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brittman

Pheasant Evening Flight

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Have hunted three days since the snow landed. I have noticed more and more pheasants feeding all day out in the fields.

Yesterday I picked up two public land roosters rather early (well it saw almost a mile off the road where I shot them) and did much scouting on the way home.

What I often saw were groups of pheasants feeding in open fields 1/4 mile to 1/2 mile from both private cover and public hunting areas. A few areas had hunters in the cover, but most appearred to have been visited only a few times since the snow fell.

I sat and glassed two separate groups of birds near the end of the day.

Just before sunset. They started to walk to cover. About 5 minutes after legal shooting time they all flew in. Some landing deep into cover, others along the egde.

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The birds wise up, the ones that have flown into the deep cover early have been shot. Its hard to cover enough ground in that last half hour of daylight. Last time I was out hunting, at 3:30 PM I saw a lot of birds still up in the corn stubble. Now what we need is some wind and weather to drive them off the open fields into the heavier cover.

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I have seen large groups of birds out scratching in the fields around 9-10am. They will then walk into the cover. Then again around 2:30 to 3:30pm they will feed. Then they normally fly to the deep cover to roost. With more snow like we are going to get this weekend look for birds out feeding longer. However these birds are spooky. You are best to get a few guys and do some blocking of you can. MOst roosters will fly well out of range. A few might hold but they hold tight. Hunt slow and quietly.

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I'd say many birds have been feeding all day long.

Right now, I have had the best luck with just me and my older dog. Hunting slow and never saying a word.

My younger dog covers much more ground, but this is not as effective when you are trying to pin down that rooster or two that has decided not to flush wild.

We push a food plot on public land last week and moved nearly 100 birds. All flushed wild. Blocker or two would have been nice.

It was really nice when my dad used to hunt with me - as he got older he would usually block and my walks were half as long since he would pick me up on the otherside.

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