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No motor days #7886738 07/01/20 05:00 AM
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Just a late night thought for a offseasons discussion.

Would anyone be interested in seeing some of our wmas/area lakes have no motor days during duck season. Say monday, tuesday, thursday and friday are walk in and kayak/paddle only hunting days and wednesdays saturday and sunday the motorized boats are allowed.

Again this wouldn't be every lake/body of water, just a select few.

Back in the late 90s you could only hunt cooper and ray Robert's on certain days. I cant recall when they opened it back up to everyday hunting. But it would be something along those lines. One can still hunt everyday if you are a walk in hunter or using a non motorized watercraft. But the idea would be to limit boat traffic and noise from motorized boats during duck season.

Do you think there is a benefit? Less noise, ducks not being disturbed by being jumped up off the lakes by motorboats, give the kayak hunters some peace of mind that they wont get waked, ect.

What are your thoughts?

Re: No motor days [Re: 2flyfish4] #7886887 07/01/20 01:31 PM
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I would be more in support of reducing the limit to 3-4 birds and have shooting hours start at sunrise rather than 30 minutes before. On small marsh type WMAs with easy access due to roads and levees (Cheyenne Bottoms, Hackberry Flat, Waurika, the place out on East Texas, etc) I could possibly see allowing no motorized boats but on major lakes, rivers, and large marsh areas (Think NWRs along gulf coast) I think it would turn away older folks from hunting as access is more difficult.

Re: No motor days [Re: 2flyfish4] #7886894 07/01/20 01:35 PM
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Its not like tpwd is going to do what the public wants anyway. Example: Boat registrations pain in the hinder. The worst service from tpwd is boat registrations. We have all raised hell for years and it has become worse.


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Re: No motor days [Re: 2flyfish4] #7886933 07/01/20 02:00 PM
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Not only do they not listen to the public they dont enforce anything.

I dont see this being on all lakes, rivers, bays, or bodies of water. I dont want to get into lake naming but there are a number of smaller lakes and or small hunting areas on lakes around dfw that this may benefit.

But then again how do you control the fisherman and pleasure boaters.

Just kinda a thought bc I think there would be some benefits that could lead to hunting being more consistent on some of the public lands. But at the end of the day it's not really foreseeable

Re: No motor days [Re: 2flyfish4] #7886939 07/01/20 02:03 PM
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Most WMAs and NWRs along the coast are already limited access (walk/paddle only) or have limited access areas. With lakes you're still looking at fisherman boat traffic. I do share your dream of finding ways to reduce pressure though.

Re: No motor days [Re: 2flyfish4] #7886943 07/01/20 02:10 PM
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My only worry is you give up a little at first and then they take a lot. We can’t eat our own. When I really want to get on and stay on ducks I pack my truck up and get ready to move around. Half the fun of public land hunting comes from roaming around and finding new places out of the way.

Re: No motor days [Re: 2flyfish4] #7887027 07/01/20 03:23 PM
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I don't understand the whole check-in thing and only open till noon, no motorized boats, and only open on some days, not open part of the season, just make it public land or don't, hunt on it, hunt what you see that is a legal game animal and follow the Texas hunting regulations. I'm originally from Minnesota and the only real restrictions they have at most wmas is no motorized decoys (which is still stupid). Make it Public Land or leave it as Private land

Re: No motor days [Re: 2flyfish4] #7887123 07/01/20 04:26 PM
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IMO boat motors have almost zero impact on ducks. If you are where they want to be, they are going to circle and come right back in when you leave. I think having a shut off time is more important than motor traffic since it allows them to find "your" spot for the next morning.

If you want to improve the overall numbers and average success rate, limit the days you can hunt. I'm not a fan of it tho. A lot of folks can only hunt certain days.


Re: No motor days [Re: 2flyfish4] #7887133 07/01/20 04:37 PM
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I would vote towards more management practices instead of taking away public hunting grounds for state parks.

Re: No motor days [Re: LarryCopper] #7887171 07/01/20 05:05 PM
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Originally Posted by LarryCopper
IMO boat motors have almost zero impact on ducks. If you are where they want to be, they are going to circle and come right back in when you leave.


I agree with this. I’ve pulled up at 0 dark thirty, setup, moved the boat and didn’t bother ducks that were 20 yds away. People for some reason think motor noise has an enormous effect on birds. IME it does not. To the OP, why not put in for some draw hunts? I know that’s not the answer to your question but given the fact that TPW isn’t overly concerned with helping build duck habitat in Texas, I don’t think pushing for special regs on certain bodies of water will ever come to fruition. I’d just like to see them do more on the public bodies of water we do have.

