Archive for the ‘Habitat’ Category

Minnesota is Talking Pheasants: Register Now for State’s First-Ever Pheasant Summit

Thursday, November 13th, 2014

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How does Minnesota combat the expiration of approximately 300,000 Conservation Reserve Program acres in the coming years? How can the state and conservation groups like Pheasants Forever partner more effectively? Can improvements be made to existing conservation programs that improve grasslands and pheasant populations? Your ideas are wanted now in Minnesota.

Minnesota’s ring-necked pheasants are at a crossroads for conservation, and the state is taking action! On Saturday, Dec. 13, Pheasants Forever and the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources are presenting the first-ever Minnesota Pheasant Summit in Marshall, an event convened by Governor Mark Dayton. Join us! The event will bring hunters, farmers, policymakers, conservationists, and key members of the Governor’s Cabinet together to discuss strategies to increase the pheasant population, improve pheasant habitat, and ensure future generations can enjoy the thrill of flushing pheasants.

Register today—registration is free and includes lunch. The Summit begins at 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 13 in Marshall, MN at the Southwest Minnesota State University (Conference Center-Upper Ballroom).

Busy that weekend?—sign-up for the Pheasant Summit’s email updates to receive notification when the online survey is available to send in your input.

The time has come to bring Minnesotans together to talk pheasants and upland habitat. Make sure you’re involved.

Field Notes are compiled by Anthony Hauck, Pheasants Forever’s online editor. Email Anthony at AHauck@pheasantsforever.org and follow him on Twitter @AnthonyHauckPF.

Rooster Road Trip Recap: Nebraska sets Public Access Standard for Bird Hunters

Wednesday, November 12th, 2014

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One of the reasons I look forward to the Rooster Road Trip every year is because it serves as my own form of a pheasant country survey. I enjoy comparing bird numbers, topography, geographic hunting differences, habitat conditions and access programs. As I reflect on today’s memorable 2014 Rooster Road Trip finale, I can say without qualification that Nebraska’s Open Fields and Waters Program is the country’s best template for opening up private land to public hunting access.

Like all the best ideas, the genesis for Nebraska’s Open Fields concept occurred during a hunting trip in 1996 between Jim Douglas of the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission and Pete Berthelsen of Pheasants Forever. The next year, the Conservation Reserve Program-Managed Access Program (CRP-MAP) was created to open up private CRP acres for public access, but with a wrinkle unique from other states. CRP-MAP incentivized landowners to improve the habitat on those acres when qualifying for the access payment. The result was an economic carrot for landowners to create higher quality cover.

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A few years ago, the Nebraska Game and Parks Department changed the name from CRP-Map to the Open Fields & Waters Program for the purpose of creating access for other forms of public recreation, like fishing. The program has also added a scoring system to incentivize additional habitat practices on private land with higher landowner payments. In other words, the higher quality of habitat and the greater potential for hunter satisfaction on array of species, the bigger the payment available for a landowner.

I’ve focused my pheasant hunting on these acres during every previous visit to Nebraska over the years and this morning was no different. Led by Andy Houser, a Pheasants Forever farm bill wildlife biologist, we released our pointers into the frosty morning breeze blowing into a beautiful stand of bluestem. Two roosters received early warning of our arrival and flushed just out of gun range within minutes of leaving the truck.

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A third rooster was not so wise. He rose to the sky off my German shorthaired pointer Trammell’s nose and banked to the left before a load of Prairie Storm 4’s brought him back to the grass. Jerrod Burke, District V Commissioner with Nebraska Game and Parks Commission, handed the rooster to me after his Gordon setter made the retrieve and alerted me to jewelry, a red band, on the bird’s ankle.

Houser explained that biology students at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s Cooperative Fish & Wildlife Research Unit net the wild roosters during autumn nights prior to hunting season. After capture, a leg band is secured and the bird is released. Then as hunters bag those roosters, researchers are able to determine many things like distribution and life expectancy.  After a phone call with the leg band’s number, Houser reported this morning’s banded rooster was indeed captured in this very CRP field earlier this autumn and was born this spring.

