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fishuhalik

Any North Dakota reports?

13 posts in this topic

Well, we're headed up on Friday! Sounds like it might not be perfect conditions but hopefully we can at least find enough birds to keep things interesting. Anyone been out that way recently? We're gonna be in the Devils Lake area. Hoping to do at least a day or two in fields but we're definitely willing to hunt some potholes if all the fields are posted. Thanks for any help!

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New Salem is where I hear all the Internet scouters are headed

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I'm getting good reports, heard today was a huge migration day for white geese, some of the birds will migrate on weather, and some will migrate on the calender and the amount of daylight. I'm heading out tomorro and I'm  feeling alot better about this trip than I have about past november trips when alot was froze up. I wish all of ND was posted and you needed permission to hunt all land, it would help eliminate getting to a field at 3 in the morning only to have a group upwind you.. Last trip out i had three fields, one posted and two not, missed out on the two not posted and got the one that was posted, still had plenty of time to get to the third field because we were at the first two, 3 hours before shooting time, Good luck to all this weekend and burn some gas, I put on 400 miles last trip before we set out a decoy, Scouting pays off even if it means missing a mornings hunt..

fishuhalik likes this

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That's how I always hunt Todd. No point in even setting decoys if there's no birds to come into the dekes. Good luck to you this week too sir! Maybe we'll bump paths somewhere along the way

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My contacts say if you can't find ducks in nodak right now, take two weeks off and quit. This is what I feared when I got my diagnosis. Shaping up to be a huntable migration for once. Would expect some more reports if anyone was still using this site.

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Well, here the report thus far. Yup, there's ducks and snows. Not much for honkers. If you put in the road time, you'll find plenty of birds to kill. You better hunt smart though cuz dang it are they stale. 

Here's my personal report. Left Three Rivers, TX at 0545 Friday, got here at 0530 Saturday. We figured we'd kill reliable birds and spend the rest of the day scouting. Went to a reliable pass shooting spot and shot 14 assorted puddlers and divers in about 1.5 hours, including a drake bwt...yeah, on November 12th. Man this fall sucks. As we were shooting we noticed a huge grind in a field behind us about 1.5 miles with 10-15k mallards and around 1k geese. They were roosting on the bay we were hunting and grinding in the field. Figured we'd set there the next morning and crush em, so we drove around most of the rest of the day trying to find the property owner. Finally found him around 1800. Sat and watched the slough in the evening and watched flock after flock of 1k+ mallards tornado down. Quite the sight!

Here comes the fun part. Let me back up a bit. We didn't take ANY gear (dekes, blinds, etc) because I was going to be meeting a buddy up there who has everything we'd need. He was supposed to meet us there Saturday am. He called and told me he had found a big feed of snows by his buddy's place in Crosby and asked if I would mind if he showed up Saturday evening. No biggy. Saturday evening rolls around and I haven't heard from him. I text him around 1800 to let him know we secured the field. No text back. Text him at 2145 and tell him I'm going to bed and give him the address. Thankfully, the owner that gave us permission also gave permission to another group of three, and I was smart enough to get their contact info. Got a hold of them and said our buddy May of stood us up. He texts me back at 0410, telling me he's in Devils (bulogne) and waiting in his truck. I text him back, nothing. I call him 5x, nothing. Thankfully the guys we were meeting up with had extra layouts and were generous enough to let us use them (faith in humanity restored!!) but the birds had been feeding all night under the full moon and didn't really even leave the slough. Ended up with 5 mallards. Since we didn't have any decoys or gear, we went into town, bought a dozen floaters and jumped a few ponds with no success. Tonight, we were chatting with the guys staying next to us, and they graciously loaned us 2 dozen floaters to use tomorrow (faith in humanity restored again!!). Plan tomorrow is to set up on the channel that feeds the bay the mallards were using since we saw quite a few landing in that area and see what we can scrounge up. Oh, and we still haven't heard back from the guy that was supposed to join us. All in all, we have seen an incredible number of mallards (there's easily 50k in that slough) and if we actually had the right gear, we'd be absolutely crushing birds. Most guys that we've talked to that are putting in the seat time are doing ok to outstanding.

Wow, that turned into a book

Edited by fishuhalik
Wanderer likes this

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Here's the report for the final day. It was tough, but we made it happen. A lot of birds left that roost but there were still a few thousand milling around. We set up in a spot about a mile off the roost and pulled traffic. If you've ever hunted highly pressured, stale North Dakota mallards that have been chased and shot at since September, you know how cagey those birds can be. Man alive did it take some perfect calling to get em cupped up. They'd circle 7-10x, and if you miss a note, they are GONE. Thankfully my call game was strong yesterday and we had quite a few birds in the decoys. Had we been shooting better we woulda had a full strap of greenheads, but apparently some of our barrels got bent on the drive down haha We were set up with a 15mph crosswind so I set the Texas boys on the downwind side so the birds would be landing in their face. I barely shouldered the shotgun all day but that's fine by me. I enjoy calling birds in more than I do actually pulling the trigger
Coolest thing that happened all trip happened in the last couple seconds of legal shooting light. The boys had been itching to kill a big greater, but since we didn't have goose decoys, the chances were slim-none. At 16:58 (yes, I looked at my phone to check the time and sunset was 1701) a few geese came off the pond behind us about 500 yards away. They gained a little altitude, then caught the wind and just drifted, sidestepping their way right towards us. I'm sitting there thinking "God, are you really gonna make this happen?!" They kept coming until they were 40yds above us, straight up. I was shooting #3s and bounced BBs off their breasts, but Josh slid some BB shot into his gun that he had sitting in his bag and was able to knock down his first greater. What a special end to the trip!!! All in all, we made the best out of a worst-case scenario, the guys got to see what North Dakota is capable of, and we got to see some incredible generosity of two separate groups of awesome guys that let us use their decoys & gear. Next year, we're Saskatchewan bound...with a much more reliable buddy

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Edited by fishuhalik
Wanderer, MJ1657 and Neighbor_guy like this

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Glad you got some upsides for all your efforts!  I had some pics in my mind from reading your report.  Thanks for making it a good morning. :)

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