any ducks outside sta's?

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Replies

  • gator4evergator4ever Posts: 2,563 Captain
    Chet that is a good question. But as you it doesnt take much pressure to move ducks.

    Jr if they pair up down here and one gets shot? Would the remaining duck just find another mate?

    Even if they gave us another 2 weeks. I think it would make a big difference.
    "sometimes it's OK just to kill a little time" my grandpa 1972
  • publichunterpublichunter Posts: 1,180 Officer
    Dates are set by the feds. If our state still did waterfowl surveys and had some sort of data based trend to prove that ducks were getting and staying here later then maybe Florida would have a leg to stand on lobbying the FEDs for a later start and finish. As it stands, the whole country has to be done by Jan 31.

    Norteast Central Florida is dryer than *** ***** old ladies **** this year so that's a big reason for no birds being around up here but there are also pockets of great habitat that don't have birds because they get no rest. The St. Johns from 46 to the headwaters has pretty decent habitat in the way of emergent vegetation and seeds year in and year out but it also gets 24/7 airboat traffic. Some places that's not that big an issue but the flood plain in that stretch of river is only about a half mile to a mile wide for the stretch with the best food and nearly every square inch of it gets run every couple of days or so. That fact is compounded in years of low water such as this year.

    The Kissimmi basin is holding birds but there aren't much around north and east of there.
  • Big MakBig Mak Posts: 2,484 Captain
    Not only Airboats move ducks, but so does the innocuous kayak... Pair bonding is hocus pocus science... That's just a convenient excuse people use to push a agenda. The fact is, on a Canadian prairie in February-April, if a mate is killed or a clutch of hatchings are predated, the mate is replaced and/or a new clutch is hatched. These are the facts. Even if Florida can't be lobbied to change the guidelines, start lobbying the FEDs... Whatever you do, don't cripple your neighbors for personal reasons, and never ask for less when more is reasonably available. The only hunters a Petaphile or other non hunter ”likes” is one that wants to hunt less...
  • duckmanJRduckmanJR Posts: 20,182 AG
    Chet wrote: »
    I think Jr should give up his secrets on scouting the bread line. If shooting is slow on the St Johns ask Jr how to coat tail on a permit at TMG or Broadmor.

    Can't Chet....They're SECRETS...... :wink

    but you could always ask the guy at the check in " Where would you hunt if you were me..." That is sure to get you on a hot spot....:rotflmao
    There are many roads to travel
    Many things to do.
    Knots to be unraveled
    'fore the darkness falls on you
  • duckmanJRduckmanJR Posts: 20,182 AG
    Big Mak wrote: »
    Not only Airboats move ducks, but so does the innocuous kayak... Pair bonding is hocus pocus science...

    Well, There you have it.... It's the Kayakers that are pushing birds off.....and pair bonding doesn't exist... It's "hocus pocus" :rotflmao
    There are many roads to travel
    Many things to do.
    Knots to be unraveled
    'fore the darkness falls on you
  • eazy89eazy89 Posts: 140 Officer
    Duck numbers are low in florida compared.to years past. Hauntings been tough you have to scout a lot to find un pressured birds.
  • Big MakBig Mak Posts: 2,484 Captain
    duckmanJR wrote: »
    Well, There you have it.... It's the Kayakers that are pushing birds off.....and pair bonding doesn't exist... It's "hocus pocus" :rotflmao

    And there you have it, another reading comprehension problem from our resident waterfowl expert.

    Since he's on a first grade reading level I guess I should have clarified that people in any mode of transportation will push ducks, including those jackasses that paddle into a marsh at sunset to sleep and disturb the wildlife before a hunt the next morning, and that pair bonding doesn't follow the hard line protocols that some of the village idiots (including some ”scientists”) believe.... I don't know why I even bother...
  • binellishtrbinellishtr Posts: 8,797 Admiral
    i'm just glad we ain't arguing over windmills...
  • Weed LineWeed Line Posts: 177 Officer
    Well im probably doing a hunt tomorrow. Havent decided where and ill be solo. Just found out im leaving work at noon so I may do a little scouting this afternoon too. Saw another pair of mallards this morning, stopped south of monroe. Even had about 6 or 7 fly into a pond behind my apartment last night. Ill let you know what I see. Hopefully its good signs.
  • gator4evergator4ever Posts: 2,563 Captain
    Weed Line wrote: »
    Well im probably doing a hunt tomorrow. Havent decided where and ill be solo. Just found out im leaving work at noon so I may do a little scouting this afternoon too. Saw another pair of mallards this morning, stopped south of monroe. Even had about 6 or 7 fly into a pond behind my apartment last night. Ill let you know what I see. Hopefully its good signs.

