Teamwork. Excellence. Amazing. Wow. With the seventh annual edition of Greenhead, I am impressed by the remarkable growth of this magazine since it was a “Hey, that’s a really good idea” concept in the fall of 2009. Seasons may ebb and flow with migration, weather and water, but readers can count on the team behind this publication to always deliver one of the best niche outdoor magazines in the country. The recognition and awards the magazine receives back up that claim and I couldn’t be more proud of each new issue.

Avid waterfowler and photographer Drew Palmer, of Kansas, contributes a captivating feature, his outsider-looking-in view of Arkansas’ duck hunting culture. I have gathered input from various hunters and hunting demographics in “Why I Hunt,” which shares hunters’ stories about what the sport means to them, beyond shooting limits that is. I follow that with a recap of a spring conservation goose hunt I was lucky enough to join as a guest of Ducks Unlimited.

While Stuttgart gets its due, for good reason, as the state’s top duck hunting destination, freelance writer Dwain Hebda roams elsewhere to explore less traveled, but no less fun, hunting locales. Hebda also has a writeup on the federal duck stamp program, providing history of the stamp program and insight into where and how the money is spent.

Annual contributor John Gordon brings our readers a biography on the amazing Shannon Nardi and the Super Retriever Series she founded.

Nobody does a duck hunting business article better than Mark Friedman and this year he has come through with a look into the revival of the Duxbak apparel brand of years gone by and he visits Spoon Custom Guns in Stuttgart.

Managing Editor Todd Traub recognizes Arkansas Game and Fish Foundation Hall of Fame honoree Rodney Herndon and the Xpress Boats brand he built.

How can the duck hunting capital of the world not have a way to recognize those who contribute so much to the sport we love? The staff at Greenhead is proud to announce the long overdue Arkansas Waterfowlers Hall of Fame, which will recognize past and present contributors to our favorite pastime. Traub provides some insight into the creation of the hall and its inaugural event in December. We hope you can attend as it will be first class.

Also for 2016, we debut a revamped website for the publication that is our first redesign since 2010. Featuring enhanced photography, better content organization and a mobile friendly layout, we look to escalate our frequency of content on the site and grow the Greenhead brand beyond the print publication. Please check out to see the new wrinkles.

In closing, I would like to dedicate this edition of Greenhead to my good friend Kody Riggan. Just before we went to press, Kody passed away from complications stemming from an undiagnosed, genetic disease known as Brugada Syndrome. He was a consummate duck hunter, but also a great friend, father and husband. Likely little known to most, Kody and I talked almost daily during duck season and a good amount during the off-season. Only so many people will talk ducks anytime, anywhere and Kody unequivocally filled the bill. I will forever miss that friendship and regret we didn’t have one more chance to be together in those Black River bottoms again.

Brent Birch