Duck Season Somewhere Podcast

MOJO’S Duck Season Somewhere Podcast

EP 257. Gaining Perspective From Half-Century “Studying Ducks” [Part 1]

A self-started Wisconsin duck hunter, Dr. Richard Kaminski left dental school to “study ducks.” And study ducks he did–for about a half-century. Beginning with graduate research studies at Delta Marsh, ending recently as Director of James C. Kennedy Waterfowl and Wetlands Conservation Center, leaving in his wake numerous waterfowl biologists among state, federal and non-governmental organizations integral to delivering the North American Waterfowl Management Plan. Between cups of coffee nd black lab fetches, he and Ramsey discuss the previous night’s family duck recipe and Kaminski’s duck hunting origins before slogging headlong into waterfowl-related topics researched extensively during his career: hemi-marsh, moist-soil management, soybean nutrition, forested wetlands, habitat complexes and more. Until Ramsey finally asks, “What happened to US duck hunting in the 25 years since I last attended your classroom?!”

EP 256. The Best Hunting Partners Are the Ones Raised

Going into Father’s Day weekend, Ramsey is joined by father-daughter hunting buddies Chris and Grace Nicolai for a truly memorable conversation about spending quality t-I-m-e with your mini-me’s. How old was Grace when did Chris start taking his daughters afield? How many goose species has Grace killed with a 410-shotgun? How many states has she hunted, how many species has she bagged–and what’s on her wish list? What else in waterfowling has hunting with ol” Dad inspired her to do? Any special challenges or considerations over the years? How is taking daughters different than taking sons–or is it? This fantastic episode is proof that your best hunting partners are the ones you raise. Enjoy. And Happy Father’s Day!

EP 255. Rice & Ducks: The Surprising Convergence That Saved the Carolina Lowcountry

Originating in enslaved people’s meager personal belongings when brought to South Carolina’s remote coastal plains during the 1600s, the long grains eventually became “Carolina Gold,” spawning an affluent rice producing culture that provided most of the world supply for over 2 centuries. It ended soon after the Civil War. But as author Virginia Christian Beach and Ramsey Russell discuss, the real story of South Carolina’s historically glorious rice culture is the enduring land ethic and the colorful cast of characters that made it happen–especially duck hunters.


Related Links:

Rice & Ducks: The Surprising Convergence that Saved the Carolina Lowcountry

EP 254. Waterfowl Habitat Management: Good Intentions, Bad Ideas, Mismanagement

Ramsey and Kevin Nelms conclude this year’s 4-part duck habitat series discussing cypress brakes and bad habitat management ideas they’ve seen along Hell Road that’s usually paved with otherwise good intentions.  As USDA NRCS Wildlife Biologist in the Mississippi Delta, Nelms has spent decades designing and developing numerous private-lands waterfowl impoundments. He’s worked extensively with private landowners throughout the region, improving desirable waterfowl habitat conditions, enhancing duck utilization, even putting together a handbook that Ramsey considers must-have essential for managing waterfowl habitat (refer to related links in the episode description for your own PDF copy). This is the final episode of a 4-part series that duck habitat nerds both new and old appreciate.



Related Links:

Wetlands Management for Waterfowl Handbook (PDF)

Managing Other Wetlands (YouTube)

EP 253. A Noah’s Ark for World Waterfowl Species: Pinola Conservancy

Meaningful waterfowl conservation comes in many forms. A life-long Louisiana duck hunter, Paul Dickson’s backyard waterfowl aviary seems like a naturally compatible hobby, but eventually evolved into something more. Much, much more. Pinola Conservancy is the largest waterfowl aviary in the United States. Privately owned and closed to the public, this aviary is home to hundreds of bird species from all corners of the globe, from critically endangered to common.  Myriad ongoing research projects are the tip of the iceberg. Surplus birds are distributed to qualified institutions and zoological parks where in the future some species, such as Baer’s Pochard, might only exist due to habitat loss.  How’d Dickson get started? When did it become more than a hobby, and what greater purposes does it now facilitate? How many waterfowl species are at Pinola Conservancy? What species are among the rarest or most endangered? Is it difficult raising all of these species in Louisiana, and how does he ensure they breed during Louisiana’s winter months? Does he have any personal favorites? What research projects are ongoing? What are some other cool things Ramsey learned during a brief tour?  Pinola Conservancy is a beacon of hope in a rapidly changing global landscape. Your inner bird-nerd is going to be unleashed listening. Afterwards, visit Pinola Conservancy’s website for live streams and social media accounts for updates.


