Communication in the field

Swampy

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   Did anyone use those little hand held radios this year? This was the first year we used them and found them very handy. Opening day at Gray Lodge was a blast listening to all the groups trying to find each other in the dark. A lot of  “look towards the flashlights” or “turn off the road when you see the tule clump”. Quite a bit of cursing. “Which flashlight, I see six of them”, “Which clump?” One guy kept calling for his buddy Larry. He never found him as far as I know.  

 The best use we found for them was for giving directions towards birds that had sailed. The first time we had three guys looking. The two without a radio went wide right while the one getting the directions from the blind almost stepped on the bird. Very useful for giving marks.
 

Wildbio

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We used them for the first time this year.  I thought they were great.  The only bad part is that now I have something else to worry about getting wet when I take my yearly dive into the marsh.:crazeye:
 

EL CAZADOR

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I've been using them for about 3 years now.  They work great.  I do a lot of hunting out in Imperial Valley and with a couple trucks, we can communicate a lot easier than with CB's.  I also use them while duck hunting, many times I've let other hunters in the group know when ducks are coming.
 

PowDuck

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We started using them a couple years ago at deer camp. We'd all check in at the top of the hour and if we heard a shot that we thought was one of us. Sure makes the time go by faster when nothing else is going on.

Keep the volume turned down real low and you can actually talk to others when deer are right below your stand.
 

mrdux

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We've used the small radios for a few years.We have a 2 hour drive to our Missouri ricefield lease and they really come in handy during the drive.We use them sparingly in the pits.
 

Speckmisser

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We picked up a couple last deer season.  Kinda useful, although I was hesitant to get them.  I like the silence of a deer hunt, and having that radio in my pocket makes for a real temptation to be checking in with my partners when things are slow.  The ones we got have the vibration setting too, so at least we can call without that annoying "BEEP".  

I figure they'd be handy for pig hunting too, especially when you need to call in the backups to carry one out.  Unfortunately, carrying one out hasn't been an issue for me in quite a while.

Didn't take them duck hunting, although I can see where they might be handy.  And, by the way, instead of that $20 waterproof case they sell, you can always use a ziplock freezer bag to keep it dry.    
 

Swampy

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    We bought the water-resistant ones from Motorola but I still use the ZipLocks because I know I am going to drop one. I wish I had the vibrate feature because that beep will flare ducks.  
 

Baldplate

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Those radios sound great, but I was told by two wardens(one at Wister and a Fed at Tulelake), that they are illegal to use during the taking of waterfowl, for any reason. Can anyone confirm or deny that information.
 

Speckmisser

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Baldpate,

First of all, I know I've seen this somewhere, but can't for the life of me locate it now...  but I think the regs are something like this...

Apparently you cannot use two-way radios for the "pursuit or taking of game", but you can use them any other time.  

The best explanation for that I've had is that folks using them for drives, or to direct other hunters to game are in violation.  If you're using them to communicate after the kill, it's OK.  Of course, if you're using them to get together for a hunt, or to locate each other, then that's OK too.  

Because waterfowl are federally legislated, the regs might be a little different.  Hadn't really thought about it, as I haven't ever really thought about taking the radio into the duck blind.  I suppose the best bet would be to ask at the check station if you're hunting a refuge.  If they say, "No," you're out of luck...no matter how you choose to interpret the law.  Leave it in the car.

But again, I just searched all through the CA Fish and Game Code, and couldn't find the regulation anywhere.  
 

foulshot

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<font face="Book Antiqua"><font size="3">Mrdux and Wildbio welcome to Jesses.  Hope you enjoy yourselfs here.
Well I've used them for a few years now.  Mostly like everybody else says for shootin the bs when times are slow.  Or giving a guy a hard time when he misses an easy shot.
Speckmisser, I sent an email to the DFG for an answer on what they say on the use of radios in the field.  As soon as I get the answer back I'll post.</font></font>
 

foulshot

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<font face="Book Antiqua">Here is the answer I got.
Hi,

There is no prohibition against using 2-way radios for communication
while hunting.

Lieutenant Liz Schwall
DFG/CalTIP
(916) 651-9167
</font>
 

spectr17

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foulshot,

I would be careful about that email response you got, the good Lt. has been wrong before. From Dick Phillips and several other wardens here in SoCal, you can have radios while hunting but if you use them to drive, herd or pursue game you can be cited under "Fair chase".

I've tried to pin these same wardens here and in other states down to the exact reg that says this and there is no reg but they say the cite comes under the "Fair chase" intent of the game laws. It's kind of open to the  interpretation of the warden.

If you'll search in the deer hunting and Alaska forum you'll find several articles I have posted of hunters busted using radios to drive or steer another hunter to game.

I will also add I'm seeing more and more wardens monitoring the FRS and GMRS radio channels on their scanners in their vehicles.

There are two states, Ohio and Iowa, that outright ban radios in possession while hunting that I know of. Most of them allow use as long as you don't persue or herd game with them.

I've got a list on my radio webpage that shows about half the states and their radio laws.

Forewarned is forearmed.
 

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