Duck Hunting photo

_Generation Wild Junior Pro Staffer Nate Dean recently got to chat with Scott Terning, Director of Waterfowler Recruitment and Education at Delta Waterfowl, about hunting, conservation, and how Delta Waterfowl is working to get more kids interested in the outdoors with its First Hunt program.
Nate Dean: What is the greatest part about your job at Delta Waterfowl?
Scott Terning: I am surrounded by passionate staff, volunteers, and members. Working as Recruitment and Education Director brings many challenges, but also provides many rewards. With this position the rewards can be noticed first hand, but knowing this position will have impact for many–youth, adults, and first-time duck hunters–for years to come.

ND: What is Delta Waterfowl doing to get the younger generation of hunters, kids like myself, involved with conservation?
ST: Delta is providing experience for young hunters like you throughout local chapters–across the U.S. and Canada. Delta will be coming out with a youth participant manual, which will allow first-time hunters to gain a better understanding about the sport of ducks and duck hunting. We have also established our First Hunt page on Facebook to keep connected with mentors and participants. We’ll be putting together a DVD and will host a variety of videos on our website that will focus on safety, shooting, and cleaning and cooking waterfowl. And my position was created to better serve our mentors and, in the end, the participants who are attending field days, hunts, or other related activities.

ND: I hear you’re a big Canada goose hunter. What’s your favorite part about goose hunting?
ST: I am a big goose hunter–but also a duck hunter. I love the sport, and to tell you the truth it doesn’t matter what I am hunting. Being out in the outdoors and connecting with the land, landowners, and friends who I am hunting with really make the experience fun. If I am hunting geese or ducks it’s always fun when they are willing to work with you. I put a great amount of time into scouting and enjoy that part of the hunt, too. In short, I would say the best part about hunting for me is the full experience: scouting first and then the hunt.

ND: Who was your hunting mentor as a kid?
ST: My father was my first mentor and provided the foundation for me. The only problem I had with that he was a deer hunter and that was all he hunted. I wanted to hunt other species and had to find other mentors who were willing to help. My first duck mentor was, strange enough, myself. I had to take things into my own hands if I wanted to get involved with the sport. I would read books and magazines to educate myself and then found some fellow high-school friends who had access to some property. They gave me my first experience in the blind. I still keep in touch with them and continue to thank them.
ND:** If you could hunt anywhere in the world and for anything what would it be?
ST: Good question and it’s tough. Right now at the stage I am in, I would say a flooded timber spot for ducks. I haven’t truly experienced a lot of ducks coming through the timber. This would be fun to see and experience as a hunter.
ND:** What are personal goals regarding waterfowl conservation?
ST: 1) Establish Delta Waterfowl’s First Hunt program. 2) Continue to bring out new or old waterfowl hunters. 3) Continue to serve Delta Waterfowl as a valuable employee.

ND: What’s the best goose hunting tip you’d give to younger hunters?
ST: Scout. When you think you found a spot, work with the landowner to become familiar with the landscape and know where the birds are roosting. The other tip I could provide is to surround yourself with fellow friends who also enjoy hunting, fishing, or the great outdoors. These friendships will last a lifetime and can be very useful for years to come.