Pheasant hunting – otherwise known to me as a pleasant walk in the woods with hunting garb, and lack of birds. Call me crazy but after two days, and 10 miles humping through the woods, I am pretty sure that all of the pheasants that are stocked and released by New Hampshire Fish & Game are gone the day after they are stocked. Had I not seen the remnants, I mean feathers of a few previously taken birds, I would swear that they did not stock the places I went to.
Fortunately for me, I spent some recon time on the computer this week both on the NH Fish & Game website as well as the Bing Maps so I could nail down where exactly the acceptable pheasant hunting areas are. The fish & game website gives you a town, and a street name. As you can imagine this makes things a little interesting. I started with the Milford Fish Hatchery using Big Maps “birds eye” feature to see what the pheasant stocking land looked like. With a sense of the covert that the state was releasing the birds in I marked down a couple towns within an hour of my house, with stocking sites and set off to find some nice farm raised pheasant!
If it only were that easy. I should have know better given the countless hours I have spent hunting up North. The puppy and I tried everything. Based on experience I hunted the thickest, shrubbiest, miserable areas first. No birds, no flushes, no excitement. Next I figured I was making this too hard, and that these farm raised birds that have been coddled all their lives are probably in the cut corn fields or tall grasses. Wrong again! Finally, I hunted out of the coverts via trail or open woods hoping to catch a bird that may have been flushed from some of the fields to the tall trees. Skunked again. Oh well, I can think of several worse ways to spend an autumn day then being outside in the woods hunting.
I did encounter a small snake and a blue jay which provided a fleeting moment of excitement and a photo op!
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