This Old House

Published on: Nov. 23, 2011

porch, installing lights and a fan increases the amount of time that you may sit outside comfortably. By adding some levees and water control structures, we can add some addition flooded ground that can be used to add a couple of additional hunting positions. Our second stage plans include these tracts and are pending the approval of matching funds from the North American Wetland Conservation Act (NAWCA). Additionally, like enclosing a porch ties it more directly to the house, several other small fields around Duck Creek will receive some work and be reforested to tie these small patches of trees into the larger surrounding blocks of timber.

I guess you could look at the Greenbrier Unit as a walk-out basement; an area that has some existing infrastructure, but will only be used opportunistically when the conditions are right. There are some existing levees that must be reconfigured, and a few scours that could provide some additional flooded ground after a good rain or when the Castor gets up every now and then. A large portion of this will be put back to trees and tie-in with the riparian corridor along the river. This work is also contingent on the NAWCA grant.

Updating the Hardware: updating access to the pools

Much like new doorknobs and handles update the interior of a house, we are dressing up our roads. The past 60 years and recent construction activities have taken their toll on our thoroughfares. Trees have grown up along the roadway edges and the ditches. We’ve looked at ways to minimize maintenance, yet maintain access to parking spots. At the end of the renovation traffic will be routed to Unit A and pools 2 and 3 differently to minimize disturbance around Pool 1 during waterfowl season. Additionally, the ditch banks will be easier to maintain in the future by being grass covered and have reduced slopes.

A Finished and Updated Duck Creek

While traditional elements of Duck Creek will remain, portions of the area will look and function much differently. Pool 1 is part of the foundation of the area, and we will continue to depend on it as a fishing lake and our water reservoir for Pools 2 and 3. The hunting blinds in pools 2 and 3 will also remain as part of the character of Duck Creek. These will accommodate those who prefer to hunt these locations and in this style. Units A and B will look totally different and lend themselves more toward those who prefer to wade-in-shoot or hunt out of a layout boat. The utilities of the area (ditches and large water control structures) that allow the area to function have been updated and should reduce the amount of maintenance and management problems that might be experienced in the future. And with the inclusion of some areas along the periphery, a few new opportunities for public use will be utilized as we make the most of the land that we have.

I know all analogies breakdown at one point or another. However, I hope this has helped show the depth and extent of our renovations in a different light, so that when we do finish with our work, you’ll have a better idea of what to expect.

Thanks again for your continued interest and passion for the area. It truly is a unique place, and I am thankful to be a part in reviving this old house. I think we can enjoy the memories of the past and look forward to making new ones in the future. I hope you feel the same way. Have a good Thanksgiving holiday and good luck with the second half of the waterfowl season.

Key Messages: 

Conservation makes Missouri a great place to hunt and fish.


On December 2nd, 2011 at 2:43pm Anonymous said:

Darin the reason there are many more ducks on the north end of pool 1 is because of the water depth. Puddle ducks prefer 24 inches of water or less. This also provides more food with warm weather draw-downs. Most people have minimal interest in hunting the ring necks that utilize the south end. It is utterly ridiculous to think that 2 parties on 4 days a week have messed up pool 2 and 3 (many times these positions are not even hunted). You are very accurate in your assessment in the changes in Duck Creek, but this minimal disturbance has not and will not affect duck usage! If you really want more refuge for the area then close the entire at 1:00 (except for the goose only season). This occurs at many areas throughout the state and NO positions are lost. Survey some experienced, successful hunters and see which side they agree with. Thank you.

On December 1st, 2011 at 4:20am Sylvia said:

Hello, I simply wanted to take time to make a comment and say I have really enjoyed reading your site.

On November 30th, 2011 at 4:40pm frank said:

Thanks for the question.  Since the second week of November, Duck Creek has been wet…and by wet, I mean about 8.5-inches-of-rainfall wet.  Needless to say if you’re trying to do dirt work in the bottoms with these conditions you are not going to get very far.  The major dirt work had been completed before the November deluge, but the finish work and the structure installment were still in progress across the work site.  The contractor hasn’t pulled the plug on the project yet, but it looks like they may have to wait until next summer for things to dry out.  We should know what their plans are in the next couple of weeks.    I’ll keep you posted once a decision has been made.

On November 30th, 2011 at 10:58am Anonymous said:

How is it looking for unit a next year, is all the work going to be complete. Could you do a post on thr progress up to this point, havent seen anything in awhile. Thank you

On November 27th, 2011 at 12:55am Darin Hudgens said:

To Anonymous, I have been hunting Duck Creek now for many, many years. I have seen it in it's glory days, so to speak. I do remember the duck blinds on the lake, I used to fish around them when I was a kid, but there have been many changes over the years to the lake since then. I remember when you could not see the other side of the lake from where you drive into Pool 1 entrance because of the timber on the lake. Today it is all but gone and this has had an adverse affect on the ducks and geese using the area over a number of years. From what I see today many of the ducks that use the mid to south end of Pool 1generally stay in the middle of the lake due to hunter traffic on the road and hunting on the lake. My opinion is reduced disturbance means more ducks spread out over the refuge and more likely to use the adjacent woods and fields for food and loafing. The reason I believe this is because the north end of Pool 1 is never disturbed during duck season and look how many ducks stay up there, spread out, and look at the hunting in A unit. Everybody and their brother wants in up there. Make the whole lake a refuge and this will happen to the south end of the lake also. Just my opinion. Darin

On November 23rd, 2011 at 8:05pm Anonymous said:

I bet Darin has not hunted Duck Creek for a long period of time. Pool 1 used to have blinds and be hunted regularly. The impact of two positions that are not hunted regularly is minimal at most! Frank must like to talk just to hear himself talk.

On November 23rd, 2011 at 7:30pm frank said:

That is the plan.  Have a good one.

On November 23rd, 2011 at 1:05pm Darin said:

I believe that if all of Pool 1 will be designated as a refuge, after the renovations are complete, this will create less disturbance to the birds on the lake from traffic and increase the numbers of ducks on the area. I also believe that this in turn will create a higher hunter success rating in Pools 2, 3, 8, and the south fields. Is this a possiblility in the future plan?? Thanks and have a Happy Thanksgiving to the Duck Creek staff.
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