Blue-winged teal are such an incredible hunting target that most sporting clay ranges offer a station dedicated to the challenge. Aside from their beautiful plumage, teal are usually the first duck species of the season and many hunters can’t wait for opening day. Fortunately, the early-season date makes for better weather, easier accessibility (no ice to crack), and great camaraderie. This post from Ducks Unlimited not only contains great tips for blue-wings, it also offers a one-minute video to prime your pump.

DSC_0011(1)As the first cool winds of the season begin to stir from the north, blue-winged teal start moving south from their prairie breeding grounds. These birds will soon fill the flyways just in time for September teal seasons in many states. While weather and local habitat conditions will affect where and when blue-wings will be available, the following teal-hunting tips will help you make the most of your hunting opportunities when these fast-flying little ducks blow into your area.

Coastal marshes and flooded rice fields are the favorite habitat of teal in south Louisiana, and blue-wings are usually thick in this region by early fall. In a good location, shooting a four-bird limit in 15 or 20 minutes isn’t unusual.

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Joe Byers
Joe Byers has more than 1,000 magazine articles in print and is currently a field editor with Whitetail Journal, Predator Xtreme, Whitetails Unlimited, Crossbow Revolution, and African Hunting Journal magazines. He’s spent the last three decades depicting the thrill of the chase and photographing the majesty of all things wild. Byers is a member of the Professional Outdoor Media Association and numerous other professional and conservation organizations.