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Stlsooner1 said:
Okie transplant here in St. Louis Area. Any ideas on where to hunt? Sure miss knocking down some birds!

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Depends on how far you want to travel and how much you want to spend. The MDC website will give you some ideas about public areas. The closer to the city the more crowded they get, but one or more may have drawings, I do not know about this year, but the MDC website should have some info about that.
If you want free on private ground that will probably be about as easy to find as hens teeth, but you can always do some scouting and knocking on doors. As previously mentioned some dairy farms may have birds since they usually start cutting corn in August, and wheat stubble can sometimes be good.
If you want a pay to shoot place there are several that advertise locally. I have not used any of those so cannot make a recommendation and I do not know if they actually shoot birds, so if you go that route it might be a good idea to ask them for references.
Sorry I can not be more help, but it has been difficult to find birds the last couple of years. If you have any questions about the MDC areas around STL that you might be interested in I will be happy to give you any info that I may have.
 

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Stlsooner1 said:
Thanks for the info, I live really close to Busch wildlife, and was going to go and pick the Rangers brain there.

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Busch Wildlife does have some fields, but gets very heavy pressure. Last year the Coonservation Agents had people lined up on the roads and would only let a limited number of hunters out at one time due to safety concerns. When some left a field then they would let others in. I think that was the first Saturday of the season and I was there for dog training, not hunting, but I did hear a shot or two now and then although few and far between. I am guessing that you will really be missing Oklahoma when dove season rolls around!
 

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bprater said:
If the last two years are any indicator, huntinmo has given you good info. Three years ago we had a magnificent dove season, with plentiful birds throughout the season. In the last two years, it wasn't worth the time and effort to even go out after the first week or 10 days of the season.

Perhaps other parts of the state did better, but here in the Ozarks it's been pretty lean hunting for doves in recent years.
Agreed, three years ago we had some very good hunts in wheat stubble and cut corn, even bagged some collared doves. The last two years have been bleak. Sunflowers might be better, but I have not found any locally where I can get access. I have occasionally been accused of being pessimistic, but I think it is more a matter of being realistic tempered with experience. There is a retired CA that hunts the same fields that I hunt and if there were better places locally I think that he would be there instead. Some of the places that cultivate the fields for doves might be better, but the trespass fees have gotten high, and some areas of the state probably have better dove populations, but at the price of gas how far do I want to go for a few doves?
I will be hunting on September 1 with high hopes for some dove shooting, but I also have a backup plan. The farmer looks at pigeons as pests and appreciates it when we shoot a few and then there is the sporting clays range when other moving targets are scarse.
Now it's off to do some scouting! :wink:
 

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I do eat dove, but usually cook up the pigeons for the dogs. Pigeons are usually kind of spooky and tend to stay around the barns where they are off limits, but will come to a dove decoy sometimes.

Probably a local dairy farm or a local cattle farm, depending on what I see by then. I keep hoping to see some concentrations! :shock:
 

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Bruce - I have a similar plan this year and had similar results last year! Went by the dairy farm that I will probably hunt and did not see any corn cut yet, hope that happens in the next couple of weeks. Farmer was out haying at another location so I did not get to speak with him. No sunflowers to be found either except for a couple of pay to play places that are private and apparently they have been drawing all the young birds away from us the past couple of years. The guy that I hunt with has been having some medical issues recently and may not be able to hunt the dove opener so I am still looking for options and hoping for the best also. :)
 

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I live in Barnhart, about 30 miles south of St. Louis on I-55, and for the past few years have been hunting mostly locally for doves. Getting harder each year to justify the cost of gas to travel much, but used to hunt in the Sikeston and Malden areas when I had a friend who was well acquainted in that area, but he is no longer there and I have not been there in several years. I do travel to West Plains now and then to visit wife's family, but have not been in that area during dove season.
 
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