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Shortly after all photos of the leg band were complete, Burke added a rooster to his own game vest with a smart left to right crossing shot. And later at the far corner of the field, Trammell was able to equal her previous Nebraska retrieving feats by tracking down a rooster I had winged on a far straightaway shot (my nemesis). While our collection of pups and hunters searched the spot the bird “should be,” I watched Trammell on my Garmin Alpha screen as she zipped to my left 60 yards. With trepidation, I watched her get further and further from me. But this was Nebraska and Tram has a history of “delivering the mail” for me here.  After a few minutes, I’ll be darned if Pheasants Forever’s Colby Kerber didn’t yell to our collection of hunters “here comes a pup with a bird in her mouth.” As any bird dog loving guy or gal will tell you; that kind of retrieve makes cleaning up the puppy messes, the torn shoes, the begging at the table, and the veterinarian bills all worthwhile.

We worked a total of four Open Fields tracts between a cheeseburger and hot chocolate (with whipped cream, of course) before calling an end to the official 2014 Rooster Road Trip. While there were plenty of roosters still to chase, photos needed uploading and blog posts needed composing. Plus, I submitted Thursday and Friday as vacation days before I left Minnesota. My own personal Rooster Road Trip, without camera or computer, starts tomorrow. Where? A Nebraska Open Fields & Waters parcel of course. I’ll be there at 8AM. I don’t drink much coffee, but grab me a hot chocolate with whipped cream and we’ll turn a couple of dogs loose into the wind together. Safe travels and see you on the Rooster Road!

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Follow along to the 2014 Rooster Road Trip at www.RoosterRoadTrip.org and be sure to mention #RRT14 in all your Twitter, Instagram and Facebook posts.

The Pointer is written by Bob St.Pierre, Pheasants Forever & Quail Forever’s Vice President of Marketing.  Follow Bob on Twitter @BobStPierre and listen to Bob and Billy Hildebrand every Saturday morning on FAN Outdoors radio on KFAN FM100.3.

All Bird Dogs Should Go to Heaven AND Nebraska

Wednesday, November 12th, 2014

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Pheasants Forever’s Bob St.Pierre and his late hunting partner, “Izzy,” were very fond of Nebraska’s uplands.

For nostalgic reasons, my most anticipated destination on the road is Nebraska. Over the years, “The Cornhusker State” has been a very fun place for me and my shorthairs.

My oldest shorthair, Trammell, and I have had some of our most epic hunts around

the Open Fields & Waters lands of southwest Nebraska. The incredibly well-managed habitat is as birdie of cover as I’ve ever encountered and the “bunching” of the grasses on these acres creates natural spots for birds to hold tight – perfect for a pointer. During our first-ever Rooster Road Trip back in 2010, Trammell locked up on six consecutive rooster points in an hour. Anthony, Andrew and I were thrilled to slip those birds into our game vests. One of those roosters in particular stands out as unquestionably the best retrieve of Tram’s life. On snowy evenings after the season, I’ve often replayed that field’s hunt, points and retrieves in my mind.

A few years later, I brought my young puppy “Izzy” to Nebraska for her introduction to the Rooster Road Trip.  Six-months old and all puppy, I watched Izzy become a bird dog locking up on a covey of bobwhite quail during our first walk in Nebraska. Magically, I dropped a double out of that covey and Izzy brought them one-by-one back to me. Sadly, Izzy passed on last autumn well before her time.

This year, I’ve got Esky, a new 6-month old puppy, along for the Rooster Road Trip. Esky is Trammell’s niece and Izzy’s half-sister. She was born in Iowa, lives in Minnesota, but I’m optimistic Nebraska will produce a moment with Esky I’ll remember forever.

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Follow along to the 2014 Rooster Road Trip at www.RoosterRoadTrip.org and be sure to mention #RRT14 in all your Twitter, Instagram and Facebook posts.

