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Lunker

Waterfowl Reports

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Lunker

I guess I will do the honor of starting the annual thread, even if the MN hunters can't contribute for another week grin

Hunted the WI opener today. My original central WI plans fell through so I ended up doing some last minute scouting yesterday close to home. Wound up on a WI river backwater in northern WI.

It was a very weird day. Saw 2 woodies from about 9-11:45 and that was it. Just before noon when I was going to pick up it got really crazy. A huge flock of mallards got broken up by another hunting party and all of a sudden there were groups all over the place working. About this time good numbers of woodies and a few ringers showed up as well. Should have probably done more shooting but was fun to watch. Wound up with 3 mallards down(1 lost, ran into the woods while I was reloading). While I was attempting to recover the cripple, birds continued to work my decoys and had about 12 woodies land in my spread...It was an action packed 20 minutes or so in an otherwise slow day.

Saw quite a few other hunters out. Not a ton of shooting but a fair amount. Gonna try again in the morning.

River was really high. A lot of flooded vegetation. Birds were staying off the main bays and sticking to smaller backwaters.

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creepworm

Went out in South Dakota for a couple of hours on Saturday morning. Could not get to the spot I originally wanted to hunt due to the flooding. Hunted some public land and got 3 Gadwal and 1 Goose. Saw a ton of birds.

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Beast26

Sounds like there is plenty of birds out in the Dakotas. A co-workers was out scouting a week ago and said he saw a ton. I was looking at the "marsh cam" where we are headed on Wednesday and there is a ton of birds just north of Winnipeg. Check this out

http://www.oakhammockmarsh.ca/nature/live-video/index.html

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carpshooterdeluxe

Sodak Opener: WATER EVERYWHERE. the area i wanted to hunt was impossible to get to from any direction due to water over the roads. didn't have plat books for the 2 counties i found good fields in so i sat around all weekend watching football.

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Lunker

Terrible morning this morning. Missed a couple pass shots and that was about it. Saw a few birds but not very many.

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TylerS

For all the birds I saw during early goose season, I can't begin to wonder where they are now.

Went to our usual resident opening spot in North Dakota and didn't see half of what we usually see. By Sunday, there were even less. I'm going to hit it hard this weekend and see where they all went. I was literally covered in ducks in August, but now they're nowhere to be found. I think all the water really has them spread out.

So in conclusion: yes, you will find ducks in Nodak, but be prepared to log some hours behind the wheel!

Oh yeah, and good luck to all you non-residents this weekend!

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Maxxed Out

It's the same in MN I was seeing piles of ducks up to about a week ago and they seem to have left or are spread out by all the water we got last week. Gonna be warm and sunny up to opener maybe that will dry up the fields and push the birds back to the big water. If not it will be a lackluster opener in western MN

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tweedlap

Hello, we had a brief cool down a couple of weeks ago and a Youth

Hunting Day.

A few teal and woodies left around here but not many.

tweed

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Gordie

Tweed I was down your way today and saw tons of ducks most in flooded fields east of you and a bunch off of the over flow on the Minnsota river. I was really suprised to see that many ducks most of them in the fields were mallys.

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CANOPY SAM

As I was cleaning the garden yesterday evening I watched several large flights of Honkers lined up in V's, flying pretty darn high in a beeline south. If I didn't know any better, I'd say some of these birds are migrating already.

Could we be in for an early freeze up?

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TylerS

As I was cleaning the garden yesterday evening I watched several large flights of Honkers lined up in V's, flying pretty darn high in a beeline south. If I didn't know any better, I'd say some of these birds are migrating already.

Could we be in for an early freeze up?

Funny you say that. I was talking to a friend last night, and he goes "you know, they are forecasting a nice fall, but those hairs sticking up on the back of my neck tell me we're going to get two feet of snow by mid-October."

I hope he's right!!!

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Lunker

I was noticing the same thing from my deer stand yesterday evening.

