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Best States for Early Season Teal?


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EB&Me

Speaking of New Mexico I used to have some good shoots along the Pecos, from Roswell area south. Almost all cinnamons, unfortunately early season the drakes aren't in breeding plumage.

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At 10+, "she" is almost certainly a he.  The biggest momma I've met while robbing a few thousand nests (under permit, of course) was this appreciably smaller one:     Suppos

A water temperature in the low 60s is what I think of as the "lizard line".  Their cold-blooded metabolizms slow beyond hunger below that mark, and it's safe to work a dog in and around the deep water

I'll throw out an unusual suggestion, New Mexico.  Theres lot of public access along the Rio Grande south of ABQ.  Plenty of birds, great food and sightseeing opportunities, and best of all, no gators

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kperry

A friend of mine that used to live in LA had a big Chessie taken by a gator in open water when the edges had a thin crust of ice.  This was in the Lake Charles area a couple of decades ago 

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Rick Hall

I'd not buy a used truck from that friend.

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  • 4 weeks later...
1971snipe

+3 on the N. Orleans/guide suggestion, since it's an anniversary trip for your wife.  Or New Mexico.  

 

You never know with teal season, if you'll have 100 deg temps, or a cool front, or a hurricane or tropical storm.  Last year Imelda dumped 25" of rain, and all of the marsh was a deep lake, and every field and pasture a marsh.  This is SE Texas/SW Louisiana.  

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Since your taking your wife for vacation time, should you think about New Mexico. I would definately choose the Rio Grande Valley over the Pecos River. Really very little to see around Roswell. Actually the more scenic parts of New Mexico are north of Albuquerque.

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Doubleplay
On 5/3/2020 at 5:02 PM, Zkight89 said:

The Wife and I are planning our annual anniversary vacation that works out about the same as early teal.  Which states do you gentlemen believe are the best for it? Naturally, we'd be looking to hunt public land unguided. Big time bonus for sightseeing or touristy stuff that ladies like also....

Texas and LA and has good early season teal hunting however finding public land to hunt is very difficult in both states unless you have a boat you can hunt from.

 

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During duck season years ago and supposedly above the gator line,  a friend's cousin lost his lab to a big gator while launching his boat in the river.  The dog had been swimming near the boat ramp when he wouldn't come when called.  The man Q-beamed the river and saw the gator swimming away with his lab.   There are places around here I wouldn't put a dog in the water regardless of temperatures.  I've seen big gators swimming at times of the year they weren't supposed to be swimming because of temps. I'd hate for my dog to be the exception to the rule.  Gil

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Jacksdad

And here I worry about a dog getting too curious about a beaver!  Can’t imagine worrying about a man eating predator that gives no clues of their presence.  

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Rick Hall
1 hour ago, GLS said:

I've seen big gators swimming at times of the year they weren't supposed to be swimming because of temps. I'd hate for my dog to be the exception to the rule.  Gil

 

For the record, the relationship between water temps and the cold-blooded alligators' metabolism triggering hunger certainly doesn't preclude them being out trying to soak up heat on sunny winter days.  They're not true hibernators.

 

But your post brings up something else folks should consider, which is that launch sites are among the worst of places to let a dog swim, thanks to the chumming of folks finding them handy spots to dump fish cleaning refuse, deer carcasses and such...

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Gators and snakes brumate and has been noted, don't "hibernate" and both will sun on a bright day regardless of air temps.  Here's a 10'+ one I photographed while snipe hunting in February years ago.  She was about 30 yards away across the canal from where I stood on the dike.  I've seen her more than once over the years as well as others while snipe hunting.  I don't know anyone who has lost a dog to gators at this spot but know of one man who had his Brittany killed by a cottonmouth moccasin while snipe hunting in February in this area.  This is in the lowcountry of Georgia. Gil

 

gator 001.JPG

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Rick Hall

At 10+, "she" is almost certainly a he.  The biggest momma I've met while robbing a few thousand nests (under permit, of course) was this appreciably smaller one:

image.thumb.jpeg.76e6f14cc01b6c6de063fee199fd22c0.jpeg

 

image.thumb.jpeg.5f8d5f581396baec30966325ac9b746b.jpeg

 

Supposed to be out there mugging moms this morning, but too chicken to intentionally run an airboat in a thunderstorm...

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I stand corrected.  Hence the term "bull gator".  Where I turkey hunt by bike, a man I know ran over a gator in the dark on his mountain bike on the woods road that straddles swamp on both sides.  She had a nest nearby.  This is the only reptile I've seen on the trail and part of the reason I don't run my dogs for woodcock there except when it's below 50 F and in the morning before sun gets high.  Gil

 

 

 

turkey buddy.jpg

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Rick Hall
1 hour ago, GLS said:

I stand corrected.  Hence the term "bull gator".  Where I turkey hunt by bike, a man I know ran over a gator in the dark on his mountain bike on the woods road that straddles swamp on both sides.  She had a nest nearby.

 

 

Either your turkey season must run later than ours or your gators nest earlier, as ours begin nesting in June.

 

Snakes might turn up in the yard:

image.jpeg.9b36939ca9a6aa50a1ca25e04e36cc56.jpeg

 

So we couldn't get off the couch, if we let them stop us.

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I can't control when snakes are out, but I can control when and where I hunt my dogs when snakes are more likely to be active than not.  I know more than a handful of folks  who regret leaving their couch and had good dogs die in their arms from snakebites while hunting on balmy winter days. 

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Rick Hall
2 hours ago, GLS said:

I can't control when snakes are out, but I can control when and where I hunt my dogs when snakes are more likely to be active than not.  I know more than a handful of folks  who regret leaving their couch and had good dogs die in their arms from snakebites while hunting on balmy winter days. 

 

Can't recall even hearing of a cottonmouth or copperhead killed dog within my circle of known-to-be-honest aquaintances, though I trust it might happen.  My three that have been bitten and all the others I can recall have all recovered.  Mine and others bitten when I'm on hand get liquid Benadryl, but a grandfather's just laid up under the porch a while.

 

Were this rattlesnake country, I'd likely snake break mine annually but still go on with our outdoor lives.

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