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Author Topic: Balancing Big Game and Waterfowl  (Read 943 times)

Offline Bookworm007

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Balancing Big Game and Waterfowl
« on: April 23, 2018, 06:26:48 PM »
How do you balance the two seasons? This year between Elk/Deer season and plus the mandatory school and work I had hardly anytime to take the dog out. This year I am looking at hunting the muzzy seasons to open up more time for bird hunting, but what do y'all do?  :dunno:
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Offline Special T

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Re: Balancing Big Game and Waterfowl
« Reply #1 on: April 23, 2018, 06:59:48 PM »
I archery hunt for this reason. The season is in September, and if it's a no weather bluebird day in the late season, I walk for deer in the woods. If it's blowing like hell I'm out banging ducks...

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Offline bobcat

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Re: Balancing Big Game and Waterfowl
« Reply #2 on: April 23, 2018, 07:20:11 PM »
That's a great question. I think you have to decide what's most important and eliminate the things that aren't. It's pretty tough to do it all. Although muzzleloader for deer and elk is a good option if you want to hunt the early seasons and birds after that. Back when I had bird dogs and hunted eastern Washington for pheasants, bird hunting was the priority. Even prior to pheasant season the dogs needed to be exercised regularly and if I was off deer or elk hunting I couldn't do that.

Generally I'd put in enough time deer hunting, usually close to home, and usually with a muzzleloader, that I'd get a deer every year, sometimes just a doe so I could put meat in the freezer and go back to bird hunting. Elk is what I gave up, just didn't have time to focus on it, so I always bought an elk tag but rarely hunted elk.

So, if it were me I'd figure out a way to get the dog out as much as possible. When I had my dogs I always felt so guilty when I left to go hunting and left them behind.

Offline ghosthunter

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Re: Balancing Big Game and Waterfowl
« Reply #3 on: April 23, 2018, 08:44:47 PM »
We have always muzzy elk, than modern deer, than ducks.

But if someone doesn’t draw a muzzy cow tag we may not go . Maybe modern deer, and a week duck hunting at potholes.

I have 19 quality buck points, but cannot decide on a unit.

No time for pheasants.
Not enough time.
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Offline jagermiester

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Re: Balancing Big Game and Waterfowl
« Reply #4 on: April 23, 2018, 09:11:55 PM »
How do you balance the two seasons? This year between Elk/Deer season and plus the mandatory school and work I had hardly anytime to take the dog out. This year I am looking at hunting the muzzy seasons to open up more time for bird hunting, but what do y'all do?  :dunno:

You know perspective is an amazing thing. Sounds to me like you have an awesome full life with tons of things to keep you moving. Some day you will have some more free time and be able to fit it all in. Right now you decide what will be the most fun thing to do with the free time that you have and push it to the limit.
I like to call it maxin and relaxin.
Lead em if they're running.

Offline Duckgtr

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Re: Balancing Big Game and Waterfowl
« Reply #5 on: April 24, 2018, 11:33:27 AM »
Your telling me. I archery hunt elk and this year I'm gonna do archery as well for deer. With that said I wont be deer huntin until archery elk opens so I can go out for early goose.

Offline Dhoey07

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Re: Balancing Big Game and Waterfowl
« Reply #6 on: April 24, 2018, 11:41:17 AM »
I haven't hunted ducks for 5 years or so because my fall is too busy.  I can't wait to get back out there though.  My oldest is 5 and I hope to take her duck hunting with me soon. It'll make it a little easier on mom if we have one less little one driving her crazy  :chuckle:

Offline buglebuster

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Re: Balancing Big Game and Waterfowl
« Reply #7 on: April 24, 2018, 12:30:45 PM »
I dont really do the duck thing, but hunt alotnof upland. I do multiseason deer so i can hunt all seasons. I hunted archery, then went to montana for elk in september, muzzleload elk here,  thwn killed a buck opening day of rifle season. Bird hunted evwry weekend till mid november and headed to montana for deer. Came back and bird hunted every weekemd until the season was over. Its pretty easy to juggle it all actually. Theres alot of weekends after big game is closed, if  you're willing to sacrafice a few early in the season.
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Offline vandeman17

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Re: Balancing Big Game and Waterfowl
« Reply #8 on: April 24, 2018, 01:23:39 PM »
Duck season is plenty long that even with me spending a few weeks chasing deer and elk, I still get in at least 10-15 duck hunts per season.
" I have hunted almost every day of my life, the rest have been wasted"

Offline Spuddieselwwu

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Re: Balancing Big Game and Waterfowl
« Reply #9 on: April 24, 2018, 01:38:15 PM »
Duck/goose season typically doesn't even pick up for me until Mid/late nov anyway just due to weather/numbers.

