Jump to content
  • Announcements

    • Brad Eden

      WELCOME NEW UJ MEMBERS   06/25/2017

      It seems the word is out and UJ is enjoying a steady stream of newly Registered Members. Welcome to all of you, and we are all looking forward to your positive participation. I strongly suggest you review the Board Guidelines that have been in place since 2002. The most significant thing being that UJ is a NO POLITICS BOARD. LInk:  UJ BOARD GUIDELINES   Also UJ stays afloat mainly through Member Donations. Once a Donation is made you are placed in the Contributing Member Group with extra Priviliges. I am getting very few new Donations so hopefully this will spur that on a bit. Link:  New Members/Donations/Priviliges
steveziv

"I'd like to try hunting"

Recommended Posts

walt lister

In the early '80s I worked with a young man much younger than me who was a city kid but who had done some ocean fishing. Went trout fishing with him a couple of times, introduced him to fly fishing and we became close friends. He had never hunted, not sure if he had ever fired a shotgun. I invited him to go quail hunting in AZ with me and he said he would give it a try. Gun safety talk stressing bbl direction at all times and a few clay birds and we went after some gambels. Steve caught the bug and decided he wanted a dog. Did his homework and ended up with a really good Lab. Did more homework and through videos and books he trained his dog well enough to win some retriever trials. Now he judges retriever trials on occasion and met his wife while training with friends. Blames me for causing him to get married and costing him all the money he spends on his new interests. Now an avid quail hunter and is very good at it. He is twenty years younger than me and the guys at work kidded me about him being like the son that I never had.

Every circumstance is different but mentoring someone into becoming a dedicated hunter is so very satisfying. I'm sure glad I did.

 

Steve and his second generation dog Dusty. He now is training a third generation dog.

az11-13022.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Curt

This just isn't the kind of sport that allows for a complete novice to one day pick up a shotgun for the first time and decide he wants to stumble around in the grouse cover.  I get a facial twitch just thinking about being out there with a guy like that.  When I was a teen my aunt winged her husbands Brittany on a preserve quail hunt, it was only the second time she'd ever been out hunting.  Another time I had a very close call when a friend (a novice) who wanted to try duck hunting 'accidently discharged' the twelve gauge pump I'd lent him and blew a sizable hole in the mud floor of the blind about 12" from my right foot.  This game is fraught with potential danger for those who haven't had the proper training and experience and we do them no favor by encouraging their participation until they have that background.  I'm not selfish, I want to see new folks enter the sport but it must be done correctly.

Last summer I did a shotgun introduction, and safety deal at the local youth day.  Just a little discussion about gun safety, demonstration, and then allowing the kids the opportunity to shoot at a few clays.  We put over 130 kids through the intro that day.  Some really liked it, others less so but there wasn't one I'd allow near my dogs with a gun in their hands.  At least not without a lot more instruction.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
steveziv

I don't know if it was mentioned here but this happened over on the Eastern Shore last year.

 

October 11, 2015   "A 75-year-old huntsman was fatally shot during a hunting trip Saturday in Queen Anne’s County, Maryland.  Maryland Natural Resources police said the shooting was accidental. “Generally speaking we have very few hunter accidents where one hunter shoots another,”  said Maryland Natural Resources Police Lt. Art Windemuth.

The incident happened off Ell Downes Road in Henderson. Marvin Bowen Coppage, a resident of Henderson, was hired to lead a guided pheasant and chukar hunt. He worked for Schrader’s Outdoors.  Police said Coppage and his dog were flushing a bird from the brush when he was shot by a teen member of the hunting party.
“There were two 14-year-olds in the hunting party. Both of them fired at the pheasant. Which one struck the guide is currently under investigation,” Windemuth said.  Coppage  was pronounced dead at the scene, shortly before 5 p.m. His body was taken to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Baltimore for an autopsy.

 

As long as this tangent has been discussed, I'll pass along this list I came across while searching the article above.

 

HUNTING ACCIDENTS

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Greg Hartman

I think you can do this with minimal risk if you work at it.

 

Maybe I was just lucky, but I worked for years as a preserve guide and watched literally thousands of birds shot over my dogs by hundreds of people - only ever had a problem one time.  We (the guides) would have to take whoever we were randomly assigned.  Guns could (and the more experienced ones did) ask for particular guides, but most of the time, we would meet our Guns just before we went into the field.  The Guns could be anything from folks who rented their guns and had never fired a shot or seen an upland bird before, to experienced guys who had lost their dog and wanted to go out anyway.  Many were corporate-type groups, some of whom might have a little experience ("I hunted when I was a kid") and others who had virtually none.

 

I drew a line at two things.  I refused to take someone who had been drinking; and I refused to guide for quail (tho' there was always a possibility of running into some stray quail in the field).