The Pointer is written by Bob St.Pierre, Pheasants Forever & Quail Forever’s Vice President of Marketing.  Follow Bob on Twitter @BobStPierre and listen to Bob and Billy Hildebrand every Saturday morning on FAN Outdoors radio on KFAN FM100.3.

Rooster Road Trip Preview – Team Pointer in Nebraska

Wednesday, November 12th, 2014

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Wednesday, November 12th

We’ll be hunting in southwest Nebraska near the town of McCook.

Shooting Hours: 30 minutes before sunrise to sunset

Daily Limits: 3 rooster pheasants per day / 12 in possession.  6 quail per day / 24 in possession.  3 sharp-tailed grouse per day / 12 in possession (west of hwy 81).

We’ll be focusing our day’s hunt on Nebraska’s wonderful Open Fields & Waters program.

We’ll be focusing our day’s hunt on Nebraska’s wonderful Open Fields & Waters program.

Public Hunting Land

We’ll be focusing our day’s hunt on Nebraska’s wonderful Open Fields & Waters program.  Through the program, the Nebraska Game & Parks Commission in partnership with Pheasants Forever pays private landowners to improve their CRP acres for wildlife and open those acres up for public hunting.  Additionally, Open Fields & Waters also pays landowners in southwest Nebraska a fee to allow walk-in hunting access on tall wheat and milo stubble (at least 15 inches) that is left undisturbed after harvest.  There are roughly 270,000 acres enrolled in the Open Fields & Waters program with approximately 80,000 of those acres located in southwest Nebraska.

Nonresident Licensing

Nebraska Game & Parks Commission offers a full season non-resident small game permit for $81 in tandem with a state Habitat Stamp for an additional $20 to hunt pheasants and quail in the state.  There is also a two-day permit available for $56.  A hunter education certificate number is required.

Pheasants Forever’s Impact in Nebraska

Pheasants Forever Chapters: 60

Quail Forever Chapters: 3

Pheasants Forever Members: 9,199

Quail Forever Members: 526

Habitat projects completed in Nebraska: 96,698 projects

Total habitat acres improved in Nebraska: 3,782,754 acres

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Follow along to the 2014 Rooster Road Trip at www.RoosterRoadTrip.org and be sure to mention #RRT14 in all your Twitter, Instagram and Facebook posts.

The Pointer is written by Bob St.Pierre, Pheasants Forever & Quail Forever’s Vice President of Marketing.  Follow Bob on Twitter @BobStPierre and listen to Bob and Billy Hildebrand every Saturday morning on FAN Outdoors radio on KFAN FM100.3.

Rooster Road Trip Preview – Team Pointer in Kansas

Tuesday, November 11th, 2014

Tuesday, November 11th (Veterans Day)

We’ll be hunting in north central Kansas near Smith Center.

Pheasant/Quail Season: November 8, 2014 – January 31, 2015

Shooting Hours: 30 minutes before sunrise to sunset

Daily Limits: 4 rooster pheasants per day and 8 bobwhite quail per day.

NOTE: Kansas is the only state with a 4 rooster bag limit!

KS WIHAPublic Hunting Land

We’ve got a trifecta of public land targets in Kansas with a state wildlife area, a national wildlife refuge and WIHA (Walk-In Hunter Area) acres all on our list of prospective spots.  We’ve been told to get ready for quail coveys this year as the area’s bobwhite numbers are on the upswing.

Non-resident Licensing

Non-Resident licenses are $72.50 with a very affordable $2.50 greater prairie chicken permit available as an add-on.  I consider these prices a steal for the amount of public land (more than 1.5 million acres) and mixed bag opportunities available in Kansas.

News & Notes

A recent Associated Press article noted that hunters contribute more than $600 million annually to the state’s economy.

Upland Bird Forecast provided by KDWP&T

Northern High Plains

Pheasant–This region maintained the highest spring densities of pheasants. As a result of delayed wheat harvest and improved weedy cover in this region, production improved, indicated by a nearly 50 percent increase in the brood survey compared to 2013. Despite this increase, the dramatic decline of pheasant populations over the last several years limited the breeding population preventing large-scale recovery. Hunting opportunities should be improved throughout most of this region but the highest densities will be found in the northern half of the region.

