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Banding Together for Waterfowl

Hunting Across Canada: Ground Zero For Geese

Saskatchewan is unsurpassed in its abundance and diversity of geese

As the sun climbed above the expansive prairie landscape, a steady stream of geese left the lake and followed the same low-level flight path. We took turns shooting as a series of singles, pairs, and flocks of various sizes attempted to land in the decoys. With a generous eight-bird limit each on Canada geese, we all got in plenty of shooting by the time the flight ended later in the morning. Examining our birds after the hunt, we discovered that we had harvested three different subspecies: western, lesser, and giant Canada geese, ranging in size from 4 to 12 pounds. 

Zink and Belding had made the trip to Saskatchewan to field-test several new models of Greenhead Gear goose decoys, and Alexander and I were lucky enough to tag along for the ride. The previous two mornings, we had been plagued by heavy frost buildup on our plastic decoys, which caused flock after flock of whitefronts and Canada geese to flare just beyond shotgun range. On this third hunt, we switched to a smaller spread of all fully flocked decoys and had much better success.

Zink had chosen to hunt in central Saskatchewan because of the remarkable abundance and variety of geese in the region. “Saskatchewan is a crossroads for migrating waterfowl in the fall,” Zink said. “The province not only raises tremendous numbers of ducks and geese, but is also a staging hub for many Arctic goose populations that breed farther north. In the parklands west of Saskatoon, you can often take large and small subspecies of Canada geese, specklebellies, snows, and Ross’s geese out of the same decoy spread. When you consider how generous many of the landowners are about hunting access, there’s no better place to hunt geese than Saskatchewan.” Few waterfowlers who have journeyed to hunt in this vast prairie province would disagree.

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