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gasparilla

Casting and blasting

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Since it's so quiet over here thought I'd share what all that shooting is about near the Myakka Cutoff . . . 

Here's my daughter with a 6 man limit of Bluebills . . .

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Here's some friends with the boys' first ducks ever (Melissa was the only one who had ever shot a duck before):

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The boys capped off their day with their first snook each:

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And we're still picking up the occasional redfish after picking up the decoys . . . Negative low tides had me leaving the Maverick at home last week and chasing these suckers with my duck boat . . . 

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Sheepshead are picking up at the Myakka Bridge.  All this warm weather has snook strung out all over the place, and hungry . . . And the reds are doing redfish things - I'm finding them in deeper water near the mangroves.  Haven't caught a trout in two weeks, but haven't tried either.

 

Wintertime and bait is easy (read: go buy shrimp) . . . Only 12 more days of ducks season!

 

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So you think I could hang camo netting from the T-top of my Pathfinder 24TE and hunt ducks out of it?  Kind of limited for duck options around these parts, never really considered saltwater.  How do you find out where you can hunt, assuming its not wherever you want. 

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@justdriftin - I have shot hundreds of ducks from my Master Angler 21.  I used to rig up burlap and pvc and this elaborate blind; really, all you need are some palm fronds - stash the boat 50-60 yards down the bank and hang out under the mangroves with a frond or two in front of you. I use the duck boat these days because the negative lows don't always leave the Mav enough water to get away . . . 

I hunt the Peace and Myakka Rivers, the Myakka cutoff, the West wall, and occasionally, the south side of the harbor proper.  I've always been afraid to hunt the Bull/Turtle Bay areas because they're technically in the preserve, but I believe you could.  I learned where I could hunt by going to areas I knew were "okay" to begin with and talking to locals and FWC officers.  I don't have it in front of me but I'm pretty sure you can hunt almost anywhere unless it's posted as a nesting area, or within a certain distance to houses/roads.  

My grandfather used to tell me that in the old days, bluebills were a 10 point duck, and they would actually extend the season on them in Florida; he shot them in the harbor out of a 13' skiff with a rusty old Winchester pump . . . I've seen thousands of them in the harbor some year; conservatively, there are seasons where the harbor holds 7-8000 birds . . . 

It's almost entirely bluebills, a handful of mottleds, and maybe a few redheads if it's cold (fingers are crossed for the front on Monday).  We've killed wigeon, blue and green wing teal, mottleds, mallards, redheads, canvasbacks, pintails, 1 ringneck and a gajillion bluebills out there.  Shoot me a DM if you need help getting started - I'm booked the remainder of the season, but be glad to help a forum brother out!

 

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