I don’t know who made Mother Nature mad, but if you happen to be reading this magazine, please make nice.
The 2018-2019 duck season was too wet, too warm and too cloudy, only to be followed by tough breeding conditions in Canada this spring and epic flooding throughout parts of Arkansas.
Spring of 2019 also marks the third time in a row that growing season has started while water was still on the trees in Bayou Meto Wildlife Management Area. As we waterfowlers know, we can’t do a whole lot to control the weather and water, so we have to keep grinding forward until things turn in our favor.
As tough as last duck season was, I luckily get a pick-me-up working on the award-winning Greenhead magazine. This edition marks our 10th anniversary and we couldn’t be prouder of how far the magazine has come, not only in design and content but also in the reception from the Arkansas duck hunting community.
It’s hard not to grin ear to ear when I’m told “I love your magazine,” and, fortunately, I hear that a lot.
Truth is, it’s not my magazine. Over the 10 years there have been some really talented people conceptualize, write, sell, photograph and distribute Greenhead, making it Christmas in August for duck hunters when it hits the stands. For all those who have been involved along the way, thank you, thank you, thank you.
This year’s lineup of stories revisits some favorite topics from Greenheads gone by as well as addressing the current state of Arkansas duck hunting.
We enjoy a photographic “stay” at one of the state’s top duck lodges, bellying up to the buffet and getting into the wetlands with the lucky guests. Speaking of lodges, Mallard Grove Hunting Lodge is the backdrop for Chris Bahn’s account of its popular youth hunt. Todd Traub revisits a feature from our first edition — Diners, Drive-Ins and Duck Dives — checking in on some of the hunting community’s can’t-miss eating establishments.
Photographer Kody Van Pelt shares tips on taking better photographs before, during and after the hunt. Contributor Knowles Adkisson shares how beloved duck call maker Rich-N-Tone recovered from a devastating fire and he tells the story of the Plafcan family from Slovak (Prairie County) and its long-standing role in waterfowling in Arkansas.
My contributions include an overview of the perfect storm of influences that limited hunter success last year. Good, or even decent, reports were few and far between, and there are a lot of opinions on why the big push of ducks simply never happened. I also dug into the growing popularity of millet as a food plot for both hunting holes and rest areas.
Please enjoy the 10th anniversary edition of Greenhead and I hope you have as much fun reading it as we do putting it together each year. Thank you to our advertisers for supporting the project, as it wouldn’t be possible without your participation.
Here’s to a better 2019-2020 duck season. Even if the ducks don’t show like they are supposed to, I plan to still enjoy the time outdoors with my family and friends, and I hope you do to.
Best of luck in this and future seasons.