It's Still Teal Time

It's still teal time here in the Mississippi Flyway, at least, that is, in the Lower 48. The boys up north in Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and Ontario, all of whom watched Sept. 1 openers in certain parts of the provinces, enjoyed good success.

Brody Edmondson with Avery Outdoors out of Winnipeg told me he and his buddies were looking forward to the Sept. 8 opener, but with some mixed feelings. "I'm looking around the Oak Hammock Marsh area now," the young man said, "and while I've seen plenty of local ducks, there's really been no migration yet. It's been hot - hot - hot, as in 85 to 90 degrees, which is unusual for us this time of year. We had a lot of rain early in the year, and then a long dry period. The grain crops are ahead of schedule, and we're dealing with a lot of black (disked) fields now, as opposed to the traditional stubble fields. It's going to be tough."

I'm hearing good things out of Minnesota and Michigan in terms of early resident Canada goose seasons; Iowa, however, has been strangely quiet as far as word concerning anything out of the three metro/urban early Canada goose zones - Cedar Rapids/Iowa City; Des Moines; Waterloo/Cedar Falls. Maybe guys are concentrating on doves, or maybe it's just been too hot, what with the mid-90s earlier in the week.

Sept. 8 marked the Missouri teal opener, and reports from the central part of the Show-Me State are excellent. Tony Vandemore sent me this photograph of some of his "little friends" destined to become the main ingredient for teal sandwiches over the weekend.

Those places that have water are sitting on good numbers of blue-wings, and a well-timed cold front that passed through the upper Midwest last weekend should bring additional birds to the table for those in Missouri and points south. Iowans, unfortunately, have until the 22nd to wait for their 5-day early any-duck season, and based on what I've seen, water-wise, it's going to be combat 'fowling at its finest on those few public areas that do have any of the mythical liquid. It looks like the Mississippi and Missouri rivers on the ends of The Hawkeye State will see plenty of activity throughout October and November.

Teal season also began on Sept. 8 in Illinois, while Tennessee's early combo wood duck/teal season kicks off Saturday and runs through the 12th.