Check your gun see for yourself than you can know what’s best for you under any circumstance
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
988 Posts
If you would've told me 5+ years ago that I would enjoy duck hunting I would have laughed. If you would've told me I would probably enjoy it more than rabbit hunting I would have told you that you had completely lost your mind! I never thought I could love anything more than a good rabbit hunt but between losing some good hounds and a bunch of places to hunt on I can say this duck hunting has just about ruined me. I still love the dogs, but every year I do this more and more and have a blast. Ive seen duck blinds with stoves, couches, and even tv's but nothing compares to leaning against a tree knee deep in water working the call watching, watching ducks cupped up and falling into a decoy spread. The way a retriever just stares at the birds circling around in anticipation for us to shoot so his owner can send him to retrieve the dead birds after the shot. We scouted a new place this morning and while it still needs 2-3 more feet of water in some places(which I'm sure it will get in about a week or so if that long)this place is going to be on fire. I can't wait for our first hunt here! Hopefully one day I can get to some flooded timber in Arkansas but until then this will do!

View attachment 51999 View attachment 52000
Man, 10ac that looks like it should be full of ducks!!! Our season comes back in Saturday. We mostly have teal & wood ducks to shot. It gets real exciting when you hear them whistling through the timber!

Have a trip planned the middle of January to hunt Reelfoot lake. I hope to get to shot my first green head. 😁
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
988 Posts
10AC a curiosity question, what chokes are you all using? Of the birds I’ve spoken of amongst myself and my buddies imo cyl to skeet chokes were used. Steel chokes up one size so a mod would be actually throwing a full pattern if you’re using steel. If the birds were even relatively close an imp cyl would surely do it if you’re not taking long shots too. If you choke tight it’s easier to miss. Pattern the gun see what you get w open chokes. Lots of fellows choke too tight and never check their gun. You’d be surprised at results both on patterning board and in dead birds.
Seems everyone chokes way too tight for all game. I believe it’s old school mentality. “What my dad taught me”, his shells were different. He shot lead, maybe cheap lead that deformed quicker opening patterns. Different wads, buffering, etc. Things are dif today. Never believe what anyone tells you. My advice included. Check your gun see for yourself than you can know what’s best for you under any circumstance
[/QUO

Imp. cylinder, steel #4 shot is what we shot Bowguy. You are correct on the steel making an imp. cylinder become modified. A couple of the guns I have it is wrote on the chokes that way. We hunt flooded timber & small ponds so all are close range shots. I do miss shooting lead though. You don't get near as many cripple ducks as with the steel.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,347 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Bowguy If I take my 20 I shoot improved with 3 inch shells. I'm partial to heavy metal shells. If I take my 12 gauge then its my old S&W 1000. 2 3/4 inch, modified choke #4's but do have some 3's. Once with the 12 I literally blew a ducks head off(no meat damage though). That gun is old and been through hell and back but man it will shoot. The last couple of years I've been back and forth on getting either the winchester SX3 or beretta A400. After holding both guns I will probably go with the Beretta. Everyone says get the stoeger m3500 but I've heard it has a jamming problem after a while with heavy loads. I'm like you though I'm not shooting until they are committed and dropping. You will educate birds shooting any other time IMO.





Man, 10ac that looks like it should be full of ducks!!! Our season comes back in Saturday. We mostly have teal & wood ducks to shot. It gets real exciting when you hear them whistling through the timber!

Have a trip planned the middle of January to hunt Reelfoot lake. I hope to get to shot my first green head. 😁
Never killed a Teal but I want to bad! There is nothing like watching mallards work and they're my favorite to shoot but ill take wood duck meat over mallard any day lol.. mallard isn't bad but it isn't wood duck either.. A couple of my buddies are going to realfoot next weekend. They have a spot open for me but not sure if I can make it or not. Good luck on your trip and I hope you get into a mess of them! Post some pics or updates when its over!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
301 Posts
Living in Arkansas my whole life I duck hunted for years and years. Had many hunts where groups of hundreds of mallards would fall into the decoys. It’s a beautiful thing. Green timber and rice fields. It ain’t like it used to be here. If you can come down and hunt some private land, that would be good. If you ever come down and hunt public land, you may be in for a big let down. I quit and sold my boat, and all my calls a few decades ago. It’s rough getting up at 2am, walking to a hole that you spent hours scouting for, then groups of guys crowd within 100 yards of you on all sides. You get a group of ducks working, and one of the groups shoots at them tree top high. The frustration was more than I could take. Now, guys line up and camp at public boat launches for a week before opener, and they all race in their hot rodded boats. Public land hunting here has turned into a circus with a bunch of young guys that only care about videoing the circus for social media. Most of them can’t call and work birds into the timber. They just skybust them. The ole school public land Arkansas duck hunts are about dead. Sad thing to see. They have ruined one of the best things this state had to offer.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,706 Posts
Bowguy If I take my 20 I shoot improved with 3 inch shells. I'm partial to heavy metal shells. If I take my 12 gauge then its my old S&W 1000. 2 3/4 inch, modified choke #4's but do have some 3's. Once with the 12 I literally blew a ducks head off(no meat damage though). That gun is old and been through hell and back but man it will shoot. The last couple of years I've been back and forth on getting either the winchester SX3 or beretta A400. After holding both guns I will probably go with the Beretta. Everyone says get the stoeger m3500 but I've heard it has a jamming problem after a while with heavy loads. I'm like you though I'm not shooting until they are committed and dropping. You will educate birds shooting any other time IMO.







