Location: Clara City, MN
Weather:Windy with flurries. Highs mid-30 with lows in the single digits. Forecasted highs of below freezing for the next week which will pretty much close most water except big bodies.
Snow Cover: Approximately 12 inches of new fallen snow in the area.
Water Conditions: All small water is frozen. The only thing that remains open is large waters and rivers.
Feeding Conditions: Waterfowl are feeding in mid-day one time a day starting in the late morning and ending well before the sunset.
Species and Numbers: Canada geese numbers have increased and also an increase of mallards that was prior to the big snow that came. Pushed some straight through. Overall waterfowl numbers are up but not sure how long it will last with the cold and new snow.
Migrations: Right before the snowstorm to now there has been a significant migration of geese and ducks into the area.
Season Stage:Past mid-point.
Hunting Report:Not very good up to the front. The day before the front it was great. Now it is hard to access fields to hunt the geese.
Gossip: With the cold and snow it is most likely going to be a quick push through the area.
Date:Nov 10 2014
Location: Rochester, MN
Weather:Lows in the 30’s and highs in the 50’s.
Snow Cover: None yet
Water Conditions: The water is very low.
Feeding Conditions: Most of the fields are picked and the birds are hitting them. The rice crop on the river is pretty bad this year.
Species and Numbers:Bird numbers are fairly low for both ducks and geese for this time of year, but they should be on the way with the cold temps and storms north of us.
Migrations: Birds have been moving through. It’s a shame that our area doesn’t hold nearly as many as it used to.
Season Stage:There are a few weeks left of duck season. Geese go on through the end of the year.
Hunting Report: Guys have been doing very well on geese around, as long as they are able to be mobile.
Gossip: Deer season started last weekend. Wear orange on your way to and from the blind if you go out.
Location: Buffalo, MN
Weather:Snow accumulating today up to 12 inches. Winds are heavy and out of the north.
Snow Cover: Storm total is forecasted to give us a good blanket of 8-12 inches.
Water Conditions: Open water, but freeze up is beginning on some small wetlands.
Feeding Conditions: Ok. Not all of the corn is out yet. Snow is accumulating in some fields.
Species and Numbers:A few geese around with some mallards as well. Most birds I saw this morning were staying put while waiting out the storm.
Migrations: Migration is occurring now.
Season Stage:Towards the end of our regular waterfowl season. We have just shy of two weeks left for ducks.
Hunting Report: It seems that most guys I talk to have been struggling all season. The weather we needed to push birds into the area just arrived and with extreme cold in the forecast for the end of this week, we will be down to only traditional late season areas holding birds.
Gossip: Most guys are hunting deer at this point.A few die hard waterfowlers remain.
Location:Cottage Grove, Wisconsin
Weather:Partly Sunny with lows in the 20’s and highs in the 30’s.
Snow Cover: None
Water Conditions: Smaller bodies of water will soon be frozen over.
Feeding Conditions:Geese are hitting combined corn fields. Ducks are starting to hit fields as well. Expecting to see good numbers of ducks hitting fields with the weather forecast.
Species and Numbers: Hunted the Mississippi River this weekend. Saw very high numbers of canvasbacks that decoyed very well. Canada geese numbers in our area are near peak right now. Mallards are starting to come down in bigger numbers.
Migrations:Divers moved down this past weekend on the Mississippi. Pool 9 specifically had good numbers of canvasbacks and bufflehead. Goldeneyes should be coming down very shortly as well. Canada geese are seen migrating in the sky very often. With the snow storm and cold weather to come mallard numbers should be high very soon.
Hunting Report:This weekend was very good with massive flocks of canvasbacks and various diver species working our decoy spread. This next week should be even better.
Gossip:Weather has set us up for a huge push of ducks and geese!
Date:November 11th, 2014
Weather:Very nice day today the 11th, leading into the cold push of air from the Northwest. We will be at the outskirt of any snow from the Upper Peninsula. Highs will be in the 30’s and lows will vary from night to night 20’s and teens,
Snow Cover: Will stay out of our area.
Water Conditions: Levels have not been too bad, even though there has been SW wind. Docks are open to trailers and river levels are walkable.
