Duck Hunting for puddlers like Mallards, Sprig (Pintails), Black ducks, Widgeons, Woodducks, Teal, and other ducks.
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What's your opinion on hunting teal (bluewings and greenwings) on ponds (small ones from 1-4 acres)? I was talking to a fellow duck hunter tonight and talked about teal hunting and told him about how I had been hunting a 3 acre pond for bluewings and he said teal really don't like any small water and tend to stay away from it. I've seen quite a few flocks of teal light into ponds, never really killed much but have seen them light into it. I'm on the Mississippi River so most duck hunters here are biased towards the river because they haven't hunted much else. I'm not disagreeing, TONS of bluewingers fly the river each year and I know it's good hunting but do you guys do alright teal hunting on small waters like I describe?
**2014-2015 Illinois Waterfowl Season**
Blue-winged teal - 16
Green-winged teal - 7
Wood Ducks - 5
Canada Geese - 3
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I have a cabin in Michigan that has about a dozen beaver ponds around it. Most of them are less than 1 acre with a few around 2 acres. There are 3 that I usually hunt. These are roost hunts just before dark. I only get one shoot out of each pond but they are usually perty good. I get mostly wood ducks but also get some BW teal and the occasional mallard or hoodie. From what I've seen the teal tend to stay around larger open marshes. But if you see ducks using the ponds then settup where they want to be. If you want to hunt there more than once though don't hunt the nights because you will scare them all out.
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Teal do show a strong preference for following open water, but that doesn't mean they won't drop into potholes. Here's the one I expect to do well at this weekend:
Haven't seen a teal pass near it yet this year, but experience tells me that when the shooting starts in places the teal are currently using, we'll see enough traffic to enjoy good gunning.
Whether you can also expect to do well depends on whether teal traffic your pond's area. And you may not know that until the shooting starts in your area, too.
If you think I'm wrong, you might be right.
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The size of the water doesn't matter as much as if the pond is in the middle of the woods or in the open.......you'll have a harder time getting teal into it if the pond is in the trees vs in a field. We don't often get teal to scream through the trees like a woodie, or drop straight down in like a mallard.....but have killed plenty on small ponds as long as they have an avenue to get to it.
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