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CANOPY SAM

Scouting report: NW MN: 09/30/10 - this morning the fields that held thousands of geese last week are now empty. There are still decent numbers of birds around, very few ducks from what I've noted, but the remaining geese are scattered out. The weather is beautiful, and the fields are still pretty sloppy from last weeks rain, so if you're coming up I'd plan to bring insect repellent. With weather so cooperative, and such an abundance of food available, it's going to be a tricky opener up here. Even fields with decent numbers of birds have them scattered out over much of the field - no real concentrations of birds. I'm pretty sure we've seen some birds moving south already.

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deerwoody

Definetly some birds on the move already.Been watching pods of birds on the river and rice around here for a couple months with comparable numbers as last year.Leech is loaded as usual along with several remote local spots.Keep the barrel warm and the dog wet!!

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fishuhalik

beast, i love that camera! i find myself watching it more and more every year, just wanting to get back up there. it's been 5 years now and it's driving me crazy

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Shoot2Kill

Worst opener I've had since moving here 5 years ago. We had 3 mallards buzz our slough and that was it. On the way out I ran into the landowner that asked me if I had seen all the ducks funneling into the corn field to the south of his property line on the other side of his timber....uh no, so off I went to get permission from that landowner who has let me bowhunt in years past so I thought it would be a lock...denied. Since it rained heavy 10 days ago he has a low spot in the middle of his field that has about 2 feet of water in it and in his estimate there are a couple hundred mallards on it. Aaaagh. Denied because his son bowhunts the adjacent timber. Frustrated.

Hopefully sunrise tomorrow will be better.

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buckx37x

The slough we hunt we had no luck on,really about as slow as I remember.We then went and jumped four little ponds including some flooded corn, finally on the last pond woodies. We came out of it with four all drakes hopefully sunday a.m. will show some better results.

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walleyehunter80

3 guys 4 doz. decoys 1 slough and 18 ducks in 1.5 hours flat, and we were picky for our last 10 birds( 9 mallards, 2 pintails, 4 blue winged teal, 1 green winged teal, 1 gadwall, 1 spooner) of all 9 were drakes not sure on the B.W.T!? Lots of ducks around!!!!

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FLnick87

pretty slow morning...ended up w/ 2 ducks and a goose. highlight was seein my 6 month lab try to retrieve the goose...she tried the foot, the wing, the neck and still couldnt get it off the ground. she did do a good job on the duck tho, defanitly got excited and wanted more birds!

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Markit

Was a slow start until we started jumping ponds. Ended up with 1 goose, 4 teal, 1 shoveler, 1 widgen, and 13 woodies. Great day to be outdoors.

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morefishplease

Slow, not many local ducks around. Talked to friends that were hunting other lakes in the county and the same results for them.

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Todd Caswell

First time in a few years Iv'e hunted the MN opener, should have had a limit of woodys and Mallards but.......... laugh Nice morning to be out and accually seen enough birds to make it interesting.

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1032165148_eqTM6-L.jpg

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Stringerless!

Hunted Carlos Avery both days. Saturday saw a fair amount of birds. All before the wonderful 9:00 start of course. Never fired a shot ! Were pretty pumped up about this morning but when the shooting started ( a FULL 13 minutes early !) Nothing survived. It was a non-stop firework grand finale that did not die down till 3 minutes after legal time. We never saw a duck. For the first time I left my calls home ! If you wanted to hear pathetic calling you should have heard us trying to call ducks and geese by mouth ! Finally got a shot at a Suzie and we got her. Missed 2 teal. That is all the oppurtunities we had. What is with the new stealth mode these hunters have now ? They do not turn on a light and stay quiet so u don't know they are there. Light comes and we were surrounded. Bad scene ! If you are gonna be close enough to hunt my spread at least flash a light so I can move !!!!

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certified jumbo

Solid pics Todd, sweet

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strait-meat

hunted out west. 3 guys 17 birds the first day. 6 mallards, 1 redhead, 3 bluebills, 5 gwt 2 bwt. and missed a decent number also.

the next day 2 guys same spot and shot 3 bwt and 1 can

wasn't really that great even on the first day.

In our area, it started about 15 mins before legal shooting hours on both days.

