Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

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CoolHandLukeGSP
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Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by CoolHandLukeGSP » Tue Apr 15, 2014 6:18 pm

I am looking to go out to North Dakota this fall with my GSP pup. My brother keeps telling me that pointers do not work well out there due to the birds flushing so far off in the distance, and they (the pheasants) do not hold well. Anyone hunt with pointers in those states? what are your experiences?

Thanks in advance.

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by Donnytpburge » Tue Apr 15, 2014 7:30 pm

I hunt with my pointers in South Dakota.

I'm pleased with there performance and the birds will
Hold, put a hawk call on the collar.

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by CoolHandLukeGSP » Tue Apr 15, 2014 7:50 pm

Donnytpburge wrote: Hold, put a hawk call on the collar.

Db
Good point!

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by Mountaineer » Tue Apr 15, 2014 9:53 pm

No problem, your bro is all wet.
But, there are indeed tough days and tougher conditions, there are learning curves for dog and hunter both and there could be an issue with what age equals "pup".

Pick a good spot, mellow expectations, have a good time regardless of success and leave bro at home.

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by uplandrsb » Wed Apr 16, 2014 6:45 am

I go to ND every year and take pointing dogs.. It depends on how you hunt them.. in big open fields it may be tough for your dog to pin them in range.. You need to hunt old homesteads, ditches, tree rows, and nasty thickets.. our dogs point grouse, pheasant, partridge and the birds hold well enough for you to get a shot.. it may take your dog time to adjust, but i personally wouldnt hunt any other way than over a pointing dog.

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by JWP58 » Wed Apr 16, 2014 7:30 am

uplandrsb wrote:I go to ND every year and take pointing dogs.. It depends on how you hunt them.. in big open fields it may be tough for your dog to pin them in range.. You need to hunt old homesteads, ditches, tree rows, and nasty thickets.. our dogs point grouse, pheasant, partridge and the birds hold well enough for you to get a shot.. it may take your dog time to adjust, but i personally wouldnt hunt any other way than over a pointing dog.
Do you hunt public, WIA's, or private? I don't want specific info, im just curious if there are enough of public and wia's to make it worth the drive.
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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by Del Lolo » Wed Apr 16, 2014 8:52 am

Pointers will be fine --- But you'll see far more Labs than Pointers.

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by PntrRookie » Wed Apr 16, 2014 9:30 am

Go early and run the pup on sharptails and huns. Those early young birds will hold and are great for dog exposure. Opener this year is Set. 13th. Sure the old willey pheasant is tough on pointing dogs and it takes time for a pointing dog to figure them out. Hens will sit tighter and you will get some nice work on them (cant shoot them though). If all you want to do is pull the trigger, grab a few labs or close working SMs and get in a row and push the fields, you will get plenty of shooting in. If you love to watch dogs roll and point birds and figure it out...you will be fine!

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by j.digiacomo » Wed Apr 16, 2014 12:21 pm

I've hunted behind first year dogs out west and there's a learning curve for sure, but if you hunt the right spots and give them enough exposure you'll have no problem getting them to point wild birds. That's what makes it all worth it IMO. Call up fish & wildlife and get a plot map. check out where you want to go. plenty of WIHA.

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by uplandrsb » Wed Apr 16, 2014 12:32 pm

uplandrsb wrote:
I go to ND every year and take pointing dogs.. It depends on how you hunt them.. in big open fields it may be tough for your dog to pin them in range.. You need to hunt old homesteads, ditches, tree rows, and nasty thickets.. our dogs point grouse, pheasant, partridge and the birds hold well enough for you to get a shot.. it may take your dog time to adjust, but i personally wouldnt hunt any other way than over a pointing dog.

Do you hunt public, WIA's, or private? I don't want specific info, im just curious if there are enough of public and wia's to make it worth the drive
Hunt mostly private in the north west part of the state.. there is a decent amount of public land, but more and more keeps getting posted with the oil boom.

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Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by CoolHandLukeGSP » Wed Apr 16, 2014 7:51 pm

I am showing my ignorance here, but what are WIAs and WIHAs?

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by Meller » Wed Apr 16, 2014 7:56 pm

WIA- Walk in Area
WIHA- Walk in Hunting Area

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Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by CoolHandLukeGSP » Wed Apr 16, 2014 7:58 pm

Meller wrote:WIA- Walk in Area
WIHA- Walk in Hunting Area
Thank you.

