Snow Goose Hunting 101: Migrating Light Goose Hunting Tips
Hunting Snow Geese During Migration Could Yield The Snow Goose Hunting Trip Of A Lifetime!
Every year from September to February ducks and geese migrate the flyway zone to Mexico. This migration flyway zone is from North Dakota to Texas. Ducks and geese follow these flyway zones from their breeding grounds to wintering areas. The migration happens because the migrating waterfowl and geese head to warmer regions in search of food and habitat. All the states in between North Dakota and Texas will see flocks of ducks and geese during these times bringing some of the best waterfowl and geese hunting every year. Hunters will travel to these regions in hopes to get their shot at the migrating ducks and geese. One species of geese that migrate is the light geese (also known as the snow geese).
Snow Geese Flying In to Feed (honest-food.net)
Snow geese are some of the smartest geese when it comes to their migration routines. They will migrate in flocks of tens of thousands. With so many birds it is hard to sneak up on them. They are very selective about where they land when feeding or roosting. They will examine the areas thoroughly and often get spooked very easily. It is because of this that makes snow geese one of the hardest birds to hunt. It takes hours of scouting and coming up with strategies to have a successful snow goose hunt. If you can master how to hunt for snow geese, then you will be rewarded with one of the best hunts of your life. When the tornado of geese begins you want to be in the middle of it. Lets us help you get there. With our snow geese hunting tips we will make sure you are in the middle of a swirling vortex of thousands of snow geese.
Snow Geese Hunting Tips For Your Next Hunting Trip:
1) Scouting Is Critical For Your Next Snow Goose Hunting Trip
Snow Goose Feed In A Cut Corn Field
One of the most critical things for a successful snow goose hunting trip is knowing where the snow geese will feed. This takes countless hours of driving around and finding the snow geese. You will find many geese flying overhead heading to feed. The geese will feed in corn fields or clover fields near the water where they roost. It is imperative to drive until you find where the snow geese are feeding. Snow geese are known for always returning to the same field until all the food there is gone. One of the hardest issues will be gaining access to the property. Many pieces of land will be posted to keep deer hunters off the land. Often you can find the house of who owns the property and ask the landowner directly for permission. Most farmers will often permit you because snow geese are destructive to land and are considered a nuisance. If you can not find the landowner's house look on the posted land sign for a name and number. Many of the posted land signs will include this. You can set up mid-afternoon for an evening hunt or at night for an early morning hunt. You only get one shot at hunting them because once they are shot at will not return to the same field and find a new field to feed.
2) Weather Will Make or Break a Snow Goose Hunt
One of the first things a waterfowl or goose hunter must take into account is the weather. The weather is a critical thing when taking into account how geese fly and migrate. Knowing if it is going to be a sunny day or overcast could affect how well the geese can spot you. It will also affect your visibility of spotting the geese so make sure there is a perfect blend of sun and cloud coverage. The wind is something that will work in your favor. The more wind, the lower the geese will fly. Some of the best hunts come on windy days. As previously stated you will have already scouted the areas of where the geese will be. Know how they will land and what direction they will be flying in from. The wind could mess this up so make sure you take this into effect. Another critical thing about wind is it can take a thousand decoys and bring them to life. The wind will move all the decoys making them appear as a giant flock in the field. So the better you know the weather, the better your hunt will be. Always make sure there is a wind that will work in your favor.
3) Snow Geese Decoys: The More You Have The Better Your Hunt Will Be
Early Morning Snow Goose Decoy Spread
One thing hunters do not realize is how hard it is to hunt snow geese. They require tons of decoys to bring them in. I have hunted spreads of 200, and I have hunted spreads of 1500. The more you have the better your hunt will be. If you want to get out there and start hunting then you should shoot for a minimum of 500 decoys. This does not require full bodies, but can be wind flag decoy that moves correctly in the wind. Snow geese get spooked quickly and are very visual when it comes to eating in a field. There are thousands of eyes in a huge flock that makes it perfect for spotting predators. Even though you may have a large decoy spread it still requires strategic set up to get geese that you want. When you set up is one thing that is important. Early morning is more likely the best time because snow geese will leave their early morning roost to feed. The other appropriate time is mid-afternoon before the evening feed. How you spread the decoys out in a field is essential. There should be a reason as to where you place every single decoy. The ultimate goal you should have in mind is creating a kill zone.
A kill zone is an open area in your decoy spread that the birds can land in to feed. Strategically place your blinds around this area because this is where you will be shooting the snow geese. The decoy spread will focus on spreading the decoys around the kill zone to entice the snow goose to land there. Place your motion decoys and spinners behind the blinds and where the wind is blowing to make it more natural and eye appealing. Snow goose decoy spread patterns should reflect how the goose was in the field when scouting. Let the migrating snow geese teach you how to lay out your spread. If you create a favorable kill zone, the birds will funnel in this area and provide you with an epic hunt. The kill zone should be where the geese vortex touches down.