Quail– Populations in this region had been increasing prior to the drought; however, the deteriorated habitat conditions associated with the drought resulted in significant declines in production. This area is at the extreme northwestern edge of bobwhite range in Kansas, and densities are relatively low compared to central Kansas. Hunting opportunities in this region will be limited this year but the best areas will be in the eastern and southeastern counties where adequate cover is present.

Pheasants Forever’s Impact in Kansas

Pheasants Forever Chapters: 38

Quail Forever Chapters: 8

Pheasants Forever Members: 5,544

Quail Forever Members: 1,058

Habitat projects completed in Kansas: 7,946 projects

Total habitat acres improved in Kansas: 210,419 acres

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Follow along to the 2014 Rooster Road Trip at www.RoosterRoadTrip.org and be sure to mention #RRT14 in all your Twitter, Instagram and Facebook posts.

The Pointer is written by Bob St.Pierre, Pheasants Forever & Quail Forever’s Vice President of Marketing.  Follow Bob on Twitter @BobStPierre and listen to Bob and Billy Hildebrand every Saturday morning on FAN Outdoors radio on KFAN FM100.3.

Rooster Road Trip Recap: Blown Away in Colorado

Monday, November 10th, 2014

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The Colorado of my imagination is painted by herds of elk roaming the Rocky Mountains. In reality, Colorado is a state of dramatic topographical diversity with an agricultural terrain not unlike neighboring Kansas or Nebraska dominating the eastern third.

The state’s primary pheasant range exists in a geographic triangle between the towns of Sterling, Holyoke and Yuma. This land is checkered with corn, wheat and grassy CRP blocks. In fact, Colorado has 1.98 million acres currently enrolled in CRP which is the third highest mark in the country behind only Texas and Kansas

Bob Hix, Pheasants Forever’s regional representative for Colorado, favors hunting walk-in areas of harvested wheat fields in which shin-high stubble has been left as residual cover. Upon our arrival in the state over the weekend, we spent some time hunting these areas, but found only limited success with Pheasants Forever’s Logan Hinners dropping the group’s first Colorado ringneck.

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For the first day of the Team Pointer leg of the Rooster Road Trip, we were joined by a group of representatives from Colorado Parks & Wildlife which included Director Bob Broscheid and Terrestrial Section Manager Craig McLaughlin and his talented trio of German shorthairs. As we pulled into the parking area this morning, a cloudless sun-soaked sky shined 50 degree temps onto our 10 person hunting group. Whenever I hunt in groups this large, I’m always concerned about safety. To this gathering’s credit, every hunter was diligent about safety to the point of being overly polite when the first rooster cackled to the sky at 20 yards in front of the center of our line. It was that Colorado pheasant’s lucky day with every gun’s muzzle safely pointed straight up and every safety firmly engaged in each hunter’s hand. The second rooster must have figured his chances as good as the first and he was right.  Even the third rooster flushed without a shot fired. Finally Ed Gorman, a Pheasants Forever chapter member and Parks & Wildlife employee, swung on a fourth rooster that was not to be so lucky as the first three pardoned birds.

By the time we returned to the parking area, temperatures had plummeted 25 degrees and winds had grown to a steady 30 miles per hour with gusts somewhere just shy of almost knocking us over. Winter was coming to Colorado and we were squarely in its path.

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After a few fruitless efforts to push walk-in areas along the state’s eastern border with Kansas, the wind pushed us back to our trucks in retreat. The downside of our Rooster Road Trip is the need to keep moving to the next destination. Colorado is a state with tremendous sunsets, topographical beauty and wonderfully nice people. It’s a pheasant destination worth spending more than 24 hours trying to figure out.  Count me and my pointers in for a return Colorado connection.

Total Productive Points Today: 13

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Follow along to the 2014 Rooster Road Trip at www.RoosterRoadTrip.org and be sure to mention #RRT14 in all your Twitter, Instagram and Facebook posts.

