Hunting with a 4/6 year old
4/14/15 @ 8:19 PM
I refuse to leave them at home because they more than want to go. However, I also dont think they are ready to sit in a blind for 10 hours. I have quite a few spots that hold bird both private/public. My thought is not to rip them out of bed before first light as this will do more harm them good. I absolutely love the breaking of dark silence with the eruption of gobbles....however at this point Im willing to miss it to give them a positive experience. My initial thought is to run and gun all day with frequent calling and look for that eager bird.....Any thoughts/ideas....None of my area have consistent action in the morning in a specific area...however, all areas hold bird and receive little to moderate pressure. My big hope is to spot a flock in a place that we can easily close the distance..
Edited on 4/14/15 8:33 PM
4/19/15 @ 8:16 PM
Took them out and they were champ. Unfortunately the birds did not cooperate. However, just seeing all them in the field pumped them up. Decided to let them sleep in and left around 6. Around 3 pm took them home and got a call from a buddy to come hunt his property. Wish they were with me but they were pretty ready to run around, beat each other up and yell. Saw quite a few that night but nothing within range. Thanks for all the ideas.
4/18/15 @ 12:02 PM
I agree with using a blind but only in the early morning. When my son was 4-6yo, I would wake him up early and take him to a blind early while it was still dark he would fall asleep but once the birds started gobbling I would wake him and after he heard the first gobble he would be bright eyed and wide awake. Usually we would sit in the blind until we quit getting responses to our calls. Then I would move sometimes only 75yds other times 250yds. We would sit by a tree or in a blow down etc and call for up to an hour if nothing happened we would move. The biggest thing I found was vocal birds kept his interest. He's 8 now but all three of those years I harvested a bird with him right by my side!
4/17/15 @ 11:15 AM
I do agree with BuckRub, the important thing is to get them out any way you can. I like the blind idea because, if you're not working a bird, it is hard for me to sit for even a half hour virtually motionless. It's impossible for 6/4 year olds, but bumping a quiet one that's 25yds behind you when you stand up, is part of the experience too. Spring is such a wonderful time to be out, with the earth waking up after a winter. Have fun and remember it's more about them than you.
4/17/15 @ 8:10 AM
Heres a Nebraska bird with my little one (whos not so little any more) We did the sneak on him from 600 yards out, running, crawling, sneaking up on a field edge and then me calling him in. I carried everything and made sure he was good to go coaching him up and encouraging him on the way. We got him at about 11am after a full morning. Out there a full morning is sometimes walking a 2500 acre piece. Do what works for you is what I am saying. There are no rules, that is where the fun comes in.
Edited on 4/17/15 8:10 AM
4/17/15 @ 8:03 AM
I would say it is up to you and the demeanor of your kids. That in in itself will change as the day progresses. I have never really sat blinds with my boys and they have been going out with me since they were 4. Once my oldest turned 6 there was an opportunity to get more tags and the game was certainly much easier and laid back. Early season you have to worry about cold, late season mosquitos. I would check properties after initial set ups and they would sit in the truck and chill at times while I was out in the woods. Many times they would come with. The excitement comes with the encouragement and wonder----Did you hear that? Did you see that? What the heck is this? Explore. Sometimes when we were running and gunning they would be on my hip and sometimes 100 yards back. It all depends, sometimes they were happy as a clam and othertimes not so much and there were tears. My favorite was when my oldest was 6 and he was behind me in a blowdown. WE had 3 toms in front of us on a field at 200 yards for over two hours before they came in, he wanted to move sooooo bad but I told him no way. His foot fell asleep and when he went to go with me to get the bird he fell down, but he saw a struttin, gobbling, mating show like no other. I hunt 24/7 so there is a lot of opportunity and if they do not want to go I get over it. If there was more constraints Id imagine it would not be as much fun. I take them out of state too as there are no age restrictions in other states, so they have enjoyed that killing birds themselves.
Edited on 4/17/15 8:05 AM
4/16/15 @ 6:29 PM
Maybe I used the term running and gunning a little loosely. What I mean is if, there arent birds in say 3/4 hours picking up and moving to next area in hopes of finding vocal birds there or along the way. Thanks for the info. They both pheasant hunt and duck hunt with me so have some experience. My philosophy is start them young. I know too many people with 10 year olds who would rather stay home and do nothing....
4/16/15 @ 11:10 AM
4/16/15 @ 11:06 AM
Having had my young son tag along in the days before ground blinds and afternoon hunting here are my words of wisdom. #1) Use a blind and bring quiet stuff to occupy them and keep them comfortable, warm, lay down, etc. #2) Bring drinks and snacks. #3) We loved the early morning and sneaking into our spot in the dark...still do. It was exciting and part of the adventure. Unless you know your guys are not morning people, I think that would be an exciting experience, especially hearing those first gobbles. #4) If you can't do the morning hunt, the afternoon hunt again in a blind, is the way to go. #5) Did I mention to use a blind. Running and gunning with two little guys is doomed to failure and disappointment.
4/16/15 @ 9:20 AM
4/15/15 @ 6:32 PM