    Yup that is a good sign. They should be there.

    When I was in HS I used to watch a pond not to far from my house. The fist sign of ducks on that pond that same day I would drive out to the twin bridges and the ducks were there. Every year every time never missed.
    "sometimes it's OK just to kill a little time" my grandpa 1972
  • Weed LineWeed Line Posts: 177 Officer
    Ive noticed the hooded mergansers in many retention ponds around here. By my parents in oviedo the ponds usually get filled with them, he said hes starting to see them come in. Its about the only indicator I have being at work all day
  • duckboneduckbone Posts: 285 Officer
    It's tough this year. Slower then last year which was slower then the year before that unless your hunting STA's which are getting better each year. How many more years before some people get it and stop blaming it on the weather is anyone's guess.
  • binellishtrbinellishtr Posts: 8,797 Admiral
    so if ur name ends on a vowel you get to hunt MWF,and consonants are T and Thurs because you cant hunt ducks 2 days in a row according to the new rules,and some people were successful stoping hunting on Sunday, so where does this leave us duckbone?

    (year 2020)
  • Weed LineWeed Line Posts: 177 Officer
    In the blind. Hope to see ducks. Hear some late sleepers moving around...
  • PinmanPinman Posts: 2,377 Captain
    duckbone wrote: »
    ....unless your hunting STA's which are getting better each year.

    Serious question. Hope Hunter doesn't think I'm stalking. How did you come to this conclusion?
  • ANUMBER1ANUMBER1 Posts: 10,512 AG
    No wooducks on our west central florida lease this year, 6000 acres, 3 hunters so pressure isn't a problem.

    No acorns seems to be the culprit.
    I am glad to only be a bird hunter with bird dogs...being a shooter or dog handler or whatever other niche exists to separate appears to generate far too much about which to worry.
  • Weed LineWeed Line Posts: 177 Officer
    Saw 2 BWT buzzing overhead. That was it. Didn't even fire a shot.
  • duckmanJRduckmanJR Posts: 20,182 AG
    Started to go this AM...Got there and readied my gear to start in ...and the heavens opened up.
    After dealing off and on for a month with an upper respiratory bacterial infection...at 57 years old I finally used some good common sense went back and sat in my truck...waited an hour but it just turned to drizzle...so I headed home....Too much season left to go and be wet and maybe get sick again.
    There are many roads to travel
    Many things to do.
    Knots to be unraveled
    'fore the darkness falls on you
  • TGunnTGunn Posts: 1,866 Captain
    Big Mak wrote: »
    The bottom line is that they have not reached Florida in significant numbers YET! Thus, they are not shot out because of hunting pressure from Florida hunters! We are just now getting a decent influx of greenwings for crying out loud. Unless they are on their way back to Canada already, everyone needs to get their vagisil out and start oiling their little kitties, while anticipating a better closer than opener this year. Even the most intensely managed duck marshes are marginal right now, so stop whining and trying to strip your neighbors opportunity away that he's been enjoying since before most of you were a stirring in your daddys loins...

    To tell you the truth with weather and timing evolving as it is, some of you restrictionists should be pushing for a later start and finish to better capture the migration in Florida, and asking to put youth season first rather than in February.


    If you're ever around Lakeport, I'll buy you a beer. You seem to have a better grasp on things than some of the self-proclaimed "expert waterfowlers" on here.

    We've had some shoots on the O this year that have been nothing short of spectacular, but it's been consistently inconsistent because there aren't a ton of birds down here yet. The birds move and you have to stay on top of them, but I can guarantee you that when they move they aren't all going to STAs. You just have to hunt every day and stay on top of them; if you hunt weekends then chances are they won't be where they were 7 days later.

    Just like fishing.

    When we HAVE had a cold bump of weather, the shooting perks back up again overnight with fresh birds, it's like somebody hits the reset button and they all start off where they were early-on, then the cycle starts all over and you have keep up. Some of you guys need to chill out with the restriction rhetoric and just hunt as much as possible. It's not pressure, the parking lot of the Lakeport Lodge has been a ghost town since the second weekend of the season---but the birds are still moving around.

