Whitetail. John, Just sending along a note and photos of how my second deer season as a member of MAHA went. I want to thank MAHA again for providing such wonderful deer habitat to hunt. As we did last year, myself and uncle Larry did a week of archery hunting before the firearm opener. The hunting was hard and very trying. The weather was extremely warm which slowed deer movement. I passed on a small buck the fourth evening of our hunt and harvested a nice racked eight point buck the next to the last morning of our archery hunt. The mast crop was very abundant this year so I moved a stand in a draw that was covered with oak trees. The move paid off with me arrowing the eight point buck on my second sitting of that stand. The buck moved in fast and was directly under my tree stand when I shot. The buck dropped where I hit him which made recovery very easy. After this it was on to the next location for the opener of the firearms season.
Myself and Uncle Larry were joined by his son Kevin and grandson Ian for this hunt. Again the weather was very warm for this time of year and deer movement was slow. Kevin was the first to tag an eight point buck on opening morning. I went and assisted Kevin with dragging his deer out of the woods. After returning to my property a small draw covered with oak trees caught my eye. I thought yeah, it worked archery hunting why not now. As I scouted around the draw I saw numerous buck sign and found a place to sit and cover the draw the best I could from the ground. Have you ever heard people say they could smell a buck? Well this draw smelled so strong with rutting buck it was unbelievable. Shortly after 5 pm a beautiful eight point buck appeared ten yards in front of me and I harvested him. The smell was definitely coming from this buck and he had been bedded just yards from where I shot him. So our group had two nice eight point bucks on the opener!! With Ian and my uncle Larry still hunting to fill their tags I purchased an anterless tag to get back out in the woods. That Tuesday morning Ian filled his tag with a eight pointer in a rain storm which turned to snow before we were able to get his deer out. Myself and uncle Larry hunted until Thursday and on the evening of the last hunt I filled my anterless tag on a nice doe from about 100 yds away. My six days of firearm hunting was filled with numerous sightings of racked bucks. One that will always stay in my mind was an encounter with a beautiful ten point buck, 8 yds away, from the very same spot I shot my eight pointer!!!
Thanks for the memories, BOB
Pheasant. Bob, a 25 year member was kind enough to send a photo of a late season pheasant hunt with his partner Dan. Typical of when you least expect anything to happen, it happens. At a moments notice calling in a reservation, they decided to take a drive to scout for waterfowl and walk a couple of fields with their dogs in hopes for a pheasant and maybe a quail or two. Unexpectedly, in 20 minutes one field produced 6 roosters, which made for an eventful ride home. Good job!
Pheasant. Gentlemen, I thought I would let you guys know that I did not shoot a trophy buck, or harvest a limit of birds. But, you can see in the attached photo, it was a great pheasant year and I am very pleased to be associated with such a fine organization. My hat is off to your whole staff. My son Colt turned 13 in Nov. and was able to really get excited about hunting. We made some memories that will last a life time. Thank you, Mike S.
Pheasant. Kenneth showing one each of his two retrievers in action. The older of the two is 11 years old.
Pheasant. One of your Association staff went out for a quick bird hunt on one of the hot days earlier this week to an area some said there were not any pheasants to be found. His old dog worked four for a quick one lease hunt while his other dog proved those others right about a lack of birds.
Turkey and Deer. When combining a spring turkey hunt with deer scouting remember that the prime turkey hunting lease land is off limits to scouting, they are for hunting only during the season. Any scouting requires a separate reservation in addition to a turkey hunt and that also applies to scouting anytime of the year as we do have seasonal lease land where scouting is not permitted during some parts of the year. Camping also requires a separate reservation and likewise the prime turkey hunting leases are off limits to camping. Spring turkey hunting is one hunter to one numbered property. Anyone encountering another hunter should card that other hunter and call 911 for trespasser reporting. Carry hunter orange to wear when moving between setups. More hunters are shot (11 in Missouri last spring with one fatality, never yet on Association land) during spring turkey season than any other season. Over the years the highest failure rate has occurred during the earlier parts of the earlier Kansas season. The highest tag filling success rates have historically been the third week in April and later when the toms are easier to pull off the hens.
