Archive for December, 2012

San Jacinto Wildlife Area Opens New Goose Fields to Hunting!

Tom Trakes, of San Jacinto Wildlife Area, announced today that they are opening the goose fields on San Jacinto to hunting. The fields are planted with rye grass, which is sprouting nicely and should be a big attractant to any geese in the area.

The goose fields will be opened each hunt day through the end of the season (conditions allowing). The reservation process still applies to these fields so if you have a reservation and a hankering to try the goose fields out you might want to give it a go. Rules for the goose fields are as follows:

You need to have your own blind.

You need goose decoys (minimum of 12 mandatory).

Four adults allowed per blind.

(click on the thumbnail to read the official flyer)

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For further information call the staff at San Jacinto at 951-928-0580

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Hunt Results for San Jacinto Wildlife Area, Saturday – 12/29/12

The average per hunter waterfowl take at San Jacinto Wildlife Area for this Saturday jumped significantly over Wednesday’s average. For the first time this year Shovelers were not the most numerous bird taken, that spot being taken over by Green Wing Teal, relegating Shovelers to the second spot. Tom Trakes, from San Jacinto Wildlife Area, reported that the results for Saturday, 12/29/12 were as follows:

132 adult and 15 junior hunters bagged 151 Northern Shovelers, 3 Wigeon, 22 Bufflehead, 1 Canvasback, 2 Cinnamon Teal, 22 Gadwall, 153 Green Wing Teal, 3 Mallards, 14 Pintail, 3 Redheads and 27 Ruddy Ducks. Again no geese were taken at San Jacinto on Saturday. 4 coots were also counted in the take on Saturday. This resulted in a per hunter waterfowl average of 2.76 birds. Tom advised that out of 50 reservation cards 30 showed up on time.

San Jacinto is open for waterfowl hunting on Wednesdays and Saturdays only. You can put in for reservations on-line through the DFG Automated License Data System (ALDS). Your reservation request has to be to the ALDS system 17 days in advance to get in on the drawing or you can get in on the daily “sweatline” drawing for the remaining blinds after the reservations are taken care of. Reservation spots are given out starting at 3 AM and the “sweatline” drawing is done after that. The ALDS can be accessed through the DFG web site at the below link –

https://www.ca.wildlifelicense.com/InternetSales/

Don’t forget that all licenses and 1 day, 2 day or season passes must be purchased at a DFG Office or a license agent before your arrive at the refuge. These can be purchased on-line via the ALDS system also, however, you will have to wait for the DFG to mail you’re the actual licenses and passes which can take up to 15 days. If you purchase your license and passes in person at a DFG office or license agent you immediately get them without the wait for the mail. No licenses or passes will be sold at the check stations. You can also show up for an afternoon refill hunt but the last refill is at 2 PM. For more information, contact the staff at San Jacinto at 951-928-0580.

SoCalHunt San Jacinto Hunting Report 12/26/12

SoCalHunt was back again at San Jacinto Wildlife Area for another afternoon refill hunt. Today my usual hunting partner was in attendance with his daughter along to cheer us on.

Today we tried a different tactic and arrived much earlier then I usually do for a refill, just before 7 am, in hopes of getting a better spot on the refill list. This seemed to work today as we ended up on the top of the second page instead of down on the lower end of the third page as we have been the last couple times. Hopes were high for a good blind and the cloudy, rainy weather bode well for our hunt.

We waited for a good blind to check in but it seemed that more hunters then usual were sticking it out in the blinds, probably due to the weather conditions, in hopes it would start the ducks moving, providing them with a few more opportunities. As we waited the hunters that did trickle in from the refuge had anywhere from nothing to one or two birds to near limits.

Finally, about 11:30 a decent blind checked in and we opted to take it and give our luck a try. We headed out to our blind and set up and we were hunting by about 12:15. It appeared, at least at that time, that the rain was over for the day and the clouds were clearing.

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As the day wore on the clouds would thicken and then break up again. The clouds seemed to stack up against the mountains and darkened threatening to rain on us again. Although the skies never really opened up on us it did rain on us a couple times for just a few minutes but not enough to even break out the rain gear.

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The gathering clouds against the mountains highlighted the beautiful foliage surrounding our blind as the low sunlight brightly lit the trees, contrasting the colors against the dark clouds.

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The occasional rain also had the effect of creating a great looking rainbow behind our pond. If only the “pot of gold” myth were true!

