First off: no matter how ‘unsporting’ it may be considered by the aficionados I always try for ‘sitting’ ducks (or at worst, swimming ducks). Moving? Once they’ve galloped the length of the pool and achieved lift off I lose interest (although I did once take advantage of a duck coming in to land).

Standard sitting duck
Standard sitting duck


As for the how, I don’t really aim—I just get a quick sight then squeeze. The results are sometimes … interesting. Not always easy to get the right shot at long range, but that’s part of the thrill of the chase, no?

Swimming duck — see the difference?
Swimming duck — notice the difference?


Are something else though. To get a mushroom with the first shot you have to catch it unawares and squeeze one off before it notices you. Sleeping mushrooms are best, they don’t wave around so much and you get more time to acquire the point of aim you actually desire rather than having to make do with what you’ve got.

Mushroom at point of awakening—still groggy
Mushroom at point of awakening—a bit groggy yet (even so those walkers are keeping a safe distance).

I find it best to get to my knees when still out of range and crawl in closer on my belly—the mushroom feels less threatened this way because you seem smaller (size does count, regardless of what some might say). Be warned that if you goof and the mushroom becomes aware of your presence you might have a few problems and need to think fast …

An alert pair in 'wary' posture—they know you are there but don't yet feel too threatened
An alert pair in ‘wary’ posture—they know you are there but don’t yet feel too threatened; note how they are covering each other’s rear— there’s no easy way of sneaking up on these guys now

If you happen across a mushroom in the stance of this one below, stop immediately and back away slowly. Don’t make any sudden moves and whatever else don’t take your eyes off it for even a split second. This is a warrior mushroom in his prime—note how he’s covered his flank with a tree and his rear with an upward slope; he knows what he’s about and it doesn’t bode well for you. Back off—and if you survive you may get another shot another day.

Mushroom at the ready, alert, confident and competent. Be very careful.
Mushroom at the ready, alert, confident and competent. Be very careful.

Sometimes — not often —  in fact extremely rarely, if ever (it only happened to me the once) you might just happen upon a mushroom holy guy. They are hermits by inclination and stand  alone in their field where they radiate the nature of a genuine saint; there’s no mistaking the ‘odour of sanctity’ about them. They are peace personified, you will feel their presence long before you see it—

Sacred mushroom — perpetual non-molestation with these: let live and live
Sacred mushroom — perpetual non-molestation with these:  let live and live

—but the rule remains ever the same: don’t touch! Bear in mind that mushrooms are essentially benign in nature—some of them—and there is no known recorded instance anywhere in the whole of history of a mushroom attacking a human. They can (and do~!) kill in self-defence or when provoked (if you bite one, for example) but they are essentially very tolerant. If you leave them alone they will leave you alone.


Good luck when hunting~!





7 thoughts on “DUCK!

  1. Did you come across any carrot snares while you were out hunting wabbits… Rabis… uh I mean ducks and shrooms? Those free-range root-veg can be a menace, pouncing out at unsuspecting passers-by from the undergrowth. Parsnips can be particularly vicious, especially the wild ones…

    1. How many times do I have to tell you city folks—parsnips are only wild if you catch them unawares! Just make a noise, give them enough time to quietly sneak away and you’ll never know they were even there. Trust me, it works.

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