    As far as slow shooting on the 29th Mak, we actually got shut out on the 29th on the O in the morning as well. NOBODY had a good shoot on the O that I spoke to, and these were guys who hunt every weekend.

    We went out, burned some fuel and some time, missed the 11AM breakfast cutoff at the local restaurant due to some heavy mileage while scouting, found birds, and then went out and smashed them pretty good Sunday afternoon considering it was 82 degrees outside and I was sweating my guts out in a t-shirt. Did you hunt the afternoon as well? It was good to us; wondering if you had the same thing in the Glades. I know the Glades are a much different shoot, just curious.
  • TGunnTGunn Posts: 1,866 Captain
    I just don't see how you guys think that such small parcels of habitat like the STAs are completely keeping ducks from other areas. It's kind of comical, actually.

    Maybe a few of the "waterfowlers" can take some time to teach the ducks to read English and buy them some calendars so they know when to fly south instead of hoping they rely on sense of impeccable timing despite October temperatures.
  • ChetChet Posts: 292 Deckhand
    TGunn wrote: »
    I just don't see how you guys think that such small parcels of habitat like the STAs are completely keeping ducks from other areas. It's kind of comical, actually.

    If the self proclaimed experts can't kill a duck they have to blame it on something.
  • TGunnTGunn Posts: 1,866 Captain
    Chet wrote: »
    If the self proclaimed experts can't kill a duck they have to blame it on something.

    No no no, I'm quite certain that every bird that crosses the state line is handed a map and a Garmin Nuvi showing the nearest STA rest stops and they just head directly to it on the Donald Duck Memorial Turnpike. They're just pouring in despite the fact that it's 80 degrees outside; they don't stop until they see an STA check station or a long line of hunters waiting to maybe get a walk-in.

    If I change my login name to something with "duck" in it, maybe I can be right on the internet.

    Sincerely,

    DuckDudeTGunn
  • Big MakBig Mak Posts: 2,484 Captain
    TGunn, we stayed in the sawgrass Sunday until noon at which point I waded back to the airboat and brought my crew a couple boxes of fried chicken and a few other munchies. We saw about 5 ducks all morning, decoyed 3, and killed all 3. After lunch we fired up and stretched our legs for the 16 mile ride back to the ramp. On the ride we saw 6 more ducks about 3 miles from our hide that morning. Very disappointing to say the least.... Once back on the trailer I told everyone to get ready for the lake when I get back off duty next week.

    I'll be in your neck of the woods, somewhere between Harney pond and eagle bay next Friday so plan on keeping the beer cold....
  • gator4evergator4ever Posts: 2,563 Captain
    I dont know about all the STAs and the other waters. But we had warm years in the past and the truth is that the big flights just dont make it down to the State.

    I have friends in NC that are complaining about low duck numbers. And this is in a year where the hatch was supposed to be at historic levels.
    "sometimes it's OK just to kill a little time" my grandpa 1972
  • PinmanPinman Posts: 2,377 Captain
    TGunn wrote: »
    When we HAVE had a cold bump of weather, the shooting perks back up again overnight with fresh birds, it's like somebody hits the reset button and they all start off where they were early-on, then the cycle starts all over and you have keep up. Some of you guys need to chill out with the restriction rhetoric and just hunt as much as possible. It's not pressure, the parking lot of the Lakeport Lodge has been a ghost town since the second weekend of the season---but the birds are still moving around.

    Dang! You should be on "Are you smarter than a Waterfowler?". I'd bet money on ya.
  • TGunnTGunn Posts: 1,866 Captain
    Big Mak wrote: »
    TGunn, we stayed in the sawgrass Sunday until noon at which point I waded back to the airboat and brought my crew a couple boxes of fried chicken and a few other munchies. We saw about 5 ducks all morning, decoyed 3, and killed all 3. After lunch we fired up and stretched our legs for the 16 mile ride back to the ramp. On the ride we saw 6 more ducks about 3 miles from our hide that morning. Very disappointing to say the least.... Once back on the trailer I told everyone to get ready for the lake when I get back off duty next week.

