|Mallards in the late January sunshine|
With the end of duck season just a few days away, waterfowl hunters will be very active this weekend. The end of season duck hunt at Black Swamp Plantation in Robertville will bring together a large group of hunters to gun for released mallards, but also to eat afterwards and enjoy fellowship. Using up the last of your steel shot shells while picking up a limit of four mallards helps to end the season on a good note.
|Manager Bill Mixon sends Bullet to retrieve a duck|
This Jasper County property is under easement with Ducks Unlimited and it drains a large volume of water that is heading to the nearby Savannah River. Otherwise known as the focus area Savannah River Preserve or SRP. Owned by the timber consulting firm Wise Batten Inc. in Estill, the property is actually made up of several historic inland rice impoundments. These areas have since been converted into pine tree production and hardwoods, but Wise Batten is reclaiming these areas for the sake of duck hunting endeavors.With nearly 200-acres of new ground fields that can be flooded, the loggers have been busy on Black Swamp in their quest to open up this niche in the flyway that welcomes wood ducks and teal to drop by. Stumps have to be removed prior to planting for waterfowl but manager Bill Mixon has a knack for setting the table in order to attract wildlife. For our hunt on January 17 we had a special guest from Beaufort in our midst. Brantley Harvey is a former Lt. Governor who enjoyed state politics during his law career. Harvey did not hunt, but rather he regaled us with his stories and brought young gun Kevin Dukes from his Harvey & Battey law firm to get in a duck blind. Slightly north of 80 years old, it’s always exciting to be around an octogenarian that will still rise early and take part in waterfowl rituals because of his love for the outdoors.
|Breakfast at the Gathering Shed after the hunt|
Traditions like any end of season duck hunt will tide us over until next season when we will eagerly anticipate the migrating ducks that have come South to meet us once again.
To read this eature story in the newspaper click Colletonian.
|Hunt host Wise Batten and happy hunting friends|
To view past blog entries from Black Swamp Plantation click 2013, 2012.