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  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • MJ1657
      Slow for us on Sunday but we shot a Golden Eye so that was kind of cool.   Not sure why it was hanging around Cambridge this time of year. 
    • Rick
      Population estimate statistically unchanged from last year Minnesota’s wolf population estimate was 2,655 wolves and 465 wolf packs during the winter of 2017-2018 within Minnesota’s wolf range, an estimate that is statistically unchanged from the previous winter, according to the Department of Natural Resources. “Subtle changes in wolf population numbers year to year indicate that Minnesota supports a healthy wolf population and the long-term trends demonstrate that the wolf population is fully recovered,” said Dan Stark, large carnivore specialist for the DNR. The survey’s margin of error was plus or minus about 700 wolves and makes the estimate statistically unchanged from the previous winter’s estimate of approximately 2,856 wolves and 500 wolf packs. The population survey is conducted in mid-winter near the low point of the annual population cycle. Immediately following birth of pups each spring, the wolf population typically doubles, though many pups do not survive to the following winter. Pack counts during winter are assumed to represent minimum estimates given the challenges with detecting all members of a pack together at the same time. Survey results suggest pack sizes were the same as last year (4.85 versus 4.8) and packs used larger territories (61 versus 54 square miles) than the previous winter. Although neither individually represented a significant change from recent years, slightly larger pack territories last winter explain the lower population estimate and are consistent with estimated changes in deer numbers in many parts of the wolf range. “The accuracy of our wolf population estimate is dependent on radio-collaring a representative sample of wolf packs,” said Dr. John Erb, DNR wolf research biologist. Annual wolf capture efforts are focused on areas for radio-collaring that are believed to collectively represent the overall wolf range, particularly with respect to land cover and deer density. Capture success varies each year, some collared wolves die or disperse, and some radio-collars prematurely fail, creating annual variability in the degree to which collared packs are representative of the entire population. “Nonetheless, confidence intervals for the past two surveys widely overlap, indicating no significant change from last year,” Erb said. Although wolf population estimates have been conducted annually since 2012, the portion of the survey that is used to calculate total and pack-occupied wolf range is completed every five years. This past winter’s survey estimated a 9,321 square mile increase in total wolf range from the 2012-2013 wolf population survey; however, the survey results indicated that only about 23 percent of this new area, or 2,175 square miles, was deemed to be occupied by resident wolf packs during the winter of 2017-2018. Minnesota’s wolf population remains above the state’s minimum goal of at least 1,600 wolves and is above the federal recovery goal of 1,251 to 1,400 wolves. The DNR’s goal for wolf management, as outlined in the state’s wolf management plan, is to ensure the long-term survival of wolves in Minnesota while addressing wolf-human conflicts. Wolves in Minnesota returned to the federal list of threatened species as a result of a Washington, D.C. federal district court ruling in December 2014. Visit the DNR website at mndnr.gov/wolves to find the full report, an FAQ and an overview of wolf management in the state, including the wolf management plan. Discuss below - to view set the hook here.
    • Rick
      Richfield artist Timothy Turenne won the Minnesota Pheasant Habitat Stamp contest. The painting was selected by judges from among 11 submissions for the annual contest sponsored by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.  Turenne is a three-time winner of the pheasant stamp contest and his painting will be featured on the 2019 pheasant habitat stamp. The pheasant stamp validation for hunting is $7.50 and is required for pheasant hunters ages 18 to 64. For an extra 75 cents, purchasers can receive the validation as well as the pictorial stamp in the mail. It also is sold as a collectible. Revenue from stamp sales is dedicated to pheasant habitat management and protection. Three entries advanced as finalists and were selected Sept. 20 at DNR headquarters in St. Paul. Other finalists were Ryan Stigman of Perham, second place; and Edward DuRose of Roseville, third place. The DNR offers no prizes for the stamp contest winner, but the winning artist retains the right to reproduce the work. The 2019 pheasant stamp will be available for sale in March. Discuss below - to view set the hook here.
    • Wakemup
      I like costa's green mirror or blue mirror personally.
    • Rick
