By Len Ackerman

Special to the Union Democrat

As the waterfowl season comes to an end on Sunday, it appears to be ending on a high note with some stormy weather coming through this week.

That, coupled with an increase in the numbers of ducks and geese that have moved into the Sacramento Valley and the Los Banos area, should make for some good shooting.

Last Wednesday, my son Bill and Steve Hinze of Aptos had a good shoot at the Santa Cruz Club, south of Los Banos, bagging limits of mixed species. The end of the season always brought a sad note to this writer when I was still hunting up to the season ending in 2017. The final week usually brought in more ducks and geese, and then, suddenly it was over at sunset on the last day.

On the other hand, the wives may be happy to have their men back home on weekends.

Most private clubs should have good shooting this weekend and this writer will surely miss shooting with member Bill Davidson at the Santa Fe Club where I was involved for 20 years.

After Sunday, hunters will be cleaning guns and muddy pickup trucks and sorting out decoys.

Following are some averages from last weekend that show improvement: Sacramento area - Colusa had 4.5 birds per hunter; Delevan 4.7; Los Banos area - North Freitas had a whopping 6.2 on Wednesday and 3.4 on Saturday; Gadwall had 5.4; Los Banos 3.7; Kesterson 3.4; Salt Slough 3.7; San Luis 3.6; and Mendota 3.8.

Most hunters consider an average of three or more a good indication of lots of birds in the area. Good luck to those hunters getting out the final weekend. I will miss being among them.

Back to fishing. At New Melones, some anglers are still out looking for a big rainbow, but it has slowed a bit since December when several big ones were caught.

Colder weather may bring them closer to the surface again.

Some big rainbows have been caught by shore anglers recently at Glory Hole Point and Angels Cove using Power Baits.

At Lake Don Pedro, there has been light fishing pressure for trout lately, but some big rainbows are turning up from time to time by trolling spoon type lures or frozen shad from the surface to 30 feet down.

Bass anglers are doing well here, too.

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