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Kansas Pheasant. Please help!

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Kansas Pheasant. Please help!

Old 11-27-2007, 09:48 AM
  #1  
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Default Kansas Pheasant. Please help!

This is my first year doing upland. I’ve made two trips up to Kansas so far. I’m getting a little frustrated though because 95% of the birds flush 100 + yards out. Most of the time the dogs are not even near them so I can not blame the dogs. We see a lot of birds but they are just not holding. My dog has pointed a few that did hold but all except one have been hens. Most of the time there is at least 3 of us and we are getting in a line, about 25 + yards apart, and pushing through the CRP walk-in areas. The dogs do a very good job of filling in the gaps between us. We always try to find walk-ins next to milo or corn fields. If there are low areas with brush we work those with one person/dog on each side. If there is a nice hedge row we work both sides of that too. We try to be as quite as possible but giving the dogs commands obviously requires making some noise. I’m starting to get worried that the dog is going to loose interest, I know I am.

What am I doing wrong?

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Old 11-27-2007, 10:14 AM
  #2  
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Default RE: Kansas Pheasant. Please help!

Nothing!! Welcome to pheasant hunting. Try walking into the wind or wait until it's a little colder when they'll hold a bit more.Don't space out so far, I realize your dogs are covering ground but they are missing the few you could shoot. It's been too dry for them to find them all.Slow down and keep your fingers crossed. There are always some dumb ones that will hold. Good luck
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Old 11-27-2007, 02:03 PM
  #3  
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Default RE: Kansas Pheasant. Please help!

I would agree, make sure you are walking in the wind. If you are in a highly hunted area the birds are probably aware of what is coming. The land we own and hunt after opening weekend you can tell a big difference in how the birds react. The birds were sitting tight 2 weeks ago when I was back hunting. now this past weekend when I was back and it was cold most of the birds were flying out ahead of us due to us chasing them around just 2 weeks prior. If it is a calm day with no wind the birds usually hear you coming. I like about a 15 mph wind in my face, that seems to be the best hunting, oh yea and some snow on the ground. Good luck, don't give up!!

As for the dog loosinginterest,I wouldn't worry about that. When I got my Brittany 8 years ago she didn't get on real good birds until she wasabout 3.5 years old. We hadbeen in a dry spell and we were not getting into good birds.She never gave up and when we got into the good birds she has been hunting upa storm ever since.
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Old 11-27-2007, 02:48 PM
  #4  
Spike
 
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Default RE: Kansas Pheasant. Please help!

Your dog isn't losing interest but it's like when you can't find your car keys. You start to get frustrated and get in a hurry. Pheasants are tough to hunt even for a veteran dog. Many a dog has been ruined by pushing it too fast or expecting too much. The suggestions above are all good ones and remember game plans don't always work. Cut off their escape routes, spend some time watching where pheasants roost and rest during the day. When controlling your dog use a silent dog whistle or a electonic collar with a tone (works like a pager). If legal hunt the most productive times, half hour before sunrise and that last hour at night. Some states don't allow this, some do. Remember those birds get educated in a hurry, the ones that don't die. Your dog will figure it out if you give him time and plenty of help. It's your job to hunt your dog where the birds are and it's his job to find them after that. Hunt thicker cover and work at a pace your dog can handle. Your dog wants to succeed just as much as you and when he gets a scent of a hot bird it's like you visiting the playboy mansion. Rushing in is not always the best tactic, work your way around the room till you get what you want. It's the same with pheasants.
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Old 11-29-2007, 05:04 PM
  #5  
Fork Horn
 
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Default RE: Kansas Pheasant. Please help!

If birds are flushing wild or just spooky you can sometimes have luck by doing this: Look at a piece of land and see how you and others would hunt it then hunt it in the reverse of how you would. Sounds stupid but most piece of land are pushed through the same way time after time and birds learn escape routes, by changing it up you can often catch them confused. You will still have wild flushing birds but you may also have some the sit tight.

Also do not slam doors, talk or yell at the dogs just silently as possible approach the field you are going to hunt. Make some friends that can act as blockers as well. Not 100% guaranteed but pheasant can be frustrating. Also if it snows a couple of inches make sure to hit that next day as roosters hold tighter innew snow often times.

Nemont
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Old 11-30-2007, 06:46 AM
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Default RE: Kansas Pheasant. Please help!

This could be stating the obvious: but pheasants, as you are finding out are real wary creatures. It's very important when you get out of the vehicle to keep the noise at a minimum,don't slam doors,don't run beeper collars,don't keep blowing on your whistle, shouting back and forth, etc.

Noise will do more than anything to keep those birds 100yds. in front of you than about anything else. Also, have you tried blocking? We somtimes hunt a field from both ends towards the middle pinching them between us.

Another spooky bird tatic is splitting up and working one man - one dog. Work slow; it sounds as if your dogs are good enough to work with you. We take 3-4 guys and start out as far away from each other as we can get, then we all workto the same corner.....we try to heard the birds the best we can.
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Old 11-30-2007, 07:46 AM
  #7  
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Default RE: Kansas Pheasant. Please help!

Very good advice, thank you all. It sounds like we are just being too loud.
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