Duck Guide Rant
I'm a 40 yr old dad and went duck hunting for first time in my life this past Jan. Had a great time, got plenty of ducks, but I didn't like that the guide drank crown royal all day. I drink my fair share but not with a gun in my hand.
Another group of 4 guys going mid Jan. All fairly new to duck hunting. Very easy going. Don't care what we shoot. Just want to shoot ducks. Talked on phone to Captain Froggy tonight. Unless you tell me he's an axe murderer, I'll go with him.
"If you don't care what you shoot, you just want to shoot ducks", then I suggest that you go to a shooting preserve.
There are several types of commercial duck hunting operations, the illegal ones, which are most of them and:
The "private impoundments" which by definition are not going to be commercially successful because of the high costs of maintaining these impoundments increases the price/hunter beyond what most people are willing to pay. Therefore these guides settle for lower prices and pack more people into their impoundments than the impoundments can support and the hunting sucks. The only consistently successful private impoundments are extremely expensive with 6 digit membership costs and annual dues often in excess of 5 digits.
Then you have the scissor boat rigs. Yes mobile, successful, more often legal, but my idea of duck hunting is not done from a boat.
These scissor rigs are also productive with sea ducks, but my idea of duck hunting is shooting ducks that are edible and not giving them away because they taste like rotten clams.
Then you have those who lease shoreline and hunt the open water from shore. If done legally without bait, then these hunters are at the mercy of the weather and the migration. They can have the weather, but no ducks or most often they have several thousand ducks in the area but no weather to move them around.
Then you have the public lands. I would recommend some of these hunts in order to gain some appreciation for what legitimate duck guides have to invest to be successful, not just in the expenses, but the time and knowledge.
If you want to shoot at ducks from a boat, I can tell you who has scissor rigs.
If you want to sit in the marsh and hope the weather is such that some ducks fly by, then I can tell you who has a blind or two and is dabbling in it.