Offline aaronoto

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Re: Balancing Big Game and Waterfowl
« Reply #10 on: April 24, 2018, 02:57:55 PM »
Fairly easily, I just don't hunt ducks until late November, the numbers and weather are a lot better then anyways.  I used to get caught up with going out duck hunting early season just because we finally could again, but the more I chased ducks early in the season the more I realized it's just not worth it until later in the year.

Offline ballstothewaal

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Re: Balancing Big Game and Waterfowl
« Reply #11 on: April 24, 2018, 06:03:14 PM »
I usually do archery for both deer and elk. When it comes to late season, I always choose duck hunting because I find it more enjoyable. Every once in a while, I will get out for the late season, but I have more fun shooting greenheads! It all comes down to what will be more fun for me in the end, and since I have more success shooting ducks than I do big game, I tend to lean towards ducks.

Offline Bookworm007

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Re: Balancing Big Game and Waterfowl
« Reply #12 on: April 25, 2018, 09:15:18 PM »
I guess that is the root of the question, which one is more enjoyable which when the choice is hunting alone or taking the dog, the dog always wins.

I'm not much of an archery guy so I guess muzzy/mod combo with have to do. It always seems too dang hot during archery season.

Thanks for the input good luck on your seasons this year!!!
"I ain't never had too much fun"

Offline sumpnz

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Re: Balancing Big Game and Waterfowl
« Reply #13 on: April 25, 2018, 10:18:03 PM »
Due to my elk hunting buddies both bailing out this year (one for a baby, other for a divorce) I won't be going to the coast like I normally would.  The area we hunt has tons of ducks, and since we always see elk in the afternoon/evening but not in the morning I had planned to hunt ducks in the morning and switch to elk in the afternoon.  But that's off for this year.

Might try some duck hunting locally this year instead.  Deer hunting won't really interfere either way.

Next year I'll again consider having a go at ducks during elk season.

Offline h2ofowlr

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Re: Balancing Big Game and Waterfowl
« Reply #14 on: April 26, 2018, 07:40:43 AM »
I had switched to archery and muzzleloader to work around my duck season.  Worked out pretty good, until the boys decide they wanted to deer hunt.  They do rifle, so I take them out the second weekend of the season for deer, so we can still catch the opener for waterfowl.
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Offline DOUBLELUNG

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Re: Balancing Big Game and Waterfowl
« Reply #15 on: April 26, 2018, 08:02:19 AM »
When I was younger and childless, I did both no problem.  As my time got more limited, I figured the years where I could hunt big game the way I like to were fewer than my duck hunting years.  I'm getting to the age where trolling and duck hunting are more appealing and a pack full of elk less so, but I'm not ready to throw in the towel yet! 
As long as we have the habitat, we can argue forever about who gets to kill what and when.  No habitat = no game.

Offline h2ofowlr

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Re: Balancing Big Game and Waterfowl
« Reply #16 on: April 26, 2018, 08:19:22 AM »
When I was younger and childless, I did both no problem.  As my time got more limited, I figured the years where I could hunt big game the way I like to were fewer than my duck hunting years.  I'm getting to the age where trolling and duck hunting are more appealing and a pack full of elk less so, but I'm not ready to throw in the towel yet!

After the last bull elk I shot way the hell off the beaten path, I have been less enthusiastic about getting another one.  Hardest pack out of my life.  Shot it at 8:45am and got the last bit of it out by 9:00pm that night after multiple trips.
Cut em!
It's not the shells!  It's the shooter!

Offline EWUeagles

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Re: Balancing Big Game and Waterfowl
« Reply #17 on: April 27, 2018, 07:29:51 AM »
I haven't hunted ducks for 5 years or so because my fall is too busy.  I can't wait to get back out there though.  My oldest is 5 and I hope to take her duck hunting with me soon. It'll make it a little easier on mom if we have one less little one driving her crazy  :chuckle:

I goose hunt a couple times of the year. If I can get a field for early goose or really anytime you and you're daughter are more than welcome to come along.

Offline jackelope

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Re: Balancing Big Game and Waterfowl
« Reply #18 on: April 27, 2018, 01:41:40 PM »
I do a great job of balancing the 2. How you ask? I don't hunt waterfowl. That is all.
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Offline ian_padron

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Re: Balancing Big Game and Waterfowl
« Reply #19 on: May 13, 2018, 11:26:37 PM »
I take a week in September and October for deer before the weather turns from bad to worse in the mountains, then it's ducks 3 or 4 days a week November till February baby! After getting beat to $hit in the mountains for 2 months, dragging my kayak through the muck in the Skagit is a welcome relief haha. Then by the end of waterfowl season I'm right back up in the hills looking for sheds.

It's a vicious cycle!

Offline vandeman17

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Re: Balancing Big Game and Waterfowl
« Reply #20 on: May 14, 2018, 08:31:54 AM »
I do a great job of balancing the 2. How you ask? I don't hunt waterfowl. That is all.
 :yike:

well that's just silly
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