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Old 01-14-2020, 07:39 PM   #71
Brady
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Read a report on the DU Migration Map of multiple flocks of snows over Colorado County way up high and headed north this weekend.

Not sure where those would be going but likely it is a long ways from here.

It is not even mid month yet and some snows are apparently headed north.

I can remember when the spring migration really got cranked up the first week of March.

Now you have to be concerned they will leave out in late January if it warms up and there is a strong south wind.
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Old 01-14-2020, 08:27 PM   #72
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I was told by a federal wildlife biologist that some snows start trickling out in mid January. He said it has always been like that.
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Old 01-14-2020, 08:58 PM   #73
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tarpon wow

I remember not too long ago both sides of I-10, starting in the Winnie area, and stretching all the way to La., was solid geese and ducks, every year without fail. Millions and millions of birds, Eagle Lake, Garwood, Katy, all of the area praries were the same way. You could drive to any of these areas anytime during the season, and it was staggering the sheer number of birds we had. Holding tanks/lakes/ponds were inundated with birds. When I think back, things have changed drastically from those times. The birds are stopping short of us, we don't have near the migrations we once had, I don't care what the experts say. Witnessing/seeing/experiencing is beleiving, the duck and goose hunting we had then was indescribable. I'm 58 and started hard core duck hunting at the ripe age of 17/18. The limit was basically 10 birds each, we had a point system with birds ranging from 10 points like a pintail drake (we were allowed 10 a piece) to a canvasback which was 100 points. I walked out of a matagorda island hunt, with 9 bull sprig and a canvasback, 190 points legally. The last bird to hit or exceed 100 points was a limit. The wardens dropped us off, and picked us up in a school bus. I'll never forget one warden saying I was illegal, and the other game warden correcting him, by reminding him I shot the canvasback last. It was 1979 Matagorda Island 1st year open to public duck hunting, I was there. Read about it in the Houston Chronicle or Post not sure which one, off we were jon boat in back of truck, motor guns decoys and black lab in the boat.
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Old 01-14-2020, 10:34 PM   #74
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Originally Posted by c hook View Post
I remember not too long ago both sides of I-10, starting in the Winnie area, and stretching all the way to La., was solid geese and ducks, every year without fail. Millions and millions of birds, Eagle Lake, Garwood, Katy, all of the area praries were the same way. You could drive to any of these areas anytime during the season, and it was staggering the sheer number of birds we had. Holding tanks/lakes/ponds were inundated with birds. When I think back, things have changed drastically from those times. The birds are stopping short of us, we don't have near the migrations we once had, I don't care what the experts say. Witnessing/seeing/experiencing is beleiving, the duck and goose hunting we had then was indescribable. I'm 58 and started hard core duck hunting at the ripe age of 17/18. The limit was basically 10 birds each, we had a point system with birds ranging from 10 points like a pintail drake (we were allowed 10 a piece) to a canvasback which was 100 points. I walked out of a matagorda island hunt, with 9 bull sprig and a canvasback, 190 points legally. The last bird to hit or exceed 100 points was a limit. The wardens dropped us off, and picked us up in a school bus. I'll never forget one warden saying I was illegal, and the other game warden correcting him, by reminding him I shot the canvasback last. It was 1979 Matagorda Island 1st year open to public duck hunting, I was there. Read about it in the Houston Chronicle or Post not sure which one, off we were jon boat in back of truck, motor guns decoys and black lab in the boat.

That is well said and what is was like.

In the 1960's and early 1970's the snows and specks got here in large numbers in late October. The guides would run them out of the second cut rice so that the birds wouldn't eat out the field by the time the season started.

The Houston Chronicle Outdoors section would run photos of that.

A lot has changed and not for the better. In the 1970's we could still shoot 4 or 5 Mottled Ducks in a day. And then the species started a huge downturn and with it the limit on them.

Anyone believe the Canada's are coming back? For much of my life the limit was only one per day and that was a given. You could see concentrations of Canada,s that rivaled snow geese sometimes in size. Now you can't hardly find a single Canada goose anywhere on the coast.

Bottom line is the goose hunting is gone for the most part. A few areas might hang on but the overall future is grim.

The duck hunting will continue to be viable but nothing like the good ole days. Some our formerly mainstay species such as Pintails and Mottled Ducks are greatly reduced in numbers and limits and that isn't going to change either.
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Old 01-16-2020, 08:08 AM   #75
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I haven't read this entire thread but I will also say that geese are pretty much gone from southeast Texas. So does anyone know what the estimated snow goose population is nowadays? Are the geese stopping further north or has the population diminished?

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Old 01-16-2020, 09:34 AM   #76
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I haven't read this entire thread but I will also say that geese are pretty much gone from southeast Texas. So does anyone know what the estimated snow goose population is nowadays? Are the geese stopping further north or has the population diminished?

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Snow goose population has increased alot
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Old 01-16-2020, 10:20 AM   #77
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Goose hunting

I'm have been around longer than I want to admit and hunting since I was 8 years old. The best days of hunting may be gone but we REMEMBER we still get to hunt. 15-20 years ago we shot 20-40 geese just about any day. Now we kill 5-15 with exception of course. I just turned down a group because their expectations were to kill 15-25 birds. I wasn't going to make an empty promise.
My point to this is we have to adjust our thinking about hunting and enjoy a sunrise. Then enjoy birds flying be happy watching 5-15 geese decoying into a spread. While the goose hunting has been looking gloomy, we don't know what the future brings. I hear of places where you can kill 2 geese per day and you sit outside from dawn to dusk hoping for an opportunity to shoot a bird.
The goose hunting definitely has shifted to Arkansas and that area, but like most of us working class guys we are forced to hunt this area for the most part. Please get out whenever you get an opportunity to go.


I'll leave y 'all with 2 old hunting clich├ęs.


A bad day of hunting is better than a good day at work. and my favorite-


All good goose hunts end the same
"That was great, that was awesome, Who wants them?


Good Luck
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Old 01-16-2020, 12:08 PM   #78
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Mallards use to migrate to the Durant, OK area by the 10s of thousands when peanuts were still being farmed in the area. Now, the peanuts are all but gone and so are the mallards in Durant/Lake Texoma. They still show up, but not like they use to, and it gets cold enough most years. Take away a major food source that 10s - 100s of thousands of birds rely on, and most will find somewhere else to go. Their offspring learn the new migration route(s), and before we know it, old wintering grounds are just that...old.
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Old 01-16-2020, 12:21 PM   #79
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Cranes

I finally got tired of fishing out the money to lay in a field all morning, take a few shots, if any, and see a few Geese. I love being outdoors but the costs stay the same as the number of geese keep going down.

Sandhill cranes...the other dark meat.( : > )

Last edited by phishtales; 01-16-2020 at 12:28 PM.
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Old 01-16-2020, 01:54 PM   #80
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Mallards use to migrate to the Durant, OK area by the 10s of thousands when peanuts were still being farmed in the area. Now, the peanuts are all but gone and so are the mallards in Durant/Lake Texoma. They still show up, but not like they use to, and it gets cold enough most years. Take away a major food source that 10s - 100s of thousands of birds rely on, and most will find somewhere else to go. Their offspring learn the new migration route(s), and before we know it, old wintering grounds are just that...old.
Peanut fields are the ticket if you can find em
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