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by hettmoe » Wed Apr 16, 2014 11:20 pm

Just because you may see more flushers than pointers, does not mean that they are more successful than the pointers...
I have lived and hunted for many decades in Eastern Montana and Western ND....And have never wished that I had a flusher rather than a pointer while hunting any birds...Please don't get me wrong; I really like flushers, too. :D Just have fun with your dog. :D :D :D

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by Vision » Sat Apr 19, 2014 7:38 am

When you hunt ND with a pointing dog you end up with this
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CoolHandLukeGSP
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Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by CoolHandLukeGSP » Sun Apr 20, 2014 7:16 am

Vision wrote:When you hunt ND with a pointing dog you end up with this
Awesome!

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by hettmoe » Mon Apr 21, 2014 8:50 am

Or maybe something like this...
PVH_9629-2usm1cc.jpg
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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by trailsend » Mon Apr 21, 2014 7:35 pm

I have lived and hunted in either ND or SD my entire life. Pointers work just fine. I will be quite honest depending on where you hunt you quite honestly don't even need a dog. I have owned pointers and labs both and both will work just fine. Those birds that flush wild with pointers are going to flush wild no matter what. When the bird numbers are low pointers, in my opinion will work better because they will cover more ground. Make sure you have your dogs conditioned well, bring plenty of water and be prepared for the any weather, it can be very cold or very hot. You can run into cactus, porcupines, rattlesnakes, and skunks. Hunting wild pheasants is a lot different than hunting pen raised preserved birds. Be very careful hunting wild pheasants is very addicting.

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by Scott Linden » Mon Apr 21, 2014 10:01 pm

I've hunted the Dakotas and E. Montana a dozen times with all types of dogs and my only contribution to this discussion would be to keep your pointers out of row crops like corn and milo. Roosters will race down those rows, and your pointer will do his darndest to catch them. Tighter cover, ditches, shelterbelts ... magical, with a pointing dog. Even CRP or grassy prairies will keep the birds holding better. Good luck, you should go. Go. GO.
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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by trailsend » Tue Apr 22, 2014 8:27 pm

I have lived and hunted in SD and ND my entire life. I have hunted with labs and pointers, pointers work just fine. Those wild roosters don't always hold real well and those that flush wild are going to flush wild for a lab as well. I have never hunted with a pointer that used a hawk beeper, in my opinion they are not needed.

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by birddogger » Tue Apr 22, 2014 10:29 pm

roosters don't always hold real well and those that flush wild are going to flush wild for a lab as well. I have never hunted with a pointer that used a hawk beeper, in my opinion they are not needed.
I agree, I think a lot of us Americans just like gimicks. :)

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by ezzy333 » Wed Apr 23, 2014 7:50 am

I had one of those hawk screamers and if I was a dog I would bite you after you put one of those on the collar close to their ears. No dog deserves that.

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by CoolHandLukeGSP » Wed Apr 23, 2014 9:24 pm

Wow! Thank you for all of the responses. And how cool is it that Scott Linden responded as well! You have all given great advice and have given me hope that I can be successful out there with my GSP. You all are alright!

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by birddogger » Wed Apr 23, 2014 11:32 pm

ezzy333 wrote:I had one of those hawk screamers and if I was a dog I would bite you after you put one of those on the collar close to their ears. No dog deserves that.

JMO
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I agree. I have never used one and never will.

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by Sundby » Thu Apr 24, 2014 7:21 pm

I live in northwestern nd, williston, born and raised up here and have been pheasant hunting here my whole life, you can hunt with any type of dog you want, I have always hunted with pointers, and they do excellent, I also have hunt with a friends lab and he does great as well, lots of places to hunt, public as well as private with a knock on the closest farmers doors, the only thing with the pointers is hunting big cattail patches, when on point you have to go in after them, with that said most birds wont hold that long around here so be prepaired to have your dog running or bumping WILD birds, early season is best, if your coming in this direction pm me.
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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by Sundby » Thu Apr 24, 2014 7:23 pm

Del Lolo wrote:Pointers will be fine --- But you'll see far more Labs than Pointers.
Not true, more pointers than labs in the nd area for pheasant hunting.

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by cjhills » Thu Apr 24, 2014 7:34 pm

We get more birds with the flushers, but I like hunting the pointing dogs more......................Cj

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by Herve » Fri Apr 25, 2014 1:08 am

Dakota is one of the best pace to hunt pheasant. Because roosters are wild birds! First days, it's hard for the dogs who discover this new game, and days after days the dogs understand the birds.

