Alex Broad – Ducks and Roosters

May 13, 2011

You will have read last week that Rob and I were heading up the line for a bit of an assault on the local game bird population with our mate Dave.

The reports leading up to opening day were positive, plenty of ducks on the pond.  As usual they all disappear a week or so out from opening day.  Opening day came around, rain and little wind, the decoy spread looked great and the hide was well dressed.  The only thing lacking was the ducks.  We managed 4 for the morning, thats right just 4.  After a feed and a regroup at the local we ventured out for the evening shot, it was even quieter, just 2 birds down.  We put it down to everything being so wet, which disperses the ducks out into puddles in paddocks etc.  We put the Genaration 4 XTR Jackets and Trousers to the test in the rain, they performed flawlessly as part of our layering system.  For a whole days shooting we remained dry and comfortable, quite important when theres nothing coming in.

 

Sunday dawned fine, but windy, surely the pond would shoot better today?  Nope, a handful of ducks came in and were dispatched for the morning.  Another feed and regroup at the local and it was decided we were going head up to The Hunters Paradise to give the owner Shane a hand with the pukekos.

We pushed them into a pond choked up with Raupo and sent the dogs in.  The pukes came out in 1’s over about 1/2 an hour or so, which provided some great shooting.  In the middle of all this a pheasant came a long to check out the commotion,  Rob and I flushed him out of the fence line and I had my first pheasant.

 

Shane offered us a shot on a few more pheasants, so we went for a wee wander through the crops, we put up plenty of birds, leaving the hens and only downing another 2 cocks.

 

We also put up 3 big red hinds, an awesome sight, they had been getting into the crops, and it showed!

 

This style of shooting was perfect for our prime summer range of clothing.  We hunted all afternoon in the prime summer, XTR gaiters and Razorback boots.  The prime summer wicked the sweat, and blocked most of the wind, leaving us dry and warm, but not too hot when we had to slog up the hills.

 

The Hunters Paradise is a registered pheasant preserve, and offers a different shooting experience to most of the other preserves.  It is purely walked up hunting, you can bring your own dog and Shane runs several different pricing structures to make it affordable for everyone.  Thanks again Shane, it was a great experience.  Have a look at Shane’s website here:

From here Rob and I traveled further up the line to meet up with another mate, Kerry, for some pheasant shooting on public land.  This was a totally different experience from the preserve.

 

We had to really work for the birds, but it was extremely rewarding.  The first day we put up 2 cocks, and knocked them both over.  Kerry’s dogs worked really well all day, and were so stuffed they had to be lifted in and out of the truck at the end of it.  The next day we hunted a different public area, only putting up 1 cock, which we just couldn’t hit…………..He’s a touch wiser now.  Cheers Kerry for sharing your spots with us, we will definitely be back next year!

 

So that was our opening mission, ducks weren’t there but the roosters were fantastic.  We’d love to hear how everyone else got on, just post a comment below and let us know.

Cheers

Alex.


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