The Pointer is written by Bob St.Pierre, Pheasants Forever & Quail Forever’s Vice President of Marketing.  Follow Bob on Twitter @BobStPierre and listen to Bob and Billy Hildebrand every Saturday morning on FAN Outdoors radio on KFAN FM100.3.

Rooster Road Trip Refresher

Sunday, November 9th, 2014

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Welcome aboard the Rooster Road Trip for the second half of this year’s adventure.  If you’re new to the Rooster Road Trip or Pheasants Forever, here are the Top 5 things you need to know.

  1. The Messenger Hunters.  Anthony, Andrew, Elsa and I are avid bird hunters who have the good fortune of being employed by Pheasants Forever.  We are not professional hunters, expert dog trainers or members of any company’s pro staff.  Some shots we make, some shots we miss.  We’re just like the average pheasant hunter.  We are, however, expert communicators of Pheasants Forever’s mission who have set out to tell the story of how membership in Pheasants Forever leads to quality wildlife habitat and publicly accessible hunting lands.  Thank you for checking out our videos, photos, blogs and tweets along the way.
  2. Public Lands Only.  All hunting along the trip is done exclusively on lands open to public hunters.  Sure we’ve been invited to private honey holes, but that’s not the point of the Rooster Road Trip.  Our mission is to demonstrate that anyone with a desire to lace up their Irish Setter boots and follow a good bird dog can find roosters on public land made possible through Pheasants Forever and our partners.  Our travels include Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs), Waterfowl Production Areas (WPAs), Public Lands Open to Sportsmen (PLOTS), Walk In Hunter Access (WIHA), Open Fields & Waters program, and many other programs turning habitat into opportunity.
  3. Sponsors Riding Shotgun.  Every good road trip requires a trusty navigator to help pay for gas and spin a good yarn when eyes grow windshield-weary.  Thanks to Apple Autos, Browning, Garmin, Irish Setter, Zeiss, Leer and Federal Premium Ammunition, we have seven featured sponsors who have contributed generously to our conservation cause in the form of dollars, prize giveaways and gear to review.  We also are pleased to have North Dakota Tourism, Explore Minnesota, Colorado Parks & Wildlife, Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks & Tourism, and Nebraska Game & Parks Commission along as day sponsors.
  4. Win a Browning Citori.  Every person that joins or renews a Pheasants Forever membership through the exclusive Rooster Road Trip membership link will receive a chance on a brand new Browning Citori 725 field 20 gauge over/under shotgun.  Additionally, all Rooster Road Trip memberships come with a year’s subscription to the Pheasants Forever Journal, Pheasants Forever vehicle decal and a special gift from Browning.
  5. Effectively Efficient.  One of the facts I’m most proud about as a Pheasants Forever employee is our ability to convert our members’ dollars into our wildlife habitat mission.  In fact since the organization’s formation in 1982, Pheasants Forever has been able to turn more than 91 cents of every dollar into more habitat.  You’ll also be comforted to know that national charity watchdog, Charity Navigator, also gives us their highest rating.

Jump on in and ride along.  There is plenty of room in the truck!  Follow the 2014 Rooster Road Trip at www.RoosterRoadTrip.org and be sure to mention #RRT14 in all your Twitter, Instagram and Facebook posts.

 VIDEO: Rooster Road Trip 2014 Teaser

 

Sponsors

The Pointer is written by Bob St.Pierre, Pheasants Forever & Quail Forever’s Vice President of Marketing.  Follow Bob on Twitter @BobStPierre and listen to Bob and Billy Hildebrand every Saturday morning on FAN Outdoors radio on KFAN FM100.3.

 

Rooster Road Trip: Great Plains Pointing Dog Primer

Friday, November 7th, 2014

Chasing autumn openers behind pointers is where it's at!

Chasing autumn openers behind pointers is where it’s at! Photo by Bob St.Pierre / Pheasants Forever

As the most senior (aka oldest) member of the Rooster Road Trip, I had the advantage of picking the states I wanted to hunt with Team Pointer prior to Team Flusher’s selection.  So, my Catholic upbringing necessitates that I come clean about the advantages I weighed when factoring in my decision to select the Great Plains destinations of Colorado, Kansas and Nebraska over states with arguably higher concentrations of roosters.

