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walleyeking19

New guy to pheasant hunting

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walleyeking19    0
walleyeking19

Okay, so growing up I've hunted just about everything this state has to offer. Grouse, deer, duck, goose, turkey, you name it, I've hunted it more than likely. That is, except for pheasant. I went to a pheasant farm last winter with my brothers but thats extent of my pheasant hunting.

So I really want to try going after some this fall still, especially since waterfowl season ends so early.

So what tips would you guys give me as a new pheasant hunter? Is public land a good option? Or should I try to get permission from farmers for private land?

Do I need a dog? My brother has a lab i could borrow probably.

Any other tips? I just want to get out and spend some more time in the field so any help is appreciated! Thanks guys!

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TylerS    8
TylerS

Hunt public land later in the season. Lots of fair-weather folks call it quits after deer season. Good time to hunt the remaining phez population.

Do you need a dog: Short answer no, but it definitely helps. Since you could maybe borrow a dog (and assuming said dog has hunted before) I'd jump on that if for no other reason than you'll have a better time finding downed birds. Despite their gaudy colors, a half-live roster blends into brush unbelievably.

The only other tip I can give is to look for small cover. Lots of folks like to try an hunt an entire section of habitat. What you wind up with is a lot of empty area with maybe one or two hotspots. As a solo guy with (possibly) a dog, you can't afford that. Look for dense areas birds are most likely to be: Cattail sloughs, thick brush, and tree rows. Those are your best shots. If you come up empty, expand your search.

Good luck!

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Stcloudangler    0
Stcloudangler

Tyler gave good advice. I would add, if you have private land to hunt that is in a birdy area, by all means do it. The later the season, the phez has been jumped a bunch of times and they get very wary. Private land will cut down on that. Along those lines, be as quiet as you can, hunt into the wind, etc. The longtails will see / hear you coming and jump hundreds of yards in front of you if you aren't stealthy.

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walleyeking19    0
walleyeking19

Thanks Tyler!

And yes, my brothers dog is a great waterfowl dog and goes grouse hunting with us and we brought him to the pheasant farm with us last year, so he's got the idea.

What type of licenses do I need for pheasants? I have the small game license from duck hunting. Do I just need the pheasant stamp than?

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Stcloudangler    0
Stcloudangler

Yes, just a pheasant stamp. 8 bucks I believe. Go to the DNR wsite to find a bunch of good starting info

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BLACKJACK    3
BLACKJACK

If you have a dog thats half the battle, work on keeping him close and quartering. Later season pheasants will be spooky, be quiet, don't slam truck doors, take that whistle and shove it - in your pocket. Hunt the edges of the field and the edges of any habitat in the field. The first time we get a 6 inch snow get out there and hunt the willows and heavier cover, the birds that are used to running will hold tighter. Good luck!!

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Roosterslayer05    3
Roosterslayer05

Everyone gave great advice except for one thing: You NEED a dog. I pheasant hunted without a dog in the BEST part of the state for 6 years. With three guys we would average 3 birds a year! Finally my uncle got a dog and our success skyrocketed. YOU NEED A DOG! I will NEVER pheasant hunt without a dog again, it's a waste of time. If you ever cripple a bird you will NEVER find it without a dog. Plus you will walk by 95 percent of the birds without a dog. The only way you can shoot birds without a dog is if you hunt small strips of cover and stop allot or if the bird numbers in the area are really high.

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Down2Earth    4
Down2Earth

Pheasant hunting without a dog is like ice fishing without a vexilar. Is it possible yes but once you have on you will never go without.

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sdsu_jacks    0
sdsu_jacks

Pheasant hunting without a dog is like ice fishing without a vexilar. Is it possible yes but once you have on you will never go without.

Pheasant hunting without a dog is worse than ice fishing without a vex. It's like ice fishing without a vex, power auger, shack, heater, and almost (but not quite) warm dry clothes and boots. It can be done but isn't something I'd do.

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stretch    0
stretch

hey walleyeking19, there is a ton of land around buffalo that is good land for pheasants. Even if you want to get out for a quick walk you would be surprised on how many birds you can flush without a dog. But if you want i am more than willing to take you out for a day on some land i know of. I have a german shorthair pointer that is very good upland dog.

