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UGUIDE

Pheasants Wintering Well in 2008

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UGUIDE

Read Pheasant Hunting Story and Webcast by clicking on link

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bcifish

Phesants wintering good in the far north zone Clay County hope they don't get plowed under this sommer.

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Sko

Pheasants are doing very well in southwest Minnesota. No snow all winter, except for December. They are spreading out now again and looking very fat and sassy. I actually some one rooster "playing around" with a hen the other day. That one must be a little confused. Even if we get a harsh blizzard now in March, they should be fine. They have not been stressed and as I said, well fed. The key, and it always is, is the spring. If it is cool and wet, this large population of carry over birds won't mean much in October.

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Jarrod32

A few of us were just talking about this the other day...how it seemed to be a good winter for the pheasants. It is hard to imagine that the hunting could get better than this past fall, but with a good spring breeding season, we might have just that...

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lawdog

I don't know what part of SW MN you are looking at Sko, but I know pipestone and Rock counties have been snow covered almost every day since December. We got snow and it never left. I think this winter has been MUCH tougher on birds than the past few. Snow cover mixed with EXTREME cold/wind is not a good recipe for pheasants...

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Dotch

As one heads east and north across southern MN, there isn't as much snow until one gets into SE MN proper where the snowmobiling has been excellent. Fields in SC MN have been clear for quite awhile. Only bad thing is we have to wait for the snowpack to the south in IA to melt down before we warm up much. Hopefully we don't get hooked by a couple blizzards or worse, several ice storms in the meantime. So far, the pheasants continue to be in good shape. Their winter cover has remained open enough so many of them are spending a lot of their time there. Not seeing near the numbers along the roads as a couple weeks ago. Even though it doesn't feel like it, they know spring is coming. Hopefully for them it is a dry warm one.

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Sko

Lincoln and Lyon counties is where I have been seeing the birds. Many! I cannot imagine that Rock and Pipestone would be having issues. Yes, you might have had more snow, but those birds are able to get down to the ground and get what they need for survival. I think they are OK as well. What hurts birds the most is lots of snow early, more snow after that, then a big blizzard in March. Or an ice storm. We have not had any of that in SW MN. We get a big blizzard now, they are going to be able to handle it. Our biggest concern is CRP. I have seen some grass plowed up already...

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123fish

I'm with lawdog on this one. With the snow we have had and the constant winds a lot of cover has been filled in that was available the last few winters. I think the birds are getting plenty to eat but they are also a lot more vulnerable to predators this winter. I know on the last day of the season this year I found three separate spots where hens had been eaten by either a fox or coyotes. There are still birds out there maybe just not quite as many as last year at this time in the far southwest corner.

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JIGGIN'

The biggest threat will be the loss of CRP and the current farm bill that is up in the air. Wait to see a lot grass get plowed under soon if not already... Grass=pheasant habitat.

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UGUIDE

Just pulled in to pheasant camp last night in Charles Mix SD. Woke up to 6" of new snow and roosters fighting outside. Late this evening I saw a couple 25 bird flushes as they lifted out of milo food plots into roosting cover. Temporary inconvience for these birds. Mating is on the mind and the roosters are getting stupid.

The roosters looked a little thinner than usual and I am wondering if that is effect of winter or just younger birds.

