Early Teal Season in Texas
The hunting season in Texas always kicks off September 1 with the opening of dove season. But, a sometimes overlooked opportunity in the early season hunts is the teal. This brief duck season typically runs the second through 4th week in September. These duck are some of the first birds to migrate before the mallards and other ducks make their way into Texas. Many of the same farms and lake areas that are open for dove season are also good spots to start looking for these ducks.
I got some necessary gear for my inaugural public land duck hunt. First up was a set of decoys, half teal and half mallards, 12 total and it was only $30 on Amazon. Next purchase was a $15 camo tarp-like thing. Next on the to-do list was to get one of the big boat trolling motor batteries for the canoe and trolling motor. I had the waders, and I decided to build some stabilizers or platform out of bamboo and bungee cords for the “”hunting canoe”.
After my first trip to Granger I’m was tempted to take the big boat out for the first crack at teal hunting. Granger Lake is a big boat lake and the river where I might launch the canoe also looked big enough for the big boat. It certainly would be easier to shoot out of the Barry Switzer and more comfy sitting around waiting for the birds. I would also be able to cover a lot more ground all over the lake looking for the birds. The big rig had been sitting the past few months because of the heat. It’s a long way to trailer it as well. If I’m going to put big miles on the truck and boat trailer, a trip to the ocean is far more tempting, so after some thought, I decided to head to a different lake and go all in on electric canoe and attempt to navigate some shallow wetlands. I just seemed more like a duck kinda place.
I have found a more pond looking place that says it’s only accessible by very small boat, and I think by boat they mean jon boat, or in my case electric canoe, and not the ski boat type of water. From the wildlife and google maps, this place looks perfect for early teal season hunting.
The destination of choice was Lake Somersvlille. It’s a beautiful lake with a campground and public hunting for hogs and deer via bow. The ducks, teals, and other waterfowl are plentiful . I made it out way before the sun came up, and my electric canoe contraption did amazingly well. I had no idea what I was doing as far as duck hunting was going, but there were plenty of birds and wildlife. Some unbelievable scenery with a gorgeous sunrise started the day off with an amazing experience.
The area that you are supposed to hunt is called Flag Pond, and it isn’t easy to reach. There is a very small canal off the main lake that you must navigate with a small jon boat or canoe. The canal was dried up about 500 yards short of the dam that makes “Flag Pond”. The muddy walk is surrounded by private land your not supposed to track trough. Once I reached the pond on foot after parking my canoe, there was no water in said pond and no ducks to be found. The only disappointing part of the day.
While on my trip I had a chance to talk with a local dude who claimed during the normal duck season, if you can drag the kayak to the pond, make a nice decoy setup before shooting time, then it’s pretty easy to limit out. We might give this a shot in the regular duck season, but it would be a tough haul in the dark.
At the end of the morning while I was packing up the gear, I ran into another group of hunters. They clearly knew what they were doing had a bunch of teals in their boat. I think they were probably shooting on or near the lake, not back in the pond. Not sure if that is totally legal or not. Most of the day there were shots going off not stop all over the region, My guess is the area is a popular destination for those that own the private land around the lake. Anywho, I can’t wait to go back for another trip.