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Posted: 10/20/2013 5:45:00 PM EDT
I just returned from another awesome pheasant hunt in South Dakota. The weather was great, our guide and his dogs were excellent and the birds were plentiful. If you've never gone pheasant hunting, please give it a try. We have a group of friends from around the state who spend four days pheasant hunting each October. It's an enjoyable time away from the everyday routine and time spent in the field is like recharging life's batteries.



Link Posted: 10/20/2013 9:54:37 PM EDT
Nice looking birds Sgt! South Dakota is truly the best pheasant hunting there is. Nice shooting!
Link Posted: 10/20/2013 10:00:33 PM EDT
I go to a nice lodge in Wessington Springs when I can afford it. I go with a sizable group of ex fed agents every couple years. Shooting has always been great.
Link Posted: 10/20/2013 10:58:03 PM EDT
Our group has been going to Gregory, South Dakota for about 9 years now and using the same outfitter. There are many places that offer hunting services in SD but ours is reliable, affordable and they always provide a great hunting experience. If anyone would like their name and contact information, feel free to contact me.
Link Posted: 10/20/2013 11:27:57 PM EDT
I have always wanted to that. What shotgun did you use.
Link Posted: 10/21/2013 9:46:52 AM EDT
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Originally Posted By DesertSkorpion:
I have always wanted to that. What shotgun did you use.
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I use the Browning Gold Hunter model in 12 gauge. It has a three inch chamber and a 26 inch vent-rib barrel with three screw-in choke tubes. It uses Browning’s Invector Plus tubes, which are longer than most on the market. It is chambered for 3-inch shells but I use the Federal 2-¾ Wing-Shok shells in #5.




Link Posted: 10/25/2013 4:31:03 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 10/26/2013 10:20:38 AM EDT by SGT69]
I was digging through some of my photos and found this nice shot from one of our South Dakota hunts.




Link Posted: 10/25/2013 9:52:48 PM EDT
Great pics.

How are the prices?
Link Posted: 10/26/2013 9:56:33 AM EDT
I'm sure there are a variety of packages and prices for SD pheasant hunts but our outfitter is just under $1K for three days of hunting and four nights lodging.  This includes guide, dogs, processing of birds, field lunches and transportation to/from the hunting area. This is hunting on a preserve with a 5 bird daily limit per hunter. SD non-resident 5-day preserve license is $76 and can be obtained on-line or at any licensing agent. Here's another photo from one of our recent hunts showing the birds taken during one day of hunting. There's a lot of birds shown there but we did have a big group (11 hunters) and limited out with 55 birds.

Link Posted: 10/26/2013 10:32:56 AM EDT
Glad you enjoyed your hunt. South Dakota has many areas of the state that have plenty of birds although not as many as a few years ago. CPR acres are down and more ground is being plowed for corn and soybean production. This means less habitat and coupled with wet spring nesting conditions it has cut numbers in some areas appreciably. It is a hunt and not a shoot so get out into the fields and shelter belts and you will still find the wily Ring-necked Pheasant in his natural habitat.
Link Posted: 10/26/2013 1:02:34 PM EDT
Great Pics!
Link Posted: 10/26/2013 4:00:19 PM EDT
Hunting wild birds in natural habitat would be preferred but many folks (usually locals) who can do that have more time and know where to go. We hunt the preserve because we're driving 12 hour each way to get there and would enjoy good results over the few days available to hunt. There's no truth to any outfitter's claim that you'll be shooting all wild birds. It's not possible to support groups of hunters on select land parcels without releasing some pen-raised birds. Our outfitter is also a bird supplier for many other outfitters in this region. We've examined most of the birds we've taken over the years on his land and have found that between one-fourth to one-third of the birds taken are wild birds. This is most likely due to his management of cover areas and crops to support them.

