GreenSkins Classic Recap

March 30, 2009 by  

By Chris Hustad

The North Dakota resident opener proved to be a huge success for all those who took part. In our group’s extensive scouting around the state, we’d witnessed large masses of ducks for weeks. The trend appeared to be the more northeast you go, the more ducks you’ll come across. Local canada geese are hit and miss depending on each county. Wherever the geese can find an undisturbed roost, chances are you’ll find huntable numbers of birds. The further you go from large towns, the less amount of pressure on the birds.

The migration has started, as small flocks of lessors, cranes and even snow geese have been spotted. Some of the migrants had even made their way south of Interstate 94, which is pretty early for these species and their travels. There are large amounts of teal still present, but not in the numbers they were in 2 weeks ago. The beans are starting to come down all over the state, and in some areas, even the corn. There was a lot of wasted barley this year, as a lot of it is in too poor of shape for harvest. This was evident with the large number of standing barley fields. Hunters taking the field this week should prepare for a lot of scouting, and seek out the wet areas. Where you find a lot of water, you will find a lot of birds. Due to heavy pressure, most of the birds will end up in large bodies of water down the back roads. They will be hard to find, but keep your eyes out for large flocks leaving and entering these sloughs.
The GreenSkins Classic, put on by, was a huge success in its inaugural year. The tournament took place in the northeastern part of the state. All teams did their own scouting and seeked out their own permission. We had 5 teams of 4 take the field based on a point system that rewarding the hunter’s patience. Here’s the point breakdown:
5 points drake mallard
5 points drake pintail
5 points drake woodduck
4 points all other drakes (excluding coots, shovelors, gadwalls, and canvasbacks)
1 point for all hens

This was a duck only tournament, as far as scoring. Canada geese would only be used in case of a tie. Most teams came in with limits of ducks, some with geese as well. The majority of ducks taken was by far drake mallards, and the teams did a great job identifying the birds in flight. This will be the first of many “Greenskins Classics”, so look forward to signing up next year!

The winners of the first Classic, was a group of great guys from Grand Forks. They put up 19 drake mallards, 3 drake pintails, 2 drake woodducks and a limit of canadas. From left to right: David Easton, Matt Jones, Phil Bettenburg, Phil “PJ” Maquire


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