Related Links:

Pinola Conservancy Website

Pinola Conservancy Instagram

Pinola Conservancy Facebook

EP 252. “And God Blessed Him With a Cannon”

I mean seriously, what little boy hasn’t dreamed of owning a real cannon?!  Originally from Wisconsin, Duffy Neubauer took it absolutely next level. His Starkville (Mississippi) Civil War Arsenal is a private collection of various artillery, rolling stock and carriages comprising an artillery battery; the only of its kind in the US. After bantering about nuanced differences among the terms Yankee, Damned Yankee and Northerner, Nuebauer takes Ramsey on an absolutely amazing tour.  How’d Neubauer develop an interest in Civil War field artillery, why’s the South such fertile grounds for his interests? In what ways are Civil War reenactments way bigger than the Super Bowl? What makes his collection the only of its kind in the US? How did artillery bring dignity to the battlefield, what different projectile types used? Necessity is the of invention invention, but what creative use of what natural, on-site material led decisively ended the siege of Vicksburg, ultimately ending the Civil War? And besides the obvious, what are 2 enduring legacies of the Civil War? Forget dull high school history lessons. Neubauer’s version is highly entertaining, absolutely full of riveting surprises. BOOM!


Related Links:

Starkville Civil War Arsenal

Shooting a Sweetgum Mortar

EP 251. Who–or What–Eats Wood Ducks?

It’s been a long while since Ramsey and today’s guest, Brian Davis, attended Mississippi State University together. Davis earned master’s and PhD degrees studying breeding and brood rearing wood ducks and other aspects of wood duck ecology.  Now an Associate Professor of Wildlife Ecology at MSU, Davis describes his duck hunting origins before pitching into wood duck predation (you ain’t going to believe it), other interesting findings such as “legacy lead” in various habitats and how the wildlife-related student body has evolved since Ramsey roamed his alma mater’s hallways. Davis is an extremely entertaining and well-informed storyteller. Y’all are absolutely going to love this episode—and will be left wondering how in the world wood ducks continue to even exist with so many different mouths to feed!


Related Links:

Mississippi State University, James C. Kennedy Endowed Chair in Waterfowl and Wetlands Conservation


EP 250. Snake?! Just Grab You One!!!

Somewhere along the way the question arises – have you ever seen someone get snake bitten in the scrotum?! Can’t make this stuff up, folks! Like other places in the Deep South, Mr. No-Shoulders is just a part of everyday life in Mississippi. Where many folks have a wholesome fear of them, some do not. There’s even a snake hand-grabbing, catch-and-release rodeo in the Great State of Mississippi! Ramsey meets with Jimmie Nichols of Grab U One Outfitters, discussing snake experiences, snake identification, snake “meanness,” snake bites and close calls, and then talking about how and why the annual snake rodeo round up got started. Make your palms sweat?  Give it this episode a listen and then come grab yourself one!


Related Links:
Grab U One Outfitters Annual Snake Rodeo Round Up in Mississippi

EP 249. The Duck Farmer, Shane Olson

Born and raised in Oklahoma, Shane Olson graduated with a degree in wildlife, soon becoming caretaker for Big Lake Duck Club just outside Tulsa. Located among one of the largest waterbodies in Oklahoma, Big Lake Duck Club was established in 1916. After sharing some of it’s amazing history, Olson goes into full-blown Duck Farmer mode, plowing deeply into learned habitat practices implemented to ensure quality waterfowl hunting. Covering all the bases of moist-soil management, hot-crop agriculture, flooded green timber reservoirs and refuge, he makes the case that great duck hunting habitat doesn’t just happen by accident. Fantastically interesting and useful information for both regular hunters and habitat tinkerers alike.

EP 248. Best-Dressed Biologist for Good Reason

Ed Penny spent years mucking through wetlands as a field biologist, plying his learned know-how to improve waterfowl habitat from Mississippi to California. Nowadays his work attire is oftentimes suit and tie, but for damned good reasons. As southern regional Director of Public Policy for Ducks Unlimited, Penny spends many long days across the table from legislators, championing the preservation of remaining wetlands habitat without which we duck hunters are S.O.L. He and Ramsey catch up, learning they cut their duck hunting teeth in the same river bottom, discussing changes since those days and on-going challenges.

Mojo OutdoorsTom BeckbeFlashBack DecoysVoormiTetra HearingDucks Unlimited HuntProofInukshuk Professional Dog FoodBOSS SHOTSHELLSBenelli

As strong advocates of conservation, supports the following organizations:

Ducks Unlimited Dallas Safari Club National Rifle Association Delta Waterfowl SCI