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Shooting doves

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Our latest family past time is sitting in the yard shooting doves. There have been so many flying in the evenings lately. We’ve even grilled them up for dinner with hot hush puppies, corn on the cob & mashed potatoes. I was unsure at first but once I tried it, I was a believer. It tasted better than a good steak! Luke was pretty pumped. “It doesn’t get any fresher than that!” He beamed in hunterly pride. He’s right.

2011 DU Committee Fun Shoot

We had our Lake Ray Roberts DU committee 2011 kick off meeting on Sunday. As long has I have been hunting and shooting I have never officially shot skeet, sporting clays, or any other shooting event. I must say that it was a blast. We did a sporting clays shoot. Sporting cays is a lot like golf in that you go from hole to hole, or station to station to shoot the “birds”. Mechanical throwers launch the clays at varying angles and distances that mimic real hunting conditions. There is even a mock-rabbit where a extra tough clay is launched across the ground and you have to shoot it as it rolls. I was pretty nervous that I would be horrible at this but I really had a good time and I think I ended up shooting pretty well.

Here are a few pictures I was able to take.  The lighting was horrible for good pictures.  I kept trying to capture the shell as it ejects from the action but I could not get a fast enough shutter speed for it not to be blurry because there was not enough light.  Maybe next time!

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My buddy Shawn

I even made it on camera.

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My favorite capture. If you look closely you can see where he just hit the clay.

Austin shooting at one of the "rabbits".

Shawn going for one of the hardest stations of the day.

My First Banded Duck

A couple weeks ago I got a banded mallard. This means that someone caught the duck and put a metal band around its leg. If a hunter gets on of these banded ducks they are supposed to call the band in to the USGS. It provides valuable information about the migration patterns and age of birds. Anyway…. To a duck hunter getting a banded duck is like winning the lottery. There are not that many banded birds out there and some people that have huntere their entire life never get one. Needless to say I was excited. I took the duck to the taxidermist and I should have him back in a few more weeks. I plan to put him in my office. Below is the certificate I got back from the USGS. The duck was banded in 2002 and it was hatched in 2001 or proir. That means that he was at least 6 years old. He was banded in Montana. Since ducks are migratory that means that he has flown back and forth for 6 years and covered thousands and thousands of miles. Pretty cool eh..

I caught a duck with my bear hands!!!!

Believe it or not I caught this little guy with my bear hands. I don’t think that he was injured or anything. I saw him swimming in the water and I started to follow him. He left little bubbles coming up so I followed the bubbles when he would dive under the water. I eventually figured out how long he could stay under and how far he could go. When he came up I grabbed him. He did seem a little nervous but I did not hurt him. It is odd that he was by himself. They are usually pretty social. In case you are wondering what kind he is. I believe that he is a drake (male) green wing teal. And just for the record I did let him go. I am not cruel. Sorry for the video quality I used my phone.

Hunting and Poaching

Austin and I took the dogs out early this morning to check out some new places to hunt for ducks. For those that don’t know there is a 2 week break in the middle of duck season which we are in the middle of. So we could not legally shoot anything today. Some people might think that hunting is kind of taboo, or that shooting ducks is cruel. I can see how someone might think that. I definitely enjoy just being outside with friends and with the dogs more than shooting. Hunting does serve a greater good though. If waterfowl populations are not kept under control they can and still sometimes do anyway destroy farmers crops. They can do some major damage a freshly planted field. Anyway, Austin and I go out this morning and we do not even take our guns. We get out of the truck, and unload the dogs and then…..BAM….BAMM. There was some one out there shooting at ducks. Remember that it is illegal right now to shoot ducks. There is a break in the season to give the ducks some time to rest. This made me so mad. Could these poachers not have waited 7 more days for the ducks to be in season again? Could they not follow the simple laws that the texas parks and wildlife established for good reasons?
After we got closer to the villans they must have felt guilty because they did not fire another shot. I felt good about that. We did find some great new places to hunt from next weekend when ducks are back in season. The dogs had a great time and we saw 3 bucks out there. One of them was a 10 point. Who knew that Denton had so much wildlife?!!!!!

Luke and Kolbe Went Duck Hunting

Kolbe and I got up at about 4:30 this morning to go duck hunting with Austin Jackson. This was the first time I’ve been in about 3 years and Kolbe’s first time ever. I am so proud of him. He did absolutely awesome. Kolbe was a little timid with the first one but after that he figured it out he did awesome. He was able to bring all the ducks back in from the water. Austin and I did pretty well. There were not whole lot of ducks flying around this morning seeing as how it was 75 degrees. 40 degrees would have been better. However it was nice because we had a couple good fly-bye’s and Austin and I were shooting pretty good. We got a couple of ‘coots and 3 Mallard’s. 1 Drake (male with green head) and 2 hens (females that are mostly brown). Believe it or not we saw 2 deer (one large buck and one smaller buck) swimming across the lake. All of this took place on Lake Lewisville right behind Paloma Creek. Can’t wait to go back. All this fun only a few miles from our house!