      Youth ages 10-15 can participate in a special deer season that runs from Thursday, Oct. 18, to Sunday, Oct. 21, in 28 permit areas of southeastern and northwestern Minnesota, including in the Twin Cities metro permit area 601, according to the Department of Natural Resources.  “Youth deer season is about giving kids a unique opportunity to get out into the woods with a parent or mentor,” said James Burnham, DNR recruitment, retention and reactivation (R3) coordinator. “Many students get a couple days off school for teacher workshops during the youth season so the break is a great time to go hunting and help share the passion for being outside that so many of Minnesota’s hunters and anglers have.” Deer permit areas open to the hunt are: 101, 105, 111, 114, 201, 203, 208, 209, 256, 257, 260, 263, 264, 267, 268, 338, 339, 341, 342, 343, 344 (including Whitewater State Game Refuge), 345, 346, 347, 348, 349, 601 and 603. Blaze orange or blaze pink requirements apply to all hunters, trappers and adult mentors in areas open for the youth firearms deer season. Public land is open, and private land is open if the hunters have landowner permission. Since it was first implemented in 2004, the youth deer season has expanded and encompassed new areas – creating a growing number of opportunities to develop Minnesota’s next generation of hunters. Passing along the annual fall deer hunting tradition does more than contribute to the bottom line of businesses in communities across Minnesota. It helps fund conservation efforts that benefit wildlife, habitat and water quality, making a better Minnesota for all. How to participate Youth ages 10 through 15 must obtain a firearms deer license. Youth ages 12 to 15 need to have completed firearms safety or, if not, can obtain an apprentice hunter validation. During the youth season, a parent, guardian or mentor age 18 or older must accompany the youth and only need a license if the youth is taking advantage of the apprentice validation option. Party hunting on a youth license is not allowed – so youth must take and tag their own deer. The bag limit for the youth season is one deer only. Youth may use their regular license or a bonus permit if they take an antlerless deer, regardless of the management designation. Bucks must be tagged with the youth’s regular license. Participation does not affect eligibility for the regular deer season; however, the harvested deer counts against the youth’s annual statewide bag limit and the bag limit for the deer permit area. If hunting in permit areas 346, 348, 349 and 603, the early antlerless only season is in effect from Oct. 18 to Oct. 21, so adults and youth can hunt at the same time in these areas; however, if a youth harvests a deer and wishes to continue hunting during the early antlerless only season they must purchase an early antlerless permit. Tags and CWD testing in permit area 603 In permit area 603, youth hunters may purchase and use disease management tags but only for antlerless deer. Disease management tags may be purchased at any electronic license vendor, online or by telephone and are valid without first purchasing a regular deer license. The tags cost $1.50 plus issuing fees. Youth hunters in permit area 603 must have their adult deer tested for chronic wasting disease (CWD) by providing the head of all adult deer in one of five head collection boxes (see page 64 of the 2018 Hunting and Trapping Regulations Handbook for location details). After the head of these deer are provided for sampling, the hunter cannot move the carcass out of the permit area until a not detected test result is received. Properly cut-up deer and boned-out meat can be taken out of the area provided no brain matter or spinal column material is attached. A tent and tripod to hang deer is provided by the Bluffland Whitetails Association at the Preston DNR Forestry office. This is available to hunters to allow them to quarter their deer, leave the carcass remains in a provided dumpster, and give them options so quarters or meat can leave the 603 zone before receiving a CWD test result. Information on proper steps to follow after harvesting a deer in permit area 603 or to check CWD test results is available on the DNR website at mndnr.gov/cwd. CWD testing during the early antlerless and youth season outside the CWD zone is not required. Mandatory testing will occur on Saturday, Nov. 3, and Sunday, Nov. 4, and Saturday, Nov. 17, and Sunday, Nov. 18, during the first two days of the firearms A and B deer seasons in these areas. More information about the youth season can be found on page 35 of the 2018 Minnesota Hunting and Trapping Regulations Handbook and online at mndnr.gov/regulations/hunting. Discuss below - to view set the hook here.
    • Rick
