A series of cold fronts have pushed new flights of ducks and geese into Texas, and dry conditions have concentrated waterfowl in areas with suitable wetland habitat. Following are reports on waterfowl numbers and hunting success provided by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department.
High Plains Mallard Management Unit: Duck hunting remains fair to good in the Texas Panhandle, although bird numbers have declined from a month ago. Numerous playa lakes are providing waterfowl with plenty of wintering habitat this year in the region.
Canada goose prospects are also good in the Panhandle. Outfitters report best success in wheat and cornfields near Etter, Dumas, and Spearman. Peanut and soybean fields around Abilene and Lubbock have also held good concentrations of dark geese.
North Zone Duck: Reports indicate duck hunters enjoyed better success during the second-split opener than on the initial opener in late October. Many hunters reported good mallard and wood duck shoots in sloughs and rivers. Mallard numbers have increased with the cold weather.
Caddo Lake and Lake O'Pines have been good for divers, gadwalls, and a few mallards. The Sulphur River has been good for mallards, gadwalls, and redheads. Lake Fork and Toledo Bend have produced good shoots for mallards, gadwalls, canvasbacks, and other divers. However, the entire region still needs more rain to fill sloughs, backwaters, and reservoirs.
South Zone Duck: While the second-split opener produced mixed results, the Gulf Coast remains the duck hotspot in Texas. Prairie
hunters have been seeing large numbers of pintails, but green-winged teal and gadwall numbers have been below average. Bay hunters have reported good success around Port O’Connor, Rockport, Port Aransas, and Port Mansfield. Duck hunters have enjoyed the opportunity to bag two pintails and two redheads this year. Goose hunters have had good success, although dry conditions have concentrated the birds more than usual. More geese have been arriving on the coastal prairies with recent cold fronts.
DU Migration Map Update
K. James reported increasing numbers & migrations of puddle ducks
Temp: 41 - 50 degrees Weather: Sunny
Wind: 15 - 20 mph
Wind Direction: from Southeast
Comments: The ponds around the lake are holding alot of ducks. Hunted public land and scouted public land and did not see much. Got skunked, which usually does not happen during the second half of the season on Ray Roberts. Maybe the freeze up north will push the Mallards down.
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