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Kansas 2021

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  • #16
    Great adventure, always seems to happen like that. I think the birds have some sort of magic power that ques them to respond at times like that. Glad you got the skunk off. It will get better, now that the ice has been broken. Thanks for sharing.

    Qac

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    • #17
      That 15 mins will be in my minds hall of fame for life. Great sights and sounds. That group picked the perfect time to show up, Besides no motion we had little wind, no sound except my feeble efforts, and frost on the decoys. The fact that I "almost" got a shot is amazing. Everytime a new group showed I assume it would pull the working birds off of me only to see them jump inline and join the party. BTW I am blaming my bad shooting on Cornstalks being winded as well.

      I have a little more duck hunting to do, some upland, crows and honkers.... but that made me ready to be out there with a full spread and sound.

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      • #18
        Funny and well written!

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        • #19
          Today was quite the surprise on my first outing of the year. I set just less than half of a spread in ground that barely had a frozen crust in it. I could hear birds not far away the whole time and as soon as I got settled in here they came. 6 or 7 spins and working really nice, about 50 landed on the other end of the spread but there were a couple of thousand locked up tight above me. With only 3 shots, I picked out a close snow and blue and dropped both of those. As luck would have it, another one behind them caught some pellets and flew off crippled which I later retrieved. Several other flocks gave it a try but wouldn't quite commit. Finally a lone blue broke off a flock of several hundred and dropped in. After that I saw a big long string probably 5 miles long to the north of me heading NW. It was quiet for a while and then I heard a flock coming from the SE. It was a never ending flock that was lower but in migration mode and continued for 20 minutes in a near solid string all headed west. That was 9am and didn't see another bird till 4:30 after I gave up and was picking up a few things. Ended with the 4, a snow adult and 3 juvie blues. It wasn't until I got home and was cleaning them that I saw the band on the snow. Ended up being banded in 2008 or before 12 miles north of Native Point on Southhampton Island, Nunavut. Interestingly enough just looking it up, Native Point is an archeological site for some stone age people. It was a great way to start the hunting season!

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          • Wapiti
            Wapiti commented
            Editing a comment
            Congrats. That is a heck of a way to start your season!

        • #20
          Man that's great. Congrats on the band. Two of the blues look like at least three year birds and the immature bird a second year bird. Great little shoot and getting to see so many is fantastic in its self. Keep at it. Don't sell your day short. A winner in my book!! Thanks for Sharing

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          • Cornstalks
            Cornstalks commented
            Editing a comment
            You're right. 2 of the blues were more mature looking than the third. My bad for not realizing the difference and glad you pointed that out!

        • #21
          Awesome congrats. Way to get after it to start the season. A bunch are showing up and moving through on the east side as well.

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          • #22
            Great start Cornstalks. Makes me want to get out now.

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            • #23
              already shooting juvies in kansas , better get some weather

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              • #24
                I agree with DD on the bird ages. Congrats on the band, a trophy bird. Keep after them and keep the reports coming. I am buried in Snow and potentially a significant amount more coming in the next 2 days. Looks to be sometime before we see some bare ground. May be a banner year for you with a snow line to the east north east.

                Qac

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                • #25
                  Congratulations Cornstalks! Sounds like you had a great hunt. Snows are definitely on the move here in KS, good reports that the north central part of the state has seen a heavy migration this week and pushing into Neb. Hopefully we can get together for a hunt this Spring.

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                  • Cornstalks
                    Cornstalks commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Looking forward to it!

                • #26
                  I was able to join CornStalks on Saturday and Sunday morning to cool down his hot streak! The birds must have been able to sense me in the decoys and decided to install a 450 yard no fly zone around the decoy spread. I am available and willing to travel if anyone wants to bird watch with me, but have a good pair of binos handy because you will need them!

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                  • Geez n Quackers
                    Geez n Quackers commented
                    Editing a comment
                    That's funny. Sorry.

                  • Cornstalks
                    Cornstalks commented
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                    I'm turning out to be a poor host in that regard lol.

