Almost as Good as Hunting, but not quite.

Indulged in a little fantasy this afternoon. Received the “Waterfowl Hunting Newsletter” from DFG today and it spurred me into applying for waterfowl reservations on many of the public hunting areas.

Large expanses of open water are very attractive to pintail, widgeon, shoveler and teal. For mallards, hunt ponds less open water where they can hide from view.

With a good draw and a full day of hunting, most refuges can produce a mixed bag like the one shown.

You might ask, “With two private clubs available every day of the season, friends who invite me to their clubs and additional hunting opportunity available, why would I spend about $300 to apply for waterfowl and pheasant hunting on California’s public areas?”

First reason: When the public areas are good, there’s nothing better.

Most of the public areas have excellent habitat. Most clubs cannot afford to create natural habitat. I enjoy hunting in natural shallow ponds, rimmed by alkali bullrush. To me this is the best type of habitat for duck hunting.

Second reason: I have many fond memories of trips taken over the years. Many stand out and I enjoy returning to the scene of previous hunts and finding out how my favorite locations hunt today. Most of the time, ponds hunted in previous years tend to be pretty much the same. It’s like visiting an old friend.

Third reason: If you want to make the most of your waterfowl hunting, you need options. The more the better.

There are plenty of others….