At thirty minutes before sunrise this past Saturday one of my favorite events arrived in Nebraska – teal season. The short season gives me an annual opportunity to renew the fondness I hold for this small duck and a chance to try out new excuses for missed shots.
Blue-winged, green-winged and even cinnamon teal pass through Nebraska but they can all be summed up in one word – quick. Teal are quick to arrive on the scene, sometimes quick to decoy and often quick to depart unscathed by the hunter holding an empty gun. The teal migration is quick, too. It often begins in August and by the time most others ducks are traveling through our state many teal are already south of our nation’s border.
To me teal posses the great combination of qualities that make them ideal for both the aspiring waterfowler and the seasoned-ducker . With some quick Teal Tips you are on your way. However, one of the greatest joys teal bring me occurs in the dark of pre-dawn – before shooting hours arrive.
To fully enjoy teal you have to visit them in the dark on their roost and simply close your eyes and open your ears. Teal are my excuse to sneak out in the dark of night and listen to the chorus of voices coming from the wet areas of our wild places. These places are alive with life right now and the laughing-quack of the blue-winged teal fits right in as the conversation turns to the changes of the season.
Realizing that Teal are Just the Tip for what is going to unfold again this fall – is pretty dang cool, too. So, get out there and take advantage of the teal and everything it has to offer.