Re: No motor days [Re: 2flyfish4] #7887190 07/01/20 05:19 PM
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Ya I get it, it is what it is. Tpw doesn't want to do much with their/our public lands to make duck hunting better. I wish they would fly millet in to some of these mud flats on the lake. If the lakes in NTX dont start dropping soon come duck season they will just be mud pits.

I believe boats do effect birds, scaring them up and pushing them around, especially in years with limited forage for them will send the ducks out in a hurry. I know alot of private land guys that scout their holes with binos bc they dont want to get to close and flush the ducks out of there. They want them to be as undisturbed as possible.

Trust me I get public land hunting in texas. I hunt 30+ days a year and this year with all the pto I have bc of covid I may be pushing 50 days in the field. I know tpwd cares little about managing our public lands. I don't want to limit hunting. But at the same the best run duck clubs in the nation limit hunting and activity to give the birds plenty of rest so they aren't burned out within the first week of the season. Just doing alittle brain storming on how we could make public land duck hunting in texas alittle but more consistent by letting the birds rest alittle.

Last edited by 2flyfish4; 07/01/20 05:20 PM.
Re: No motor days [Re: 2flyfish4] #7887554 07/01/20 10:55 PM
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As you get older, motors will mean more to you. I tried a couple of kayak hunts last season. Wore me out for multiple days. Twenty years ago I could have done it 4-5 days in a row with longer paddles.

I tend to fish and hunt in the same areas. The same ducks that sit still for my kayak aren’t disturbed by my mud motor. The same ducks that break 100 yards from my mud motor, break more than 70 yards from my kayak.

The primary problem seems to be stale ducks due to lack of fronts. Stale ducks learn the game on the lake or find secluded water.

I wish Texas used more the Arkansas model for duck management, but they don’t.


Thought for the day: Ducks were almost hunted to extinction long before camo was invented.
Re: No motor days [Re: Windrider] #7888108 07/02/20 02:21 PM
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Originally Posted by 2flyfish4
I believe boats do effect birds, scaring them up and pushing them around, especially in years with limited forage for them will send the ducks out in a hurry. I know alot of private land guys that scout their holes with binos bc they dont want to get to close and flush the ducks out of there. They want them to be as undisturbed as possible.

Lakes vs private waters are different stories. On lakes they are used to seeing boats constantly and it means little to them. They are not used to seeing potential predators around ponds or private wetlands and will spook much more easily there. Again, just my opinion based on what I've seen. Maybe the lakes and private spots you hunt are different.

Originally Posted by Windrider
The primary problem seems to be stale ducks due to lack of fronts. Stale ducks learn the game on the lake or find secluded water.

Bingo! Birds that have been around a while lean quickly where they won't get shot. Heck, they even learn time on the lakes limited to hunting hours before noon. At a couple in particular, right after noon they'll start piling into the areas you can hunt. Really makes scouting difficult.


Re: No motor days [Re: 2flyfish4] #7889865 07/04/20 02:11 AM
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Originally Posted by 2flyfish4
Just a late night thought for a offseasons discussion.

Would anyone be interested in seeing some of our wmas/area lakes have no motor days during duck season. Say monday, tuesday, thursday and friday are walk in and kayak/paddle only hunting days and wednesdays saturday and sunday the motorized boats are allowed.

Again this wouldn't be every lake/body of water, just a select few.

Back in the late 90s you could only hunt cooper and ray Robert's on certain days. I cant recall when they opened it back up to everyday hunting. But it would be something along those lines. One can still hunt everyday if you are a walk in hunter or using a non motorized watercraft. But the idea would be to limit boat traffic and noise from motorized boats during duck season.

Do you think there is a benefit? Less noise, ducks not being disturbed by being jumped up off the lakes by motorboats, give the kayak hunters some peace of mind that they wont get waked, ect.

What are your thoughts?


I don't like the idea of "days" as I don't think you will get the desired area effect on birds your seeking if just alternating days, but I would like the idea of designated non motorized areas of WMAs or lakes if the area is large enough to accommodate the idea. Cheyenne Bottoms Wildlife Area in Kansas does this. I hunted via kayak one of the non motorized areas a day before Thanksgiving that year. I paddled deep into the unit parting rafts of swimming ducks as I went without ever seeing another boat and only hearing very distant mud motors. It made for a very memorable hunt and experience.

Re: No motor days [Re: 2flyfish4] #7889950 07/04/20 04:03 AM
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Yes sir I like that idea. And several of wmas along the coast are like that. For what ever reason NTX does not have anything like that.

