January 2013

C2 Goes Duck Hunting

Author: Special To C2 Magazine | Photographer: Mark Staff Photography

On a chilly morning in December, C2’s photographer Mark Staff awoke at 2am to join Clark Fons and Chris Marra for a Lowcountry duck hunt on Bear Island, WMA (Wildlife Management Area). The 2013 waterfowl season in South Carolina is currently open and runs through January 27.

Moving Target
Most waterfowl fly at speeds of 40 to 60mph. The fastest duck ever recorded was a Red Breasted Merganser that attained a top speed of 100 mph.

Camouflage 101
Facemasks are an integral part of the total camouflage. Ducks generally circle several times before starting their descent and will quickly pick up on a shiny white face staring up at them from the blind.

Bear Island Wildlife Management Area
is a owned by the SC Department of Natural Resources and is managed to provide quality habitat for wintering waterfowl and other wetland wildlife including threatened and endangered species such as wood storks and bald eagles; to provide habitat for upland game and nongame species; and to provide recreational opportunities for the hunting and non-hunting public.

The Day’s Bag
Four Green Winged Teal
Three Northern Shovelers
Four Gadwall
One American Widgeon
The Daily limit for waterfowl in South Carolina is six total ducks per person. Each species of duck has its own limit and hunters are slapped with a hefty fine if regulations are not adhered to. For more information, visit www.dnr.sc.gov/regs/migratorybird.

Decoys & Calls
Experienced Duck Hunters are very particular when it comes to setting up their decoy spread. Wind is the number one factor. Ducks always land into the wind, so the idea is to place the decoys in such a way so as to create an opening landing strip for them. Less is more when it comes to using duck calls. It’s been said that “in the hands of the inexperienced, a duck call is the greatest waterfowl conservation tool ever invented.”

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