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Late Western NY Waterfoql


Kevin J Legg

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I'm thinking of heading down to hunt the late Western zone after the holidays. Will likely be staying with a friend on Honeoye but also may have access on Keuka and Coneseus. Also may look to hunt Oak Orchard on the big lake. With the limited number of birds I'm seeing on the SLR I'm wondering if it is worth the trip down. Perhaps winter will arrive in the next two weeks and move some birds. Any report on bird numbers would be appreciated.

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There have been times during past warm seasons when Keuka ended up with a decent amount of mallards; usually, we're hoping to see divers on the larger bodies of water. Since they've been there for some time, however, they can be very gun shy, and hunting Keuka requires strings or long, long leads due to very deep water most places. Another good option if you have access is to field hunt. All that I really know is that so far this season is slow. I hope that changes for the diehards on here...

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There were 100 mallards in my back yard last night on Oneida lake(north zone) they were not there like this at any point in the season. They were all over the bay in big groups. I hunted the Cicero swamp yesterday that is only a mile from my house (south east) and I did not see any birds at all. Crazy.

Was planning on doing the finger lakes hard for divers but with the weather it looks like field goose hunting and more swamps....

Early in the season I was joking with my dad I am a birdwatcher because the hunting was so bad. Now when he calls for the report I tell him I can't even watch birds. I should just shut it down and start fishing again...

Sent from my SM-G900V using Lake Ontario United mobile app

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Geese are everywhere in our area but we would rather hunt ducks.  We shot less than 10 ducks this weekend saw a bunch but like Matt we couldnt get them to come all the way in to our spread.  Two of my buddies hunted near lake ontario this morning and shot 4 mallards.  They said that they really didnt see that many birds.  Hope some more birds come into the area soon

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So I am sort of getting back into duck/goose hunting after a long hiatus (25 years).  I have noticed ducks and more-so Geese will circle just out of range of a spread.  Question....would it be legal to find a tree and use a climber to get up off the ground to close the gap?......might be fun.

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There are spots where guys pass shoot at geese and they try to get to the highest spot they can. I have thought about the same in my tree stand while deer hunting before, my only concern  would be if the geese follow the same route every time. As far as I know its legal as long as you follow the other waterfowl hunting rules.

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