Friday, November 4, 2011

South Dakota – The Waterfowl Sleeper State

A few years ago, on a Winchester Ammunition ladies hunt, I met Heather Reddemann. Heather is a prostaffer for Winchester Ammunition and SHE Outdoor Apparel. She is a person I instantly clicked with and stayed in contact with over the years. She is a dog trainer at Oak Tree Farm in South Dakota, as well as a full-time pharmacy PhD student. She has been hounding me to get out to South Dakota for not only pheasants, but ducks as well. This year I was fortunate enough to draw a limited tag for waterfowl.

I have always known South Dakota is notorious for pheasants, but what about ducks? Our first adventure out was started with an argo ride (which is now on my must-have list). We found a nice waterhole and hid in the cattails. We saw and heard so many ducks that morning. It became clear to me that South Dakota is a sleeper state for waterfowl.

I could tell it was my first duck hunt of the season, my shot was lousy, but I still had a lot of fun and managed to shoot a nice bufflehead, something I haven’t shot before. That afternoon we got in some pheasant hunting at Oak Tree. I was thrilled to finally say that I had hunted pheasants in South Dakota!

I have always hunted behind German Shorthair Pointers; this was my first time behind flushers. I always thought I liked pointers, but Heather’s labs changed my perspective; I think I am a flusher kind of girl! Her dogs can go from a duck blind in the morning to a pheasant field in the afternoon and perform like rockstars.

The next morning we got back into the waterfowl frame of mind and hunted a little waterhole right behind Heather’s house. We had action all morning! We had pintails, teal and every duck imaginable come into our little spread.

My favorite moment was when I heard a WHOOSH…a small group of green winged teal came firing in like a bunch of fighter jets. I couldn’t believe how quick they were. I was able to drop one of them. I was super excited! The thrill of hearing those quick birds and being able to bring one down picked up my shooting confidence.

I was bummed my trip was so short, but I am glad I got to experience South Dakota. Working with Heather’s retrievers was a treat. They are such versatile and smart hunting dogs. The hunting was great. I can now finally say that I have pheasant hunted in South Dakota, as well as waterfowl. I am also glad I got to share that time in the field with a dear friend.


  1. Glad you enjoyed your stay and hunt in South Dakota. Come back and visit soon!

  2. Looks like your enjoying the hunts. We are doing a youth hunt in red field

    Best wishes,