Hunting in Barrel: Tale of duck hunting in the Apulian wetlands sent by our friend reader Riccardo.
We are in autumn 1991 and for my friend Giammario (Beghelli!) And I it is a favorable period for our passion for duck hunting as we manage to get invitations to go to the valley quite often: Daunia Risi and San Floriano (FG).
My second son Francesco, who is 14 years old, is also passionate about hunting and pests me because he wants to come in barrel with us. An invitation arrives at the San Floriano and I am forced to take it with us. Departure at 3,30 from Bari for Zapponeta where the appointment at the hunting lodge is for 4,30.
Upon arrival, as usual, great confusion with the manager who fills out the permits in an indescribable crowd. Our turn comes and we are given a discreet barrel in the “Zarattini” tank: barrel n.12!
At 5 we are at the landing stage where we meet the boatman "Zippone". We should settle on the small boat in three, four with the boatman with rifles and cartridges; the barrel is located 200 meters inside and 100 meters from the embankment that enters the valley perpendicularly.
So we decide, Giammario and I, to go on foot on the embankment up to the height of the barrel, while Francesco with all the equipment will go on the boat also to let him enjoy the thrill of splitting the water at night and raise some birds. So we walk on the embankment and the boat follows us parallel for about ten meters.
Suddenly Giammario makes a big noise with the "rear" and of course this causes irresistible laughter from everyone. Then the boatman: "Quann u coul fasc fracass u dottour vè alla spass !!", translated: "When the c. makes a noise the doctor goes for a walk! ". At this sentence the laughter becomes irrepressible and we get a stomach ache.
Finally we are at the height of the barrel where the boatman comes to pick us up after having deposited Francesco and all the equipment; the barrel is a concrete caisson that can comfortably hold two people; in three it is quite tight but we have to adapt.
Among other things, I also brought a 12 ga over / under for Francesco who will be able to shoot down a coot.
For the record, our game bag was only 3 wigeons but the day was characterized by incredible pans also due to the fact of shooting uncomfortable. But as always, the pleasure of a morning in the valley makes you forget all the negative things.
* Archive photos and not corresponding to the Author's Story.
(Passion Hunt Archive)