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  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • smurfy
      sheez got that right!!!!!!!!!
    • hunterdown
      I might be able to make this, I think Jr. will have the time off as well....so, maybe him and I?
    • Rick
      Spring turkey hunters hoping to bag a tom during the first two weeks of the season have until Friday, Jan. 26, to apply for a lottery permit. The season runs from April 18 to May 31 and is divided into six hunt periods, A through F (see table below). Hunt A and B licenses for firearms hunters age 18 and older are limited in availability and assigned via lottery drawing. Turkey lottery applications cost $5 and can be purchased online at mndnr.gov/licenses, by phone at 888-665-4236, or in person from a license agent. Successful applicants will receive a postcard in the mail by mid-February and can purchase their hunting license starting March 1. Firearms licenses for hunts C, D, E and F are not lottery-limited and will be available for purchase over-the-counter beginning March 1. All licensed turkey hunters can participate in Hunt F if they have an unused tag from one of the earlier hunt periods. Archery and youth hunters (under 18) are exempt from the lottery and may purchase a spring turkey license valid during all hunt periods, including hunts A and B. Surplus lottery licenses from hunts A and B, if available, will be sold over-the-counter starting in mid-March. Visit mndnr.gov/hunting/turkey for more information about turkey hunting in Minnesota. 2018 Spring Turkey Hunt Periods
      Hunt A: April 18 – 24
      Hunt B: April 25 – May 1
      Hunt C: May 2 – 8
      Hunt D: May 9 – 15
      Hunt E: May 16-22
      Hunt F: May 23-31 Discuss below - to view set the hook here.
    • Rick
      Youth and adults can learn to hunt turkeys this April with experienced volunteers who will cover safe hunting techniques, how to call-in turkeys, hunting tactics and field dressing a bird. “We teach the skills and techniques that allow new turkey hunters to become lifelong hunters,” said Mike Kurre, learn-to-hunt program coordinator with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. “This has been a successful program and as a bonus, we love hearing how former participants go full circle to teach others how to hunt.” Participants can apply through Monday, Feb. 12. The hunts are Saturday, April 21, and Sunday, April 22, and provide opportunities to access locations that may otherwise be closed to hunting. “We get volunteers from the National Wild Turkey Federation and this is the 16th year we’ve cooperated for these hunts,” Kurre said. “Over the years we’ve introduced more than 5,000 people to these hunting experiences. We also work with the Minnesota National Guard to get military adults and their families into turkey hunting.” Details about how to apply and costs to participate are available at mndnr.gov/turkeyhunt. A pre-hunt orientation is required and all participants will need to have a valid firearms safety certificate or its equivalent. Youth must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. Overall participation in the hunts is restricted by the number of volunteers and private lands that are available. Anyone interested in providing turkey hunting land for the mentored youth hunts should contact the Keith Carlson, Save the Habitat Save the Hunt coordinator for the National Wild Turkey Federation in Minnesota at kcanoka@comcast.net.   Discuss below - to view set the hook here.
    • Rick
      Gov. Mark Dayton has proclaimed Jan. 20-28 as Snowmobile Safety Awareness Week in Minnesota. This an opportunity for the Department of Natural Resources, volunteer safety instructors, the Minnesota United Snowmobilers Association (MNUSA) and its 250 member snowmobile clubs to join together to recognize the importance of safe, responsible snowmobiling. “It’s a fun and exciting activity, but snowmobilers should always remember to make safety a top priority,” said Conservation Officer Bruce Lawrence, DNR recreational vehicle coordinator. “They should also always use common sense and keep a clear head when riding.” Here are some other key safety points: Snowmobiling and alcohol don’t mix – don’t drink and ride. Smart riders are safe riders – take a snowmobile safety training course. Always wear a helmet and adequate clothing. When night riding slow down – expect the unexpected. Know before the ride  – always check local trail and ice conditions. Cross with care. Know risks and be prepared – make every trip a round trip. One is the loneliest number – never ride alone. Ride safe, stay on the trail – respect private property. To legally ride a snowmobile in Minnesota, residents born after Dec. 31, 1976 need a valid snowmobile safety certificate. Options for both classroom and online classes can be found at http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/safety/vehicle/snowmobile/index.html People can find Minnesota snowmobiling events and activities on the MNUSA webpage: https://mnsnowmobiler.org/get-involved/mnusa/events. Discuss below - to view set the hook here.
    • eyeguy 54
      sounds like a hoot. hope to get there. 
    • Roscoe010
      Hi Wanderer, I am going up this weekend too.  Glad the weather will be warm! I will try a different pit this time, but had good luck last year.  I hope the fish will be active and hungry.
    • IceHawk
      Thanks Rick! Jeff hope to make it always a good time and laughs when you get a group of great people together. I usally do more jaw jacking  then fishing at these things but for me its just as much fun 
    • Rick
      I will donate a few goodies. I will send it to @Tom Sawyer if he messages me his address.
    • IceHawk
      Lol! Smurfy  Its not as easy to identify areas like the old days the ice towns in Mertens bay and in front of Steils old house on cedar island aren't there like years of past but she's still the same chain that you grew up on. And IMO better than when we wee younger. 
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