I've done a couple of outfitter bird hunts in my home state of Missouri and in nearby Illinois at hunting clubs.  It is not my kind of hunting. The birds are placed in the field shortly before you start and they rarely take flight like a wild bird (if at all). Our hunts in South Dakota aren't anything like that.  The dogs have to work the crop rows hard to locate the birds and they quickly take flight and are challenging to shoot. It's not a slaughter like some might think.
Link Posted: 9/4/2014 12:23:51 PM EDT
For those of you thinking of a pheasant hunt in South Dakota this year, it's time to contact a good outfitter to have a successful hunt. We always have a great time hunting the fields and enjoying time with friends.

Link Posted: 10/8/2014 7:17:18 PM EDT
You do know that you can hunt most of the road right-of-ways for free if you just obey the 660' rule?
The costs for fuel,meals,license,and lodging for two of us runs around $1200 total with us staying 6 nights and hunting 5 days.
Find a brome grass ditch along a minimum maintenance road with a fresh picked corn field beside it...shot limits many times in less than 1/4 mile...and we own row crop ground East River.
There's also lots of public hunting areas but you are required to shot only approved non-toxic shot on them.
Link Posted: 10/8/2014 7:23:28 PM EDT
My father, brother and I usually make it out there every year.  We hunt hard, hitting CRP and roadhunting.  Sometimes it takes us all day to get the limit, but we always do.
Link Posted: 10/8/2014 7:47:19 PM EDT
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Originally Posted By llanero:
My father, brother and I usually make it out there every year.  We hunt hard, hitting CRP and roadhunting.  Sometimes it takes us all day to get the limit, but we always do.
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That last hour or so of shooting time can be really good in the right area with the birds moving to roosting cover.
Have you ever found a standing corn field,with good roost cover across the road,that was holding a lot of birds and sat in the ditch pass shooting the ones that were flying to roost?
Link Posted: 10/8/2014 8:02:00 PM EDT
Gotta love my state of SD. Glad you had a good hunt and thank your for coming back every year.
Link Posted: 10/8/2014 8:17:56 PM EDT
I can't recall if my first year was '83 or '84 but I've not missed a year. Sometimes we'll come back for the second 5 and then there's prairie dogs in the summer and I'm thinking seriously about coming up for the free fishing weekend this year.
Link Posted: 10/8/2014 8:27:21 PM EDT
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Originally Posted By stesch_s10:
Gotta love my state of SD. Glad you had a good hunt and thank your for coming back every year.
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I agree.Thanks for coming to my state.
Link Posted: 10/8/2014 8:35:31 PM EDT
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Originally Posted By mojo7:


I agree.Thanks for coming to my state.
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Originally Posted By mojo7:
Originally Posted By stesch_s10:
Gotta love my state of SD. Glad you had a good hunt and thank your for coming back every year.


I agree.Thanks for coming to my state.


Don't know where else to get Chislic and Pickled Bluegill.
Link Posted: 10/8/2014 9:22:14 PM EDT
My Kansas trip is coming up next month.  Been hunting the same fields with the same guys since 1997.
Link Posted: 10/8/2014 9:23:11 PM EDT
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Originally Posted By baogongmeo:


That last hour or so of shooting time can be really good in the right area with the birds moving to roosting cover.
Have you ever found a standing corn field,with good roost cover across the road,that was holding a lot of birds and sat in the ditch pass shooting the ones that were flying to roost?
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Originally Posted By baogongmeo:
Originally Posted By llanero:
My father, brother and I usually make it out there every year.  We hunt hard, hitting CRP and roadhunting.  Sometimes it takes us all day to get the limit, but we always do.


That last hour or so of shooting time can be really good in the right area with the birds moving to roosting cover.
Have you ever found a standing corn field,with good roost cover across the road,that was holding a lot of birds and sat in the ditch pass shooting the ones that were flying to roost?



