Pre Second Split Duck Report; Filming in the Tennessee Hole

December 04, 2018

Over the course of the morning, I lit several thousand birds in the hole.

I think the entirety of the Arkansas duck hunting population is happy that the second season is finally about to be here. As was the case before season, conditions and duck numbers look great heading in to the opener of the second split. As one would have it, we have great beautiful sunny day weather for several days in a row…while season is closed. And, of course, it is supposed to be cloudy, rainy and overcast for the first few days of the second split. Oh well, I guess we will have to give it a go anyway. Given the numbers of ducks being reported all over the state, I like our chances regardless.

Friday night/Saturday morning a pretty big storm blew through northeast Arkansas, and it brought several inches of rain to much of the area. The Cache is back out and I heard Bayou DeView is out too, but I can’t confirm that. I do know there are ducks up and down Bayou DeView—an area that had less birds than normal during the first split. With the Cache being out, you have to believe ducks are to be found somewhere on it. If I give out any more info than that the Cache River hunters may have me drawn and quartered.

The Black River area is reportedly holding a ton of birds. I have heard strong reports from Lake Ashbaugh and that entire area all the way down to south of Rainey Brake.

White Oaks is holding steady with several birds, although, I wouldn’t say it’s anything overly impressive. We appeared to have picked up several birds Sunday morning and I’ve got my fingers crossed that we will hold on to at least some of them through the weekend. Birds are using our woods, and when they start doing that, we don’t need a big number of birds for the hunting to be excellent. I will be crossing my fingers that they get nice and comfy in there over for the next couple of days.

The big wildcard is the Mississippi River. It fell out but after all these storms, is set to rise again and crest at 30’ in New Madrid on Monday. The river at that stage in that part of the world is a deadly combo on ducks. With the river rising and reaching an ideal stage over the next few days, we very well could lose many birds to the bottom ground along the Mississippi River. My hopes are that the Cache being out will keep enough great habitat in my area for a few birds to stick around.


I went in and filmed in the Tennessee Hole Sunday morning. The show was quite impressive. With no hunters in the woods and no hunting anywhere, the birds put on quite a show. Over the course of the morning, I lit several thousand birds in the hole. It’s strange and beautiful to film in the woods when there is no hunting. Once the birds start coming in, they can really pile it on—since no one is blasting their butts off! The biggest problem I had was them seeing me when I was filming and competing with the thousands of birds down in the woods not too far away. Regardless, after getting busted by several big groups of mallards, I moved, got hidden better and was able to capture some really cool footage. I have 12 minutes of the 30+ minutes I videoed that you can go watch on the link below.

It seems as though the break was good for the area and it looks like it could be a strong second split opener. And, as mentioned before, I am only reporting what I have heard from reliable sources regarding the duck reports. By this morning, everything could have changed--or I could just be flat out wrong! I wish you all great success during the second split!

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