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by JKP » Tue May 06, 2014 8:18 am

Been going to ND since '94 and there is not better place to make a bird dog out of a bird dog. First off...and JMHO...decide to go for the dog and not worry how many birds you kill. If it were me, i would avoid the sloughs and shelter belts and get your dog out in the CRP (what's left of it!!) and let the dog learn to reach. Find good grass not far from harvested crops and you'll find birds. Break the gun and let the dog learn and when you get that hard point and can walk up, kill birds.
Don't worry about the dog making mistakes on roosters....pheasants dogs become pheasant dogs by learning and making mistakes. Find some shorter, softer cover, out of the wind in the late morning and you may jump some sharpies...go to stubble or short grass on the edge of stubble for huns. Don't worry how many birds are on the tailgate at the end of the day...let the progress of the dog be the reward.

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by hettmoe » Wed May 07, 2014 8:56 am

JKP wrote:Been going to ND since '94 and there is not better place to make a bird dog out of a bird dog. First off...and JMHO...decide to go for the dog and not worry how many birds you kill. If it were me, i would avoid the sloughs and shelter belts and get your dog out in the CRP (what's left of it!!) and let the dog learn to reach. Find good grass not far from harvested crops and you'll find birds. Break the gun and let the dog learn and when you get that hard point and can walk up, kill birds.
Don't worry about the dog making mistakes on roosters....pheasants dogs become pheasant dogs by learning and making mistakes. Find some shorter, softer cover, out of the wind in the late morning and you may jump some sharpies...go to stubble or short grass on the edge of stubble for huns. Don't worry how many birds are on the tailgate at the end of the day...let the progress of the dog be the reward.
My thoughts exactly! Those that have been around awhile understand that it is about our dogs. If it becomes or continues to be about killing birds, we will be disappointed in my opinion.

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by Bossman27 » Fri Jun 20, 2014 12:16 pm

I hunt both Dakota's with a GSP.

The reality is if you're going to hunt wild birds, especially late in the season...you better learn to hunt quiet and work the wind properly. Most people that complain about birds flushing too far out are screaming on their whistle and walking with the wind at their back.

I trained my dog to track back to me when I use the tone on his ecollar. We hunt silent and work the wind as best as possible. Really no matter what you do some cagey birds are going to evade you. That said, rarely will they all evade you if you hunt quiet.

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by gonehuntin' » Sat Jun 21, 2014 6:17 am

Bossman27 wrote:I hunt both Dakota's with a GSP.

The reality is if you're going to hunt wild birds, especially late in the season...you better learn to hunt quiet and work the wind properly. Most people that complain about birds flushing too far out are screaming on their whistle and walking with the wind at their back.

I trained my dog to track back to me when I use the tone on his ecollar. We hunt silent and work the wind as best as possible. Really no matter what you do some cagey birds are going to evade you. That said, rarely will they all evade you if you hunt quiet.
That's really good information. It is unbelievable how spooky late season birds are. I once parked my truck near a cat tail patch and got out. As soon as I got out, about twenty birds flushed deeper into the marsh.

Another time the pooch and I closed in on a cattail marsh, wind to my side, totally silent. As soon as the dog started busting cattails the marsh erupted in 80-100 cackling birds.

You can't stress quietness and stealth enough in late season. And those things happened when there used to be birds!!
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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by Grange » Sun Jun 22, 2014 7:59 am

Busting through thick cattails in late December has been very productive for me over the years. Yes a lot of them can bust early, but it's the ones that stay behind that are fun.

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by sdsujacks » Tue Jun 24, 2014 12:24 pm

Grange wrote:Busting through thick cattails in late December has been very productive for me over the years. Yes a lot of them can bust early, but it's the ones that stay behind that are fun.
I agree with you there. Late season thick cattails are all I look for. It can be quite the workout too...

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by oldbeek » Tue Jul 01, 2014 12:57 am

I went to south Dakota with a bunch of guys that didn't know my dog. The were driving corn rows. I said I would walk way out on the wing ( outer edge of the line) I was in thick CRP. Had my three birds pointed and shot before we were half way down the corn row patch. Hunted one day out on the grass land, not as much cover, and those birds did run a lot more.

