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MNpurple

Rabbits after Roosters??

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MNpurple

Just finished my very first pheasant season with my 11 month old dog. We had a great time and each learned alot but I dont want to see it end.

There are a ton of rabbits on the WMAs I've been hunting, both in the cattails and the brush. Any of you guys switch gears from roosters to rabbits?? I thought it would be a great way to keep my dog smelling and putting up the pheasants but I'd be shooting the bunnies instead. Would this screw a young dog up if I switch my quarry on her suddenly?

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Duncan7709

I will be going after rabbits and squirrels this weekend with my bow it is a lot of fun to shoot a running bunny with a bow even though you dont have a very good success rate.

As for the dog I dont know I just go out with a few of my friends and do little drives with posters. If you jump a rabbit stay still they will usually circle back to where they were.

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BLACKJACK

If you start shooting rabbits in front of your bird dog, next pheasant season she'll be chasing pheasants AND RABBITS!!! I once had a pheasant dog that got into a fight with a coon in the cattails, I shot the coon, guess what, from then on in he hunted coon in the cattails!!!!

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Eric Wettschreck

Dude, little fuzzy bunnies are fun to shoot and darn tastey. However, if you shoot them over your bird dog you will have turned your bird dog into a bird/bunny dog. That's not a lot of fun when you're out bird hunting and your dog takes off after a bunny.

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gundy89

Keep in mind that you'll also be shooting at something running on the ground ahead of your dog. You'll probably want to get an orange vest.

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2 DA GILLS

One factor to consider is the breed of dog you are running. The versatile breeds are suppose to hunt feather and fur. I do not promote or train my griffon for hunting fur, but in the pure sense he was bred for both. Even though I do not promote it, I know he still hunts rabbits. He pointed a few last Saturday.

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MNpurple

I know that when we are pheasant hunting she will sniff out a hot rabbit scent if she finds one as I have watched a rabbit break out of cover in front of her while she is scenting where they just were. I guess I have never punished her for it because many times unless you actually see the rabbit, you dont know what scent has them excited.

You guys with older, more experienced dogs, do your dogs truely just ignore a hot rabbit scent if they get on one and totally ignore a rabbit right in front of them? Is this something you punished them for doing when younger or they just learned that nothing comes from chasing a rabbit, only a pheasant?

I just figured the more time I spend afield with her scenting and putting up pheasants the better she will be, and if she happens to flush a rabbit I will put a few in my game bag. Maybe it will cause more harm than good though.

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yakfisher

I've never shot a rabbit in front of my dog and when we are out pheasant hunting see doesn't chase after rabbits when they take off in front of her. If you want a dog that hunts both go for it, but don't forget that the retrieve is the reward for the dog. My dog has gotten to the point that she won't even chase after pheasants that aren't shot at, she'll follow the bird for maybe ten yards and then if there isn't a shot she circles back and starts hunting again.

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BLACKJACK

Quote:

do your dogs truely just ignore a hot rabbit scent if they get on one and totally ignore a rabbit right in front of them? Is this something you punished them for doing when younger or they just learned that nothing comes from chasing a rabbit, only a pheasant?


My dogs learn 'NO RABBITS' from a young age when we are out for walks, its in the same catagory as 'NO DEER', they learn in a hurry that we're after birds. Nothing worse than seeing your dog getting birdy - and then seeing a rabbit running away instead of a bird flushing. The 'NO RABBITS' along with early exposure to birds and bird wings tied to dummies is enough to make them into BIRD dogs.

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brittman

I would not be shoot'n bunnies in front of my BIRD dogs. Especially pointing breeds.

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jigging-matt

I wouldn't shoot at something on the ground in front of my dog. Too close to him. He won't chase a rabbit while we are out in the field, unless it jumps up right in front of his face, but then all I have to do is yell "No" and he stops. I would hate to see him start chasing rabbits and stop looking for the roosters. grin.gif

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metrojoe

There is always preserve hunting.

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Northland Sportsman

I would not shoot rabbits in front of my pointer. I think it would encourage the hunting of rabbits for her and detract from the pheasant hunt. My dog will point and start to chase the occasional rabbitt but it is stopped by my command in a hurry. It is not a problem and I would prefer to keep it that way.

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Tom7227

Everyone has missed the answer so far. What you need is another dog. A friend tells fond stories of hunting rabbits with beagles in Illinois when he was a kid. Come on kid, be a true American. Go out and spend some money.

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SpringerGuy

If you want to keep a pheasant in front of your dog, hit a game farm every once in a while through out the off season. Nice treat for you and your dog.

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mnmuzzleloader

Well this is what he little guy and I were able to come up with last night in half hour.

2193756746_47a7a6c5d0.jpg

I don't know why someone would chase some from China anyway!

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LABS4ME

In England, Labs are required to retrieve both birds and hare at field trials. In makes no difference to the handlers or the judges what is shot and what needs to be retrieved.