1) Winter is Coming: Four inches of snow fell on Wednesday night just 40 miles north of my home in Minnesota’s Twin Cities. While I consider myself a hearty Northwood’s hunter who isn’t afraid of a cold hunt, given my choice, I’d hunt 40 degree sunshine soaked days all season long. Can you blame me? After last winter’s recurring “polar vortexes” put Minnesota into 30 below zero deep freezes, I’m guilty of making autumn last as long as possible. Advantage: Pointers

2) Chasing Openers: I love opening day of the season. To me, a state’s pheasant hunting opener is more exciting than Christmas morning. So why not celebrate opening week with our Pheasants Forever brethren in Colorado and Kansas? Admittedly, this stacks the odds significantly in our favor over Team Flusher considering Andrew, Anthony and the gang hunted states with openers weeks ago. There is no secret to the science behind there being more roosters in the field on opening weekend than will be around to be chased three weeks later. Advantage: Pointers

3) Walking vs. Busting.  I’ll be the first to admit a Labrador retriever, or similar flushing breed, is a better pheasant dog in the birdie cattail sloughs of Minnesota and the Dakotas. My GSPs and my 5’7” frame would choose the rolling plains of Kansas any day of the week over getting our butts whipped by the thick thermal cover of the north. Matching a dog’s style with habitat puts both groups in their preferred situation. Advantage: Push

4) Mixed Bags.  Have you ever walked up on a dog on point expecting a rooster to cackle to the sky only to have a covey of 14 bobwhite quail rise and whirl like bumblebees all around you?  Nine times out of ten, I’ll empty the Citori without anything falling. But, on that tenth time, on that tenth time when you bag a double. Talk about a bird hunting high! Throw in the possibility of greater prairie chickens to our bag and the advantage is obviously ours. Advantage: Pointers

All right pointing dog lovers, what other advantages will Team Pointer have over the Flushers in the week to come?

Follow along to the 2014 Rooster Road Trip at www.RoosterRoadTrip.org and be sure to mention #RRT14 in all your Twitter, Instagram and Facebook posts.

The Pointer is written by Bob St.Pierre, Pheasants Forever & Quail Forever’s Vice President of Marketing.  Follow Bob on Twitter @BobStPierre and listen to Bob and Billy Hildebrand every Saturday morning on FAN Outdoors radio on KFAN FM100.3.

Rooster Road Trip Recap: Losing Count in Minnesota

Wednesday, November 5th, 2014

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There’s a retired teacher in Marshall, Minn., we’re told, who hunts a different publicly accessible area each time he goes upland hunting – and he hunts almost every day of the state’s 3-month season. Figuring out which of the nearby 40,000 acres outside your back door you’ll walk – doesn’t this sound like a problem you’d like to have?

Within 30 miles of this southwest Minnesota town, there are 40,000 acres of state Wildlife Management Areas, state Walk-In Access areas and federal Waterfowl Production Areas. Our first Team Flusher stop was the Clifton-Rolling Fields Wildlife Management Area, a massive upland project that was dedicated at the Minnesota Governor’s Pheasant Opener in 2012. Yet all the talk among the chapter members graciously hosting us was about upcoming upland habitat projects – land acquisitions, land donations, prescribed burns, food plots. Yes, 40,000 is a big number, but this local group of Pheasants Forever volunteers doesn’t mind adding to it.

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Nick Simonson, president of the Lyon County Chapter of Pheasants Forever, showcased Pheasants Forever upland projects and upland hunting success in the Marshall, Minn. area.

Despite an idyllic morning and early afternoon, a few misses, a missed identification and a flush too close to a neighboring farm site had conspired, even with roughly two dozen flushes, to leave us entering “The Golden Hour” with just one rooster to our credit.