Whitetail. Terry E., a long time deer and turkey hunter sent in a superior, reality deer hunting account that tells in detail how easy it is to see a trophy quality whitetail and how hard it is to tag one. These are the type of hunting accounts that separate this website from the idealized magazine articles that many do not read any longer. It is exactly the quality of deer hunter that Terry demonstrates that makes this Association what it is. It is also this type of hunting account that helps attract other hunters of his quality. Thank you Terry for one very good season long hunting account.
Bobwhite Quail. John, Here's one of Lucy. She was exhausted and cold the last two times I took photos. She refused to sit pretty. I was about wore out as well. Easy walking and cold. The frozen hard ground had her feet sore. All she wanted was her box. I was in quail every day. If I shot better I would have had more than one limit picture. Lots of good edge habitat. The quail would flush the far side. Shot through a lot of brush to get these. Missed a lot more than I bagged. She had more points than I could remember to count each day. The singles action would come fast at times.
Bobwhite Quail. Another quail hunting update from a long time member that was lost in our emails:
" John, The last 2 days of the [location deleted] season were real cold, especially Friday. I didn't take any pictures Friday because my batteries in the camera and spare ones were dead from the temperature. We got 7 quail Friday and 13 Sunday. We quit hunting at 4 pm both days to let the coveys re-group before dark since it was so cold.
We found 2 coveys in a half day Friday and 5 coveys Saturday. The birds were real jumpy in the cold and the singles were very difficult to locate after the covey rise. We hunted [location deleted] County Friday and [location deleted] Co. Saturday. It was nice to explore some land we have never hunted. I definitely found a few spots I need to scout this spring for the boys and I to turkey hunt.
The quail hunting was definitely spotty but if you were willing to hunt and walk hard the birds there were definitely enough birds to make good hunting. Jimmy S."
Upland Birds. Jeff B., from Illinois sent in a season's worth of pictures that is very telling of how our upland bird hunting is for those that travel from out of state. All Jeff does is hunt when he can which is always less than he wants and simply hunts on his own not even asking for recommendations. He is a smart hunter that while he does return to his favorite areas each year he also explores new areas as well careful never to over pressure any one property. He is the kind of upland hunter that requires little watching while a minority of others in the association must be told to try new ground rather than continually hunt the same units. Thank you Jeff for being the hunter you are and thank you for taking the time and effort to send in your letter and pictures.
Upland Birds. Another near the end of the season report from long time upland hunter Andrew N. In this case we left the state locations within the text rather than replace them with "[location deleted]" as this one is a generic overview and comparison across the states. We also appreciate the value of such feedback from all hunting disciplines and share it to as accurately reflect our hunting conditions as is possible in text and picture:
"Jon, In the past, especially last year, I have had greater success in Iowa than in both Missouri and Kansas. Unlike Kansas, which is primarily CRP grass, milo and wheat, Iowa offers heavy ditches and tree lines draughts next to oceans of corn. The farming practices in Iowa seem to be better about leaving cover for wildlife than some its neighboring states. Typically (except when it is really cold), I have found two to three pheasants in a draught instead of the 10-15 birds or more one might see in a large field of Kansas CRP grass. With this in mind, it is much easier for one or two guys with one or two dogs to be able to find birds. More importantly to me, I have found that birds cooperate much better with pointing dogs in the "draught" setting as opposed to grass. To this bird hunter, I get more satisfaction out of a good point and honor than I do killing the bird. Hence, in Iowa you have a much better chance of actually seeing your dog on point.
However, this year, Iowa had ups and downs. Opening weekend was expectantly difficult because most of the row crops in the State of Iowa were still in the ground. This makes it nearly impossible to hunt when you know that the birds are hiding out in the standing corn. This issue continued to be a problem in some parts of Iowa throughout the season. One particular piece of property, which had some of the best cover and birds I have ever experienced in the past, was frustrating as hell because the neighboring farmer left in about 200 acres of corn throughout the season. I KNOW that's where the birds were because I heard them and saw them flush when my dog "inadvertently" made into the corn. Hence, this was a problem in some parts of the State.
