This is the number one question asked to me by hunters on the phone before they come out. The biggest mistake I ever made in my guiding career was telling a group we were killing mallards and we weren't. I learned a couple of things from this mishap on my part.
The first thing I learned was I am duck hunting service and not a mallard killing service. Mallards have become so unpredictable, I can't just really rely on shooting just them to run my business. Second thing I learned was to always tell the truth and nothing but the truth when people call. So I now always give the truth when somebody calls. Most of the time we are killing ducks. It just may not be the kind they want to shoot. We have always had access to old catfish ponds and working catfish ponds in our guiding rotation. It seems the ducks (shovelers, bluebills, and Canvasback) that sit on these ponds arrive here and never leave throughout the season. So it makes for some exciting shooting for some clients that may kill one to two ducks all season in some of their honey holes at home. So now when people call and ask if we are killing ducks, I always ask which species they are talking about. Some people may just want to go to a mallard hole and kill one big duck compared to a limit of other ducks when things are slow, but I find most people want to shoot. Shooting always make customers and also myself happy and as long as we are killing ducks I am happy. I think the only time I get frustrated in this business is when a customer doesn't pull the trigger enough to fill a limit. So if that happens in my guided duck hunts I will always take the customer out for a free afternoon hunt. I hope to see all of you soon at Mossy Island Outfitters.