Wellington Weekly Hunting Report – June 08 2017
Mix Your Game Up
Image right: Waiting patiently for some pass shooting on a fine but breezy Lake Wairarapa day (Credit: Hamish Carnachan).
Not quite the weather we like for waterfowling this weekend but Saturday is still looking pretty good for much of the region with a big wind change around midday.
Hopefully this is going to be enough to rough up the larger water bodies and get the ducks moving, looking for calmer ponds.
Recently we've had one prominent conspiracy theorist bemoaning a lack of mallards. Of course if you're shooting the hell out of the same small pond day-in, day-out the ducks are going to disappear - it doesn't take a PhD to figure that one out...
Actually the mallards are around, and in good numbers. It's a matter of getting off your chuff and going looking for them!
We're at the halfway point of the main waterfowl season so it's a matter of mixing it up because the birds have wised up. Change your game and you'll get into some game!
Here are the prospects for this weekend:
|Morning showers then southwesterlies turn gusty northwest.
|Showers and westerly turns strong southerly.
|Showers and southerly turns back northwesterly.
|Mainly fine with northwesterly developing in the afternoon.
|Showers with westerlies tending southeast.
|Cloudy with a chance of a shower. Light winds.
|Showers and westerlies developing in the afternoon.
|Showers and westerlies dying out in the afternoon.
|Cloudy and showery with light winds.
Three day rain forecast
For the latest rain forecast click here
|Friday, June 9
|Saturday, June 10
|Sunday, June 11
Pass Shooting Well Worth A Shot
Using minimal decoys and sitting patiently on a prominent flight line can reap rewards (Credit: Hamish Carnachan)
Now that we're over halfway through the main waterfowl season the ducks have seen a lot of activity in some parts and have been shot at a fair bit.
Some have seen other ducks fall to hunters who have materialised out of what look liked benign structures surrounded by enticingly large congregations of settled birds.
So, it's only natural they've now grown pretty wary. This means they may well swing wide of decoys and maimais which can be very frustrating for hunters.
A different and often effective approach to take at this stage of the season is to hunt the flight paths.
These are the regularly used lines the birds transition from one area to another one - it could be routes used to move from daytime roosting or camp sites to feeding areas in the morning or evening etc.
It takes a bit of careful observation to locate these flight lines but when you're set up well on them the pass shooting can be superb.
Minimal decoys, or none at all (often a call will bring the birds into range) is all that is required. Plus a bit of patience.
Give it a shot!
Safety Comes First
Opening Weekend is behind us but there's plenty of duck hunting ahead over the season - firearms safety still comes foremost
1. TREAT EVERY FIREARM AS LOADED
- Check every firearm yourself.
- Pass or accept only an open or unloaded firearm.
2. ALWAYS POINT FIREARMS IN A SAFE DIRECTION
- Loaded or unloaded, always point the muzzle in a safe direction.
3. LOAD A FIREARM ONLY WHEN READY TO FIRE
- Load the magazine only after you reach your hunting area.
- Load the chamber only when ready to shoot.
- Completely unload before leaving the hunting area.
4. IDENTIFY YOUR TARGET BEYOND ALL DOUBT
- Movement, colour, sound and shape can all deceive you.
- Assume colour, shape, sound, and shape to be human until proven otherwise.
5. CHECK YOUR FIRING ZONE
- THINK! What may happen if you miss your target? What might you hit between you and the target or beyond?
- Do not fire if you know others are in your firing zone.
6. STORE FIREARMS AND AMMUNITION SAFELY
- When not in use, lock away the bolt, firearm and ammunition separately.
- Never leave firearms in a vehicle that is unattended.
7. AVOID ALCOHOL AND DRUGS WHEN HANDLING FIREARMS
- Good judgement is the key to safe use of firearms.