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End of 1st half


1971snipe

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Went to a flooded pasture with my grandson this morning to close out the first half of duck season.  It rained for most of the morning, then started blowing hard, and we finally picked up after bagging two teal, two shovelers and three gadwall.  

I've seen much better hunts, but enjoyed being out with my grandson.  I ordered a gel pack slip on pad btw, and it seemed to work well with my shoulder.

 

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I just wish I could hit something out of my layout boat this season.  Been having some pretty stout shoulder pain on the aiming side.  MRI on Thursday... a little concerned I’m getting a rotator cuff rebuild.

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molliesmaster

Nothing wrong with that bag.    Over here in SC, anything other than a wood duck or a merganser is a good find.  Heck, some days even the wood ducks are well received. 

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22 hours ago, molliesmaster said:

Nothing wrong with that bag.    Over here in SC, anything other than a wood duck or a merganser is a good find.  Heck, some days even the wood ducks are well received. 

We lived in Summerville SC for 5 years in the 80's, and the first two years wood ducks were my total bag.  Local guys referred to them as "summer ducks".  I ended up having some really good hunts over there, even though the bag limit then was 3 ducks, including 1 mallard.  

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molliesmaster
4 minutes ago, 1971snipe said:

We lived in Summerville SC for 5 years in the 80's, and the first two years wood ducks were my total bag.  Local guys referred to them as "summer ducks".  I ended up having some really good hunts over there, even though the bag limit then was 3 ducks, including 1 mallard.  

 

I hear there were some good opportunities back then and I know there are still some decent opportunities around now provided weather and wallet come into play.    But I have gone out west and become spoiled on too many occasions.    The real saving grace for SC duck hunting is that the "summer duck" is delicious enough to warrant all the hassle. 

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On 12/1/2020 at 11:41 AM, molliesmaster said:

 

I hear there were some good opportunities back then and I know there are still some decent opportunities around now provided weather and wallet come into play.    But I have gone out west and become spoiled on too many occasions.    The real saving grace for SC duck hunting is that the "summer duck" is delicious enough to warrant all the hassle. 

Indeed, the wood ducks were tasty.  Here in SE Texas if someone bags a wood duck or a Bufflehead it's a prize, almost guaranteed to be mounted.  Back when I was in SC both of these ducks were passed over for other ducks that are routinely in the bag here.  Funny how the different locales work. 

I miss the years there.  Float trips down the Edisto and Ashley rivers.  Pre-dawn trips into Sparkleberry Swamp.  And some memorable trips into a frozen Hatchery WMA within the confines of Lake Moultrie.  Sometimes on days when the Hatchery was closed we would launch on Pinnopolis and hunt the edges of the lake just outside the Hatchery's boundary.  One very foggy morning at the boat ramp we could hear an approching outboard, and when it came into sight we heard the passenger sitting near the bow say "Sh** ... this is our third time to be back at the ramp".  

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molliesmaster
1 hour ago, 1971snipe said:

Indeed, the wood ducks were tasty.  Here in SE Texas if someone bags a wood duck or a Bufflehead it's a prize, almost guaranteed to be mounted.  Back when I was in SC both of these ducks were passed over for other ducks that are routinely in the bag here.  Funny how the different locales work. 

I miss the years there.  Float trips down the Edisto and Ashley rivers.  Pre-dawn trips into Sparkleberry Swamp.  And some memorable trips into a frozen Hatchery WMA within the confines of Lake Moultrie.  Sometimes on days when the Hatchery was closed we would launch on Pinnopolis and hunt the edges of the lake just outside the Hatchery's boundary.  One very foggy morning at the boat ramp we could hear an approching outboard, and when it came into sight we heard the passenger sitting near the bow say "Sh** ... this is our third time to be back at the ramp".  

 

That lake and area you mention are now a mad house come sunrise in late November-January.      Impoundments with tame mallards releases line the shores of the lake and the poorer people line the banks hoping to feed off the scraps.    It's sad, not the people, but what some of us will consider "duck hunting". 