4) Movement In The Decoy Spread Is A Must
Snow Goose Decoy Spread With Spinners
Snow geese are visual learners and will not feel comfortable to land in your decoy spread if there is no movement happening. This is the number one reason you should always hunt for snow goose when there is some wind. One thing that every snow goose hunter should have are flyers. You will need a rotary machine to suspend your flyers and bring them to life. It's this movement that brings your spreads to life. Another great thing to have are suspended hard plastic decoys and snow goose socks. These allow the wind to catch them and creates a movement to the spread. 1000 socks all moving in the wind can look like a flock of feeding geese. Another thing that every snow goose hunter should have is a flag. The simple movement of a flag can bring the geese into your kill zone. Remeber, always have movement in your spreads because it will only pass your spread off as the real thing.
5) Camouflage Is Critical, Make Sure The Snow Geese Can't See You
Team Hunting And Fishing Depot Blending In The Decoy Spread
When hunting for snow geese in a field, if the birds can spot you then you will be unsuccessful in your hunt. You must be fully covered. One thing that you should be dressed in is all white. It is in your best interest to wear all white hoody or jacket and white pants. Wearing all white allows you to blend into the decoy spread. It is imperative that you either lay on the ground, layout blind or backboard layout chair. If you are in a cut corn field, use the husks and stalks that are on the ground. Surround your blind with decoys and field debris to make it look natural. Snow geese can pick up black so make sure you are fully covered. One thing I love is you can have a camera out or a phone. You can talk in spread when the birds are coming in as long as you are covered. Every time you get up to fire make sure you reset your camouflage and cover for the next wave of birds. If there is snow on the ground, do not be afraid to use it. Whatever mother nature gives you in the field is a perfect way to remain hidden naturally.
6) Shoot Your Lanes When In The Blinds, It's For Your Safety
Always Shoot Your Lanes When Snow Goose Hunting
As you can see from our previous picture, the blinds for hunting snow goose will be near the kill zone. All hunting blinds will be placed in a line. It may seem common sense to shoot your lane in front of you, but when the geese start pouring in you can forget this easily. By sticking to your lanes you and your fellow hunters will kill more birds. All of my snow goose hunting trips have involved ten or more people. Saftey is always the number one concern. By sticking to shooting lanes, you will decrease the chance of an accident from occurring. Always remember that you should shoot your lane then work yourself to the outside. It is a good idea to have a pre-hunt meeting in the field, so everyone is on the same page and knows the plan. Hunters that are informed are more likely not to have accidents occur.
7) You Have To Adapt And Not Be Afraid Of Change
While out on a hunt there will be many things that change. Some can be critical to a successful hunt. If the wind changes direction, you may have to reposition decoys or blinds around a kill zone. Do not be afraid that you will run the geese off. Always be thinking of how the birds would be thinking. If a flyer looks unnatural in an area, do not be afraid to get up and move it. You have to adjust and readjust for some of the most successful hunts.
A Few More Snow Goose Hunting Tips To Make Your Next Snow Goose Hunting Trip Epic
- Everything must be hidden: gear, legs, shoes, shell boxes, water bottles and anything else brought into the field.
- Vehicles: park them far far away from the field you are hunting (at least a half mile).
- Snow goose sock decoys work just as good as full body snow goose decoys; much cheaper alternative when needing so many decoys.
- Even with no snow on the ground wear white. This will help you blend in with your decoy spread.
- Snow Goose land in waves, as the birds are landing shoot them and reload and get ready for the next wave. The ones you missed will take flight and regroup and try to land again.
- Never shoot at a pair landing when the geese are starting to tornado, let them land and wait for a large group.
- A flag is an essential piece of equipment for a successful snow goose hunting trip.
- If two parties set up on the same field, invite them to hunt with you. Not only will two separate ruin a hunt when on the same field, but the more people you have in your party shooting on the same birds the more geese you will kill and have a better hunt.
- Always shoot your lanes and focus on one bird at a time. When the geese are thick aim for a bird with multiples around it and behind it. You will take out several with one shot.
- Best Shells to use for snow geese are 3" steel shot
- Geese will continue to tornado a field until they are ready to go back to the roost. This means you will get sunset to about 11 am to shoot on as many geese as you please.
- During migration (September - December) the snow geese flocks get very large (100k and up in some areas) So when someone says you can kill 1000 birds on a snow goose hunting trip. That is probably a true statement.
951 Snow Goose, Snow Goose Hunting Trip Of A Lifetime
Snow goose hunting is challenging, yet a rewarding kind of hunt. When the geese are migrating you will encounter a flock of birds that can be several hundred thousand. If you have the right gear and decoys, then you will be very successful with hunting snow geese. Always remember the seven most important things: scouting, weather, amount of decoys, motion in the spread, the camouflage of everything, shoot your lanes, and adapt. Snow goose hunting during migration could yield the snow goose hunting trip of a lifetime!