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This years shootout was one of the worst on record.The winners only shot 4 geese.I was out at the refuge yesterday and there are SOB's all over.The head man said the birds were flying all over but wouldn't decoy.A lot of them are on the north end of the refuge and are going into Manitoba to feed in pea fields up there.
6 teams were not allowed to hunt because they didn't know about the new cap and couldn't get non-res. licenses.I would have thought that with the new cap the organizers would have notified the teams about that.
 

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Thanks for the update, Ken. The results are very interesting. First, so few geese were shot and second, there were six clueless teams that aparently knew nothing about the license restriction. Hmm, I don't know what to make of that. Sounds like they did a lot better over at Kenmare.
 

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Ken please correct me if I am wrong, but I would expect that results in Kenmare would often be better.

Kenmare really has no set rules. Pass shooting, sneaking flocks, or decoy hunting are all allowed. Thus if a group of guys make a nice sneak on a flock of snows, they can put up winning numbers in a matter of minutes.

There was a spot on news the other night about a couple hunting snows off of Kenmare. They never fired a shot.

Bottineau on the other hand has a contest were teams of four hunters are randomly assigned "pre-scouted" and posted fields. They must hunt in their assigned field and I believe are also assigned a field judge to watch.

Old theory
Conventional wisdom used to say the young snows are in the last flocks to migrate. Thus Mr. Hustad's success in SK vs the success in the shoot out. I saw very few young birds in the snow and blue flocks we scouted in ND. We chose to pass shoot the SOBs and had excellent success. Watched huge flocks of SOBs fly almost 1/2 mile out of there way around most decoy spreads. They also often flew out in another direction leaving the decoy spreads high and dry. :(
 

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PH...you are correct...it is strictly luck of the draw.You might get a field in an area that has no geese.I don't know what the rules are at Kenmare.
I think I would disagree about the young geese.That is true in the spring because the families have broken up and the adults are always in a hurry to get to the tundra,whereas the young are not.In the fall they are still in family groups.I think being in the right field has more to do with the poor success.Chris hasn't said yet but I would bet he used an e-caller.Plus he probably was where the birds wanted to be.The reports I've heard are that most here are crossing the border where there is little pressure and lots of the right foods.
 

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Ya, we used an ecaller. When we had it off and walked around picking up decoys, they still poured in....go figure. The enormous amount of juvy's and no hunting pressure is why Sask. is so productive and ND isn't in my opinion.
 

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I've been to the Kenmare Goosfest (not in the competition) I've also have hunted Bottineau area for SOB's several times.

I will also say in general Decoying SOB's is overated. Most of the time when you have a good shoot it's because they wanted that field - I have been having as good of luck with 18 full bodies & 2 dozen shells 1 snows 1 blues.

Hard to believe they did so poorly ???

I'm not a big fan of compeitive hunting. Everything in life seems so competitive. Hunting for me is FUN and an obcession :roll: But I love hunting new areas.

I like jumping them & pass shooting them & using real flocks as decoys. & this weekend where I was, they were everywhere :D
 

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I'm going to have to agree with Fetch. I always do good pass shooting, as long as there are plenty of birds around. Can't even remember the last time I got a juvey pass shooting.
 

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Few years back my brother and I were hunting snows with a fairly inexperience hunter ( he did not shoot too well ). Well we were in "one of those fields" where the juveys could not resist landing in.

Limit was seven : he shot six of his seven birds by flushing juvey geese out of the decoys at 10 to 20 yards. My brother was shaking his head in disbelief.

Pass shooting = big white snows and eagle head blues.
 
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