What type of habitat do you look for when hunting pheasants?

Discussion in 'Upland Game Forum' started by Canaduck, Mar 30, 2001.

  1. Canaduck

    Canaduck Elite Refuge Member

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    Hi guys!

    Well, my pheasant hunting is extremely limited(I went out on the last day of the season last year when there was about 15 feet of snow). I was wondering what type of cover you look for when hunting pheasants? We have large agricultural fields broken up by windrows, fencerows and small patches of brush. Where will the birds be during the regular season(no snow on the ground)? Where should I concentrate and do you have any particular tactics that work well in this type of cover?

    Thanks!
     
  2. AGR

    AGR Guest

    Hi Canaduck; I usually find them in the thickest stuff. Creek bottoms with rose bushes and bullberry, irrigation ditches with lots of cover. Cattails around sloughs can be great, especially when the birds have been pushed, because nobody wants to go in there. My dad always said to look for three things..... water, cover and food. ie. a long overgrown irrigation ditch that cuts through a wheat stubble field is rooster heaven. Also try old farm steads that have been left to grow weedy. Just some thoughts Good Luck! Oh ya, if your working a long ditch or narrow area like wind row, it is good to have your partner block the end and you walk towards him. Pheasants would rather run than fly so it helps to block them off. Walk slow, zig zag and stop often this makes them nervous and they can't quite figure out where you are going.
     
  3. blackdog

    blackdog Senior Refuge Member

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    My grandfather taught me to look for the "edges", any cover near food, water, or cover. Canaduck, the areas you describe in your post "We have large agricultural fields broken up by windrows, fencerows and small patches of brush. " would be good. Later in season or during rain hunt the thickest cover available except on sunny cold days the birds will feed in the opeen and soak up the sun.
     
  4. Greybeard

    Greybeard Elite Refuge Member

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    Hedgerows, fence rows, downed cornfields, hay fields with grass waterways running thru them. Don't overlook Marsh areas...they love to sneak thru the cattails.
    A lot depends on the kind of day you're hunting and what the weather has been for, say, the previous 4 to 5 days. If it's hard weather with deep snow, go to the thickest cover.
     
  5. drakewoodie

    drakewoodie Elite Refuge Member

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    Cold windy days-hunt the brush....
    warm calm days i would hunt the grasses in the morning and the feed around 1 hour after that...
     
  6. Buckeye Quacker

    Buckeye Quacker Senior Refuge Member

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    These fellas got you covered real good, Cduck, just bear in mine that they have patterns just like all upland birds and they move from roosting areas to feeding in the fields shortly after light unless its really nasty with rain or cold and snow , from there they usally seek water and a lofing area not far from their feeding areas, then they head back to feed in the afternoon till they head back to roosting area which also might change from time to time depending on wheather conditions. If its real cold and windy they really like the thick cover such as catails .
    Good safe hunting,
    B.Q.
     
  7. KEN

    KEN Moderator Moderator

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    Early and mid season...CRP

    Late season...cattails
     
  8. California Flyway

    California Flyway Elite Refuge Member

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    Double wide ditches in the middle of Ag crop fields. Put the guy with the best dog down in the middle of the thick stuff. Most birds will take off and bank with the wind. Try to hunt into the wind to give your dog a chance to scent. Always have blockers at the other end of a ditch. I did hear of a trick of putting a small transister radio at the end of a ditch and then going back around and driving towards it. Might work if you hunt alone. Never tried it.Make sure you have dogs that stay in range.
     
  9. Colby

    Colby Senior Refuge Member

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    I love to hunt strips of sourgum, next to a nice big shelter belt.

    Colby
     
  10. yabetterduk

    yabetterduk Senior Refuge Member

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    Hey CF the radio does work we have to use it somtimes.
    Where I hunt I am mostly limited to cut rice.
    It's great for birds but it takes a toll on your dog. At first I did't think to much about hair missing around my dogs eyes after a hunt. But now that the dog is older his eye lids have become ulcerated due in part to keepin' his nose buried in the rice.
     

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