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by deke » Tue Jul 01, 2014 12:01 pm

When we were in SD this year we had our best luck hunting drainage, edges of corn fields, and food plots. In that order. We saw so few birds come out of crp that we eventually just started targeting these more productive areas. Even if we were in the field for ten minutes, but already walked the drainage, we would turn around and head out of the field. Picking and choosing what cover you should be hunting will help you put more birds infront of your dog, as well as keeping some un necessary mileage off of him. We hunted ten days with one dog and came home with 54 roosters, and we stayed in one day to watch the Seahawks beat the Vikings. Also, bring a pack of highlighters and mark your map after you get done hunting an area; chances are if the birds are there one day they will be back. EX: Red = Hot Yellow= Medium Blue= Cold In the SD book there is a place to write in the back, number really good spots and say what it was EX: Long CRP Field Next to Corn, Mile long, 8 roosters flushed. By writing down what you see, you will start to see patterns emerge and can better target certain areas.

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by Donnytpburge » Tue Jul 01, 2014 3:11 pm

Image

Its Cold in SD

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by Grange » Fri Jul 11, 2014 9:10 am

sdsujacks wrote:
Grange wrote:Busting through thick cattails in late December has been very productive for me over the years. Yes a lot of them can bust early, but it's the ones that stay behind that are fun.
I agree with you there. Late season thick cattails are all I look for. It can be quite the workout too...
It's not a pointing dog, but I love this picture because it really does give the feel of how much of a workout working cattails can be.
Image

If I remember correctly we did get some stragglers out of that stand of cattails.

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by SetterNut » Fri Jul 11, 2014 3:53 pm

Thats not the greatest place to put a pointing dog.
Walking in there to flush a pointed bird would suck.
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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by Grange » Mon Jul 14, 2014 9:51 am

SetterNut wrote:Thats not the greatest place to put a pointing dog.
Walking in there to flush a pointed bird would suck.
I don't disagree with you. Walking in there was not a lot of fun, but it did produce birds. The dog in the picture is my lab, but in that stand with me were father's brittanies and my brother-in-laws GWP. Points weren't very common and when the dog did point we needed the locate beeper to find it.

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by ACooper » Mon Jul 14, 2014 3:52 pm

SetterNut wrote:Thats not the greatest place to put a pointing dog.
Walking in there to flush a pointed bird would suck.
It does, I was wishing for a Spaniel or Lab anytime we got into those cattails.

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by Bossman27 » Mon Jul 21, 2014 2:24 pm

gonehuntin' wrote:
Bossman27 wrote:I hunt both Dakota's with a GSP.

The reality is if you're going to hunt wild birds, especially late in the season...you better learn to hunt quiet and work the wind properly. Most people that complain about birds flushing too far out are screaming on their whistle and walking with the wind at their back.

I trained my dog to track back to me when I use the tone on his ecollar. We hunt silent and work the wind as best as possible. Really no matter what you do some cagey birds are going to evade you. That said, rarely will they all evade you if you hunt quiet.
That's really good information. It is unbelievable how spooky late season birds are. I once parked my truck near a cat tail patch and got out. As soon as I got out, about twenty birds flushed deeper into the marsh.

Another time the pooch and I closed in on a cattail marsh, wind to my side, totally silent. As soon as the dog started busting cattails the marsh erupted in 80-100 cackling birds.

You can't stress quietness and stealth enough in late season. And those things happened when there used to be birds!!
Yeah its the small things. Don't slam your car door, be ready to go when you get to the spot so you don't spend 5-10 min farting around with your dog's e-collar. Don't make your horn honk locking the door, and wind dependent don't enter the field from the obvious parking lot entry everyone else does if you're hunting a public spot. The birds get used to evading people entering in the same spot.

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by GSP_Uplander » Fri Jul 25, 2014 3:59 pm

My dad use to go out every year with his Weimer and they did just fine!

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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by mnaj_springer » Sat Aug 09, 2014 9:37 pm

A good dog is a good dog, regardless of how they hunt. I've used spaniels on every type of bird in North Dakota. Once a dog figures out how that type of bird works, they'll produce. Good luck! And don't forget there are ruffies in the NE corner of the state!
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Re: Hunting the Dakotas w/a pointing dog

Post by dakotagun » Mon Aug 11, 2014 9:49 pm

Never hunted SD, but live and hunt in central ND. Still public land available that produces birds, but it's dwindling. Have a GWP and Brittany; have always owned pointers. Most upland guys I know or hunt with have pointing dogs. My hunts are nothing like the SD cornfield shoot-fest I hear about - we walk a lot, talk little, and bag an occasional rooster following a staunch point in some thick cover. My favorite time is mid-late December, when those buggers are cagey.

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