Ten years ago, geese and ducks were plentiful along the rice farming area east and west of Houston, and hunting was extraordinary. Drought throughout Central Texas curtailed water supply and rice farming was severely impacted, forcing some farmers to seek other crops or occupations and waterfowl to change winter roosting sites. Populations are slowly improving. Duck season and East Zone goose season are open until January 31 and West Zone goose season closes February 14. Photo by John Jefferson
I thought I knew something about Texas waterfowl hunting. After all, my earliest hunting adventures included wading a large pond near the Gulf to hunt ducks during high school years -- finding out later that it was full of alligators. Then, I acquired a brother-in-law who owned 10,000 acres of rice, cattle land, and duck ponds near Devers, also enjoyed countless hunts in the rice-rich areas west of Houston, and even hunted geese and Sandhill cranes in the Panhandle.