Tu tene eum procul; Ego curram ob auxilium!

Sunday, December 07, 2008

First Limit

Friday was closed to duck hunting, but
snipe were still open. I went out on the
St. Johns River to do some scouting for
Saturday's second phase of duck season
and to whack a few snipe.

There were only two folks on the marsh:
the sheriff's deputy that checked my
license and me. He was real decent
and let me sit on the side of his airboat
and puff for a bit. We chatted and then
he headed off.

I hadn't gotten snipe one up to that
point though there were tons around.
I finally decided that it was the blaze
orange shooting vest I had on. Although
there wasn't anyone else around to mistake
me for a snipe, I also thought it might
be a good idea to have it on in case the
heat and/or exertion got to me and I
ended up face down in the mud. Still,
the snipe were seeing me a hundred
yards out and bolting. I ditched the
vest and put a camo jacket on that
had pockets for shells and birds.
That seemed to do the trick and things
picked up. The only problem was that
the day was over seventy degrees, sunny,
windless, and I was wearing neoprene chest
waders. I needed to be in shorts and short
sleeves. As it was, I ended up drinking
7 bottles of water to keep from dehydration.

I would hunt a spot for a bit in as close
to a circular route as would bring
me back to the boat without having
to cover hunted over land. When
I covered that, I would pack up and
find another spot. I covered a lot
of really boggy ground. I spent a lot
of time shooting behind birds, but
I was picking up one or two at every
stop. There were times I flushed so
many that I didn't know which one
to point at. But, I didn't lose any
birds and found all but three of
my hulls from almost two boxes
of #7 12 gauge steel shells.

It was my first snipe limit ever
and maybe more fun than duck hunting.
I was glad that we weren't able to
get organized for duck hunting the
next day. I was too sore.




Blogger Josh said...

Hey, I got this link from Hank Shaw's Hunter-Angler-Gardener-Cook. I'm a huge fan of snipe hunting, and I just wanted to say that this was a great post! Good shooting, and good fun.

Here in California, we have some boat-in only spots, and I just might hit them up for snipe at some point.

11:24 PM  
Blogger oldfatslow said...

The two feet of rain we
got the day Tropical Storm
Fay wouldn't leave put so
much water on the St. Johns
River that it scoured a lot
of duck feed vegetation but
left some beautiful snipey
mud. I ended up get my limit
three times this year.

You might want to check out
the Snipe Forum. It is an
international group of snipers.



11:49 PM  
Blogger Josh said...

Thanks for the link! It's great.

10:44 PM  

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