Good morning fellow pheasant hunters. Just a couple points regarding stocked pheasnats. Thank you to the DNR for their stocking efforts. Over 75,000 birds stocked. Amazing and allows many of us the chance to make unreal memories with our family friends and our beloved dogs.
There are many many pheasants left to pursue. In fact more than many of you would believe. Here are my suggestions to find pheasants.
1) Hunt the other hunters. Then hunt where they don't.
2) Use OnX to find potential areas. Way in back corners. I like to find little Honey Hole spots that no one else hunts.
3) Find private/public edges. Many birds feed/louge in private stubble fields and lounge around in thick ditches or fencelines. They return to public land to roost.
4) Don't hunt grass fields. Hunt the nastiest cover available. Willows, tamarack swamps, shrub thickets.
5) If you are not sweating you are not working hard enough. I always tell my wife that I had another good stress test today.
6) Explore-drive around. I went to two publics yesterday I have never hunted. Saw 9 roosters. Got one and got close to 4-5 more
shots. I saw no other man tracks where I hunted. There were hunters in all the parking lots on this public. The one place I found was a public private edge. I was on three tracks in 20 yards. No parking lot - parked along the road.
7) I saw 24 roosters in one large section this week. That is the truth-you can choose to not believe if you want. Many of those roosters are darn near impossible to get. They just keep running ahead and then eventually fly. Last year my nephew had his gps tracker on and we took one rooster 700 yards before we finally got.
8) Some of us do not chase the stocking trucks. We just hunt. My dog and me and family and friends are at 30 roosters. Not over possession limit. Eat often and share some. We do not hunt every day. I usually hunt alone-the way I like it. Couple hunts with son and other family.
In conclusion, there are way more roosters left than some of you think-if you're willing to work to find them. Get out and put the miles on walking and exploring. Nothing like harvesting a beautiful rooster with your dog and see it laying in the snow.