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First Bird Despite Disrespectful Hunters

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First Bird Despite Disrespectful Hunters

Old 03-20-2019, 04:37 PM
  #1  
Spike
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Default First Bird Despite Disrespectful Hunters

Last year on opening day, we were hit with the lows and highs of hunting all in one day. After being the first one to the spot, I am a waterfowl hunter, so that means something to me, but apparently doesn't mean anything to others, we had hunters swing in and cut in behind us a shoot birds on their way to our field. THEN the guy parked out in front of us TWICE and sat there forever, getting out of his truck, walking around, talking on the phone, you name it. We had decoys out and orange up, so I KNOW he saw us. It just blew my mind how someone could have such little respect. Anyway, we got fed up and moved to a different property and immediately spotted some birds. After calling to them for an hour, we decided to put a reap on them from 400 yards away. We had to have crawled 250 yards, and when we came over the hill, the birds closed the rest of the distance in a hurry! What a hunt! I am curious have you ever had other hunters treat you like that? Hope you enjoy the video:
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Old 03-21-2019, 03:37 AM
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Just go to your neighboring state to your east, you will see the same thing.
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Old 03-21-2019, 08:41 AM
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I've have had instances where hunters would come between me and the bird I'm working. Maryland game regulations have warned hunters not to do that. But I still think it's illegal to perform that misdeed in Pennsylvania. Some hunters might be deaf enough that they don't hear your hen calls, but only hear the gobbler gobbling. We have a number of shooters at our shooting range that are partially deaf.

What I do get angry about unsportsmenlike conduct during first light in the morning...is a hunter shooting roosting birds. I think that it has happened twice in the last two years on adult opening day, on public hunting land where I hunt. It occurred to me hearing the gobbler gobbling a few times, followed by a shot. I'm pretty confident that they shot at a roosting bird --- unless they just spooked it off the roost an then took a shot. Happened about two or three hundred yards away from me in the same location.

Last edited by Erno86; 03-21-2019 at 08:48 AM. Reason: added a word
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Old 03-21-2019, 09:55 AM
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I no longer get mad when hunters get between me and a gobbling bird. I just take it as a compliment - they obviously thought my calling was an actual bird, and they were merely putting themselves between the tom and hen.

Erno - don't assume they shot out of the tree. If they snuck to within 75 yards of the tree the toms will sometimes pitch down shortly after they start gobbling, especially late in the season. One season in CT, late in the season towards the end of May, I mistakenly got closer to a bird than I liked. The only thing that saved me was he was gobbling on his own and was facing the opposite direction AND I saw his fan in the tree before he saw me. He was less than 50 yards from the deer path I was on. I immediately hit the ground and got situated against the closest tree - and he obviously heard me rustling in the leaves. He went into strut but was now looking in my direction - so I yelped way earlier than I normally would. I think it was a consequence of the entire situation - full foliage, damp morning, rustling leaves, etc. - but as soon as I was done yelping the old bird dropped down and went into strut only 25 yards from my tree. As soon as he dropped his fan he was dead, and I was in my truck and headed home shortly after official sunrise. When you get in close late in the spring it can happen REALLY fast and they can hit the ground well before daylight, I suspect because they want to make sure they're the first tom the hen sees.
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Old 03-21-2019, 10:06 AM
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I believe the're actually some turkey hunters out there...who don't know the difference between a hen cackle and a gobble.

It just sounds strange...that I heard a hunter do the same possible tactic (shortly after dawn, with me hearing just one or two gobbles...then a shot shortly thereafter) on two consecutive opening days, at the approx. same location. I can sometimes tell the difference between the gobble sound level of a roosted bird and one that has flown down --- Assuming that the tom or jake first gobbles from his roost and then on the ground.

I've read that some hunters actually do shoot roosted birds, even before dawn.

Last edited by Erno86; 03-21-2019 at 10:34 AM. Reason: added a sentence
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Old 03-21-2019, 10:06 AM
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Originally Posted by Weekend Woodsmen View Post
Last year on opening day, we were hit with the lows and highs of hunting all in one day. After being the first one to the spot, I am a waterfowl hunter, so that means something to me, but apparently doesn't mean anything to others, we had hunters swing in and cut in behind us a shoot birds on their way to our field. THEN the guy parked out in front of us TWICE and sat there forever, getting out of his truck, walking around, talking on the phone, you name it. We had decoys out and orange up, so I KNOW he saw us. It just blew my mind how someone could have such little respect.
You might have been first - but those other hunters might have parked in a completely different spot and didn't even know you were there. Turkeys also establish home areas and roost trees - so those other hunters might have patterned the same birds and knew they went to the field every day, and they intentionally planned to sit at a pinch point in their trail. Just recognize that to them - you were screwing up their hunt! Unless it's a WMA with pins and posts, then it's all fair game, and don't assume that just because you were in the area first that the other hunters didn't scout the bird for months and that they even knew you were there...


