The Duck Hunt
It was still dark that early morning when I packed up my 7-year-old daughter with plenty of warm layers of clothing and snacks in my pickup truck and drove us out into the crisp cold air that carried the promise of a successful duck hunt. I drove about an hour west of Fargo, North Dakota to prairie pothole country where the ducks are always plentiful in October.
As we set up our blind along the shore of a small slough, my daughter Lucia and I exchanged stories and jokes as our excitement grew. The sounds of birds splashing and talking to each other echoed through the cattails. Lucia offered words of encouragement while I set out a dozen gadwall floaters and a pair of Mojo Mallard Spinning Wing Decoys. “We’re gonna get a lot of ducks today, dad!”
As the sun began to rise, the first ducks flew overhead, and I readied my shotgun while Lucia held her breath. I felt my heart racing as I aimed at the first bird, trying desperately to lead it just right, and squeezed the trigger. The shot rang out across the water, and the bird fell from the sky, its feathers fluttering in the breeze. “You did it! Nice job, dad!”
With each passing minute, waves of gadwalls and teal descended upon us like a relentless Air Force determined to land on the “X” just 15 yards in front of our blind. By 7:45am I was wading through the cold water and mud retrieving our entire daily bag limit of birds – five gadwalls, one shoveler, and two bonus blue-winged teal.
Lucia and I spent the next 20 minutes sitting next to each other eating Goldfish crackers while watching the emerging sunrise bathe us in its warm light. Then I quickly gathered up our gear as she sat and petted each of the bird’s feathers, commenting on how sticky the blood was on her fingertips. I felt an immense sense of pride being a father who is raising a daughter who loves the outdoors as much as I do. The thrill of the chase, the camaraderie of a father/daughter duck hunt, and the satisfaction of bringing home a bounty of ducks made for a memorable experience.
As we buckled our seat belts for the drive back home, I reached my hand back to Lucia and offered my hand to hers. “Thanks for getting up early and coming with me today.”
“You’re welcome,” she replied. And after a few second pause, “I love you, dad.”
“I love you, too,” I answered tearfully as I put the truck in gear to drive away from yet another magical and exhilarating adventure of a duck hunt in North Dakota.
About the Recipe
Looking for a mouth-watering recipe that will impress your dinner guests that may want to try wild game for the first time? Look no further than this delectable duck and portabella mushroom ravioli dish! With tender duck meat, earthy portabella mushrooms, and perfectly cooked store-bought pasta, this recipe is sure to be a hit at your next dinner party or when you want to simply treat yourself to a restaurant-quality meal at home that takes just 30 minutes from start to finish. Whether you are a seasoned home cook or just starting out in the kitchen, this recipe is easy to follow and produces a truly delicious result. So why not give it a try and wow your friends and family with this indulgent and flavorful wild game dish!
Want to learn more about cooking ducks and geese? Check out this article!
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
Try our Delicious Wild Fish and Game Spice Blends!