Kevin Crisp and two friends opened the duck hunting season last Saturday and Sunday at a slough along the Kansas River near Lawrence.
Two days before the opening, Crisp spotted several large flocks of migrating blue-winged teal along the Kansas River between Lawrence and Linwood.
Moreover, a friend reported a lot of ducks were residing in the waterways at Cheyenne Bottoms near Great Bend. So he suspected there would be teal aplenty flying on opening weekend.
There were, but so few hunters that ducks were never roused out of their roosting waters. So only a few flocks of teal took to the air.
Consequently, Crisp and friends struggled to down seven blue-wings on Saturday and six on Sunday.
Despite the difficult hunting last week, Crisp felt this weekend would be better. And as the duck and goose season unfolds later in the fall, Crisp is anticipating some splendid shooting, surpassing last year's.
A year ago, there was too much water and the ducks were scattered all over the Kansas River valley. This year's low-water conditions should draw a lot of ducks to the slough Crisp hunts.
Besides the birds arriving from the north, Crisp reports a nice supply local birds, especially wood ducks.
On top of that, the local goose population appears to be magnificent.
-- Ned Kehde