Your pheasant hunting experiences/bird numbers this past season?

remy3424

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Joined
Apr 10, 2019
Messages
65
Location
NW Iowa
I think many state's seasons have closed or will be shortly, how did the folks here do? I am in NW Iowa, it was the best season I have had with great bird numbers. The CRP fields really are helping the bird numbers in my immediate area. We have little public ground and other than your waterways and wet areas (and road ditches), government programs for filter strips and crp fields provide the bulk of the nesting and roosting cover. We are having sub-zero temps currently and have had snow with 40+ mph winds which began in the daylight so I am hoping the birds found conifers to roost in to preserve the great numbers we have.
My old GSP doesn't like photos...
upload_2020-1-20_8-34-4.png
 
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1100 Remington Man

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Joined
Jan 6, 2011
Messages
333
Location
Iowa
Surprised I did not see you out hunting as I was there as well.
What surprises me most is how few hunters out there these days.
You have some nice looking dogs there.
 

KurtB

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Joined
Feb 11, 2004
Messages
436
Location
Colorado
I hunt only public land walk in areas in KS and NE. NE was down this year compared to previous years, in my experience. Never hunted KS before and we did okay there. Not great but got into birds. Hoping for a mild finish to winter and great nesting cover this spring.
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Got this guy's son joining the team come Saturday. 2020 will be a year of training and then I'll be dropping two drahthaars on them come fall.
 

remy3424

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Apr 10, 2019
Messages
65
Location
NW Iowa
1100, you are right, not much bird hunter competition. I did run into a few other locals, but I am not sure I could name 10 other bird hunters. How was your season? What was your option of the bird population? I only venured out past 15 miiles from Kingsley on 3 outings. Went north of Le Mars once and southern Woodbury county twice. The dogs did a decent job. The old dog is mine and the other is my hunting buddy's from Moville.

Kurt, I was on another site where a few fellas from Kansas were so depressed with the very low bird numbers they were debating about retiring from bird hunting, a sad thread for sure. Glad you did better. Habitat and weather conditions make or break the bird populations. The areas that had the big spring flooding had to experience low numbers. Good looking dog. I don't think I could deal with 2 dogs with a job and my other hobbies. I have decided not to get a replacement until my is done, he has earned that.
 

KurtB

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Joined
Feb 11, 2004
Messages
436
Location
Colorado
Having any dog is a pretty big time commitment for sure. I am blessed to be self employed and working from home, so the task of puppy training gets fit in nicely to my daily routine. Really between a few big game hunts and a lot of upland hunts, those are my only hobbies. And it helps that my wife loves dogs too.

Any reports from SD, ND, or MT from the group?
 

1100 Remington Man

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Joined
Jan 6, 2011
Messages
333
Location
Iowa
1100, you are right, not much bird hunter competition. I did run into a few other locals, but I am not sure I could name 10 other bird hunters. How was your season?
My season was just OK In Iowa and bird hunting is nothing what it use to be and may never be again. I don't know if I will ever have a 100 bird season again. Its not just birds bagged it is numbers seen. I have hunted Western Iowa for 46 years and we watch where the DNR counts say is the best areas and go there.
Years ago Hunter would walk all the rivers and creeks in Iowa and I can not tell you the last time I saw hunters on both sides of the Floyd River walking the section through.
I did go to South Dakota again as well and there bird numbers were down also but we managed to limit out.
Part of what is not helping is my GSP passed away and till I retire I can not get another because of work.
I'm afraid Iowa will never have another 1,000,000 bird a year harvest, because of farm practices, Predators and Hawks. The DNR is also not helping as well.
 

cynjon

Active Member
Joined
May 28, 2019
Messages
33
Location
Piedmont, SD
SD seemed to be down in most places.
That was my SD experience as well. A very wet year meant that most crops were still standing during the first month of pheasant season. With easy access to food and cover in the cropland, the birds on CRP and grasslands were few and far between. Late season hunting was showing much better numbers and success rates, however.
 

PredatorSlayer

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Joined
Aug 3, 2019
Messages
1,095
Location
CONUS
Having any dog is a pretty big time commitment for sure. I am blessed to be self employed and working from home, so the task of puppy training gets fit in nicely to my daily routine. Really between a few big game hunts and a lot of upland hunts, those are my only hobbies. And it helps that my wife loves dogs too.

Any reports from SD, ND, or MT from the group?
ND was slow, comparable to the last couple years I suppose. We had to work hard for them.
 

KurtB

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Joined
Feb 11, 2004
Messages
436
Location
Colorado
I need to road trip thru a few states this fall. And fingers crossed that Kansas and eastern CO have better hatches. Very mild winter here so far and that has to help.
 

just_jon

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Joined
Dec 1, 2019
Messages
49
Location
Newville, PA
Wild birds here in PA were as plentiful as previous years. By plentiful, I mean ZERO. Since I can’t live without a springer or two underfoot, I’m forced to chase state stocked birds and preserve hunts from which I derive little pleasure aside from spending time outdoors with friends and family. The state is trying to reestablishing wild birds on several tracts of public and private land ranging from 17,000 to 97,000 acres which are closed to hunting except for a youth hunting day. Results are discouraging with only 35% of hens surviving beyond 12 weeks are introduction. My, how I miss the good old days.
 

remy3424

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Joined
Apr 10, 2019
Messages
65
Location
NW Iowa
Jon, that stinks. What has the PA decimation been attributed to, the same issues as states with declining populations...habitat loss and weather conditions?
 

Country Bumpkin

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Joined
Sep 22, 2015
Messages
431
Location
Boise, ID
I hunt only public land walk in areas in KS and NE. NE was down this year compared to previous years, in my experience. Never hunted KS before and we did okay there. Not great but got into birds. Hoping for a mild finish to winter and great nesting cover this spring.
[/URL]
Got this guy's son joining the team come Saturday. 2020 will be a year of training and then I'll be dropping two drahthaars on them come fall.
Cool dogs, we almost went the Drahth
 

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