As for the guy walking around in the field - I would agree that he was completely disrespectful, or he was green/orange colorblind. There is a subpopulation of colorblind people who do not see blaze orange or pink, and that's one of the reasons we're now starting to see purple emerge as a new warning color.

To answer you're question - yes, I've had other hunters 'screw up' my hunts. However, after talking with them we all realized (at least 99% of the time) that it wasn't intentional, and most times they didn't even know I was there. It's a passion where most of us wear full camo, walk very quietly through the woods and call like a hen on the ground - it's very difficult to tell the difference between a hunter and real bird.

Last edited by Strut&Rut; 03-21-2019 at 10:10 AM.
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Old 03-21-2019, 10:39 AM
  #7  
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In good conditions...a person can hear a turkey gobble one mile away, but I doubt that same person can hear a hen fly down cackle or soft tree yelps in the same conditions --- at that distance.

A hunter can sometimes sound better with a hen call then the real thing.

Last edited by Erno86; 03-21-2019 at 10:44 AM.
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Old 03-21-2019, 12:36 PM
  #8  
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There is bad, greedy behavior in hunting every species. Some people don't have the common sense that God gave a goose. I have been hunting in a field with 4 men and three pointing dogs for pheasants, Some other hunters driving down the road saw us and stopped jumped out of their var and ran down the edge of the field to get to the end of the field ahead of us and proceeded to walk towards us slowly, hoping we would flush birds to them. We called in our dogs and stood there. What a bunch of fools, had any birds flushed straight our they or us would have been shooting directly at the other party. These are the kind if things that happen when you are on land you don't own. Nothing new, the same kind of crap used to happen in the 50s and 60s in the pheasant fields where people would sneak to the end of a corn field that other hunters were walking through and hope they would push birds out that end to them. That was even worse because while they knew you were in the standing corn you didn't know the fools were at the other end of the field. I never under estimate the stupidity of people caused by greed. I am sure others here can speak to situations they ran into while hunting deer, doves or whatever.
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Old 03-21-2019, 12:43 PM
  #9  
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I was hunting in an area where a dirt road went around an opening. It had some trees separating part of the opening from the road. I had a blind up any decoys out. I was calling in a decent flock of birds and a truck came by. They parked and got out and tried calling. I know that they could hear me and saw the birds heading into my direction. They came into range but I couldnít shoot if I wanted to because of there location. So I got out and scared the turkeys off so that I wouldnít be getting shot. The next year a friend set up there and the same thing happened only one of them walked up the road and the other guy walked out and scared them out towards the road where his friend shot a jake that came out. Itís wasnít like they didnít have any areas to hunt. Some people are lazy and have no respect for others.
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Old 03-22-2019, 04:00 AM
  #10  
Spike
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Originally Posted by Strut&Rut View Post
You might have been first - but those other hunters might have parked in a completely different spot and didn't even know you were there. Turkeys also establish home areas and roost trees - so those other hunters might have patterned the same birds and knew they went to the field every day, and they intentionally planned to sit at a pinch point in their trail. Just recognize that to them - you were screwing up their hunt! Unless it's a WMA with pins and posts, then it's all fair game, and don't assume that just because you were in the area first that the other hunters didn't scout the bird for months and that they even knew you were there...


As for the guy walking around in the field - I would agree that he was completely disrespectful, or he was green/orange colorblind. There is a subpopulation of colorblind people who do not see blaze orange or pink, and that's one of the reasons we're now starting to see purple emerge as a new warning color.

To answer you're question - yes, I've had other hunters 'screw up' my hunts. However, after talking with them we all realized (at least 99% of the time) that it wasn't intentional, and most times they didn't even know I was there. It's a passion where most of us wear full camo, walk very quietly through the woods and call like a hen on the ground - it's very difficult to tell the difference between a hunter and real bird.
This was a dead end road and the first guy drove by as we were walking to the woods, but at the same time maybe you are right about the color blind part. I guess since I never got up and went to talk to him, maybe he didnít realize that we were there. In any case it ended up working out for us, so I guess it was meant to be!
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