We had a lab that pulled double duty whaen we were in high school and college. We pheasant hunted with him all fall and walked the tracks along the Mississippi in Jan and Feb. for bunnies. He never had a problem... the key is not what they are being used to flush, but if they are under control on the flush. ie: they are not allowed to chase! We also just walked over and picked them up. Never a problem with him when hunting... I'd rather have them check out ALL game scent and verify bunny or bird on the flush, but that is me.

With that said, I don't employ those tactics any longer. I now ice fish more than bunny hunt... way more. My last 3-4 bunny meals have come from air rifle shots at the landscape eating vermin in my yard. Once in a great while I get out and really hunt them... should do it more as it's fun... just don't seem to get around to it.

I don't believe they ever totally ignore rabbit scent, even if we never shoot one in front of them. Last week in SoDAk, I bet my dog flushed 50 rabbits in 3 days. No big deal, she won't chase them and I knew then it was not a bird. If I wanted a years worht of hassenphefer, I could've had it!

Good Luck!

Ken

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  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • Hoey
      OK - we made it back!!!  Every trip is different with it's own potential perils.   I finally got into my house on Friday around 11am.  My guests were rookies, so i spent time with each of them, getting setup, heaters started, Vexilars set, houses banked, lines prep'd and set, bait, etc...  The bite was somewhat slow and many small ones.  The day got better 3 to 430pm.  Ended up with 6 nice eyes (19, 18x3, 17x2), 13 jumbos (most ever for a day), 12 small sauger which we ate for dinner.   On Saturday we headed up to the south shore of the Angle, longer ride, so again did not get started too early.  Ended up with our 6 eyes for our limit, these ranged from 15 to 16 inches and a 4-pack of sauger.  Again the bite seemed to pickup at 3 or so and was done by 430pm.   Ice as 3 foot or so.  Snow depth varied a lot, depending on the condition of the ice.  Smooth areas were blown off to crusty 6 inches or so.  Rough ice surely held a lot of snow.   The drive back on Sunday was somewhat tough from Baudette to Emily, winter storm warning.  Slow go, low visibility, and icy roads, sometimes down to 15 mph.   Next scheduled trip is with my wife, son, and three of his Gopher swim teammates for spring break in three weeks.  
    • Naturboy
      Those were caught from a shallow lake (17’) in 9 feet of water at the bottom of the first shoreline break. I was using a UV buckshot and minnow head since the water was murky. The crappie is still swimming the walleye not so much. I didn’t get the exact location. Sorry  
    • Sunset Lodge
      Hello from the NW Angle!

      Minnesota fishing has been most productive in 20-24 feet of water.  Guests are bringing home their limits of Walleye and Sauger with the occasional Perch and Northern mixed in. Fish have been most active early and late in the day and the bite has been terrific. The use of electronics continues to be very beneficial with fish taking jigging spoons, jigg’n raps or rattle baits.  Snowmobile ttrails on the Minnesota side continue to be maintained and are in great shape. We are still making ice, with most spots at over 30 inches. 

      North and East of us in Canada, big Crappies are coming in on light tackle setups out of 30 feet. If you are looking for walleye, they are everywhere!

      Until next week, 

      Sunset Lodge
    • JBMasterAngler
      On the Bayfield side of the bay, the target depth is typically 10 to 40 ft. The basswood island area is where they go after lakers. There’s a plowed road that goes out there. As of last week the ice was about 20 inches in that area, might be thicker now. Check out the Bayfield webcam, you can see what kind of activity is going on.
    • Jarrid Houston
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    • cat44
      Anybody know if there is a pressure ridge/ice heave out in front of the Warroad Access? I know ice conditions will change throughout the coming weeks. Looking forward to getting after some pike.  The last few years there has been a pressure ridge there, last year it went from Springsteel over to Swift. And we've been up there plenty of times when there hasn't been one at all. Just curious to find out what conditions are like in that bay. Thanks!
    • Hoyt4
      Most likely our last trip up this year unless we go up for crappies but i'm running out of weekends. We had another great trip this weekend the fish are so fat this year more than I remember in the past.  Got my old man out for a good walleye bite he had a blast and caught a ton of fish. One day they just attached the bait as it was coming down they would come up and smash. Next day you put in the bottom and not even see the lure on the vex bring up a tad and they would smack it. Fun and a lot of snow hitting yesterday when we left.
    • PRO-V
      Agreed!!
    • SaintPaulPaul
      Switch to regular Budweiser and they seem to just jump out of the hole. No, seriously the way I improved my landing success through the ice was to go to small treble hooks. One small one on a 6' leader, a weight and Colorado blade above the leader seems to work for me. If you are on the flag right away, you don't risk gut-hooking them. I also recycle my Power Pro musky line and put it on tip ups. Also, I should add that I always  have a jaw-spreader and 8" forceps for quick and easy hook removal.
    • Iowabrewcrew
      Funny...seems like when the Emerald run slowed down up there 4-5 years ago, the fishing followed suit!
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