cut season/bag limits

Megadeth

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 15, 2001
Messages
349
Reaction score
0
A friend of mine had some hair raising news for me this afternoon. Apparently the USFWS and several DFG's from around the west are discovering a very dismal scene from the western prairies in Canada. The long drought is obviously taking a massive toll on the waterfowl habitat, and making breeding nearly impossible. Possibly a short, split-season with much lower bag limits. That might help explain the great breeding season were experiencing? Any input ?
 



Wildbio

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 14, 2002
Messages
312
Reaction score
1
Right now no one knows what will happen.  They haven't even started the breeding pair surveys yet.  You're right about the drought though.  Over the last few years the prairies have been dry and the people incharge of setting limits are tossing around ideas in case the trend countinues, and reproduction declines again.  They were talking about the possiblity of this happening last year, and we got barely got the 107 day season and 7 bird bag.  The flyway council meets in Aug or Sept, and this is when they will have an estimate of what the fall flight will be.  Wait a couple of more months before you get into full panic mode over this.  
 

Arkhunter

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 29, 2001
Messages
46
Reaction score
0
If I had to place a bet one way or another right now, Id bet on fewer days and less ducks for next season.
 

huntducks

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 15, 2001
Messages
3,076
Reaction score
0
If I had to have a choice leave the days alone, cut the limit I would not care if they cut it to 4 birds, when it was 4-5 birds 12 or so years back, I had some real good hunts all the 2-3 time a year newbie wantbie skybusters did something else other the duck hunt, let them stay home and watch football, least they won't be setting up 50yds from my decoys, shooting at all the shore birds that they think look like duck's, not having to listen to them scream at there non retrieving untrained dogs, them howling at the moon at midnight and blowing a goose call.WOW.

:rant-mode:
 

Another Mike

Member
Joined
Apr 26, 2002
Messages
8
Reaction score
0
Huntducks

Yep, I had the same experiences with the shorter seasons a few years back also. A lot less idiots in the marsh, better "quality" hunting and a LOT less hoopla and media hype.
And truthfully, though the counts were supposedly down, I never really witnessed having less birds in the sky during those times. When (or if)  the weather got cold, the ducks came and you shot 4 instead of 7.....no big deal.
If they do reduce us this year, hopefully DFG will reduce our shoot days early on in October and/or November instead of January.

(Edited by Another Mike at 9:15 am on April 28, 2002)
 

Arkhunter

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 29, 2001
Messages
46
Reaction score
0
As for as choosing between less days or less ducks, it doesnt work like that.

The way its set up now, the choices are 30 days/3 ducks, 40/4, 50/5, or 60/6 unless theyve changed it.
 

KID CREOLE

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 27, 2001
Messages
1,227
Reaction score
0
Arkhunter,

In California we have a 100 day plus season, 40 plus days in the beginning of the season are a total waste
 

Another Mike

Member
Joined
Apr 26, 2002
Messages
8
Reaction score
0
Arkhunter..

Out here its 100 days/7 ducks, 79/5 or 59/4.  California's season has to take place between October and end no later than the 3rd Sunday in January. Most of us out here lean towards getting it to end as late as possible, even if it's the 59 and 4.
 

Jay

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 12, 2001
Messages
693
Reaction score
0
My guess is we're looking at a 79 day / 5 bird season. If we get lucky it will include two pins.

My prediction is:

NE Zone: 10/19/02 - 1/4/03 plus an additional two weeks for geese.
Balance of state: 10/26/02 - 11/10/02, 11/16/02 - 1/18/03 with geese open during the split  
 

rlwright

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 8, 2002
Messages
562
Reaction score
0
Yeah, here in California the first half of the season sucks. I would gladley trade the first half of the season for one more week at the end. I wouldn't mind lowering the bag limit either, since I've been using steel I've wounded twice as many ducks as I've dropped. Lower bag limit would mean less wounded ducks per outing, and besides we usually fall short of a limit most the time anyways.

How about this study: Compare the amount of ducks that die in a year due to being wounded by steel shot, as compared to the amount of waterfowl that die per year due to lead poisoning? I'm curious?  
 

Jay

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 12, 2001
Messages
693
Reaction score
0
rlwright,

Don't mean to tell you how to hunt but I found my crippling losses went way down when I started shooting 3 inch #1 steel in a full choke pattern. My pattern is filled in really tight so I almost always get multiple hits on the bird. Even if you do only manage one pellet in the bird #1s are big enough to at least bring the bird down. The bird is usually either stone cold dead or unscathed. When the wind starts blowing hard I move up to 3 1/2 inch steel BBs with the same affect.

