If you are reading this, you know this past weekend was the opener for early goose, and although the excitement was high, results were low. I went out on Saturday morning with high hopes of a great opener but was forced to settle with sun burn. I took my father in-law and brother to a family farm about 25mi south east of Alexandria MN. The field had been cut and picked but cover was good. At sun up we heard one round of shooting in the distance, and that was it for the day. I brought some training dummies and ran drills with the dog so that he wouldn't be so bored. At 11:00 I called around to some buddies in various parts of the state to find that their hunts were as dismal as mine.
On Sunday we went to another relative's farm by Melrose MN. The week before I scouted this field and it had been cut and picked and the winter wheat had just started growing. After hearing of geese being on the Sauk River the day before I thought it would be perfect. When we got there and started carrying the gear in I noticed in my headlamp that the wheat looked like it had grown. Too close to shooting time I carried on. We set up and my brother took a cart to cut some cover grass while my father in-law and I set up decoys. In the dark the Shells seemed to deep in the grass but in the dark I thought that it would be ok. When the sun broke we started seeing birds. My brother and I drew in some geese from way out but we where just to far outside of the flight path. Several other flocks were in the area but none were very aggressive in pursuing a feeding spot. Then the jack pot! Or so I thought. The was a pond about 1 mile due north, where we were facing, that was holding geese. When they got up they started flying straight at us. I started into a short "domestic dispute" routine and they broke apart and started dumping air. Here we go! 30 geese are looking like they are locked on about 150 yards out. When they stared to fly again, I hit them with another short routine and they started to turn. When I looked to my right I saw that my father in-law had fallen asleep with the hood of his power hunter open! I yelled for him to wake up and was unable to recover the birds. They had made a hard left and were out. Another day without a bird.
On Monday morning I could not get my father in-law out of bed, so it was just my brother and I. We went to the same field but set up in the fresh cut part of the field and at sun up we discovered that someone was hunting the farm next to us. Not because we could see them, because we couldn't, but because the flutes they were blowing were soooo bad!. Any little bird movement and the flutes were going a hundred miles an hour. Sad part is that there were about 200 geese that roosted with the cattle all night in that field and all they did was scare them away!
Hopefully the weather is not so nice and the birds are moving this weekend. Just need to remember that less calling at this time of the year is better. Let the decoys do the work when they are young and dumb.....As long as they are not buried in the tall, freshly sprayed with fertilizer, field.