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2 hours ago, molliesmaster said:

 

That lake and area you mention are now a mad house come sunrise in late November-January.      Impoundments with tame mallards releases line the shores of the lake and the poorer people line the banks hoping to feed off the scraps.    It's sad, not the people, but what some of us will consider "duck hunting". 

Wow, man that is pretty sad deal indeed.  We visited friends in Summerville and Goose Creek back in January before the covid shutdowns, and the towns and area (and traffic) was almost unrecognizable from when we were there in the 80s.  The Navy bases and shipyards moved out and industry, commercial interests, and developers moved in.  

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4 hours ago, 1971snipe said:

Indeed, the wood ducks were tasty.  Here in SE Texas if someone bags a wood duck or a Bufflehead it's a prize, almost guaranteed to be mounted.  Back when I was in SC both of these ducks were passed over for other ducks that are routinely in the bag here. 

I absolutely love to eat wood ducks and teal and can't ever think I would pass one if under my limit!  

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molliesmaster

Hard to beat a plump green wing teal.   Our local wood ducks are pretty lean but once the northern birds move down I start to whole pluck a lot more birds. 

 

I was lucky enough to get a couple of the fat ones last week.   One of them was seared in a hot skillet two nights ago, just butter and salt/pepper.  Better than a ribeye from the best steakhouse around. 

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I can remember one freezing morning in Sparkleberry Swamp, the air was full of low quacks, mallard chatter and wood duck squeals.  We saw the wood ducks first, and as I rose to shoot, one of the hunters, a local guy, quickly said "no!, those are summer ducks".  They wanted all mallards, and we ended up with a pair of black ducks and a few widgeon.  No mallards, and to my dismay no wood ducks.  

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On 12/3/2020 at 11:45 AM, 1971snipe said:

I can remember one freezing morning in Sparkleberry Swamp, the air was full of low quacks, mallard chatter and wood duck squeals.  We saw the wood ducks first, and as I rose to shoot, one of the hunters, a local guy, quickly said "no!, those are summer ducks".  They wanted all mallards, and we ended up with a pair of black ducks and a few widgeon.  No mallards, and to my dismay no wood ducks.  

I use to frequent the areas you are talking of in the late 80's into the very early 2000's.  It was a great place to hunt.  Back then not many people cared about hunting ducks because you could only shoot 2 wood ducks and a grand total of 3 ducks total of other species.  Once the limits increased and the Duck Dynasty craze started it was all down hill from there.  I've lived in SC all my life.  I haven't short a duck in SC in probably 15 years.  I can get my fix without a hassle in MS on my lease.  I hate I have to travel.  Kids these days I know that hunt ducks will get to a spot at 11 pm or so that night so they can hunt that spot and camp out there all night.  When morning comes if they kill 1 duck they consider it a success.  Not worth it to me.     Yes I know the Summerville area well and it has totally changed.  It's over crowded and the whole state is becoming that way.  

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9 minutes ago, mccuha said:

I use to frequent the areas you are talking of in the late 80's into the very early 2000's.  It was a great place to hunt.  Back then not many people cared about hunting ducks because you could only shoot 2 wood ducks and a grand total of 3 ducks total of other species.  Once the limits increased and the Duck Dynasty craze started it was all down hill from there.  I've lived in SC all my life.  I haven't short a duck in SC in probably 15 years.  I can get my fix without a hassle in MS on my lease.  I hate I have to travel.  Kids these days I know that hunt ducks will get to a spot at 11 pm or so that night so they can hunt that spot and camp out there all night.  When morning comes if they kill 1 duck they consider it a success.  Not worth it to me.     Yes I know the Summerville area well and it has totally changed.  It's over crowded and the whole state is becoming that way.  

On a positive note, on our visit to Summerville last January we got there at Abt noon, drove straight to the Tastee-Freez and ate lunch.  Hopefully it's still there post-covid shutdowns.  

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