In other parts, I had mixed results. Just prior to thanksgiving, I went by myself and was able to obtain my limit in quail and pheasant within two hours. The following week, I went to the same area with three guys and dogs and was unable to obtain similar success (of course it didn’t help that one of my buddies had a young dog who tended to like to keep "ahead" of things). In general, I do think the birds in Iowa were down compared to last year and the weather didn’t cooperate through most of the season. All in all, it was still much better than Missouri and well worth making it out into the field. However, I saw plenty of hens and plenty of strong coveys of quail to seed the next year. Fortunately, and as last season proved to be true, Iowa continues to maintain the type of habitat that one good spring hatch can cause a dramatic turn of events in the bird population."
Pheasant. Charles D., sent in pictures and hunting story from this year that has expanded his website album into its second page. This section covers duck, pheasant and prairie chicken hunting and doing so during the ice storm. This letter just as his previous one falls into the hunting epic category giving a distinctive viewpoint about our hunting compared to previous letter from others. Thank you Charles for another great letter!
Whitetail. Talk to Ward W., on deer hunting and anyone will come away with an understanding of having spoken to a real deer hunter. Ward has three years of success traveling a long distance and without any local year round advantage that will make some wonder just how it can be done. Congratulations Ward you show what we have and how we should all be happy for it. Thank you for your years of pictures. Let's hope it continues.
Pheasant. Here is a couple of pictures of some birds that I shot in [locations deleted] in the middle of November. First time that I hunted in the first part of the season, I usually hunt after Thanksgiving and one of the things I notice different between the two time periods was the cover and the hunters. I usually do not see that many after Thanksgiving but right after I shot this picture seven truck with at less two guys in each truck came by me (on the road, not our lease land). That's why I did not get a shot off my dogs.
Picture number two was after driving seven hours, I got the old dog out and he put of a show. Birds were sitting tight but it was raining and my glasses would get fogged up, so the shooting was not so great (That's my story and I'm sticking two it.) Picture one is of the younger dog and I think the light is starting to come on.
Thanks guys for all your hard work. I have never had a problem with finding birds on any of my trips up from Texas.
Whitetail. Bill M., sent us in a picture of his first whitetail through his Association. Thanks Bill and we believe this will only be the first of many. Bill travels all the way from Massachusetts to hunt the mid-west.
Whitetail. Jeff tagged a nice whitetail, 148 inch, making it his first since joining his Association.
Whitetail. Mark P., with his first Association whitetail deer picture on the website. Mark is famous for being the Association's first member from Rhode Island having joined just this past May. Thanks Mark we look forward to you hunt next year.
Whitetail. The Steen's do it again! Whitetail and turkey hunting success that has been the most successful husband and wife team in the association. Congratulations to the Steen's for another great season. Thank you for have been so kind to send in so many pictures through the years.
Bird Hunters, Jay J. found on one of the Kiowa Co leases in January a transmitter for an electronic dog training collar. If it may be yours give us an email and we will put you in contact with the finder.
Upland Bird. Jon, Just thought I would drop you a quick note. With this being my first year, I had no idea what to expect other than what I had read on the website. I'm strictly a bird hunter and found the majority of the ground to be good and bird population good. Moved birds everyday. I've attached a photo for your use. Hope to be able to get back out there after the first of the year. John
Thank you John, much luck for the rest of the season.
Duck. Dave C., tells us just what great duck hunting we have by his traveling all the way from North Carolina to his Association's wetlands. He also now has two very well composed dog pictures that show where much of the hunt comes from. Thanks Dave for reminding us what is important in life.
Whitetail. John, Got him Saturday morning about 7:30. What a hunt! Galen is wanting to start taking the boys with him on the club. George is 11 and hunts Austin is 8 and doesn't yet he just goes to be there with dad. Lauren is 13 and hunts.
Good luck and thank you Marti and many more great days to come.
