August 20, 2014

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RatNation™ Meet Your National Rats

The Top Dogs, eh, Rats. The National Refuge Rats.

You know you are a Refuge Rat. It's at your core. You find an indescribable joy in getting up early, scouting, getting dirty, and ultimately having killer hunts.

But what about the Rat across town? Or across the State or Province? Or the Rat across the Country?

They are right here. Meet your National Refuge Rats (NRR).

Here we feature one to a few successful Refuge Rats from each of the States and Provinces of North America. These proven duck and goose hunters share their unique backgrounds, stories and tips. Check them out.

Are you the next National RefugeRat?

Think you have the background and experience? Think you have the track record? Think you have the insight that makes you a good public refuge waterfowler? 

Think you would represent your area well? Then we would love to hear from you. Give us a shout.     This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Arkansas - Michael Fleeman, NRR, ProStaff welcomes Mike Fleeman from his home state of Arkansas.

Mike hunts about 40 days per year on some of the most demanding public waterfowl ground in the country, the Bayou Meto.

It is the most crowded, hardest hunted duck hole in Arkansas, and possibly the world. The morning boat race itself is an event.

California - Josh Campbell, NRR, ProStaff

california-josh-campbell-mixed-full-limitsPlease meet Californian Josh Campbell.

Josh has been hunting for 27 years, nine of those for waterfowl on public refuges throughout the State.

Every fall, Josh also makes a freelance journey to Canada, targeting geese.

In the paragraphs that follow, Josh shares his knowledge and insights which have led to some super hunts as a Rat on public lands.

Idaho - Phil Lewer, NRR, ProStaff welcomes Phil Lewer from Idaho.

Though this upcoming season will only be Phil’s fifth hunting season, he was fortunate to get a good taste of waterfowling by a very skilled mentor who also happens to be a world renowned decoy carver; Don Mintz.

And that mentoring has paid off well.

He has hunted refuges since his very first duck hunt on the Deerflat National Wildlife Refuge at Lake Lowell. A true Rat.

Phil shares his opinions and thoughts below about hunting public lands and what has worked for him.

Give a big Rat welcome to Phil.

Illinois - Gary Bartlow, NRR, ProStaff

illinois-gary-bartlow-two-drake-mallards-pitPlease greet Gary Bartlow from Illinois.

Gary has been hunting for 24 years and lives to kill limits of waterfowl. He hunts more than 45 days per year primarily targeting ducks. Most of his hunting is done on public land in Illinois.

He also makes waterfowling trips to Missouri, Kansas, and Arkansas every year, and loves to spring snow goose hunt which leads to about five trips to NE Arkansas every February.

Indiana - George Witczak, NRR

indiana-george-witczak-drake-wood-duck-with-duck-bandGive a big hand to George Witczak from Indiana.

He typically hunts 45-60 days out of a 60 day season in some of the nastiest marshes and bayous in Northwest Indiana.

George is also active in recruiting new hunters, improving local refuge habitat, and sharing hunting values and tactics with other waterfowlers.

Hats off to George. More to come...

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