We keep talking about doing this; there's some CRP up on the corner that's an excellent roost, just never done it.
Link Posted: 10/8/2014 11:48:59 PM EDT
If there's birds in the standing corn you can hear them moving around before they go to roost if there's not a lot of wind a lot of times.
Usually there's not much cackling instead you hear walking around...the first time that I heard that,I thought it was deer,they made so much noise.
Some of them cross on foot and some of them fly...mostly one or two at a time is what I've seen. If you hear wings in your front,get ready as they cross real quick.
Link Posted: 10/9/2014 12:02:43 AM EDT
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Originally Posted By baogongmeo:


That last hour or so of shooting time can be really good in the right area with the birds moving to roosting cover.
Have you ever found a standing corn field,with good roost cover across the road,that was holding a lot of birds and sat in the ditch pass shooting the ones that were flying to roost?
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Originally Posted By baogongmeo:
Originally Posted By llanero:
My father, brother and I usually make it out there every year.  We hunt hard, hitting CRP and roadhunting.  Sometimes it takes us all day to get the limit, but we always do.


That last hour or so of shooting time can be really good in the right area with the birds moving to roosting cover.
Have you ever found a standing corn field,with good roost cover across the road,that was holding a lot of birds and sat in the ditch pass shooting the ones that were flying to roost?


Oooh, yeah  That's something else, when scores of pheasants make that last flight for the roost with the setting sun.  

Link Posted: 10/9/2014 12:59:08 PM EDT

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Originally Posted By SGT69:


I was digging through some of my photos and found this nice shot from one of our South Dakota hunts.





http://i159.photobucket.com/albums/t146/STLCOP911/f02a8db8-276a-418a-a5b3-1c8dae946ee9_zps7661b813.jpg



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Awesome pic.   Pheasant is by far my favorite hunting.  Thanks for sharing!

 
Link Posted: 10/13/2014 9:19:52 PM EDT
My mom is a 2nd gen SD girl. Her mom was born and raised in DeSmitt, and my mom was born in Lake Preston. The stories she used to tell me about the pheasant hunters and the amount of pheasant she and her brother would clean for the hunters to earn extra money (this was back in the mid to late 30's). Farmers used to pay her dad with pheasant when they couldn't afford to pay their bill..... gramps owned a gas station, granny owned small restaurant which is now in the garden of the University in Rapid City.

I have been wanting to go there to do some pheasant hunting for so long, and now with these pics, the bug has bitten even deeper. Great stuff guys!

Link Posted: 10/28/2014 11:24:38 PM EDT
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Originally Posted By SGT69:
Our group has been going to Gregory, South Dakota for about 9 years now and using the same outfitter. There are many places that offer hunting services in SD but ours is reliable, affordable and they always provide a great hunting experience. If anyone would like their name and contact information, feel free to contact me.
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I just got back from Gregory myself. It was amazing. The second time I have hunted with the Stukels and it is an amazing time.
Link Posted: 11/5/2014 12:48:56 AM EDT
I was out in Gregory, actually the next town over, Dallas, on opening weekend too.  My uncle has been hunting with a local farmer for 30 years so we hunt his land.  Bird population was definitely a lot better this year!   One day we got our limit for 7 guys in 2 hrs!
Link Posted: 11/10/2014 12:10:58 PM EDT
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Originally Posted By Cpwest:
I was out in Gregory, actually the next town over, Dallas, on opening weekend too.  My uncle has been hunting with a local farmer for 30 years so we hunt his land.  Bird population was definitely a lot better this year!   One day we got our limit for 7 guys in 2 hrs!
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Our actual hunting area is outside of Gregory and about 20 minutes south of town. We are very familiar with Dallas though.  That's where some of our hunters would end up in the evening. Let's just say a little different kind of hunting.
Link Posted: 11/13/2014 12:14:15 AM EDT
Was this an actual hunt? Or were the guides releasing these birds from cages And tossing your way?

There are a few places to "hunt" pheasant around me, but it's more like skeet shooting.
Link Posted: 11/13/2014 8:51:44 AM EDT
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Originally Posted By Marshmellow:
Was this an actual hunt? Or were the guides releasing these birds from cages And tossing your way?

There are a few places to "hunt" pheasant around me, but it's more like skeet shooting.
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Marshmellow, take a look at my comments on Page #1 of this thread, especially the one dated 10/26/2013 2:00:19 PM CST.  These are not all wild birds but this is not like some outfitter hunts I've been on where they do practically toss the birds at you. We work the fields with the dogs in long thick crop rows and brushy hills to get our birds.

Again, take a read on page 1 where this has been discussed.

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