Pheasant Season is STILL OPEN, But....

Varmint Al

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There was an error on the length of the season. See below:

The season is closed for wild pheasants on public land, but the season stays open on Private Game Bird Clugs for released birds till Feb 3 2002. The club that I have making a web page for hunting priviledges only let me know about this today. I was ready to hang up the 20 ga. and just hunt ducks. But not now. I will keep Bart from getting rusty and go after a released bird once or twice a week. If you live near the East Bay, and don't want to give up yet, check out the Limit Out Hunting Club.

Here is the link.
http://www.varmintal.f2s.com/limitout.htm
Too early in the year to let Bart get rusty on hunting. He has been doing very well this seaon. Bart gives a thumbs up to more hunting time.


(Edited by Varmint Al at 8:46 am on Dec. 11, 2001)


(Edited by Varmint Al at 3:55 am on Jan. 25, 2002)
 

Varmint Al

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Batting cleanup...
I went out pheasant hunting today. It took 30 min and 3 shot to bag 2 roosters. It all went too quickly. It only took about 30 minutes from the time I let Bart out of the truck till we were back with the roosters. Bart did an excellent job and has not gotten rusty since the regular pheasant season closed. The club had some hunters today and they didn't get all the released birds. That is where batting cleanup comes in. But, I went to a more remote area of the fields and I actually got wild birds. That is still legal. The club has to release 120 birds for every 100 taken. The two roosters I got were in a dry ditch and they flushed at about 10 yards from me. Couldn’t ask for a better hunt. Two is enough to clean and keep the dog happy. I took a picture of Bart holding one after we got home. It is a 1.5 mile drive.
 

karstic

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Nice picture of Bart. How have you trained him, as a flusher, pointer, retriever? Do you use him only for upland game or for waterfowl also? What does he seem to be the best at? I may be getting a lab pup within the next year and would like to use him both for upland and waterfowl. I know there is a compromise on the upland side as far as labs go, but I feel any (trained) dog is better than no dog when sniffin' out the birds.
 

Varmint Al

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Hi Karstic.

Bart is a flusher. I have never had a pointer and don’t know about them. Bart is a natural flushing dog and I have not tried to change his style, just control it. The trick is to keep him close. I have been using an electric collar. It takes just one nick at the start of the hunt to let him know I am still in control. Then just a soft whistle when he starts to get too far. He stops and waits for me. I am no spring chicken and can't go too fast anymore.

Bart does both pheasants and ducks. I like hunting pheasants better because of the more reasonable hours. My wife also is training him for obedience. He has his CD and that helps. He also has 3 legs toward his Junior Hunter Title. That is very good training. Any dog that passes even a single leg, has to be doing something right. Besides it is fun to meet all the people with their dogs at the JH Test events. We will try for the final leg over at Lodi, CA in February Hunt Test.

I have a web page for Bart. There is more info there about his young days and results from this years pheasant season. Here is the URL:

http://www.cctrap.com/~varmint/abart.htm

Bart was fetching at a very early age. Fetching is in the genes.
 

Varmint Al

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Sorry. I had bad info on the end of the pheasant season for released pheasants. I put down Mar 15 and it is really Feb 3rd. The guys at Limit Out have about 200 pheasants left and they are going to have a shoot out the Weekend of Feb 2 & 3. They will release all the remaining birds and you can shoot all you can afford for $25 per pheasant. It is going to be a wild time on the island...


Read about it here: http://www.limitoutinc.com/

Also the duck kill numbers are in for the club. I am not a good duck hunter, but it looks like they had a good time.
 

Varmint Al

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Well, it's never over till it's over, but it's over now. I got 2 tickets for pheasants this last weekend of the season. On Saturday, Feb 2 I went out with Bart. There was lots of activity in the center of the Hunting Club, but there is a small area that is usually overlooked right near my house. Anyhow, Bart was working the field and he hit a hot trail. When he is on a pheasant, his tail goes like a helicopter blade. I got ready and up comes a rooster. One shot with the new 20 ga Fiocchi 1-1/4 oz copper plated #5 shot and the rooster went down like a rock. Bart was on him and it took him about 5 seconds to pick up the rooster. I think it was still kicking. Anyhow, Bart did the fetch and I had him come to heel, sit and lift his head with the bird and deliver to hand. A perfect fetch.

Sunday, the last day, there was someone hunting in that section of the field so I came back home and got my hip boots on. I went back out and had to cross a deep ditch to get into another area that is seldom hunted. Only 200 yards into the field and Bart hit a scent. I got ready and a hen got up. Hens are legal for released birds. After getting over the hesitation that I have from years of letting hens go, I went ahead and shot the hen. Again, those Fiocchi 20 ga shells are great and the hen went down hard into 4' tall brush. I could see Bart disappear into the brush after the hen. I waited about 10 seconds and whistled for him to fetch. A few seconds later and I can see his head with the hen in his mouth coming my way. Another perfect fetch with a fancy finish. That was a great way to end the best pheasant hunting season I have ever had. I got a total of 14 birds during the regular season and 4 birds in the extended season for released pheasants.

Bart is entered down at Los Banos for the Junior Hunt Test. If he passes on Feb 17, it will be his 4th leg and a Junior Hunter Title. The Test requires that the dog delivers the bird to hand and doesn’t just drop it on the ground. That is why I have Bart do the fancy finish on each retrieve. My wife, Mary Ann is going to train Bart for Senior Hunter and I will help her.

No more live birds till the Hunt Test and Bart will just get bumper training. Soon it will be time to get out the fly-tying gear and get ready for trout season. Not sure how Bart is going to handle trout fishing.....

 

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