• Waterfowl & Duck Hunting

    Paul Sasser of Greensboro takes advantage of North Carolina’s September teal season for some early season shooting.

    Feel the teal - Early teal season on tap in North Carolina in September

    “Feeling the teal” is an expression used by supporters of UNC-Wilmington’s athletic teams. Teal became the school’s official color in 2009 after serving unofficially for many years prior. Greenish blue or bluish green, depending upon your perception, it is an iridescent color present in the speculums of blue-winged and green-winged teal.

    These two tiny waterfowl species lure early birds like Paul Sasser of Greensboro, a dedicated hunter, to the marshes north and south of Wilmington in September. He says the four-hour drive is worth the effort.

    September 01 at 7:00am
    One of the top WMAs for wood ducks, Hickory Top Greentreen was closed last season, making it an even better choice in 2016-17.

    Bear Island, Santee Delta are top waterfowl WMAs

    According to Dean Harrigal, SCDNR’s waterfowl biologist, hunting on WMAs is divided into two classes of hunting units: Class I and Class II.

    September 01 at 7:00am
    Most of North Carolina’s top public duck-hunting waters are in coastal counties.

    Futch, Goose Creek are NC’s top public duck spots

    With three major sounds, a half-dozen big rivers, hundreds of feeder creeks and small streams — all located along the Atlantic Flyway —  coastal game lands dominate public-land waterfowl hunting in North Carolina.

    September 01 at 7:00am
    Most species of ducks remain well above their long-term average, according to the 2016 Trends in Duck Breeding Populations report from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

    Duck numbers hold steady, USFWS says

    The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) recently released its report on 2016 Trends in Duck Breeding Populations, based on surveys conducted in May and early June by FWS and the Canadian Wildlife Service. 

    August 14 at 9:54am
    The Decoy Raft is the fastest way to deploy and retrieve decoys, and it's the brainchild of a handful of Carolina boys that are passionate about waterfowling.

    Get ready for waterfowl season with the Decoy Raft

    What’s the quickest method to deploy a dozen decoys? It’s the same method to deploy four dozen, a hundred, or even more. It’s called the Decoy Raft, and it’s the product of a handful of friends from North Carolina who are passionate about waterfowl hunting.

    August 03 at 5:53pm
    Blake (left) and Daryl Hodge (right) are serving as regional hosts on Drake's Migration, in its 7th season on the Sportsman Channel.

    Carolina hunters featured on Sportsman Channel's Drake's Migration

    If you happened to catch the newest episode of Drake’s Migration on the Sportsman Channel this morning, and you know anything about waterfowl hunting in the Carolinas, you surely noticed some familiar faces on the show. 

    June 27 at 1:06pm
    The 2016-17 waterfowl and webless migratory bird seasons have been set, and include some big changes from years past.

    NCWRC announces 2016-17 waterfowl, webless migratory bird seasons

    In a first for waterfowl season dates, bag limits, and regulations, the NCWRC has already announced these details for the upcoming 2016-17 waterfowl, webless migratory bird, and extended falconry seasons.

    April 26 at 6:30pm
    The NCWRC is seeking input from waterfowl hunters concerning the 2016 waterfowl seasons.

    NCWRC seeks public input on upcoming waterfowl seasons

    Have you ever wondered where agencies like the NCWRC and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service get their ideas for what they think will benefit outdoorsmen? These agencies often ask for public input concerning topics like migratory bird seasons, and they are requesting such input now through April 10. 

    March 22 at 1:54pm
    These decoys are all on Decoy Rafts, which make quick work of setting out and retrieving dozens of decoys.

    Decoy Raft revolutionizes setting and retrieving decoys

    What if you could eliminate the time it takes to deploy dozens of decoys down to the amount of time it takes to drop a sheet into the water? What if that sheet disappeared, leaving only the decoys to show on the surface, and what if that sheet allowed infinite adjustability to your spread of decoys, and even allowed hunters to change the direction and orientation of all the ducks with one jerk of a rope?

    March 08 at 6:32pm
    Don't worry, Team Wrecking Crew didn't kill them all, but there's no such thing as Canadian geese.

    There's no such thing as Canadian geese

    That big black and white goose is a favorite among waterfowl hunters, but many don’t seem to know they aren’t called Canadian geese. This is probably one of the most commonly mistaken words among hunters, and it makes sense why. It’s a goose, it’s from Canada, so it makes sense to call them Canadian geese! But, their proper name is actually Canada geese. There’s no such thing as Canadian geese.

    March 02 at 3:39pm
    Snow goose populations have skyrocketed over the past 25 years to the point that they were doing significant damage to agriculture and breeding habitat.

    Light goose conservation order opens the floodgates for North Carolina hunters

    Nearly 10 years ago, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service issued the “light goose conservation order” that resonated throughout every waterfowl community across the country. The USFWS pulled out all of the stops to encourage hunters to combat the exploding snow goose explosion.  

    February 15 at 7:00am
    Full-choked shotguns and large, heavy loads of non-toxic shot are the norm when targeting snow geese.

    Snow geese require special shot choices, sizes and shotgun chokes

    Snow geese travel thousands of miles to reach their southern wintering grounds. After hunters study the flocks and finally get a group to creep into shotgun range, the hard part is over, and hunters need to use their equipment to bring them to the dirt.

    February 15 at 7:00am
    Fully camouflaged layout blinds are a great option for hunters looking to hide from snow geese out in the open among decoys.

    Full-camo, layout blinds or all-white are snow goose concealment options

    As soon as duck season ends, a choice few waterfowlers will pack away their duck decoys and layout boats and unload masses of white decoy shells for the snow goose conservation season. 

    February 15 at 7:00am
    For waterfowl hunters, Canada geese offer the last chance to cut some feathers. South Carolina's late season is Feb. 14-29, and North Carolina's is going on now through Feb. 13.

    Duck season is over, but Canada geese are still fair game

    With duck season ending on Jan. 31, hunters across the Carolinas can turn to resident Canada geese to get their last waterfowl fix of the year, but even those birds who are used to contact with humans can be a little tougher to take.

    February 01 at 8:27pm
    Excel OPTIFADE Camo Boats

    Excel OPTIFADE Camo Boats

    Excel Boat Co. and W.L. GORE & Associates have partnered to offer Excel boats in GORE OPTIFADE Concealment Waterfowl Marsh Pattern. The pattern takes into account how ducks and geese see the world below them. Since birds are particularly sensitive to color and continuity with their surroundings, OPTIFADE micro pattern is extremely detailed to confuse bird vision. OPTIFADE is available on all Excel boats including the popular Excel F4 and Bay Pro.

    February 01 at 7:00am
    Eastern North Carolina is snow goose heaven in February.

    Don’t snow on my parade - The snow goose parade begins this month in eastern North Carolina

    When the talk turns to snow geese, most North Carolina hunters immediately think about a long trip to the great plains of North Dakota, Nebraska, Texas, Manitoba or any of the other states and provinces along the central flyway.  

    February 01 at 7:00am