24 Dec 2008 – Texas Weekly Migratory Bird Hunting Report

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24 Dec 2008 - Texas Weekly Migratory Bird Hunting ReportWeekly migratory bird hunting reports are posted from early September through early February.

High Plains Mallard Management Unit: Temperatures had been below freezing for several days last week with winds gusting at over 30 miles per hour. More geese are roosting around Etter and Cactus Lake since the beginning of December. Larger lakes have held the only open water since shallower playas are frozen. Decoying action for geese has been solid when winds are less than 20 knots. Some hunts have produced equal ratios of dark and light geese. A good crop of young snow geese has aided in great decoying action. Many more mallards are showing, but hunters have had to break ice. Lots of ducks are using warmer feed lot ponds. Haskell County hunters have taken wigeons, mallards, gadwalls, teal and good numbers of Canadas. Prospects are good.

North Zone Duck: Frigid temperatures throughout the Central Flyway have sent many more mallards across the Red River. Some good hunts were posted in the snow last week on area lakes and reservoirs. Sloughs and backwaters are loading up with greenheads and wood ducks. Green-winged teal have been seen on shallow flats on lakes and reservoirs. Mallards, gadwalls and teal have been solid on Lake Wright-Patman, Lake Palestine, Lake Fork, Lake Tawakoni and Cooper Lake. Wood ducks have been steady in wooded sloughs. Inland ponds near the coast were fair over the weekend. Mostly teal, gadwalls, pintails and shovelers were taken. Some good goose hunts were posted just north of IH-10 near Winnie last week when four days of fog socked in along the coast. Prospects are fair to good.

South Zone Duck: Duck hunting improved significantly along the coastal prairie with blasts of cold air that reach South Texas. Most hunters have said they saw an influx of green-winged teal which helped fill bags quickly. Pintails have been solidly decoying over shallow flats. More gadwalls have shown, but their fickle behavior has limited decoying action. Hunters continue to wonder where large flocks of shovelers have been this season. Spoonbills have been noticeably absent for the entire season. The High Island marsh has been fair to good for teal and gadwalls. Collegeport and Palacios have been good for teal, pintails and gadwalls. Port O’Connor, Rockport and Port Mansfield hunters have taken pintails, redheads and teal. Inland ponds near Port O’Connor have been good for limits of ducks. Goose hunting was solid during the week with at least four days of fog between cold fronts. Many outfitters have regularly harvested over 30 geese per hunt. Canada geese are showing in many bags. Prospects are good.