They are big. They are slow. And for some reason I can not seem to kill one.
I sat here with a list of possible topics for this blog. I went over and over the list trying not to write about this topic. However it kept popping back up in my mind as the one that I had to write about.
I really don’t understand what it is with me and geese. I don’t know if it is a curse, karma, or just plain bad luck but when it comes to geese after 15+ years of waterfowl hunting I am still batting ZERO.
It happens every year, we will be hunting and you hear them coming. And like most other duck hunters we get ready. The problem is that they almost always turn right before they get to us and go somewhere else. Now I know most of you are thinking “well if they are not going to you then you don’t have what they want.”. Well I would agree with you except that when we are not hunting they land on our pond. I know that we are not flaring them because they are not getting close enough to see us. I just don’t know.
Occasionally the planets will align the heavens will open up and the geese will come to our little piece of heaven while we are there. Well this is when it gets even worse for me. The first time that this happened I was in a boat with Buckman and another friend of ours. The other buddy had knocked down a duck across the pond and we had just picked it up and were returning across the pond when 3 geese landed in the pond about 15 feet away. Now most of the time we are not the type to shoot birds off the water but we are also not idiots. We are in the middle of an open pond in a boat and 3 geese just landed 15 feet away. What else was there to do.
We all picked a goose and started the assault. Having never shot a goose before I really did not know what to do. I have been turkey hunting before and with them being only 10-15 feet away I figured there was no way that I could miss the head. Well I was wrong. I shot for the head twice. After the first shot they decided to get out of Dodge so with my last shot I figured I had better go for the body. There was no use we watched all three of those geese fly off into the distance. Every man had his on account from that assault but they all ended in the same question “How?”
My next experience was somewhat better. On this particular day we had a gaggle come over the top of us. I happened to be shooting BBs that day and figured that I would give it a try since the showed no sign of interest in our pond. I picked the lead goose and slung some steel in his direction. He had a momentary wobble in his flight but kept going. They flew across the impoundments that are down from us and I heard the shots open up on them. Later that day I was at the gas station and was talking to the guy pumping gas across from me. His son was so proud of the goose he killed that morning at the impoundments beside us. He said that the geese came by real high but the one he killed was flying really low. I wonder how that happened… I said nothing.
My last encounter with geese was the year before last. My cousin Ray had told me that when you shoot a goose shoot where the white and black meet on his chest. We had one fly by low and slow right over the top of me. In my hurry to get into position I forgot to shuck a shell into the chamber and I had a small shooting window. I threw up on him and click, shucked and on the second pull I put the load into the limb at the end of my window. Coach and Buckman got a goose out of that bunch but for me it was par for the course.
One year I may actually kill a goose but who knows. That is why they call it hunting and not killing.