Last edited by 2flyfish4; 07/04/20 04:03 AM.
Re: No motor days [Re: Sniper John] #7889964 07/04/20 04:36 AM
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A little motor should be ok, 7hp or less .... smile ani


Re: No motor days [Re: 2flyfish4] #7890192 07/04/20 02:38 PM
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In a word. No

The only thing I would be in support of is no scouting past 2:00 p.m on all WMAs.

Last edited by ducknbass; 07/04/20 02:39 PM.
Re: No motor days [Re: 2flyfish4] #7890195 07/04/20 02:41 PM
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Originally Posted by 2flyfish4
Yes sir I like that idea. And several of wmas along the coast are like that. For what ever reason NTX does not have anything like that.



Because our WMAs are also fishing lakes. it's hard if not impossible to enforce If I wanted to go scouting I throw a couple fishing poles or some trotline in my boat and I'm not scouting I'm fishing. The state walks a tightrope between different uses for land

Re: No motor days [Re: LarryCopper] #7892897 07/07/20 02:16 PM
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Originally Posted by LarryCopper
IMO boat motors have almost zero impact on ducks. If you are where they want to be, they are going to circle and come right back in when you leave. I think having a shut off time is more important than motor traffic since it allows them to find "your" spot for the next morning.

If you want to improve the overall numbers and average success rate, limit the days you can hunt. I'm not a fan of it tho. A lot of folks can only hunt certain days.



In general the first few guys to find the birds this is true. But by the time the 10th boat has rafted them up the motors are diffently impacting the birds. And I'm referring to fresh birds also. This is commonly an opener type situation. Stale birds are another situation. I'm against as many regulations as possible but were hunting here, not trying to make a living. Whats best for the birds? Less intrusion on them. I'd like to see a cutoff time for scouting but peer pressure would be best. 2 years ago I was on a large Oklahoma lake. 9:30am here comes barney scouting with shotgun slung over his shoulder and dog up on the front deck. He looked like he could have stepped off the cover of a cabelas catalog. That crap needs to be stopped. During the season no scouting before 10am and none after 1 or 2pm. If you cannot make it happen with those stipulations go find another hobby. But I'd like to see peer pressure enforce those rules, not the government. Like catch and release bass fishing did in the 70's and 80's

Re: No motor days [Re: 2flyfish4] #7894142 07/08/20 02:07 PM
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I’d be okay with cutting off the late afternoon scouting to keep some pressure off the birds.

Re: No motor days [Re: 2flyfish4] #7894160 07/08/20 02:24 PM
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Lots of good discussion here, any efforts to reduce negative impact on both the game and on each others is worthy of consideration. How to implement and regulate is always tough, but just having regulations even if hard to implement and regulate brings down pressure. I applaud the thinking and discussion no matter the conclusion.


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Re: No motor days [Re: 2flyfish4] #7895001 07/09/20 01:50 AM
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Less restrictions are better. I hunt about as much as anyone and 95 percent of it is on public. All these time limits do is keep people from hunting which is not good for keeping our rights to public hunting. Not everyone can hunt first thing in the morning, some guys can only scout after work, and some take kids on evening hunts after school. Keep complaining though, you will end up with the rules a lot of places in Arkansas have.... and still won't be piling up the birds. Scout as much as you can and hunt every chance you get (morning, mid-day, afternoon, whenever you want before sunset). I never leave a place after a bad hunt saying "man, more rules would've let me kill more birds" I just scout until I find a place with more birds.

Re: No motor days [Re: OTL91] #7895145 07/09/20 10:38 AM
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Originally Posted by OTL91
Less restrictions are better. I hunt about as much as anyone and 95 percent of it is on public. All these time limits do is keep people from hunting which is not good for keeping our rights to public hunting. Not everyone can hunt first thing in the morning, some guys can only scout after work, and some take kids on evening hunts after school. Keep complaining though, you will end up with the rules a lot of places in Arkansas have.... and still won't be piling up the birds. Scout as much as you can and hunt every chance you get (morning, mid-day, afternoon, whenever you want before sunset). I never leave a place after a bad hunt saying "man, more rules would've let me kill more birds" I just scout until I find a place with more birds.


I don't see anyone "complaining" as you say, I see folks thinking and discussing. You make some thoughtful points, too bad you tainted it with your insulting judgement. With any limited resource there will always have to be sufficient guidelines to protect and preserve that resource that those guideline will usually be debatable and unsatisfactory to some. That's why thinking and discussing are so important, those lessen the problems.


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