With the occasional spit of rain, rapidly falling temperatures and wind gusts approaching 30 miles per hour – the polar opposite of our comfortable, windless morning – there was really nothing golden about it, that is, until pheasants started flushing.

Six roosters fell to the line of flushing dogs and upland hunters, and another surely would have ended there had it not been for an inopportune flush near the trucks. Hens kept the dogs plenty busy in between the colorful rises. So how many total? Well, definitely two dozen, maybe three…plus the dozen from the morning…we’re still tallying. And at the end of day of pheasant hunting, that is also a nice problem to have.

Anthony Hauck is Pheasants Forever’s online editor. Email Anthony at AHauck@pheasantsforever.org and follow him on Twitter @AnthonyHauckPF.

Minnesota Preview – Flushers Gain Home Field Advantage on Day 3 of Rooster Road Trip

Wednesday, November 5th, 2014

Members with Lyon County Chapter of Pheasants Forever pose at the Rolling Hills Wildlife Management Area, an upland project which the chapter contributed to, with Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton at the Governor’s Pheasant Opener in 2012.

Members with Lyon County Chapter of Pheasants Forever pose at the Rolling Hills Wildlife Management Area, an upland project which the chapter contributed to, with Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton at the Governor’s Pheasant Opener in 2012.

Home field advantage is on our minds this evening as we travel through the night from South Dakota to our resident state of Minnesota. The work being done by chapters in the southwestern part of Minnesota is nothing short of incredible- land acquisition and wildlife habitat projects completed by our devoted chapters span across most counties near the city of Marshall. Pheasant hunting is a tradition for the Lyon County Pheasants Forever members who will be joining us tomorrow, and we are looking forward to our time afield with these individuals- many of which have been part of Pheasants Forever since 1982.

Our sponsor for day three of the 2014 Rooster Road Trip is Explore Minnesota- an organization dedicated to all things Minnesotan. Looking at a list of the “20 Reasons to Explore Minnesota” on their website this evening, #19 (in no particular order) on the list is “Wonderful Wildlife.” The work done by Pheasants Forever in Minnesota contributes to this notion, and with some luck, we hope to prove their list correct with roosters in our game pouch.

If you’re looking for additional reasons to visit MN for a hunting trip in the future , check out the wing shooting story on the Explore Minnesota website for more information on starting your own Rooster Road Trip in the state!

Wednesday, November 5th

We’ll be hunting in Minnesota’s southwest corner with the Lyon County Chapter of Pheasants Forever based in Marshall, Minn. In addition to the Rooster Road Trip crew, five committee members from the local chapter will be joining us for the hunt.

Season Dates: October 11, 2014 through January 4, 2015
Daily Bag Limit: 2; changes to 3 on December 1, 2014 through end of season
Possession Limit: 6; changes to 9 on December 1, 2014 through end of season
Field Notes: The highest pheasant counts were in the southwest, south-central and west-central regions, where observers reported 28 to 62 birds per 100 miles driven. Hunters will find good harvest opportunities in these areas.

Non-resident Licensing

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources offers a convenient website to purchase your non-resident hunting license, view hunting regulations, and read pheasant hunting prospects across the state. Non-residents will pay both a small game fee ($103) and pheasant stamp ($7.50) to hunt the entire season, with 72-hour licenses also available ($75).

Pheasants Forever’s Impact in Minnesota

Pheasants Forever Chapters: 74

Pheasants Forever Members: 24,336

Pheasants Forever Expenditures in Minnesota: $67 Million

Habitat projects completed by Pheasants Forever in Minnesota: 26,390 projects

Total habitat acres improved by Pheasants Forever chapters in Minnesota: 240,958 acres

Follow along to the 2014 Rooster Road Trip at www.RoosterRoadTrip.org and be sure to mention #RRT14 in all your Twitter, Instagram and Facebook posts.

Anthony’s Antics Afield is written by Anthony Hauck, Pheasants Forever & Quail Forever’s Online Editor.  Follow Anthony on Twitter @AnthonyHauckPF or email Anthony at AHauck@PheasantsForever.Org.