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Anyway, back to the hunting. We had a couple of spoonys swing near our blind but they didn’t quite get into range. At one point, not too long after we started our hunt, a nice little drake bufflehead came into the decoys and my partner nailed him with one shot. As buffleheads tend to do when wounded the little drake hit the water and immediately dove. After a long “scuba dive” he popped up right in front of me and I administered the coup de grace and we had our first duck in the bag.

To make a long story short that was the only two shots we fired all afternoon. There was never another opportunity presented to us this afternoon and at quitting time we packed up our gear and our one bird and headed in.

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Although the hunting results left a lot to be desired the day was well worth spending in the marsh as the scenery was absolutely gorgeous and the sunset was even better then the usual outstanding San Jacinto sunset.

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So, once again the afternoon was a bust, bird wise, although we both agreed that we wouldn’t want to be anywhere else, after all, you can’t bag any sitting on the couch watching TV. It seems that the main migration still hasn’t arrived and even though we had a few good afternoon hunts last season, this year, at least so far, it seems that the morning is the way to go to consistently bag a few birds. Unfortunately, this year, due to a number of circumstances we’re pretty much going to have to stick to the afternoons. Hopefully the main migration will arrive soon, before the season is over.

Hunt Results for San Jacinto Wildlife Area, Wednesday – 12/26/12

The average take of waterfowl at San Jacinto Wildlife Area for this Wednesday went down slightly under cloudy skies with occasional rain. Shovelers, once again, were the number one bird bagged with Green Wing Teal a close second on Wednesday. Tom Trakes, from San Jacinto Wildlife Area, reported that the results for Wednesday, 12/26/12 were as follows:

137 adult and 16 junior hunters bagged 68 Northern Shovelers, 11 Wigeon, 15 Bufflehead, 1 Canvasback, 5 Cinnamon Teal, 24 Gadwall, 64 Green Wing Teal, 4 Mallards, 4 Pintail, 4 Redhead, 2 Ring Necks and 40 Ruddy Ducks. No geese were taken at San Jacinto on Wednesday. 10 coots were also checked in on Wednesday. This worked out to 1.65 waterfowl per hunter. Tom advised that out of 50 reservation cards 21 showed up on time.

San Jacinto is open for waterfowl hunting on Wednesdays and Saturdays only. You can put in for reservations on-line through the DFG Automated License Data System (ALDS). Your reservation request has to be to the ALDS system 17 days in advance to get in on the drawing or you can get in on the daily “sweatline” drawing for the remaining blinds after the reservations are taken care of. Reservation spots are given out starting at 3 AM and the “sweatline” drawing is done after that. The ALDS can be accessed through the DFG web site at the below link –

https://www.ca.wildlifelicense.com/InternetSales/

Don’t forget that all licenses and 1 day, 2 day or season passes must be purchased at a DFG Office or a license agent before your arrive at the refuge. These can be purchased on-line via the ALDS system also, however, you will have to wait for the DFG to mail you’re the actual licenses and passes which can take up to 15 days. If you purchase your license and passes in person at a DFG office or license agent you immediately get them without the wait for the mail. No licenses or passes will be sold at the check stations. You can also show up for an afternoon refill hunt but the last refill is at 2 PM. For more information, contact the staff at San Jacinto at 951-928-0580.

Hunt Results for San Jacinto Wildlife Area, Saturday – 12/22/12

The per hunter waterfowl average at San Jacinto Wildlife Area for this Saturday improved somewhat over Wednesday’s average. Once again Shovelers were the most numerous bird taken with Green Wing Teal taking over the number two spot for Saturday. Tom Trakes, from San Jacinto Wildlife Area, reported that the results for Saturday, 12/22/12 were as follows:

126 adult and 13 junior hunters bagged 105 Northern Shovelers, 18 Wigeon, 13 Bufflehead, 3 Cinnamon Teal, 35 Gadwall, 48 Green Wing Teal, 6 Mallards, 5 Pintail, 6 Redheads, 6 Ring Necks, and 9 Ruddy Ducks. No geese were bagged at San Jacinto on Saturday. 2 coots was also included in the count on Saturday. This resulted in a per hunter waterfowl average of 1.84 birds. Tom advised that out of 50 reservation cards 22 showed up on time.

