By Paul Wait
“This pass,” I whispered to myself, alternately tensing and relaxing my grip on the autoloader poised across my chest, all but the last few inches of barrel well hidden within a corn-stalk-covered layout blind.
Just down the line, two of my partners quacked and chuckled at the circling flock, cajoling the cautious greenheads and susies as they surveyed our spread in a sweeping arc.
A drake broke ranks first, fluttering down solo, nearly on top of the spinning-wings decoy just to my right. His descending yellow bill hung above the field, not more than 15 yards from my bead. But I didn’t shoot him. Not yet.
From behind, 40 pairs of mallard wings swooped low, coasting in unison for a final approach. They backpedaled to finish strong just beyond the tips of our toes.
It was a memorable moment. And it’s exactly why we hunt.
Whether you prefer feet-down greenheads, twisting teal or speeding bluebills, getting ducks over the decoys is always the goal.
It’s why you train your retriever all summer, shoot at the range in July, string new decoys in August and pull on your waders on opening day.
It’s also why Delta Waterfowl works hard for you. It’s the reason our duck production team bounces across the prairies on snow machines in January and February to install and maintain mallard-producing Hen Houses. It drives our Predator Management efforts every March to July to allow ducks a better chance to hatch a nest. It fuels our desire to work with farmers to conserve the best duck-nesting habitat. It’s why we never stop fighting for hunting access, and the reason we continually push for sensible hunting regulations in every flyway.
You entrust us with your membership and support, and we put it to work for you. Together, we are The Duck Hunters Organization.
Here’s hoping you find ducks over your decoys often this season.
Not a Delta member? Click here to join The Duck Hunters Organization today!