    I'll be in your neck of the woods, somewhere between Harney pond and eagle bay next Friday so plan on keeping the beer cold....

    The closer you are to Harney Pond, the better your chances of getting that beer. We're in Lakeport.
  • huntmstrhuntmstr Posts: 6,290 Admiral
    There are birds to be found and shot. You have to look hard for them. Like TGunn and Big Mak have said, some days are better than others and the big numbers are not here yet. What we do have here are well educated and hanging in big pods in the open water where it's nearly impossible to reach them. They aren't easy to decoy and even harder to call. Most of my birds are coming on layout hunts or paddling around and jumping birds late morning. I went paddled out this morning for a few hours on a secret spot in Tampa Bay and was the only one out there. I found some ducks that must have been new arrivals and took a mixed bag limit of 2 teal, 1 spoonie, 1 mottled, 1 greenhead mallard and one pintail drake. I was home by 9:45.

    Been seeing lots of divers in the Bay and they're moving around from place to place daily. One day they'll be north and the next 20 miles south. Lots of redheads, cans, scoter, buffies and scaup. But again, they're not coming anywhere near shore and they are not decoying near anything sitting more than a foot above the water. Very hard hunting and long sits are required to bag a limit... pack a lunch and be ready to be disappointed. I spend more time scouting than hunting normally, but this year it's been twice as hard to find birds. All part of the game and that much sweeter when it all comes together.

    Found some blackbelly whistlers the other day. They're flying to a place where I can't shoot them and they're roosting in a place I can't shoot them. I think I've about figured on a way to get them in between... but I'm only going to get one crack at them. Monday or Tuesday will be the day.
    Bushnell, Primos and Final Approach Pro Staff. Proud member of the Fab Five, Big Leaugers and Bobble Head 4.

    I had you pissed off at hello.
  • snookyjsnookyj Posts: 1,687 Officer
    Good days and bad days...the weather has alot to do with the way fish and game act here in our state, especially the birds. We've been hunting up around Istopoga and the river up there. Its been hit or miss, The first couple of weekends we went we got em good. Here lately its been slim pickens'.
  • huntmstrhuntmstr Posts: 6,290 Admiral
    duckbone wrote: »
    It's tough this year. Slower then last year which was slower then the year before that unless your hunting STA's which are getting better each year. How many more years before some people get it and stop blaming it on the weather is anyone's guess.

    You know that's a false statement as was shown to you by the harvest reports shared by John Monti.
    See back then .....

    2006 = 4571 waterfowlers inside a filtermarsh

    3 years later...

    2009 = 5591 waterfowlers inside a filtermarsh

    last year...

    2012 = 10,454 waterfowlers inside a filtermarsh

    I see the access allowed into these "babied" marshes DOUBLED in the last 6 years... I would say that is a great accomplishment when it comes to marshes under a federal mandate? Not to mention a HUGE pat on the back for UW and the work they have done over the years.

    So now lets compare the harvest #'s over the last 6 years and see how much they have drasticly increased since ALL your fowl are inside of them?

    STA 5 hasnt really grown in size, until this year, so lets start with it for comparison...

    STA 5 in 2006 = 1910 Hunters harvested 9600 waterfowl

    STA 5 in 2012 = 1905 Hunters harvested 8651 waterfowl

    NO... say it aint so... in a 6 year period the amount of waterfowl harvested dropped close to a 1000 birds?

    Some documentation was taken on a few different "quality" ducks too...

    2006 STA 5 = 240 Wigeon harvested / 2012 STA 5 120 Wigeon harvested
    2006 STA 5 = 48 Pintails harvested / 2012 STA 5 72 Pintails harvested

    The norm has pretty much stayed the same in STA 2 as well yet a drop in harvest numbers??...

    2011 STA 2 1006 Hunters / 3880 birds harvested

    2012 STA 2 1122 Hunters / 3854 birds harvested

    More hunters, more pressure, less birds harvested. So the STA's are not increasing harvest numbers.
    Bushnell, Primos and Final Approach Pro Staff. Proud member of the Fab Five, Big Leaugers and Bobble Head 4.

    I had you pissed off at hello.
  • publichunterpublichunter Posts: 1,180 Officer
    What your spy failed to provide you in the cut-n-paste was the data for 3 and 4 which Mr. Monti brilliantly and most definitely purposely failed to include.
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