Feeding Conditions: There are plenty of crops that need to come down. Beans and corn are still standing in a majority of land on both sides of the border.
Species and Numbers: In the immediate area there are Canadas but have been here for some time and staying in the city. A small mallard group was seen several days ago but they have moved on. Not much to see even glassing the open waters.
Migrations:Should be interesting to see what floats in during the Midwest snowstorm. The west end of Lake Erie is just quiet right now and just south of the border is the same.
Season Stage:Both duck and goose will re-open in the Lake Erie marsh zone on the 15th in Ohio. Southern Michigan is open until December 7th.
Hunting Report: A few birds are being taken on the Lake, but it is spotty.
Gossip:I don’t even have anything to make up!!!
Date: Nov 11, 2014
Location:Lake County, IL / SE WI (Kenosha County)
Weather:Warmer this week, temps in the 40’s SW winds.
Snow Cover: None yet
Water Conditions: Minimal rain, water drying up in fields. Lakes and ponds wide open.
Feeding Conditions: Harvest still in full swing, plenty of corn around and fields are loaded with geese
Species and Numbers:Thousands of geese, large feeds in corn fields. Duck numbers appear lower this week, less on the water that I scout. Very small groups of mallards (10-12 per group).
Migrations:Geese are heavy in our area, less ducks this week.
Season Stage:Still early, north is getting very cold so we should see a big push of birds this week.
Hunting Report: Hunted fresh cut corn field with no success. Minimal bird traffic was a problem, and we hunted the field too early. We should have let it sit a couple days to get birds staging there. With the freeze coming, the farmer has already tilled the field.
Gossip: Around here, some success in SE WI with groups shooting 8-12 geese in corn fields. Minimal duck success, even on the Chain of Lakes.
Weather:Highs in the 40’s, lows in the upper 20’s, overcast with light precip. Winds out the NNW at 15-20.
Snow Cover: N/A
Water Conditions: Good
Feeding Conditions: Good, harvest 90% complete.
Species and Numbers:Teal, spoonbills, gadwall here in good numbers. Mallards are starting to show up.
Migrations:Yesterday we watched large flocks of ducks show up all day. We also had flights of snow geese around the area as well.
Hunting Report: Yesterday was a great day to be out. Hunting was strong in most places around the area. Birds worked well, especially in the morning but shut off around 10:30. Action picked back up around 1.
Gossip: Most places are very concerned with an early freeze with this recent drop in temps.
Name: Ralph Harr
Location: St. Peter's, MO.
Weather: Colder with major weather system coming through the area today bringing strong winds and cold temps.
Snow Cover: N/A
Water Conditions: Water conditions are good right now with nothing frozen but will be much different situation in a week.
Feeding Conditions: Fair to good
Species and Numbers: Mostly dabblers and some local geese. Numbers should be increasing throughout the week.
Migrations: Major migration early this week. Still too early to tell how many birds we will pick up.
Season Stage: Early stage of the season still
Hunting Report: Hunting report from last Sunday: Good morning movement with most groups working very well. Good groups of mallards and some pintails working spread which was a good feeling.
Gossip: Be safe this week and weekend with the cold temps
Weather:Mild but changing rapidly with and Arctic push on the way. Temps will start out the week in the 70’s and will only reach the 40’s by the weekend.
Snow Cover: None
Water Conditions: Overall the lakes and rivers are at normal levels. Some pumping has taken place in the area and that is where you will find the ducks right now.
Feeding Conditions: Very good, the fields have plenty of waste grains available.
Species and Numbers:Gadwall, pintail, green-winged teal, mallards and specks are all in the area now. We should see a big influx by the end of the week.
Migrations:Pretty typical of the ducks right now but that will all change by the end of the week. We should see more mallards and some snow geese after this front has passed.
Season Stage:Youth day is on November 22 with the regular season to open Thanksgiving Day. Geese will be fair game after this Thursday the 13th.
Hunting Report: I wish there was one but not yet.
Gossip:The Dawgs are still at number one! The biggest game of the year will be in Tuscaloosa this weekend.