Fall and Winter Waterfowl Hunting Opportunities Available in Alameda County

When I lived in Fremont, I used to lease a Cargill-owned salt pond near Union City, probably close to, if not the same ponds that are now available for public access. I considered it a good outing and it’s possible to bag some ducks – an urban adventure. We brought home widgeon, shoveler, lesser scaup, golden eye and once we bagged a couple honkers.
I’d say some type of boat is an advantage, but watch out for the mud. Once the rain starts, the roads are a real mess. In 1995, I wrote an article about hunting the salt ponds and it was published in California Game and Fish. They titled it Bay City Ducks.
Reviewing that article brings back memories and a few suggestions.
1.) Don’t worry about rising early for salt pond ducks, but you may need to get there early to get in.
2.) Be careful with your shotgun. Clean it well after the hunt. Salt is hard on metal.
3.) A small boat is best as you may have a workout getting it out there.
4.) Even when privately leased, I found the blinds closest to the bay to be the best producers.
5.) Bring your sun glasses. It’s wide open water.
6.) Bring your dog if you can, it will save time retrieving ducks.
7.) When you knock down a swimmer, you’re in for a chase.
8.) The wide open water begs for as many decoys as possible.
9.) Don’t try wading. The mud is very ugly.
This is just an outing. It’s not as good as duck hunting gets, but it’s way better than mowing the lawn.


John Krause, CDFW Bay Delta Region, (415) 454-8050
Conrad Jones, CDFW Bay Delta Region, (916) 322-8908
Media Contact:
Janice Mackey, CDFW Communications, (916) 322-8908

The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) is offering waterfowl hunting at Eden Landing Ecological Reserve (ELER) in Alameda County.

The reserve is composed of former industrial salt ponds, which is now managed for wildlife habitat by CDFW as open water ponds. ELER will be open for up to 100 waterfowl hunters on the dates listed below. Hunters will be permitted on a first-come, first-served basis for each of the one day hunts. There is no fee for these hunts.

2013 hunts:
Saturday, Nov. 23: Check-in at 5 a.m.
Tuesday, Nov. 26: Check-in at 5 a.m.
Saturday, Dec. 7: Check-in at 5 a.m.
Thursday, Dec.12: Check-in at 5 a.m.
Saturday, Dec. 21: Check-in at 5 a.m.

2014 hunts:
Saturday, Jan. 4: Check-in at 5:30…

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