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Late season Pheasant help

1082 Views 8 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  jcronk
Thanks again to everyone for your advice on shooting. Hopefully will get to try it out tomorrow.

OK, there will be three of us hunting with 2 dogs (labs). My lab is about 6 years old and understands the game pretty well, probably much better than I. The other dog is my buddy's and one of the puppies from my litter that is 9 months old. She is coming along nicely for being 9 months old.

We are hunting rolling wheat country that has pretty good cover for birds. When we hunted there a couple weeks ago, it had rained the night before so everything was wet. The birds were holding pretty good. This past Monday, my buddy went back to the same spot and almost all the birds flushed wild about 50-100 yards away. I don't think it will rain tonight, so I expect the birds will be running and flushing wild tomorrow.

Also, there aren't too many breaks in the cover, so you can't corner them and run them out of cover.

So, what do you recommend? Should we work the fields together slowly and be careful to be quiet? Should we work them fast to try to get on them quicker? Should 2 of us try to push the birds to the third guy? Or what?

Thanks so much. Will give you a report tomorrow evening.
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When the birds are particularly wild, and late season roosters are, my experiece is that with more than one shooter, the squeeze is your best option. Shoot UP please. No level to the ground shots. I have been peppered by over-anxious shooters. Not a nice experience. In a squeeze, make sure the bird is high - can't stress that enough. Also, any defined cover locations, attempt to approach with each of your 3 shooters approximately 120 degrees apart. SHOOT UP !!!!!!!!! Good luck. My late season ended Dec 31. Got out on the 30th. Saw many hens. One long flush rooster (didn't shoot) and one well flushed rooster that is in the freezer for a little later fine dining with a nice bottle of wine to accompany the meal. GOOD LUCK. Jack
I'd suggest you try your idea about putting the third guy at the end of the field. We call it "posting" around here. It is very important when trying this technique to be very careful not to shoot anywhere near your poster and he towards the drivers. Blaze orange required, of course.

Being quiet will be very important as well, including not slamming the truck doors. Hopefully your dogs will stay close so you won't have to yell at them at all. Slow walking is normally the best way to go unless you have to catch up with your birdy, moving dog in which case you may have to run. The dogs know where the birds are and that is where you need to be.

Look forward to hearing your report.

Wayne is bang on. The running thing makes me chuckle about the times I've found myself flat on the ground because of a badger hole or a dirt clod or just tripping on myself. When I first started with a dog, I tried to call him back to where I knew the birds would be - ya right! Stay with the dog. If you are lucky enough to have one under full control - great. If it breaks, keep up - if you can. Let us know how it goes. Regards, Jack
Thanks guys, it makes perfect sense. We all wear hunter orange vests and hats. Safety is of first importance to all of us. I hunted with this friend 2 weeks ago for the first time. I think he was a little nervous since my son is only 13. When we were finished hunting, he pulled me aside and said,"Keep up the good work with Matt. I felt very comfortable hunting with him. He is as safe or more safe than any of my other hunting partners." Wow, that made me feel good. I just keep pounding it in to Matthew though.

The other dog is young and stays real near his owner. My dog works very good and if she gets a little to far, I just give a short toot on the whistle and she is right back in range. She is an absolute joy to hunt over. I know what you mean about when they get birdy and take off running. Those darn birds can run.

Will hopefully be able to post a report tomorrow.

Thanks again.
jcronk said:
Stay with the dog. If you are lucky enough to have one under full control - great. If it breaks, keep up - if you can.
Then you gotta come to a screeching halt and shoot while panting out of breath, ya, been there,can be tough.
Best advice I can give is to be as quiet as possible.

Pinching is a good option too.
REPORT: First of all, I am beat. We had a good day though.

Many birds flushed wild, but we did have 4 very good flushes. Of those I nailed 2, my friend got 1 and my son and I missed one at about 35 yards flying across at mach 10. The young dog flushed it up above us and Al could not shoot because he couldn't see us at the time. He yelled "bird" and it was flying with the wind and down hill at full speed.

We didn't try to pinch, but we covered a lot of ground. It is really cool to hunt with one of the puppies out of a litter we had and she is doing so well.

Score 3 for humans against late season pheasant!!!!

Got to go prepare for a pheasant dinner!

Later and thanks for all the advice.
Nice to hear you had a good hunt. Proper thing not to shoot when you can't see your partners. Enjoy the meals to follow and the stories to be embellished with time. Regards, Jack
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