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Heading up on October 20th for some pheasant hunting.
What do the shelves look like for ammo availability?
We normally hit the Cabela's in Mitchell on the way to Gregory.
There is also a Running's in Gregory.
 

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Very hit or miss. Some has been popping up and I suspect retailers will have a surge of pheasant ammo for the opening but be prepared for high prices and purchase quantity limits.
 

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I don't know where they are going to get it. Distributors are tapped out and shells are sold instantly when they become available. Nobody in their right mind is holding inventory for opener when they can sell it in hours today. Not unless its a local mom/pop shop trying to help hunters, i would expect a 1 box limit in that case.

I would take shells with you, unless you want to shoot buckshot. Thats about all ive seen available lately at cabelas.
 

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Im suspecting there will be a lot of ruined trips this year, with guys expecting to buy ammo at their destination in SD/NE/ND. Even Iowa has no shells (or birds). Youll see guys shooting trap loads and waterfowl loads, whatever they can get ahold of. Im guessing the week after opener you can take a good dog and round up your limit of cripples without firing a shot. It was like that with dove opener, i saw guys shooting everything from #9 lead to #7.5 steel, to #2 steel at doves. Lots and lots of crippled birds
 

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Im suspecting there will be a lot of ruined trips this year, with guys expecting to buy ammo at their destination in SD/NE/ND. Even Iowa has no shells (or birds). Youll see guys shooting trap loads and waterfowl loads, whatever they can get ahold of. Im guessing the week after opener you can take a good dog and round up your limit of cripples without firing a shot. It was like that with dove opener, i saw guys shooting everything from #9 lead to #7.5 steel, to #2 steel at doves. Lots and lots of crippled birds
That does not suggest much of a positive nature linked to the decisions of either hunters or shooters.
 

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The handful of lodge operators I know got their shells in early this year, they pooled together a mass order and got what they wanted.

Nephew works at one of the retailers in question in this thread and they have been holding pheasant ammo back to keep people who just want ammo to go bang or to resell from buying it up beforehand. It isn’t in the quantity they would like though and I would expect it to sell quickly.

I have been seeing a lot more ammo and reloading components on the shelves the past few weeks where none was available for months. I think the hoarders and resellers are running out of cash. It still is by no means plentiful though.
 

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As Southdakbearfan noted, it's going to be hit and miss. I just passed through Nebraska, Montana, Wyoming, South Dakota etc. and stopped in all of the right places and found nothing I was looking for. You can get a pretty good idea of what to expect at Cabela by looking at what they offer online, not much.
It's slim pickings everywhere.
If you have shells, bring them. It's times like these that those squirrelled away flats are worth their weight in gold.
 

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I can't imagine going on a hunting trip with hopes of buying ammo at your destination, as opposed to just bringing your own.

I wouldn't have done that back in normal, pre-pandemic times, and I sure as heck wouldn't ever consider it now.
 

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I can't imagine going on a hunting trip with hopes of buying ammo at your destination, as opposed to just bringing your own.

I wouldn't have done that back in normal, pre-pandemic times, and I sure as heck wouldn't ever consider it now.
Amen! If you can't buy it from any number of online retailers, I wouldn't bank on it being available on the ride to the field.

I always wondered why people would say, "Don't get a 16ga or 28ga, you can't buy ammo at Walmart." Well now I know, that is how some people roll..
 

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We were in NW Nebraska Wally World and I went to the ammo shelves and found them empty. Stopped in Bomgaars in Hot Springs SD and they had steel at high prices.
 

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I travel for work throughout North and South Dakota and ammo is slim and very hit and miss. I stop at big names and small spots. I wouldn’t bet on finding what you want any where. You might find shells but what you prefer is like winning the powerball. I would have ammo before I left home. Just my two cents… Good Luck hunting!
 

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I have several "buddies" who have been calling and asking if I have any extra pheasant loads. I've given each a single box of something factory made that will work but not necessarily what they wanted. "Beggars can't be choosers," I tell them but they aren't happy.

Glad I have enough components to reload my own and don't have to rely on the rare factory loads. I worked the sporting goods department of a regional chain until a month ago and only a handful of flats for pheasant hunting came through the doors in the last year. Don't see that improving in the next week when pheasant season starts.
 

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It isn't legal for me to sell you ammo but I'm tempted to bring my hydraulic loader with me and sell folks shot, powder, hulls, wads and primers and rent them my loader. They can then hire me to run it for them while they stand there. $1 a round and I figure I'll make a million by the time I'm ready to come home. :)
 

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Holy cow, $1.20 per shell.. I'd buy bismuth before buying those, at least then you could shoot a duck and be set for non-tox area as well...
The limit is 3 birds per day. All the bismuth I have seen is significantly more than $1.20/shell and I dont see it as readily available. Lead is still superior to bismuth for ballistics. Sure lead can't be used to duck hunt legally, but he asked about pheasant loads. In the world of non-toxic shot, I can go to the store and buy steel off the shelf and I see it available online regularly.

He better just buy what he can find at this point in time. I like the way one member put it on another website "you had to be blind not to see this ammo shortage coming."
 

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Hevi bismuth and boss come in at 1.20-1.50 a shot, but i understand wanting to stick with lead. Just seems like you are way over paying for a standard heavy lead shell at that price.
 
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