      Hunters in portions of southeastern Minnesota can once again harvest antlerless deer in an early antlerless-only season from Thursday, Oct. 18, to Sunday, Oct. 21, in deer permit areas 346, 348, 349 and 603 in Fillmore, Houston, Olmsted and Winona counties, according to the Department of Natural Resources. “The goal of this hunt is to reduce the deer populations in these areas with higher deer densities because of damage to agricultural crops and increased risk of chronic wasting disease spreading,” said Erik Thorson, acting big game program leader. “Any antlerless deer harvested as part of this hunt do not count against an individual’s normal statewide or deer permit area bag limit, so they can be considered extra deer.” Deer populations in permit areas 346, 348 and 349 have been over the population goals established in 2014 for multiple seasons. The antlerless-only season is intended to help move populations toward established goals, reduce damage to resources and provide additional hunting opportunity. How to participate Public land is limited in the early antlerless hunt areas and hunters need to ask permission to hunt private lands. All deer must be tagged with an appropriate permit. There are a few permit and license options for those who want to participate. With at least one valid early antlerless permit, and a valid archery, firearms or muzzleloader deer license for all four open permit areas. With bonus permits and at least one valid early antlerless permit, as well as a valid archery, firearms or muzzleloader deer license for all four open permit areas. In permit area 603 with disease management tags. Any hunter of legal age may purchase and use an unlimited number of disease management tags to harvest antlerless deer during the early antlerless-only hunt in permit area 603. They are available for $1.50 plus issuing fees wherever deer licenses are sold and are valid without any additional licenses. Disease management tags may not be used outside permit area 603. In the early antlerless deer hunt, only antlerless deer may be taken, the bag limit is five, and hunters may use up to five early antlerless permits or other valid permits. Deer harvested during the special season do not count toward a hunter’s statewide limit during other deer seasons. Early antlerless deer permits cost $7.50 for residents, $40 for nonresidents, and may be purchased wherever hunting licenses are sold. The early antlerless season coincides with the four-day special youth deer season. More information can be found at mndnr.gov/hunting/deer. CWD testing in permit area 603 Hunters in permit area 603 must have their adult deer tested for chronic wasting disease (CWD) by providing the head of all adult deer in one of five head collection boxes (see page 64 of the 2018 Hunting and Trapping Regulations Handbook for location details). After the head of these deer are provided for sampling, the hunter cannot move the carcass out of the permit area until a not detected test result is received. Properly cut-up deer and boned-out meat can be taken out of the area provided no brain matter or spinal column material is attached. A tent and tripod to hang deer is provided by the Bluffland Whitetails Association at the Preston DNR Forestry office. This is available to hunters to allow them to quarter their deer, leave the carcass remains in a provided dumpster, and give them options so quarters or meat can leave the 603 zone before receiving a CWD test result. Information on proper steps to follow after harvesting a deer in permit area 603 or to check CWD test results is available on the DNR website at mndnr.gov/cwd. CWD testing during the early antlerless and youth season outside the CWD zone is not required. Mandatory testing will occur on Saturday, Nov. 3, and Sunday, Nov. 4, and Saturday, Nov. 17, and Sunday, Nov. 18, during the first two days of the firearms A and B deer seasons in these areas. Individuals can voluntarily have deer tested for CWD through the Veterinary Diagnostic Lab at the University of Minnesota for a fee. More information is available online at vdl.umn.edu or by telephone at 612-625-8787. Discuss below - to view set the hook here.
    • jgrimmz
      I had a good opener, also with ten. We should have taken a lot more, but shooting, jitters, and other factors prevented it (as usual). For us, Sunday was really slow, but still managed to bag a few. 
    • Parmer
      That's a good idea thanks. 
    • fish_time
      We love it when we catch a muskie, but it can be such a grind!   
    • mbeyer
      Just got back from five days on the lake. We were fishing for walleye in the end fun with limits already taken. We are on an island and the dock bite was very good. Slip bobbers with either rainbows or chubs. Also, walking the island and casting tubes was also productive for larger walleye. Off the point of the island, under dock, near rocks. I guess that means we caught most of our fish shallow. Wind was our friend, to a point. Didn't like some of the gusts but wind blown shore and points were key. Follow the wind.   Smallmouth were not shallow. We did work some shoreline but did not find those fish up shallow. We did run into some smallmouth on the points, etc deeper while fishing for walleye.