Swan Tags

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Swan Tags

Postby Duck Runner » Wed Sep 20, 2006 7:07 pm

Who drew a tag? I got mine, but my wife didn't.
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Postby Leakydecoy » Wed Sep 20, 2006 8:21 pm

Yep. Pac Flyway. :thumbsup:
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Postby phutch30 » Wed Sep 20, 2006 8:58 pm

What I didnt draw.Man that blows!!!! Now I have two stupid bonus points. Oh well congrats to you lucky SOBs
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Postby Troutslayer » Wed Sep 20, 2006 9:05 pm

I got one, yeah baby. Pac flyway. Better start looking for an anti-aircraft gun. I've never shot one before.

Fingers crossed on the bison tag.
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Postby marcbme » Wed Sep 20, 2006 9:20 pm

Crap! I hate you! (good luck) I hope you die! (it's about the funnest hunt you'll have) You suck! (congrats!)
Lord......let me be as good a hunter as my dog thinks I am....amen
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Postby Duck Runner » Wed Sep 20, 2006 10:24 pm

Troutslayer wrote:I got one, yeah baby. Pac flyway. Better start looking for an anti-aircraft gun. I've never shot one before.


I've never shot an anti-aircraft gun either, or a swan for that matter. :mrgreen: Gonna need some advice from the veterans around here.
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Postby marcbme » Wed Sep 20, 2006 10:49 pm

Keep calling Freeze out's update line for Swan numbers. When they get enough head over there, get on the causeway bank, cover up and get ready to have fun. Only need 3" B or BB shot, your shots will be 20 yards max (think my illegal swan last year). The swans hang out in a weeded area and take off right over the causeway. They are so big that they don't have much altitude by the time they get over you.

If you can get into the weeds between the Causeway and the road, where they hang out, that would be even better. (but you need a canoe or other non moterized boat)

Try to go on a week day too. Weekends have lots of jackasses who scare off swans, claim swans shot by others, ect...ect....

Also look to have some GREAT snow goose shooting too, they come in in flocks of THOUSANDS. And in between, there is decent duck pass shooting to occupy your time between swans and snows. I have a map of freeze out if you want it, I could try and PDF it and send it to ya.
Lord......let me be as good a hunter as my dog thinks I am....amen
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Postby Leakydecoy » Thu Sep 21, 2006 8:31 am

Freezeout is a spectacle to behold if you've never been there before, but I've stopped hunting there for some of reasons Marc mentioned. Too much of a firing line situation for me and more shooters than hunters. It's certainly the best concentration of swans in the state but not the only place to fill a tag.

Just be sure you learn the difference between trumpeters and tundras. I've been seeing more and more of the trumpeters every year. http://www.trumpeterswansociety.org/id.htm
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Postby phutch30 » Thu Sep 21, 2006 8:52 am

Call the hot line and wait for the swan numbers to reach 4000+, then go. I usually wait for a little higher numbers but that can kill ya also. If you wait too long the area freezes up. Over the years my best time has been around Halloween. The swan and snow geese numbers are way up.

When you go. Go up and watch the swans the evening befor eand locate the flight paths. The next morning be there with a 12ga loaded with B,BB,BBB steel or #2 heavy shot (best choice) and wait. It rarely takes more than qa day to shoot your swan. MAke sure you have a viable means of retrieving ie dog, boat or waders. I dont recommend waders as the mud in the ponds is something else.

I like the area between the road and pond 4 for swans, that has always been the ticket for me. The snows all come off the main lake and usually head NW but depnds on the wind. It wont take long to figure out where to be for the snows.
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Postby Duck Runner » Thu Sep 21, 2006 11:02 am

Thanks guys, I have never been to Freezeout before so I am as green as can be with this... I have a boat so that won't be a problem either. I understand you can shoot trumpeter or tundra swans in the Pacific flyway whereas in the Central only Tundra. The excitement is almost too much to handle. ha ha.
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Postby phutch30 » Thu Sep 21, 2006 12:24 pm

You "can" shoot trumps but it is highly recommended that you learn to identify tundras. It really isnt that hard. They allow you to shoot trumps because of the numb nuts out there who mistake the trumpeter swans for tundras.

