Skip to main content Skip to main content

Band Tales: 2020 Double-Double Down

Mexican Jewelry: Wild brant hunt yields a shiny bonus.

Band Tales: 2020 Double-Double Down

Dustin Kuehn was trying to enjoy a morning brant hunt in Obregon, Mexico with his dad, Dave, but things just weren’t going their way. “Our first spot didn’t produce any brant,” Dustin related. “Nor did we even see any. Meanwhile, we kept hearing barrages from the other two groups in our hunting party, off in the distance.”

Things looked like they might change for the better when their guide arrived in an air boat, frantically motioning for them to get their stuff and get in. Another group had limited out and they were being moved to their blind. By the time they got there however, the brant had quit flying.

Dustin still wasn’t discouraged. “It was slack high tide, and being an experienced black brant hunter, I knew the brant would fly again once the tide started receding.” Sure enough, they soon had singles and pairs coming into the decoys. Unfortunately, Dave’s gun kept jamming after the first shot. Dustin quickly downed two singles and then a triple to finish his limit of five before handing off his gun so Dave could fill out his limit. Then, the birds stopped flying again.

“The skies were empty for a while, except for a few groups of cormorants, which would get our heart pumping until they did their cormorant-glide,” said Dustin. Then he caught a glimpse of big, black birds working their way up the shoreline. “I couldn't tell if they were brant or cormorants, but I started mouth calling.” When it looked like the birds were going away from the hunters, he quit calling and was about to express his frustration when he heard the brant calling back.


“They were coming up the shoreline but we couldn't see them from our blind. I whispered to my dad to get ready, and I started mouth calling again.” The birds approached on Dustin’s side, so low Dave couldn’t see them before they splashed into the decoys. In a hushed but excited tone he instructed his dad, “Stand up and fire a shot to get them up.” With his first shot, Dave put the birds flying and with his second, dropped a single. The brant were fleeing quickly and nearly out of range when a third shot neatly folded two birds about 40 yards out. “Woohoo! You got your limit!” Dustin hollered.


Dustin was snapping pictures while Dave picked up the first bird, a handsome mature gander. When he picked up the second, Dave yelled back, “It's double banded!” Then he picked up the third and said to his son, “Dust, you're not going to believe this.” Grinning widely he responded, “Yes, I am. “It's also double banded, isn't it?” Indeed, it was, and the bands were only eight numbers apart. They subsequently learned that both birds were banded on the same day in the same location, undoubtedly from the same flock and maybe even father and son.

The Bands

  • Hunter: Dave Kuehn
  • Band #: 2007-42152
  • Species: Black Brant (M)
  • Banded: 07/26/2019
  • Location: Near Nuiqsut, AK
  • Recovered: 02/19/2020
  • Location: 6.8 mi W of Lilipa, Sonora, Mexico

  • Band #: 2007-42144
  • Species: Black Brant (M)
  • Banded: 07/26/2019
  • Location: Near Nuiqsut, AK
  • Recovers: 02/19/2020
  • Location: 6.8 mi W of Lilipa, Sonora, Mexico
  • GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

    Recommended Articles

    Popular Videos

    Hunting Cacklers

    Hunting Cacklers

    Our scouting, decoying and blind setup tips are sure to help you get on large flocks of small geese.

    Critical Waterfowl Gear

    Critical Waterfowl Gear

    For more enjoyable — and safer — waterfowl adventures, be sure to anticipate what gear you'll need ahead of time.

    The Magic of Motion Decoys

    The Magic of Motion Decoys

    When used correctly, spinning wing and other moving decoys can boost your duck bag limit.

    See All Videos

    Magazine Cover

    GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

    Digital Now Included!

    SUBSCRIBE NOW

    Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

    PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

    Buy Digital Single Issues

    Don't miss an issue.
    Buy single digital issue for your phone or tablet.

    Buy Single Digital Issue on the Wildfowl App

    Other Magazines

    Special Interest Magazines

    See All Special Interest Magazines

    GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

    Get the top Wildfowl stories delivered right to your inbox.

    Phone Icon

    Get Digital Access.

    All Wildfowl subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

    To get started, click the link below to visit mymagnow.com and learn how to access your digital magazine.

    Get Digital Access

    Not a Subscriber?
    Subscribe Now