Here in Florida it's been anything but sunny and warm. This year's record low tempuratures saw ice on the Everglades, a massive fish kill, and few ducks to show for the weather...except for a few choice places on the man-made marshes. The gleaming gems of Florida duck hunting are known as the Storm Treatment Areas or STA's.
What the STA's are really is several impoundments divided into cells that allow the state's water management districts to pass sheet water run-off through them in an effort to clean the water of nitrates and phosphates. What you end up with is thousands of acres of prime duck habitat closed to motors and hunting except one day a week. If you're lucky enough to draw a permit or get a walk in tag, you're almost guaranteed to have a great hunt.
January is the best time for full plummed birds in FL and the STA's have quite a variety of puddlers and divers alike. From the rare Fulvous Whistler and Black Belly tree Ducks, to the very common blue winged teal and most birds inbetween, you can find them in south Florida's STAs.
Here's a few pics to whet your appetite for next season.