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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
i know all of us in southeast texas are still working on clean up since IKE. i know the least of our concern is the upcoming duck season but lets face it, it would still be nice to get out of the house and enjoy a duck hunt or two. I've been looking forward to it since the last day of last season. I was just curious to get everyone's feedback on how our duck season might turn out. I'm sure the best info we could get would be to compare it to LA marshes after Rita. Lets hear some opinions....
I think the ducks will show but will not stay long at all if we don't have food and too much pressure. Most likely the season after this one will hopefully be good with an abundance of food.
 

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This is just my opinion(and its not very educated as I have never hunted a storm devastated area), but I definintely believe the usual number ducks will make it down with the fronts, but as you said, it depends if they stay. I've heard that a big storm surge like we've had will kill all the fresh/brackish water vegatation ducks love. And, if they choose to leave the coast, they will likely head further south, or just move a little north to the praries. That is where I believe they will be stacked up and where the best hunting will be. The only problem with the prarie is its usually heavily hunted, so the ducks/geese might roost in the vast water of the marsh still for safety, and move north to feed every morning. So...if you had a good roost spot in the marsh the last couple years where the ducks usually stacked up, they might still use it heavily, but their schedules and patterns will vary if they're feeding elsewhere(they may return in the afternoon or evening instead of the usual early morning hunting which we all know is usually best)
So...I do think the ducks will be abundant on the coast, but hunting them may be a whole different story on the coast, as they will pick and choose their spots to land wisely, as compared to a normal year where they aimlessly fly around sitting sitting down here and there in everybodys spread.

By the way...I am refering to puddle ducks and geese that I shoot on the coast.(gadwall, teal, widgeon, pintail, snows, specks)

Then again, I may have no idea what Im talking about...I can only hope my roost will be full!

Good luck this season!:shamrock:
 

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donbmt
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This was the topic of conversation last night at a friends house. We came to the conclusion that the marsh is done for at least a year, I talked to a couple a big landowners south of Hwy 73 who said they planned on doing some big time marsh burning this winter to burn all the salt and chemicals out of the grass. I'm of the opinion that the best hunting around here will be flooded rice and the lakes, aka Rayburn, Dam B, etc...

Hopefully we can get some rain and fill up the slough near my deer satnd
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
there might need to be a duck hunting depression therapist hotline # for all the duck hunters in setx this season.
 

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Master of Boats
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I hunt in Hackberry LA, after Rita, we had actually pretty good hunting. The marsh was a mess, but there was a lott of fresh green growth, and the widgeon grass did make it make after a year or two. I do not know what they were eating but we had pretty good hunting.

One thing that was very frustrating - my pond had a very hard bottom pre Rita. After, you could not step out the blind without being mired in goo. Dogs hated it, the lower the water level, the worse it was. Once it took me 20 minutes to make a 50 yard trek from the boat, that couldn't get in the pond due to low water, to the blind. I used a 40HP then, switched to GD SD, no problems since. The bottom was a little better this year, not yet back to "normal". Haven't been able to go to the marsh since Ike, but expect the same.

Hunting anyway - ducks or no ducks!

MM
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks for the info! My father in law has a hard time getting around in the marsh with his hurt knee. That was the question he kept asking me as to what i thought the bottom would be like. Obviously he was hoping for something complete opposite as to what you described. Hopefully this hurricane will give us a different outcome as far as the bottom goes but i won't count on it. Glad to hear the ducks still stuck around a while.

Marshman said:
I hunt in Hackberry LA, after Rita, we had actually pretty good hunting. The marsh was a mess, but there was a lott of fresh green growth, and the widgeon grass did make it make after a year or two. I do not know what they were eating but we had pretty good hunting.

One thing that was very frustrating - my pond had a very hard bottom pre Rita. After, you could not step out the blind without being mired in goo. Dogs hated it, the lower the water level, the worse it was. Once it took me 20 minutes to make a 50 yard trek from the boat, that couldn't get in the pond due to low water, to the blind. I used a 40HP then, switched to GD SD, no problems since. The bottom was a little better this year, not yet back to "normal". Haven't been able to go to the marsh since Ike, but expect the same.

Hunting anyway - ducks or no ducks!

MM
 

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10 miles inland from High Island and our rice fields, millet, grazing pastures, and freshwater reservoirs were covered with salt water (and alot of it). We didn't even attempt teal hunting and just not sure what big duck will produce as it has already been slow for the past few years.
Sorry for the bah humbug attitude...I think depression is setting in already.
 

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Master of Boats
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TX Cajun, that is what our places looked like after Rita. Someone forgot to tell the ducks cuz they still came. I was looking back at our records, we killed as many ducks as a normal year, per day, but we had less days since we were all still on generators until Dec. Last year was crazy good, pretty much limits every day, although harder by the end of the season. Some of the lodges had record kills for the season. All of that in a war zone of a marsh.

Funny thing after a storm. Perfect camo did not matter. So much junk in the grass, as long as you can be STILL, the ducks didn't spook off. One of my buddies obsesses about everytime a duck doesn't work in, "what is spooking him?" The answer after a storm, is who knows, but they get used to seeing all the wood and trash. If you had a decent spread, and stayed still, they came.

Fishing in the afternoons was great too. Not much traffic, lots of trash in the water.
 

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Thanks MarshMan

We are still going to get after'em if they show up but your post has me feeling a little better. We lost both farm houses, a 40ft sea container that had 4 ATV's in it, numerous bags of decoys and numerous fiberglass pit blinds. And when I say we lost them...I mean they are gone and no where to be found. Back to the basics for our club. It was only a hunting club when others lost so much more..that is what we tell ourselves. I'll post up some before an after pictures shortly.

thanks
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
txcajun - sorry to hear that. i know it seems like a small loss compared to other people losing their personal homes, but its still depressing. I hope you get a big fat insurance check in to get some new equipment.
 

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My group of guys lease property on the N. side of Bolivar, parts of High Island, parts of Smith point, and some rice in Nome. All in all, the property is in bad shape, our marsh buggy floated 1.5 miles away but we found it and it had no real damage. The only real loss was 1 polaris ranger that can not be found. Thank God I have buddies on the SW side of town to take me hunting. Hopefully the marsh will come back soon.
WS
 
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