Saturday, November 24, 2012

Buffleheading with the Beauty...

There was a newbie in the blind, she even brought her own gun...

Ready for some more action...

I was quite pumped and the plan was set.

My youngest would go duck hunting with me.

This became more than just a hunt, actually it became a potential "rite of passage", an initiation of the youngest warrior in a clan of duck hunters.  I prayed for all things to be right in the morning, my thoughts rested solely on offering my passion to a curious youngster.  Repeated I asked myself if she would like duck hunting.  My wife simply said that if she wants to go then it certainly is the right time.  I went to bed imagining the hunt, the possibilities, and started to doze.

A little big, but she adapted...
I didn't sleep too much and was up way too early, but it gave me time to have it all ready.  Out came the gear, jackets, gloves, boots, and all other necessary items.  The only difference, there was beside my traditional spread the same set up for a first grader.  I couldn't wait for my little beauty to get up, and she didn't make me pace too long. 

When Leah shot down the stairs, she was greeted with toast and coffee (milk with some coffee) for breakfast.  While we ate, I watched a decent flock of mergansers swim along the shoreline by the six bufflehead decoys I had thrown out earlier on the high water.  For us, this was a good omen for I did not want our first duck to be the lowly common merganser.  I wanted our prize to be a drake bufflehead just like the ones Leah admired Thanksgiving morning.

Shortly thereafter, we put on our gear and made way under the shore.

Armed with a pink Red Ryder...
This was our first duck hunt, no big sister, no mom, just a little blonde girl and her daddy.  Armed with a pink Red Ryder, Leah exuded an excitement like no other.  We settled in, discussed proper firearm handling, and began to wait.

In the midst of some conversation, target practice on an unfortunate hen mallard decoy, and the always important sharing of a candy bar, a single drake bufflehead entered plain view and made an unfortunate turn into the wind to visit our spread.  With clearance to shoot, I popped up and dispatched the duck without hesitation.  As I looked down to my youngest, she grinned and bestowed upon me one immense honor, "good shot Daddy".

The remainder of our short hunt consisted of working on the blind, target practice with the BB gun, inspection of the bufflehead which had "rainbow colors through the black on the head", and general duck blind talk.  No more ducks dared visit the spread, but that's fine simply because we had a blast.

Top notch day, I couldn't have been any happier...

My wife has always said that our youngest would be the hunter, whereas our oldest is very content with just fishing.  I figure that I'll support their decision in what they choose to do in the great outdoors, but I'm very pleased that my little beauty thoroughly enjoyed her few hours "gunning" with her daddy.  She also hit that poor decoy about ten times, I've got a sniper on my hands.

Have a great day,

The Downeast Duck Hunter


  1. Wonderful! There is nothing better than daughter/Dad hunting time.

  2. It is great to get out with our little ones isn't it? I can't remember what happened just yesterday, but I remember 12 years ago, in October taken my, now 22 year old, daughter on her first duck/goose hunt in Eustus Maine. The three ducks taken along with the two geese were just a bonus to the time I spent with her on our two day hunt.

  3. Wonderful. Nice Blind too. You guys making ice?

  4. Erin, I can certainly appreciate the outdoors relationship you have with your dad. I hope my two have a passion for fish and game like you.

    Travis, I have always enjoyed your stories about your adventures with yours. The pike one always makes me smile.

    Rev, a good bufflehead blind usually is as little as possible. They decoy so well that I've gunned them just sitting on rocks. As of right now, no ice, lots of wind, and cold temperatures in the near future.

    Thanks to all for swinging by...

  5. Awesome! Looks like she's already a better shot than Luckie.

  6. I love seeing this! Nothing better than daddy-daughter, partners in crime!


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