                • #27
                  Originally posted by Cornstalks View Post
                  I saw quite a few birds heading south this weekend, more on Saturday than Friday. Friday only had 2 low flocks heading south in the morning that didn't act interested at all. The rest of the flocks were a mile high for the rest of the day. Saturday was a bit different. Steady streams of flocks heading southeast all day very high. There were also flocks heading northwest both high and low. A couple of flocks seemed to slow down for a look and one even turned from a half mile away at a 90 and come took a look but aborted at about 500 yds away. Finally mid afternoon Saturday a flock working its way into the wind heading northwest balled up behind me and then a dozen birds tried to pull off the flock. Al but 2 were sucked back into the flock and those 2 came down fast. Both of them did it right until they were just over the outer edge of the decoys before deciding they didn't like it. I dropped the first one and missed the 2nd. I was rewarded with a fine looking adult blue and although it ended up being a one bird weekend I was happy enough with that success
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                  Congrats on the band!

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                  • #28
                    Thanks guys. I'm fortunate to live far enough south to have in effect an extended season on these birds. On Sunday I wondered if all of Arkansas had emptied out of birds. Heavy migration late morning till noon when I packed up and they were still clouding the horizon heading NW. I couldn't get any to play even though I had miles long strings of them going right over. mo4NU and I even pulled up socks and changed the spread from fairly spaced out to packed in tighter to see if it made a difference. It didn't and could have been just too few decoys at around 5-600. Some large feeds in the area were pulling them in of course and our decoys probably didn't look or sound to appealing. Sunday I didn't have to clean birds but Saturday I took home a snow and a blue with a Canada on the side. Overalll a great weekend in my book.

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                    • #29
                      I saw an uptick in snow goose numbers near my house 3 days ago. I don't normally see snow geese here at home, but they do stage here for about 10-14 days each spring. Have seen birds here the last three days, so I would guess the northbound push has started. Regardless of weather, they will probably be north of here in two weeks, if the normal pattern holds. High temps will be around 50 for the next 5 days, so no snow will be in NE Kansas next week. It should be pretty muddy in this part of the world for the next month or so.

                      That's what's happening here.

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                      • #30
                        Saw a lot of bird movement yesterday in NE KS. Not a whole lot came over me but with 10X binoculars watched massive groups of birds tracking east to west for the most part. At first light a few flocks went over headed SE. Then until about 9am a steady string of decent flocks kind of lollygagging along that went by south of me and seemed to reach an imaginary road to the west of me where they turned more NW. After that both north and south of me was major migrations to the west. Not sure if they eventually headed north somewhere out of sight or continued west. This lasted all day and not sure how many I didn't see during my 2 hour nap. I hated to get skunked and knowing I was pulling the spread before today's forecast of 3-6 in snow, I stayed to the end and finally had a couple of flocks set up on me. I missed a couple of opportunities and ended up with an adult snow and blue. All of the birds that got low enough to get a good look at all appeared to be adults which isn't surprising Looks like the next spread set will be in a couple of weeks and probably going for the full spread. With temperatures around 0 degrees for a low for a whole week it will b e time to break out the drill.
                        This movement was interesting to me with the predicted snow coming. In 2019 there was a snow line that stayed late into the second week of march. I remember this same kind of movement to the west as if they were trying to find a way around it to get farther north. I'd like to know where the birds yesterday ended up at when they stopped. It would have been one enormous mill in

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                        • Kansasgoose
                          Kansasgoose commented
                          Editing a comment
                          I think they will end up at Quivera. Central KS normally doesn't get as much snow, and normally will warm up faster than the Missouri line area. I have seen birds push west almost every year when snow gets in the way. I have watched snows follow the Kaw for many years, and it should provide a water source next week if the birds wanted to use it.

                        • MODAKR
                          MODAKR commented
                          Editing a comment
                          Thanks for the report cornstalks! Glad you got some shooting anyway. I’m just curious what kind of a spread do you set for short term sets like that? Socks or FB? and how many? Thanks!

                        • Cornstalks
                          Cornstalks commented
                          Editing a comment
                          MODAKR, I set socks exclusively the last couple of years but used to set about 4 dozen FB's too. Nothing to do with birds but more of the amount of work it takes with FB's that I've quit doing that. I think I set around 600 which always looks kinda puny when it gets light. I usually throw 4 power flappers out and maybe a couple of clones to help if there isn't much wind
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