San Jacinto is open for waterfowl hunting on Wednesdays and Saturdays only. You can put in for reservations on-line through the DFG Automated License Data System (ALDS). Your reservation request has to be to the ALDS system 17 days in advance to get in on the drawing or you can get in on the daily “sweatline” drawing for the remaining blinds after the reservations are taken care of. Reservation spots are given out starting at 3 AM and the “sweatline” drawing is done after that. The ALDS can be accessed through the DFG web site at the below link –

https://www.ca.wildlifelicense.com/InternetSales/

Don’t forget that all licenses and 1 day, 2 day or season passes must be purchased at a DFG Office or a license agent before your arrive at the refuge. These can be purchased on-line via the ALDS system also, however, you will have to wait for the DFG to mail you’re the actual licenses and passes which can take up to 15 days. If you purchase your license and passes in person at a DFG office or license agent you immediately get them without the wait for the mail. No licenses or passes will be sold at the check stations. You can also show up for an afternoon refill hunt but the last refill is at 2 PM. For more information, contact the staff at San Jacinto at 951-928-0580.

Deadline Approaching to Apply for Reservations for San Jacinto’s Junior Waterfowl Hunt

Saturday, February 2nd, 2013 is the date for San Jacinto Wildlife Area’s Junior Duck Hunt. This opportunity is open to hunters age 15 or under. A non-hunting adult must accompany the junior hunter(s) in the field. Apply for the junior hunt through the DFG’s new Automated License Data System (ALDS). Access the ALDS at the following link:

https://www.ca.wildlifelicense.com/InternetSales/

Remember the application request has to be in to ALDS system at least 17 days prior to the hunt date to be included in the drawing. This means that the application has to be in to the ALDS system by January 16th, 2013. Be sure to get you reservation request in to the ALDS system on time so you won’t miss out. Juniors who don’t draw a reservation can still show up and have a good chance of getting out via the sweatline draw after the reservations are taken care of. The non-reservation draw will be held immediately after hunting spots are assigned to the reservation holders.

Remember, only junior hunters can apply for this drawing. An adult hunter cannot apply and pass the reservation on to a junior hunter.

A pancake breakfast will be available to start the day at 3 am and, at noon, there will be a lunch for all participants. In addition, after lunch, there will be a raffle with a bunch of hunting gear available for the juniors to win. Volunteer are needed for this event. For more info, or to volunteer or donate a prize, call the San Jacinto office at 951-928-0580.

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SoCalHunt San Jacinto Hunting Report 12/19/12

After a couple weeks hiatus due to an emergency home repair and a bout with the flu SoCalHunt was back at San Jacinto Wildlife Area for an afternoon refill hunt.

When we arrived at the check station parking lot there seemed to be an inordinate amount of trucks in the lot, causing us to be concerned about our chances of even getting a blind on the refuge. We checked in and put our names on the refill list and found that our fears were well founded as we where down on the third page of the refill list.

We waited for a while however every time a hunting party checked in with their birds someone above us on the list refilled the just vacated blind and headed out. We finally decided that we’d take what I would call a “marginal” blind, just to get out on the refuge, as it appeared that holding out for something better just wasn’t going to happen. I will say that some of the straps coming in looked pretty good, not limits but many of the hunters were bringing in 3 or 4 birds each.

We took off from the check station lot and headed for our assigned blind. When we arrived the conditions were clear, somewhat cold and calm. As we set the decoys the snowcapped mountains behind us reflected in the calm waters of our pond.

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We settled in to wait for some ducks to come by and for he first couple of hours absolutely nothing happened. At one point I heard the familiar whistle of wigeon and looked up to see a large flock of about 20 wigeon flying by, although well out of range both in distance and altitude.

As the day progressed the wind started to stir and we had hopes that this might get some birds moving. At one point I glanced up to see a hen gadwall exiting our pond at low altitude, at what I would consider the maximum distance for a shot. By the time I saw her she was already on the way out so I didn’t have a chance to even shoulder my shotgun. As our afternoon ticked away the wind got stronger, making our decoys bob and weave in the waves.

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Well, to make a long story short, that was about the action for us for the day. Although it was nice to get back out in the marsh after my absence, it would have been nicer to collect a few ducks for the dinner table. So, as the sun set we picked up and headed for home.

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Anyway, it appears the main migration from the north hasn’t happened yet although I do know the count for today was a little better over all (just not for us today). Hopefully the next time we hit good old SJ they’ll be a few more birds in the area.


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