Pheasant hunting tips

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quanah labs
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Location: Texas

Pheasant hunting tips

Post by quanah labs » Sun Oct 21, 2012 7:46 pm

I thought it would be fun to start a pheasant hunting tip thread. It could be both benificial to newbies an veterans.

So what do you guys look at when trying to decide what tactic to employ? How does weather conditions affect your strategies, and what cover do you key on in realtion to various other observations? How do you attempt to maximize the effectiveness of your bird dog? I would also like to know what a regular day hunting pheasants is like, such as what time do you hit the fields in the morning and when do you go in and when do you hunt again in the evening?

I realize that some of these questions probably seem insanely obvious and not worthy of even answering but I , like I'm sure some others on this forum, are new to pheasant hunting and would find your responses extremely benificial.

So come on guys lets here your tips, tricks, an top secret go to tactics!

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campgsp
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Re: Pheasant hunting tips

Post by campgsp » Sun Oct 21, 2012 11:34 pm

Pheasant hunting is all about strategy. I look at pheasants like I do deer. Lots of noise and they're gone before you get there. When I show up to my destination I use stealth. Quietly closing doors and getting gear. I barely ever talk with the dogs in the field. I more then less follow their lead. And 9 out of ten get my limit easily.
I have found that a good pheasant dog comes with experience. They soon learn to pin a running rooster. I'm not saying a pup can't do it but once they learn a pheasants behaviors its unbelevable what a dog can do. I have a 10 year old shorthair that barely ever lets them sneak away. I've watched a running bird in the open dog running in cover a couple yards to the right of bird. Get ahead of it swing around and stop the bird in its tracts. Was really cool to see. Bird held there to for me to flush it.

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campgsp
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Re: Pheasant hunting tips

Post by campgsp » Mon Oct 22, 2012 1:30 am

Weather can play its roll in choosing cover. I have found that on really cold days cattails are the best.
When choosing a spot I like to stay away from corn fields. Its just to much of a running game. Brush is best IMO. Bluestem or switch grass is great cover to look for. But in all reality they can be anywhere. I've taken a few in the woods. The last bird I shot last year was in a mowed field with one tiny patch of tall grass. And I mean tiny maybe a yard long. . Fence rows and creek ditches are great spots. Especially ditches. They can hold a lot of birds.

Just my. 02

ddoyle
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Re: Pheasant hunting tips

Post by ddoyle » Mon Oct 22, 2012 6:47 pm

When coming to and end of a patch......stop! Just wait sometimes birds will hang in and if you wait and stay quiet they usually bust.
Doyle

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millerms06
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Re: Pheasant hunting tips

Post by millerms06 » Wed Oct 24, 2012 9:13 am

I like to walk and always expect to do a lot of it as the season progresses. Guys will not shut doors quietly or keep quiet while hunting with their buddies. That is a recipe for pushing birds further out to longer distances from a parking lot or in the nastiest cover on the property.

With that said, I pay attention to anything that would create an escape funnel from short grassy cover to denser cover (thick brush, cattails, wooded area) and work the dogs in the latter. Hunting pressure, weather, and time of day will create a better sense of where to go.

This year I put away the bell. I have an easier time finding my dogs and seeing them so the sound indicators that would be used for me are not necessary. This year I have limited out 3 of the four days of pheasant hunting so far. The first day I started our hunting two hours after the season opened with parking lots and sides of roads lined with cars. When I got there it seemed like everyone was either walking back to their vehicles, or sitting at their vehicles talking with other hunters. The total hunting time that day was fifteen minutes using the details aforementioned.

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campgsp
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Re: Pheasant hunting tips

Post by campgsp » Wed Oct 24, 2012 9:28 am

that was always a good time for me to choose an area. Guys leaving or sitting at cars. birds are still there and holding tight they are usually held up in the thickest cover. In this situation thick cover is the first and best spots that I hit lots of people are not going to hit them areas so birds are there. got a limit more then a few times using that method.

But SHHHH dont tell anyone. its just a gundog forum thing.

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wills1235
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Re: Pheasant hunting tips

Post by wills1235 » Wed Oct 24, 2012 11:21 pm

I have generally hunted mornings, but had a great experience the Monday afternoon after opening weekend. I had about an hour to hunt so I headed out to a very small piece of nearby public land. It's heavy grass with a small amount of brush, and that key element, water. Even though I expected that it got pounded for the opener I thought that with the bad weather I might find a bird. And I did. What was amazing though was the number of roosters that came sailing in from the surrounding scrub land near sunset. I was able to watch the birds land, then go put my pup on the birds. Great training for the puppy and a full game bag. Had no idea the roosters would be hanging out in the scrub land.
The best place to hunt is where the birds are. Next best is where they ain't. Anywhere else works too.

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bumper52
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Re: Pheasant hunting tips

Post by bumper52 » Fri Oct 26, 2012 1:09 pm

From the middle of the season to the end....I like to go to several of my favorite spots and hunt them backwards....THAT can really help with those runners.

Wildweeds
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Re: Pheasant hunting tips

Post by Wildweeds » Sat Oct 27, 2012 7:36 pm

Beware of the Suicide Queen,I learned this long ago.I would have a dog go on point,produce a hen,sometimes three or four,give up and move on without thinking anything of it.Till I saw this very thing one day,two roosters slinking off in figure 8 patterns necks to the ground in the crp.I've killed quite a few birds since I saw that with due dilligence on the flushing attempt after the queens hit the blue yonder.

LtsHnt
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Re: Pheasant hunting tips

Post by LtsHnt » Mon Oct 29, 2012 10:35 pm

being from sd, phez is the primary bird i hunt and every yr i learn something new.
1. phez are very tough birds, takes alot to knock one down sometimes, use the right chokes and right shot. ( i learned this the hard way by either missing birds or wounding them).
2. as was said before, weather has alot to do with where to look for birds, cold= heavy cover and shelter belts of trees, light weather, they can be in just about any cover really.
3. time of day, around noon they are out feeding, later in the day they move to roosting areas.
4. if available and are hunting with responsible hunters, use blockers...also have guys on the outside of cover get up about 30 yrds to keep birds from excaping from the sides.
5. after shooting birds, and dog is not close by, get you butt up to where it went down, most likely is still somewhat alive and if you wait too long, they have moved at least a few feet.
6. have a plan before getting to the field, that way talking is to a minimum....im sure this list could go on, but ill just stop here.

oh ya...always trust your dogs nose!...phez can hide just about anywhere and may even be found a few feet from your truck at the end of the day. hope this helps!

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