Self Guided Pheasant Hunting
Failure With Hunts - One Example
To jump start the self guided hunter includes an examination of failed pheasant hunting approaches that are demonstrated by the first year central mid-west upland bird hunter.
That first year central mid-west upland bird hunter is defined as one who is Kansas hunting for the first time. This experience includes terrain distinctive of prior experiences. Often this hunter travels in from non native pheasant states. Prior dog experience has been on pen raised birds. In short, a hunter who has not had the hunting we all desire the most, wild pheasants on natural terrain.
That hunting is also the toughest hunt there is. No where we will we say our hunting is easy. Wild upland bird hunts on natural terrain require more walking than any would like to walk. Keen shooting ability when fatigued. Dog power capable of wild birds that is far different than pen raised bird or field trial dog power.
Self Guided Pheasant Hunting In Pictures,
Two Hunters, Two Dogs, One Day, Out Kansas Hunting
Kansas hunting trip with two dogs, two hunters, four roosters bagged on a sunny day in January.
Pictured below is a grass and brushed-in dry drainage, nearby a water way inside a grain field.
This spot holds a covey each year along with several pheasants. It is a spot to hunt to get away from the tall native grass fields that are the common Kansas hunting. It is also the type of protective cover we can get pictures of dogs on point rather than in tall grass where the picture of a dog on point is typically more grass than anything else. This old Brittany point was on a pheasant. The youngster setter on a far too close of an honor.
One Pheasant Hunting Method
A common approach to Association private land pheasant hunting is to take the maps sheets that have the most acreage on an individual sheet as prime decision criteria of where to hunt. The belief being the map sheet with the most land means there must be more hunting. That hunt starts at the first lease closest to the motel. Then in an outward fashion each spot on the map sheet is hunted in turn until the end of day light.
A quail covey point on the pheasant hunt. Such is Kansas pheasant hunting terrain. Any one pheasant field may be surrounded by creeks, fence lines and drainage's that hold coveys. The same for turkey and deer. Any dog given to chase turkey or deer will find ample opportunity.
The failure of this approach is that our best bird hunting is within the agricultural regions where 45% to 55% of the land use is farming. This farming land covers the majority of all Association lease land. It overlaps with sustainable pheasant populations in less than the total available acreage.
A second point is at an average of 50% land usage in farming means the best anyone could hope for in terms of wildlife habitat is 500 acres per 1,000 gross lease acres. Of that 500 acres of good habitat it is not all on one lease or one spot.
Furthermore, of that 500 acres of wildlife habitat some and not all is well suited for pheasant hunting.
All this brings the self guided hunter not to attempt to put nature in a box and take a systematic approach of hunting all land. It requires the self guided hunter to develop a calibrated eye for where to hunt and what not to. If at this point it seems to make self guided pheasant hunts too difficult then the reader is probably more suited for a guided hunt on preserve birds.
No One left To Flounder - We Assist
Not all is lost as the Association partners who enjoy pheasant hunting behind their own dogs cover all regions throughout the year. They, along with the online private hunting land map library, will get the hunter to the right point of where to park his truck. Meaning that on any one map sheet there will be spots of better pheasant holding protective cover. Those spots will be pointed out to the first year Association hunter. After that first season most hunters develop their favorite areas for return hunts and explore other regions as their motivation allows.
These favored areas will change with each new dog as that any one dog will perform better in different habitat than the other.
A Second Failed Approach
Then several singles point on the scattered covey. Switching from blue sky shooting at pheasants that fly relatively flat and away compared to quail that twist and turn sideways around tree and scrub. This hunting requires a sense of humor.
Another failed approach of the new to the Kansas self guided hunter is to draw final conclusions from limited trials.
The first hunt will not be a good hunt. A full season of hunts should be experienced before beginning an analysis. It is that the first hunt, the first season is likely to be better than experienced elsewhere. It will be the worst compared to subsequent Association hunts. Many hunters have found good hunting in this Association. There have always been a handful of new Association hunters each season that will speak only of failure.