Duck Hunting In A Kayak – 101
Duck Hunting in a kayak sounds like fun , you get a perfect outdoor experience plus you get to do what you are passionate about , both kayaking and duck hunting .
Sounds like there are a few rules and regulations to duck hunting in California , so its important to have all the rules read and understood .
Good points to read about …
Kayak Duck Hunting 101
Hunting ducks in the California Delta has to be one of my greatest passions! With a kayak, you can get into some really remote places that are not accessible by foot or boat. You can get virtually anywhere that you want as long as there is a waterway.
There are some challenges to hunting with kayaks. You are facing forward, and cannot twist around to see what is behind you, let alone shoot behind you. You are limited to about 110 degrees out in front and to the off side from your shooting side.
Safety is the most important item when engaged in any kind of hunting. Kayak hunting is no different, in fact, probably more so than standard waterfowl hunting. Personal flotation devices (PFD) is a MUST while in your kayak regardless of what you are doing. Kayak hunting is dangerous, you have a loaded firearm on board.
There are some other safety things to consider. Where are you going to place your shotgun? I prefer to keep mine between my legs, with the barrel pointing forward and up off the kayak. I also have a tether to the gun in case it gets bumped and goes into the water, or in the event that I roll the kayak over. Always have the safety engaged on your shotgun, and never have a shell in the barrel until you are ready to hunt.
Now that we have the basics of safety down, and I am assuming you are proficient in kayaking, lets get down to the basics of waterfowling! Ducks do not like heavy traffic areas. Areas that have lots of boating traffic, will not hold ducks.
Here in the CA Delta, there are tons of islands. All of them are owned by someone. If you get out of your kayak and onto them, you are tresspassing. You can stay in the shallows and tules and hunt. One of the best ways to hunt these birds, is pass shooting as they cross from island to island. I prefer to be in the water for this rather than in the kayak . Other times, I back my kayak into the tules and shoot as the birds are flying in one direction .
Setting out decoys for the kayak hunter is another great way to hunt the CA Delta. With a kayak, you are not going to be able to carry vast numbers of decoys. I carry about two dozen. I try to find a secluded cove with good cover, or a small island where two channels converge.
The diversity of waterfowl in the CA Delta is amazing, and any serious waterfowler should consider kayak hunting. Several times I have limited on birds .
Remember to have fun, explore and experience the great outdoors, but please be safe!
Article by : Rick Brockman