Saturday, April 28, 2012


I trust you are aware of The Labor Department's proposed regulations concerning children working on farms.

It is painfully obvious that today's farm families cannot make decisions for themselves. It takes a skilled community organizer from the farm rich area of metropolitan Chicago to do for them what they cannot do for themselves. How did our Republic survive the last 250 years without him?

You may not have been aware of a proposal buried deep within the regulation that would affect duck seasons for years to come. (Stretch Pelosi proclaimed "We have to implement the regulation to find out what is in the regulation. Away from the fog of the controversy amid the fact we make up this crap as we go along.") 

Deep (read hidden) within the Labor Department’s proposed Child Labor Laws protecting the proletariat  children from the parental bourgeoisie on family farms, was a proposal to protect young mallards from the grueling, oppressive rigors of the migration. 

The young mallards of the current year’s hatch will no longer be allowed to be in the air for more than eight hours in any twenty-four hour flight period. Night flight is strictly prohibited. Mandatory rest periods of a minimum of one hour must be allowed every two hours during the eight hour flight day. Adequate food and water must be made available during said rest period. 

In addition, the migration must be supervised by adult birds in a ratio of no less than 2 adults for every 8 juveniles. If the ratio falls below this level due to adults having a confrontation with Mr. Benelli, Mr. Beretta or Mr. Browning, juveniles must wait for replacement adults before continuing migration.

Hilda and Potus trust these regulations will be accepted in the spirit intended. The duck population cannot be trusted to govern themselves.

Addendum: Secretary Saladbar has instructed the US Fish and Wildlife to continue research on replacing steel shot with mini-nets. The move will facilitate a catch and release component heretofore missing from waterfowling. To date tests have been very encouraging. Dogs may be used to retrieve captured birds providing their teeth have been removed. Retrievers must be approved, inspected and registered before they are allowed in the field. The following are approved inspection sites: Humane Society, PETA or the following PETA representatives:  Alec Baldwin, Pam Anderson or Metta World Peace (watch out for the elbow!) When asked for a comment on the farm bill and the proposed 'mini-net' shotgun shells, Harry Cattails replied, as an aide wiped the spittle from his chin, "I am going to check on my fig and pomegranate trees on my way back from the Cowboy Poetry Contest in Elko."

God Bless the USA!

Thursday, April 19, 2012


As I am penning this post at 10:30 am on April 19, we just completed the sixth day of the 2012 Turkey Season.

I am pleased to report seven hunters have bagged twelve turkeys. If you count the tom I bagged this morning that would be lucky 13!  Perhaps not so lucky for the turkeys, but very exciting for the hunters.

I had the most amazing morning I have ever had while hunting turkey. I did not have hunters scheduled today so I went out by myself. I settled into one of my blinds and waited for the sunrise to illuminate the Nebraska landscape.  As the morning grew brighter, the stillness was broken by the sound of turkey leaving the roost.

I had placed my four Dave Smith decoys (three hens and a jake) fifteen yards from the blind. After allowing a few minutes for them to get settled, I let out a soft chirp. A gobble immediately rang out in response. A couple more chirps followed by a seductive purr and the tom was on the run. Not just one tom, but an eight-man football team! They ran up to the decoys and proceeded to kick the hell out of my jake decoy. They took turns jumping on his back beating him with their wings. The decoy was soon on the ground but the scrum continued.  It was if I was watching the All Blacks pummel Les Bleus.

Assuming they had convinced my decoy to abstain from any coital bliss, they began to parade for the lovely ladies. As the biggest tom separated himself from the melee, Mr. Beretta sent a calling card of #2 shot his way. The gesture was unwillingly accepted. The remaining seven casually sauntered 30 yards away and remained there for another twenty minutes before moving off.

I have been blessed to witness another scene in God's magnificent outdoors.

8 toms on my jake decoy
Nate Houle 2 toms with bow

The one that did not get away

"Nobody who does not appreciate the majesty of the hunt should be allowed to disgrace the bird by killing it."
Paraphrase from Norman Maclean

Tuesday, April 10, 2012


The abnormally warm weather of winter 2011-2012 presented us with new challenges. Two years ago we arrived to find three feet of ice on our ponds. When I arrived on February 15th, two of our ponds were completely open and the third had just a light layer of ice. The first scout flocks were already in the area. We applied a full-court press in order to ready our spreads as quickly as possible.

What occurred over the next three weeks was truly epic. Our hunters harvested 980 snow geese. On March 1st, three hunters harvested 62 snows! March 5th was our largest one day total with 112 geese from our three locations. On March 9th we killed 66 birds and on March 11th they were gone.

We had a banner year on banded birds.  We had two neck collared geese. In addition we had six leg banded geese. All the geese were banded in the far north of the Northwest Territories of Canada.

I have been hunting spring snow geese in this area since 1996. This was the first year we did not have any snow. It always snows in early March in southeast Nebraska!

100% of our groups have re-booked for the 2013 season. I am adding another location next year to accommodate our increased demand.

I invite you to join me for a waterfowling adventure of a lifetime. We are now taking reservations for the 2013 spring snow goose season.

Scenes from the 2012 Snow Goose season.