When do you give up? - The HuntingPA.com Outdoor Community
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post #1 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-14-2019, 02:17 PM Thread Starter
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When do you give up?

When do you give up on pheasants?

I've been out (without dogs) every Saturday sense the last stocking at my usual spot on the 20th. The number of birds flushed has decreased substantially, and my focus has shifted from pheasants to rabbits. BUT even so I still managed to flush 3 hens on Saturday, 22 days past the last stocking. I plan on still going out every saturday until the close of season, if not for high hopes of pheasants, but to at-least try to manage a cottontail or two in the bag.

When do you typically hang up the shotgun for pheasants?
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post #2 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-14-2019, 02:21 PM
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Either the last day or when I realize my wife is getting irritated. Getting a puppy will help on this front. Eventually she will say "You better get your dog out of this house!" (It's YOUR dog at that point.)


Edit: I'm pretty dense so I never really notice my wife is getting irritated with hunting until she tells me.

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Last edited by Vonfoust; 01-14-2019 at 02:52 PM.
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post #3 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-14-2019, 02:47 PM
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As long the weather holds up.I go because I like to see my dog smile and she needs to do what she was bred to do.We went out this past saturday and killed one hen.I saw one set of tracks and had no other flushes but had fun watching the dog do her thing.I don't have the heart to let her sit in the house on a saturday.The dog overheard me tell my wife that I might take her hunting.When she heard that,there was no backing down at that point.I don't expect much shooting this late in the season but hanging out with a dog is better than hanging out with a lot of people.
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post #4 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-14-2019, 02:52 PM
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I have taken the boys out almost every day since the season re-opened.
we have not seen a bird since December 31 but still go out. I may stop carrying the gun
and or not go out if the weather is bad.............however the boys really enjoy themselves.
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post #5 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-14-2019, 03:51 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vonfoust View Post
Either the last day or when I realize my wife is getting irritated. Getting a puppy will help on this front. Eventually she will say "You better get your dog out of this house!" (It's YOUR dog at that point.)


Edit: I'm pretty dense so I never really notice my wife is getting irritated with hunting until she tells me.
I plan on getting my first bird dog this spring, and am very excited about it.
I feel like it will increase the experience by a huge margin. Even without I still enjoy tracking around in the field. For instance this past saturday I walked a total of 10 miles, flushed 3 birds, and 6 rabbits, to some that may seem like alot of walking for so little opportunities but I enjoy the ---- out of it. Cant wait to add the dog component.
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post #6 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-14-2019, 04:03 PM
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Taking a dog is a lot like when you first start taking a kid.You're perspective and reasons for being out there change.My enthusiasm has decreased a lot as I get older.The kid and dog increase the level of enthusiasm by a great deal.
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post #7 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-14-2019, 05:05 PM
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My and my dog's interest decline as it gets harder to bind birds. There are still some out there and we will probably go look for some of them again tomorrow. But, we aren't hunting them every day like we were a couple weeks ago. When it gets to the point we can hunt for a couple hours in each of our hot spots without finding a bird we will probably call it quits for the year.


One of my hot spots currently has a bunch of traps set in it now so we have already quit on it, at least for now. If we get deep snow that too will shut us down.

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post #8 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-14-2019, 05:31 PM
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I grew up in the true heyday of pheasants in Lebanon County. I could go out before school and get two pheasants and still be at the bus stop in time for school. Wide World of Sports came to Lancaster County to film pheasant hunts. Farmers use combines instead of corn pickers that would miss ears of corn. They take in the corn stalks, pull up the fence rows to make huge fields, There is nothing for pheasants to hide in or eat in huge open expanses of winter wheat or corn stubble. The quarries around Lebanon no longer release as much calcium dust into the air, something that helped strengthen pheasant eggs enough to hatch. Less protection from the plethora of cats that roam around suburban sprawl. I saw a cockbird two weeks ago. The first pheasant I have seen since 2009. Most likely both escapees from a breeder and immediate fox bail. Almost 20 years ago, I went hunting on the SGL up near Dillsburg. Kicked up a few pheasants, but decided not to shoot. Let go in hopes that maybe there would be a clutch of chicks the following Spring.
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post #9 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-14-2019, 07:52 PM
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Originally Posted by zimmerstutzen View Post
I grew up in the true heyday of pheasants in Lebanon County. I could go out before school and get two pheasants and still be at the bus stop in time for school. Wide World of Sports came to Lancaster County to film pheasant hunts. Farmers use combines instead of corn pickers that would miss ears of corn. They take in the corn stalks, pull up the fence rows to make huge fields, There is nothing for pheasants to hide in or eat in huge open expanses of winter wheat or corn stubble. The quarries around Lebanon no longer release as much calcium dust into the air, something that helped strengthen pheasant eggs enough to hatch. Less protection from the plethora of cats that roam around suburban sprawl. I saw a cockbird two weeks ago. The first pheasant I have seen since 2009. Most likely both escapees from a breeder and immediate fox bail. Almost 20 years ago, I went hunting on the SGL up near Dillsburg. Kicked up a few pheasants, but decided not to shoot. Let go in hopes that maybe there would be a clutch of chicks the following Spring.
So your answer to the OP's question would be "almost 20 years ago"?
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post #10 of 24 (permalink) Old 01-14-2019, 08:53 PM
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As others have said, the odds of success continue to go down as the late season goes on. However, I plan to get out at least a few more times to let my dog run and hopefully find some birds. Two of the places I frequently fish each spring are near stocked pheasant fields and I have seen pheasants several times out in April and May so I know there are still birds out there through February.
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