Got up north for the opener again this year. My favorite spots were holding all the birds I had expected. 3 WODU and a drake ABDU on opening day. Had some migration research in NH the next few days so didn't get any more in until Friday (my birthday
). My lady was able to take her hunter safety course early this spring and was on her first duck hunt with me. This is how she experienced her first hunt... One of the streams I like to hunt is about a 1.5mi paddle in. We got in early and laid out a doz RNDU,a small pile of WODU and a doz or so hen MALL ( the few drakes I've seen are still eclipsing). Several ABDU's in the spread well before shooting light. A large group of RNDU (30) that we could hear 150yds before we could see them made a pass right in our face. I thought they would turn back in but put down about 100yds upstream. Had a few good passes from some other small groups of this and that. Beautiful pink sunrise, coyotes howling, and a very angry, very large bull moose right out on the stream 70 yds to our east. He was making all kinds of noise. 2 BAEA's turned the corner about a quarter mile upstream and took a few dives at the RNDU's and pushed them right on top of us. They again only made passes because the BAEA's landed in an old spruce just upstream. They circled a few times wanting to land, but laid back down somewhere else south. The big bull moose from earlier found a sparring partner just SE of us and they got right to it. The amount of sound was defining!! One NOHA cruising low following the flow of the stream came a few yards over our heads. We paddled the stream out to the north to finish the morning around 1pm with a few woodies and blacks to show.
Now I give you these details for this reason. My lady was able to do some spring turkey hunting with me. Get out early, sit on a field edge, keep your mouth shut, and hope something comes by. She has asked me in the past why I am so passionate about duck hunting. I told her that bringing home a duck or two is merely a side thought for me. Killing ducks is my least favorite part of the process; the way the woods wake up when you're sitting on a remote backwater is unlike anything else. As a biologist I get to see the woods wake up more often than I'd like ( I don't mind staying in a warm bed with a hot woman). The morning of the 27th was one of the most exciting, beautiful, active days I've ever experienced and I was so glad that she was able to experience my birthday morning with me. It goes without saying, but I will... SHE IS HOOKED!!! It's all she has been able to talk about since we got home Sunday. We'll never get to see the number of birds like the hotspots in the Midwest, but nowhere else on earth can you experience a true backcountry hunt like you can in Maine. We are truly blessed to live in here!
Keep rocking' . Good luck to everyone today and going forward. Stay safe. I'd add photos but I can't figure it out on this damn iPad.
I thought my calling would bring in the ducks, now I realize it's the sound of me peeing that works best...