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fishuhalik    2
fishuhalik

If you're hunting an area with lots of birds you don't need a dog. Some will sit, some will run & some will flush. I had great luck in nodak last year without a dog. I'd usually fill up in less than an hour. This year, bird numbers were way lower & we struggled. We still killed a lot of birds but I'm sure we walked by even more. My suggestion, if you don't have a dog & bird numbers are down, hunt really skinny cover. Stuff like a pond with a small strip of cattails between the water & a cut field. Make sure you're walking right through the thick of it. If you walk the edges, they'll stay put. Also, if you are hunting bigger areas, zigzag it. People have told me I'm crazy, but I firmly believe that when you're walking a field, those birds will sit still if you're walking a straight line. If they can't tell where your next step is gonna go, they get nervous & flush.

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fishuhalik    2
fishuhalik

Oh, and stay quiet & hunt with the wind in your face.

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walleyeking19    0
walleyeking19

Thanks for all the tips guys!

I just got a new shotgun over the weekend, so I'll probably get it ready to go tomorrow and head out for the first time Thursday morning! Anyone having any luck recently? Really looking forward to trying my luck. Should be a lot warmer than sitting in a tree stand!

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Pherris    0
Pherris

Not sure wher your heading but I hunted Lac Qui Parle county last weekend and did very well. we saw more birds then some of my better years in SD. I was amazed. Hunting was challenging because of all the snow but the birds were there. Good luck!

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123fish    0
123fish

Head to the red willow and cattail patches and you will find birds. They are in their winter cover for sure.

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BLACKJACK    3
BLACKJACK

Thanks for all the tips guys!

I just got a new shotgun over the weekend, so I'll probably get it ready to go tomorrow and head out for the first time Thursday morning! Anyone having any luck recently? Really looking forward to trying my luck. Should be a lot warmer than sitting in a tree stand!

Don't get discouraged, you're starting out at the toughest time of the year, most the of the dumb birds have been shot.

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walleyeking19    0
walleyeking19

Yeah I figured it wont be easy hunting at all! Duck season is all but over and I already got my deer and I'm not a guy who can just sit around all day doing nothing so I'll give it a try! Getting a bird is just a bonus.

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BLACKJACK    3
BLACKJACK

Have to disagree. The most recent tips say it all. A dogless hunter is not that disadvantaged if you no where to look once winter sets in.

Since winter is about one month or more early this year. He could do fine.

Mid-season when snowless is when / where the guys with good dogs take the vast, vast majority of the birds during that period.

Not sure what your point is, what you're disagreeing with?? Are you saying its easier to shoot a rooster at this time of year or that its easier for a dogless hunter to shoot a rooster at this time of year?

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Stcloudangler    0
Stcloudangler

I think what he might be saying is, if a dogless hunter sneaks up to a little patch of cattails with all this snow, your odds are as good as a hunter with a dog.

Birds will hold tight until you step on them. That is, unless they see you coming and jump way early.

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NELS-BELLS    36
NELS-BELLS

Last Friday, hunting in Central MN, I saw more birds then I've seen in the past 3 years total. Most of the birds I saw were on public land.

I wouldn't have needed a dog, although I did have one.

I used to get plenty of roosters before I got my lab, but I had to wait for fresh or melting snow and basically track them till they flushed.

Nels

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brittman    0
brittman

Don't get discouraged, you're starting out at the toughest time of the year, most the of the dumb birds have been shot.

This is NOT the most difficult time for a dogless hunter to be out there.

Snow is the great equalizer and a quiet dogless hunter can do very well. I would say this is the best time to go out. Birds are concentrated and you can track them. When you knock one down they are somewhat easier to find.

Unless your hunting consists of road hunting ditch birds ... wink

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Eric Wettschreck    0
Eric Wettschreck

Head to the red willow and cattail patches and you will find birds. They are in their winter cover for sure.

^^^^^^^^ This.

They're grouping up or already grouped up. When one jumps up a bunch jump up. Good times. Have fun.

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BLACKJACK    3
BLACKJACK

This is NOT the most difficult time for a dogless hunter to be out there.

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brittman    0
brittman

BlackJack - must of stuck a nerve ... sorry, but I do not chase them out of ditches like so many of the guys lving in Wilmar do. wink

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