Remember this before you shoot a swan. Tundras are abundent and can withstand current harvest levels. They number in the tens of thousands Trumpeter swans number about 1000 for the total rocky mountain population. If we are to continue to have a season for swans its in our best interests to NOT shoot ANY trumperter swans. There are efforts by the greenies going on now to eliminate the swan seasons in the west due to the "incidental" killing of trumpeter swans. So learn to identify the tundras. If you can tell a mallard from a gadwhal you can tell tundras from trumpeters. So please dont just go shoot a swan. Know what you are shooting befor you pull the trigger.
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Postby Duck Runner » Thu Sep 21, 2006 12:49 pm

Understood. I will have to do my research with that. Any quick easy distinction?
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Postby Fredito » Thu Sep 21, 2006 12:55 pm

I think the easist way is the sound that they make...if you look at the link above in this post it gives a detail of the differences...I agree with the above posts...if you cant tell the difference, dont take the shot...although I have to say my persoanl favorite is when you have swans mixed in a group of snows and hear 'wow, look at the size of that snow'. :umm: ....hope everyone has a good season
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Postby phutch30 » Thu Sep 21, 2006 1:12 pm

Fredito- Jeff said that didnt he. He said they same thing last year with me and mark. Only it was "wow those snow geese look weird" when a flock of pelicans flew by. :laughing: Just kidding Jeff.

The sound is good if they are talking. If not look at the bill, tundras have a smaller bill with less pronounce black. If they are close enough (under 30 yards) you can see the yellow on the bill edge of the tundras and may be able to see the red on the bill of the trumpeters. You will usually see way more (1000:1 ratio) tundras than trumps at freezout. And the hotline will give notice if the see any trumpeters and where they have been hanging out.
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pelicans

Postby fun4jake » Thu Sep 21, 2006 2:03 pm

Huh, They were Pelicans, I am confused now!!
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Postby marcbme » Thu Sep 21, 2006 4:05 pm

Count yourself lucky...out of 6 members of our "regular" hunting party that applied for a swan only one, my brother, scored.
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Postby Fredito » Thu Sep 21, 2006 5:19 pm

check out this pic... http://www.schmoker.org/BirdPics/Photos ... S_ETC1.jpg the poor goose is just dwarfed...I should put in for a swan next year....those birds always set me off when I spend a half hour crawling on my stomach in the snow to jump some geese and end up spooking those and thus the entire flock of geese :withstupid:


the site also has a galley of tundra swans:
http://www.schmoker.org/BirdPics/TUSW.html
and trumpter:
http://www.schmoker.org/BirdPics/TRUSs.html
and just for jeff...snows!!!
http://www.schmoker.org/BirdPics/SnowGeese.html
and if i wanted to be a jerk...Heres another one jeff :hammering:
http://www.schmoker.org/BirdPics/AWPE.html

Hope this helps guys I know its alot
Last edited by Fredito on Thu Sep 21, 2006 8:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Leakydecoy » Thu Sep 21, 2006 8:07 pm

I agree with what the others have said and that's why I provided the swan ID link above. There is NO reason to shoot a trumpeter and plenty of good reasons why it's not a good idea.

I use just two swan decoys and the big birds will come in as if on a rope. Better yet, they can't help but talk on the way in which simplifies any ID challenges. Personally, I've found pass shooting a swan to be pretty anticlimatic but having them spread those wings while setting into your dekes is intense. I once had some trumps come from behind into a diver set on Canyon Ferry and I about peed myself. The problem with using decoys on a weekend at Freezeout is that they attract hunters, too.

Unless you're planning to get one mounted, I highly recommend picking out a grayer young bird for the table.
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Postby Duck Runner » Thu Sep 21, 2006 8:38 pm

Leaky, do you use floating swan decs? Havn't seen those before. I would much rather decoy a swan that pass shoot, I am interested in knowing more about that process. Any calling required or just let them go as they will?
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Postby Leakydecoy » Thu Sep 21, 2006 8:46 pm

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Postby Troutslayer » Thu Sep 21, 2006 10:14 pm

Duckrunner, maybe we should get together to fill those tags? I know a spot...
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Postby Duck Runner » Thu Sep 21, 2006 10:28 pm

That sounds like a good time. It would be nice to get a little help for my first time around, and another huntin' buddy is always a plus.
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Postby phutch30 » Fri Sep 22, 2006 8:24 am

Man you guys are so lucky. I was really looking forward to going. I cant believe I didnt draw even with a preference point. Have fun.
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Postby Hart » Mon Sep 25, 2006 10:03 pm

You're going hutch. I need a good retriever for my swan.
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Postby phutch30 » Tue Sep 26, 2006 1:46 pm

HAHA. Fine ,I'll be your swan retriveing B%$# if thats the only way I get to go swan hunting. But I aint going to smile while I retrieve it!
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