Whitetail. From Rex A.,: Had my best year ever whitetail deer hunting thanks to your quality properties, I can't tell you enough how much fun I had this year. This sport is getting more expensive each when you kill 3 trophies and have to mount them. I am forced to take up learning taxidermy to keep down my expenses. I have 13 on the wall now, and need to expand my display area in the garage. Enclosed are a couple I got back last week from 03 season, I am not paying any more taxidermy bills to anyone else! Thanks for running a great club, and in a couple of years I might send in a complete layout of all the trophy bucks which I have harvested through the club. Thanks again and have a good new year, Rex
Thank you for sharing Rex, watching your success over these short years has been impressive.
Duck. Mark O., a long time duck hunter continues a tradition of sending in a report that we look forward to every year. Thank you Mark it seems like you have a good year every year! Mark writes: Jon, We had a great opening weekend for waterfowl hunting. Sam and Steve and I harvested 33 ducks in two days. Mostly gadwalls, a few ringnecks and teal. The birds flew very well on Sunday. We had our limit by 7am. It was a lot of fun. This club definitely has the right ingredients for success. Thanks for everything you do. Mark
Mule Deer. Nathan D., sent in a picture of one very big 4x4 Mule Deer that anyone would be proud to put on the wall. Congratulation's to Nathan and thank you for sending in the picture.
While this is our first Mule Deer picture of this season we have hunter reports of several others and look forward to seeing their results soon enough.
Feedback. Many suggestions from many hunters makes for a better experience all around. Here's one resulting from a buddy hunt. That suggestion is for the partner to photograph the other partner in action be it walking in on dog point or shooting from the blind. It will be the picture 10 years from now that will give the good memory and smile.
Pheasant. Randy D., captured several pictures while on a pheasant hunt showing varied game that makes for a more enjoyable trip. Read his hunting account covering pheasant hunting, dog injuries, ducks, Mule Deer and the 119 Rios seen below. Thank you randy for showing the hunt is more than just the harvest and what can happen to a good dog.
Feedback. Thank you to all that are sending in their hunting updates and pictures. Christmas seems to have been a banner time for digital cameras. For those emailing pictures in we would like to ask to send files at 100,000b or 100KB resolution typically a 100 DPI for a 5x7 or 300 DPI for larger sizes. With these larger file sizes we have enough of a picture to enhance through enlargement/brightness/contrast/color adjustments to make for a more presentable photo. Anything less and the picture size is typically too small for the 3 1/2 x 3 1/2 inch size picture that is the optimum of online viewing. For those asking what we would most like to have as text for any pictures is the same as what we are most asked about and that is habitat where the harvest occurred, game activity, weather and successful hunting methods.
2005 celebrates our 40th year serving the hunter. Thank you to all of the Association hunters past and present.
Waterfowl. Frank, Bob and Al sent in the entire season's worth of duck and goose hunting pictures covering a lot of days and ground. These three are but a sampling showing the range of their success covering ponds, river and field. Thanks guys for one impressive spread. Have a look at several of their pictures we posted to this page (the rest went to other areas of the website) as well as an end of season wrap up provided by one of the hunters.
Whitetail. Father and sonswhitetail deer hunt. A great year when the entire family is successful. Thanks to Brad, Zack and Payton for sharing the pictures of their hunt.
Whitetail. Bill S., from Florida shares with us one great looking racked buck he harvested this past season. Bill joined his hunting Association in February 2000 and after traveling and hunting 4 seasons is able to harvest a wallhanger worthy for any trophy room.
Congratulations Bill and good luck for the years to come. Thank you for sending in the pictures and letter.
Bobwhite Quail. One great quail dog as Kevin has shown us several such pictures each season for several seasons hunting the same land as the rest of us. His dog has demonstrated many times it is the dog that can cover habitat that will find the quail. A simple statement many fail to recognize for its nuance. Many of us have dogs that will run the ground failing to understand that is different than hunting the right habitat. It is dogs such as Kevin's that make for those recurring exceptional quail days that other dogs only have on lucky days. A quail limit for many bird dog hunters comes as frequently as a 150 class buck comes for many deer hunters. For others lucky to have the dog training skill to produce such a dog as Kevin has it is a significant accomplishment many others hope to achieve someday. Thanks Kevin for sharing with us one more aspect of hunting.