Help! Need advice on where to hunt PDs
I am an experienced ground squirrel shooter in Northern California, but look forward to finally traveling to the Midwest for prairie dogs. I know zilch about PDs, other than that they are larger than ground squirrels.
My problem is that I am stuck. I know no ranchers in the Midwest who allow PD hunting, and have no way of find out. I don't particularly want to pay a guide because I am used to hunting on properties of ranchers I know and whose properties I have had permission to hunt in the past.
I am used to contacting ranchers directly and asking for permission to hunt, but it is a far cry to drive all the way to a state such as South Dakota, for instance, and find that hunting is largely closed unless a guide is hired and some outlandish fee is charged. My wife and I ideally would like to merely park our self-contained motor home on private or public ranch land and do either walk-around shooting with .22 rimfires, or longer-distance shooting with centerfires.
Is there a best time of year for PD hunting, and which states should I be looking at? Are any public lands (such as BLM) available? What is the best way to contact land owners, other than checking with the Chamber of Commerce in each town on the map? I know my questions seem naive to you experienced old-timer PD-shooters, but I' stuck, and would appreciate any advice you have.