Wednesday, December 28, 2011

The Dismal Duck Season of 2011

The duck season is more than half over in Virginia and things aren't looking up.Compared to last year I haven't even harvested half as many birds.The funny thing here,I'm not complaining one bit.Last year I was hunting in semi-urban areas surrounded by mcmansions and highways and we did great on hunting.The feeling that came from harvesting those birds was nothing more than meat in the freezer.This year I have kept it local,determined to figure out my local rivers and where the actual migratory birds are.Unfortunately the weather has no cooperated at all with highs in the 60's and lows well above freezing.For the last week I have burned a lot of gas,bumped into way to many stumps in my effort to locate birds.Bottom line is they simply are not here yet.Given my schedule at work I have one more week to hunt and that will be the end of my duck season.I have managed to scratch out a few birds and I still hold out faith I will have a few more memorable hunts.

Bright sunshine,no wind,50 degrees,no birds

Last week I set up in my boat blind by myself and watched the sun come up while I enjoyed a hot cup of coffee.I listened to the geese fly over at nose bleed level and wasn't bothered by it at all.Over the last few years I forgot what it was like to creep into a swamp before sunrise and just listen.Not to the traffic and sirens of the city but to the wind and the birds waking up.I scratched out a few geese that day and had an awesome feeling of accomplishment.The next day I went even farther back into the swamp with one of my brothers and we fired zero shots.Upset?Not at all!We hid the boat back in a creek and rested on the shoreline and simply talked about everything that life has seemed to throw at us in the last few years.It's easy too forget what this time of the year is supposed to be all about.I would hope that whatever your outdoor addiction is you take a moment and try to remember why it was you fell in love with it.For me it isn't about shooting animals and reaching limits.It's all about the camaraderie of the duck blind at 530 am.Seriously where else will grown men feel comfortable telling off color jokes at that time of day.Christmas has come and gone and New Years is only a few days away.My only hope is Winter will show up very soon but I won't hold my breath.


The Reverend Fowl ™ said...

The Ducks won this year in the natural areas.

tugboatdude said...

You got that right Rev!Most of the seasons are closing or closed up North on the East Coast and the birds are just starting to show up.No worries,I just have to hunt harder!