My 2 cents.
 

hntndux

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 29, 2001
Messages
1,440
Reaction score
33
I second what Jay says.  I'll bet my crippling rate has been cut 75% since switching to #1's.  I may hit slightly fewer birds, but still end up with more in the bag...
 

D Sea

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 23, 2001
Messages
500
Reaction score
0
Here is a link to the newly proposed framework (from the March 19, 2002 Federal Register)  http://migratorybirds.fws.gov/fedre...preliminary.pdf   See page 10 for a summary chart.

For the Pacific Flyway, it looks like our options will be:
Liberal: 107 days 7 per day/14 in possession (7 Mallards including 2 hens)
Moderate:  86 days 7 per day/14 in possession (5 Mallards including 2 hens)
Restricted: 60 days 4 per day/8 in possession (3 Mallards including 1 hen)
Very Restricted;  38 days 4 per day/8 in possession (3 Mallards including 1 hen)
 

twoducks

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 31, 2001
Messages
45
Reaction score
0
rlwright,  I have to agree with jay, if you are loosing that many birds then You need to rethink what you are doing, if you are just plain missing then you need to get to the range and practice, if you are shooting to high then you need to improve your skills but the bottom line is you should never loose that many birds.
As far as season, I would like a later starting date, and then split the season if we have to and finish as late in Jan. as possible.
 

Spec

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 19, 2001
Messages
104
Reaction score
0
Shooting skills mean more ducks not lost ,first look at the big picture if you want to shoot ducks and are loosing to many change shot sizes or types of shot being used! If I were shooting in the area you shoot in I would be using heavy shot the bay ducks can take alot more shot because they have thicker feathers and heavy down for your pellets to go thru swhoot bigger stuff or heavier stuff like #4 heavy shot or #2 Steel in 3 inch find a choke that patterens good in your gun and stick with it! crippled ducks mean 2 things you are shooting at birds to far or not getting them in the pattern! Here in the valley we never shoot birds more than 35 yards away at my blind and with the amount of birds we shot out of the blind we only lost 3 birds all season ,we were lucky as other blinds got the birds that didn't die right away or the total would have been 8 or 10 birds,those birds were mostly geese that didn't fall dead or for some reason didn't get a wing broke when shot! I know when we first started using steel we wounded more birds but we have taken the time to learn what it can do and it kills just fine at closer ranges !
 

pitdog

Banned
Joined
Jun 12, 2001
Messages
2,297
Reaction score
0
Well said Spec,

I shoot Bismuth #4, #2 and BB shot. Steel is much faster and I lead too much as a result and tend to miss a few. I have been using Bismuth since they were introduced and I rarely lose a crip. Still, whether heavy or steel, you need shooting skills to limit the cripples.

Just my 2 cents.
steve
 

rlwright

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 8, 2002
Messages
562
Reaction score
0
I'll give the #1's a try, I've been using 3.5" BB, 3" BBB, 3" 2, and 2.75" 4. Hitting them hasn't been a problem, killing them is what's lacking. I can see them get hit in the air and then they fly for a mile then drop dead. Whats frusterating is upon recovery(if possible) theres 3 or 4 holes in them. Unless I break a wing, they keep flying. I know this is got to be happening to other hunters becuase theres alot more wounded ducks around then there used to be. I think I need a denser pattern, but that means using smaller shot which is harder to find with non-toxic loads because they bearly carry enough energy for the longer shots.

Any other suggestions? Maybe a good excuse for a new gun?  
 

songdog

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 5, 2001
Messages
2,054
Reaction score
1
I've sucked it up and shot Bismuth for the last three years.  There's been a marked decline in the number of birds that I've lost.  A few boxes a month from Cabela's in the off season means that the pain isn't so bad when the season rolls around.
 

hunthog

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 7, 2002
Messages
424
Reaction score
3
rlwright,

Sounds to me like you need to let the birds work a little more.  I don't take shots longer than 30-40 yards and have no trouble dropping them dead with an IC and  2 3/4" 2's.  Been using them for years.  I have a Benelli SBE but never shoot 3 1/2' at ducks and rarely shoot 3".  Please tell me you're not one of those guys that thinks 50 yards is a good range for steel, even 3 1/2" steel.  Try letting those go by and wait for shots you can kill cleanly with.  I can't even imagine shooting 3 1/2" BBB or BB at ducks and I can't even imagine you not killing them dead with shot that big with 2 or 3 pellets, especially in BBB.  Like shooting a person with a 12 ga slug.  I "accidently" shot a duck over my decoys, at 40 yards, after shooting at some geese with 3" BBB's.  It broke every bone in the ducks body.  It looked like the dog was carrying a wet, bloody rag back.

Shoot em' in range, hit em' and they drop like a rock with 2's.

hunthog
 


Top Bottom