Never killed a Teal but I want to bad! There is nothing like watching mallards work and they're my favorite to shoot but ill take wood duck meat over mallard any day lol.. mallard isn't bad but it isn't wood duck either.. A couple of my buddies are going to realfoot next weekend. They have a spot open for me but not sure if I can make it or not. Good luck on your trip and I hope you get into a mess of them! Post some pics or updates when its over!
I have a SX3 and I really like it . The only problem that I had with it has the synthetic stock and forend have a rubber texture sprayed on it to make it feel like rubber for a better grip . The coating started coming off and it felt like it had sticky glue on it . I took alcohol pads and clean it all off . I like the feel better now . I called Winchester about this and they said to send it back to them and they would refinish the whole gun and check everything and mail It back to me at no charge , except me shipping it the first time and I am not the original owner . I know a couple other guys that had the same thing happen to their SX3 . Ours are over 5 years old , they might have fixed that problem now . But like I said I like it better without that rubber feel now .
I will add , that mine is a 3 1/2” and I bought a deer choke for it from a local gunsmith that makes them and it will throw the tightest pattern that I have seen at 40 yards with Remington 3 1/2” OO buckshot . He and is son have the SX2 , so he had already did the work for me and told me what to use . I shot a deer from 40 some paces sitting in a tree stand and I couldn’t believe how bad it tore him up and patterned .
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
988 Posts
Bowguy If I take my 20 I shoot improved with 3 inch shells. I'm partial to heavy metal shells. If I take my 12 gauge then its my old S&W 1000. 2 3/4 inch, modified choke #4's but do have some 3's. Once with the 12 I literally blew a ducks head off(no meat damage though). That gun is old and been through hell and back but man it will shoot. The last couple of years I've been back and forth on getting either the winchester SX3 or beretta A400. After holding both guns I will probably go with the Beretta. Everyone says get the stoeger m3500 but I've heard it has a jamming problem after a while with heavy loads. I'm like you though I'm not shooting until they are committed and dropping. You will educate birds shooting any other time IMO.







Never killed a Teal but I want to bad! There is nothing like watching mallards work and they're my favorite to shoot but ill take wood duck meat over mallard any day lol.. mallard isn't bad but it isn't wood duck either.. A couple of my buddies are going to realfoot next weekend. They have a spot open for me but not sure if I can make it or not. Good luck on your trip and I hope you get into a mess of them! Post some pics or updates when its over!
Let me know how their/ya'lls trip goes.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
7,090 Posts
As Arky said Arkansas isn’t the same as it used to be. Public land is crazy. I quit except for a couple times a year going on private ground with a friend of mine that invites me. Sold just about all my gear too. If you want to hunt timber ducks you will be better off contacting some guides/outfitters around Stuttgart and paying 5-600 day. Duck Leases are ridiculous. Ours was 1,000 ea and they jumped to 5,000 and that was 10 years ago. They are going for over 10,000 now. If I were wanting to go I would save my money and do a 2 day guided lodge hunt. Enjoy
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
3,213 Posts
I’m not big on these Turkish guns
As Arky said Arkansas isn’t the same as it used to be. Public land is crazy. I quit except for a couple times a year going on private ground with a friend of mine that invites me. Sold just about all my gear too. If you want to hunt timber ducks you will be better off contacting some guides/outfitters around Stuttgart and paying 5-600 day. Duck Leases are ridiculous. Ours was 1,000 ea and they jumped to 5,000 and that was 10 years ago. They are going for over 10,000 now. If I were wanting to go I would save my money and do a 2 day guided lodge hunt. Enjoy
Theres 2 ways to do most duck hunt imo. Idk about your area but most areas I’ve been to there’s the rich lease than the grunt spots. They can be good but it’s lots of work. I didn’t mind the work.
 
1 - 20 of 23 Posts
Top