During the winter migration, there can be nothing more exciting than Missouri duck hunting. In this state, the Mississippi River runs along the eastern part, and the Missouri River flows through the central region into the Mississippi Alluvial Plains.
Nearly 40% of migrant waterfowl travel through this region, making it an excellent spot for hunting. Also, Missouri is one of the largest rice producers in the country that makes it an excellent habitat for the birds.
In 2015, the hunters bagged over 400,000 ducks. So, there are plenty of games if you are appropriately geared for the challenge. Before setting out, check out these tips:
Always Carry a Life Jacket
Whether you are going solo or in a group, it is essential to wear a life jacket when wading in the river. At the same time, avoid getting into the deep waters as the weight of your boots and waders can make it challenging to stay afloat. If you fall into the water by accident, it can put you in a dangerous situation without a life jacket.
Wear Eye and Ear Protection
Usually, you will be close to a shotgun during the duck hunting expedition. It can damage your hearing for some time. The ringing in the ear is also unavoidable unless you cover them up with the right devices. You can find high-tech protection devices that can allow you to hear the signals within a safe range, without causing any damage due to high decibels.
Also, shooting from a short-range near your face can be risky for your eyes. Any stray shell casing can cause irreparable damage. So, wear safety glasses that protect your eyes and improve visibility in low light or bright conditions. Most importantly, choose fog-resistant and shatter-resistant glasses to provide backup.
Most hunting expedition providers in Missouri allow hunters in small groups to stay comfortably and wade safely during the trip. But, you have to carry the best gear to make the most of this experience.
When wading in the 40,000 acres of hunting area between wildlife habitats and conservation regions, you need a reliable pair of neoprene waders. It will keep you dry and warm. Preferably, choose the boots with 800-gram Thinsulate, so it will provide proper insulation when the weather gets warm. If the temperature dips further, you can double up your wool socks to stay comfortable in the water.
Parka and Gloves
Without waterproof gloves, you can’t sustain the rivers’ cold water in the Mississippi Alluvial Plains. Hence, find the best cold weather gloves with Thinsulate covering and proper lining to provide warmth.
Simultaneously, the gloves shouldn’t restrict your ability to pull the trigger or handle the shells. A warm and waterproof parka is another essential gear you need for Missouri duck hunting. Choose a jacket with deep pockets layered with 800-fill goose down for keeping you warm.
Follow the Regulations
There are many regulations for duck hunters in Missouri. It is better to be acquainted with the local laws instead of falling into a legal mishap. Firstly, there is a daily limit of 6 ducks with species-based restrictions on hunting. For example, you can hunt not more than 4 Mallards, two Scaup, three Wood Ducks, and two Redheads.
The hunters require a migratory bird hunting permit, a federal duck stamp, and a small game hunting permit before the trip. Usually, the trip provider will arrange these permits to enjoy your time without worrying about them. There are specific restrictions on motorboats, hunting dogs, and shotguns for duck hunters in Missouri. On the opening day of the migration season, you can’t have the freshly killed ducks above the daily permissible limits.
Carry a Blind Bag
During the Missouri migration season, the weather may get rainy and can pour heavily in the hunting grounds. In such conditions, you have to keep your belongings like wallets, mobile phones, and other gadgets safe and dry. Carry the waterproof and floating blind bags that can keep your things safe even when you take a dip. When hunting in timber, choose a blind bag with a sturdy strap that you can hang on a nail or a tree branch.
There is no shortage of habitats for Missouri duck hunting. You can make your selection according to your convenience. But, choose guided tours in any part, especially if you are a novice. The tour providers have access to the best hunting grounds, and their staff is well-trained at setting the decoy spreads to catch the game.
Author Bio: Alison Lurie is a copywriter and content strategist. She helps businesses stop playing around with content marketing and start seeing the tangible ROI. She loves writing as much as she loves the cake.