Sunday, June 2, 2024

    My Season Update: Waterfowl Scouting And Preparing For Small Game

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    I wanted to check in and give everyone a quick update on how preparing for my fall hunting has been coming along. As the weather in southeast Michigan has rapidly begun feeling more and more like fall, I have started to feel the familiar excitement as hunting season approaches. At the end of August, I finished scouting and hung my last trail cam on the private land property where I will be hunting deer. Now, I am avoiding the property completely as I let the deer get comfortable before I go in on the opening day of bow season. In the meantime, I am practicing every day with my bow and have been going through dry runs of my saddle set up at night to simulate the low light conditions of a morning setup or evening tear down.

    Tikka T1X .22LR

    Small game season starts on September 15th and I have been spending some time at the range zeroing in my rifle. This year I am shooting a Tikka T1x bolt action rifle chambered in .22 LR. I will be running a Silencerco Sparrow suppressor and shooting CCI subsonic rounds while I target squirrels and rabbits. I am enjoying the suppressor setup with the combination of subsonic rounds which makes the rifle as quiet as a small staple gun. I will be out in the afternoon on public land for the opening day of small game.

    Scouting For Geese

    After a few unsuccessful waterfowl hunts last year, I am determined to bag my first geese this fall. To that end, I have been scouting several different marsh areas and trying to come up with a plan to hunt one. Today I got a late start to scouting and didn’t get to the marsh property until about 15 minutes before sundown. The cool evening air was cutting through the tall grass and a beautiful orange moon was starting to shine. I crept back for about 10 minutes until I reached the edge of a pond. I could hear some very loud and vocal sandhill cranes who had decided to utilize the pond. Taking one step forward, I must have spooked them because suddenly all 20 of the cranes were flying up in V formation over the pond. If only we could hunt them here, but I digress. Surveying the now empty pond, I did not see any geese.

    I worked my way through the riparian zone to the other end of the pond and after settling in the grass, ripped a few honks on my goose call. A beautiful Canada goose flew up from about 20 yards behind me answering my calling with a series of honks. After flying around for a bit, It flew to the nearby field. As the sun set and I made my way back to my car, I was pleasantly surprised to see 3 different groups of Canada geese flying low overhead. I must have counted about 50 geese in all. The last group of 20 came in for a landing on the pond I had been near. Feeling pretty good about my chances on this property, I went home and spent the evening getting my decoys rigged up and loaded for a morning hunt.

    RELATED  Video: Bobby Guy - Tips For Successful Duck And Goose Scouting

    It’s late and it’s going to be an early morning at 5am for my first full day of hunting this fall. I’m hoping to come home with a couple of geese and some squirrels. Good luck to everyone on the first day of small game season!


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