I went south Tuesday morning after a long night at work. I was all set up and marvelling at how light it was already 30 minutes before shoot time. A few flights of ducks flew overhead in bigger numbers than I'd seen all season and then an owl came out of nowhere close enough that I jumped up and almost touched it. I'm not sure who was more afraid...me having something unexpected almost fly into my head.... or the poor owl that had something come to life and almost grab it. As shoot time approached I had high hopes.
Just after LST the one other hunter in the area fired 2 shots. I'm not sure if he connected, but i called desparately to a lone hen mallard that was departing his area area with full afterburner. She was the last duck I saw for the next hour. Eventually a pair of mallards flew overhead just high enough that I should have gotten on the call and tried to convince them to circle back for a lower look. I didn't, and shot at them more out of frustration than anything else...and missed.
That was it! A beautiful morning for sure with low fog rolling in sporadically and a light breeze. However, after 2 hours of next to nothing I decided to call it a day. I started picking up decoys when I looked over and saw my lab proudly carrying back a very lively greenhead. I guess she gave up on me and decided to go find her own duck. Obviously, someone left a cripple in the field from earlier in the week and we were lucky enoogh to find it. At least I had proof to show my wife that I was truly duck huinting and not involved in some other early morning activity.