Plantation Duck Club 2020-2021

Thread starter #1
Yesterday was the first day of official prep work for the coming duck season. After an amazing am spent turkey hunting with my neighbor, I fired up the tractor and started bushhogging and laying out my corn plots. This year’s crop will be corn, rice, chufa and moist soil natural foods. The corn will have to be fenced to keep the deer out. Most important thing in the next couple of weeks will be bushogging everything. The does drop fawns all over the impoundments and after many close calls last year, the last thing I want to do is hit one. I’ll be cutting in the fields after that and getting all the corn plots ready to be planted. Target date is to have all corn in the ground by June 1...weather is such a factor. It can make or break you. I’ve seen it do both. Corn is expensive and subject to drowning, drought, hurricanes, hail storms and pretty much anything Mother Nature wants to sling at you. Going to go with 5 acres of corn in 5 impoundments. Most planted food will be either Rex or Wells strains of rice. Last year I grew my rice without flooding it during the growing process. This is doable but you need about an inch of rain to fall on it each week for optimum growth. Last year’s crop was pretty stressed so this year I’m going to put water on it once it gets up a few inches. Chufa will be planted in June, Jap around the first week of September. Moist soil desirables will be promoted with soil disturbance in “plots” over the next few weeks. Once the hot weather gets here, soil disturbance will result in more undesirable plants like Seabania and sickle pod. I’m convinced that both are the work of the devil.
As always, this thread will show the good, the bad and the ugly of managing for waterfowl in the south. After two slow seasons as far as consistent numbers of birds, we all hope that this will be THE YEAR....as we do every year. Please feel free to use this thread to exchange ideas, discuss management practices and help each other improve our waterfowl habitat. Good luck to everyone and let’s all hope that THIS is the year.
 
Thread starter #2
A few cool observations and pictures from yesterday’s start up:

1) We have atleast 3 clutches of Blue Wing’s ranging from 3 to 9 duckling, 2 clutches of chicken Mallards totaling 12-14 ducklings and about seven clutches of Wood ducks. Also have a clutch of coots. These are birds I watched yesterday from the tractor so there could be more. I am fascinated by the teal raising here.
2) Saw both Eagles being very active in the giant nest they have on the edge of “the Eagle nest pond”. I assume they have some young ones or are getting ready to. They didn’t like me being around them and were not afraid to express their aggravation.
3) Game was abundant in the dry impoundments. Lost count of deer numbers. Saw two different pairs of quail as well as a covey that I guess hasn’t split up yet.
4) Saw 11 non venomous snakes and the biggest gator I’ve seen on the place since I got it (probably 9 ft) He was in my “dove field” that ended up having water back up into it. A hen teal with only 3 little ones was swimming close by to him. Hopefully he will find A new home when I pull the boards.
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Thread starter #6
Living vicariously through y’all once again

Any plans on trapping for nest raiders?
Long Cut, A friend of mine trapped some coyotes, a bunch of bobcats and coons last year. We didn’t do any trapping this year but would definitely like to get more dedicated to it....we have an unreal amount of coons and cats...
 
Thread starter #10
Chuck-I would love nothing more than to be slingin’ Feathers from the front of that sucker!! Got the new skiff Jones right now, bad....gonna have to either rob a Bank or win the lottery to to get me a HB like that! Nothing comes close....let’s GO!
 
Thread starter #11
Got to the club tonight in time to enjoy a bourbon drink and slip around a little. We have had way too much rain here to do much other than bush hog dikes this weekend. Guiding turkey hunts Sat and Sunday and mowing dikes in between. Teal hen closest to the house is down to two young’uns. Hope to put eyes on some others tomorrow. The sound of frogs is like nothing I’ve heard before.
 
Thread starter #12
slow am in the turkey woods with one bird gobbling twice. Moved closer and never heard him again. Got several miles of dikes mowed today. Ponds are too wet to put a tractor in and I’m thankful I haven’t planted any corn yet. Volunteer rice is coming up all over the place and loving the rain. The more I see the ease and adaptability of rice, the more i see it being the perfect crop for my management plan. A lot of neighbors are pumping water off their corn in hopes of saving atleast some. Plenty of time to replant but at $260 a bag, it gets expensive. Ponds have a surprising number of blue wings in the puddles today. I assume most will move on and I hope they do. Seeing the predation on the ones raising here makes me think they are better off raising in Canada and migrating like they are supposed to. Critters seen from the tractor today include 6 pairs of quail, two eagles, 50 or so bwts, a dozen or so wood ducks and the two clutches of chicken mallards. The chicken mallards are half grown and seem to have faired better than the baby teal. Wood duck clutches appear to have done well also. Deer everywhere and every kind of shore bird know to man in the fields today. 2 alligators and 5-6 non venomous snakes also hanging around. 2C429B4F-705C-4642-A770-DAA1B082EF50.png C41E0B03-5A8C-477D-9713-8704B28776D2.png
 
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Thread starter #13
Was fortunate to have the opportunity to pick up a 175 acre tract on the Coosawhatchee river about 15 minutes from the duck club. The property is loaded with deer and turkeys. It also has a 15 acre controllable green tree reservoir with a solid history of producing wood ducks, gadwall and teal in good numbers when we have ducks. I look forward to doing a play by play on this property. The river offers great redfish, trout and tarpon fishing so cast n blast opportunities are endless. This camp won’t be part of the club and will just be for my family.
 
Thread starter #17
Good afternoon prepping rice and corn planting...not many things better than being on a tractor in these temps... countless deer seen, quail, wood ducks and Mississippi Kites...no teal though. Makes me wonder if the clutches they had got eaten or if they were just hunkered down where I couldn’t see them. Saw two pretty groups of half grown looking wood ducks and some chicken mallards....several coot clutches and every wading bird on the planet seemed like. First brace of barnyard grass is maturing and will reseed for the fall crop. Smartweed growing and strangely enough saw several individual stalks of nodding smartweed already flowering. Time for a bourbon drink and to get a game plan for the coming weeks. Got corn and rice stacked liked cord wood and ready to roll. Got stands of volunteer jap and rice all over the place. I love planting season. Weather like today will be short lived but is sure appreciated. B1D9543C-ACD8-42EE-8724-2A82F17F3CC8.jpeg 2F39A2F6-9C79-432A-8CEA-BA969127697A.jpeg
 
Thread starter #18
Spent this afternoon doing my last mowing for corn and rice planting. Will start cutting in everything in the am. Also worked on my smartweed plots....got some awesome nodding smartweed, Pennsylvania smartweed and Lady’s thumb coming on. I high mowed the sesbania out of a few plots. It’s amazing what comes to light once the undesirables are eliminated. The seed bank never disappoints if disturbed at the right time. Truth is, there is no reason to ever plant for ducks. I love moist soil management and if I didn’t run a club, I’d never plant a thing.
 
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