 

Basically I made safety happen.  I kept tight control over the situation without being overbearing, demanding or obnoxious.  Tried to keep it light ("These dogs are like children to me.  If you shoot the dog, you'd better shoot the guide, too - three or four times to make sure - because otherwise he will kill you ha, ha, ha...").  Having steady pointy dogs was a big help, too. ("OK, Bill - it's your turn.  The dog's pointing here and telling us that there's a bird in that cover right there.  When I give you the word, go in from the side of the dog and kick it up.  NEVER shoot at it on the ground if it runs or if just flutters along the top of the cover.  Make sure you don't take the safety off or mount the gun until you see plenty of blue sky behind that bird.  No bird is worth a dog.  Harry, Jack - stand over there, keep your guns pointed, up safeties on, until Bill fires.  If he misses and you have a safe shot without shooting toward anyone or the dog, go ahead.  If someone hits the bird, don't shoot it again on the way down - you might hit the dog - the dog WILL get any wounded ones").  Then, I would go kneel down beside the dog on point and put my hand on him/her before the Gun kicked up the bird so if they were going to shoot the dog, they'd have to shoot me, too.  Then, finally, I'd tell the Gun whose turn it was to go in and kick up the bird.

 

This was a 13 year old kid whose mother (not a hunter but knew he endlessly dreamed of and read about hunting) bought him a 5-phez 1/2 day hunt with a rented gun for his birthday.  We showed him how to fire the gun on some low seven skeet targets until he was smacking them with regularity, talked to him about safety, and off we went.  He killed every bird he shot at and was 100% safe and respectful of the dogs.  Not at all an uncommon experience.

 

Note a young Chase and Maggie in her prime.

 

 

2006 - 10-21- Wing Pointe - 5 - part of the harvest, Maggie and Chase.jpg

 

Obviously, guiding for wild birds would not allow this sort of pre-fab safety process.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
garyRI

I've been asked several times. Living in hunting safety course mandatory states my response has been "take the course & I'll take you". Two fellows took me up on the offer & in both cases everything turned out great for me and them.

 

Manatory courses ensure "skin in the game"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Rafterboy

I am currently mentoring my neighbors boys, and the grandson of a farmer who's property I hunt. They go out with me one at a time, and I am ruthless about firearms safety. I don't mind them missing, but somedays it feels like a non stop "watch where that f…ing thing is pointed" tirade. Before I let the boys handle a rifle I shoot a few goats and get them to help dress the carcasses - usually with a .223, but occasionally with a .22, to make the point that it isn't a toy.  

 

I guess it is important for the future of the sport to have a new generation that still wants to hunt, and it is nice seeing them learn. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Scrappy

I have never had the opportunity to introduce a complete novice adult to bird hunting.  However, I would think that it is something that we should want to do if asked.  With the number of bird hunters shrinking, particularly in relation to the increasing urban population, I believe that we need as many friends in our corner as we can get.

 

If a friend is truly interested in hunting, I don't think that it should be an more difficult, or any less enjoyable than teaching a new kid to hunt.  I have done that three times now with my own kids.  All of them started duck hunting at 10-years-old. Two of them moved on to upland shooting at 13 (as soon as they had enough endurance to pack their own gun all day).  All of them had to take a hunter's education course.  We constantly went over proper gun handling procedures in the duck blind and in the field.  I have honestly never met a safer hunter than my 14-year-old boy.  After we shoot at a covey HE will often ask ME: "Is your gun back on safe?" and "Did you remember to reload?" (two questions I also continuously ask him).  I don't think it would be any more difficult, and in many areas less difficult, to teach an adult newbie to bird hunt.  For me the items to stress would be: 1. Hunter's ed course is mandatory; 2. Safety talks prior to and during and every hunt; 3. Make sure they understand hunting is difficult (at least the hunting I do), but incredibly rewarding.

 

Although I have been a big game hunter my whole life, I am very grateful for the individual who took the time to teach me how to chukar hunt, thereby opening up the whole panoply of Idaho upland birds to me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Remo

I might consider it for sharp-tails in low cover. But that would be it for me. My pheasant hunting is mostly cattails, tall and tangled, not a place for a newby. I am always paranoid about someone shooting over my dog too. You can explain until you are blue in the face about low flying birds but people don't consider muzzle blast and stray pellets.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
shinbone

Everyone is free to choose whether they will mentor a new hunter, but I think it is an important part of the sport to do so.  Opportunities for a person to be exposed to the sport are dwindling everyday, including no longer being passed down through family connections, so us experienced hunters have to make up the difference if we want future generations to be able to hunt.  And, this takes an extra effort to make happen.  JMHO, but those who proudly say they only hunt by themselves are doing no more than exercising their right to be selfish, and should be ashamed.  But that is JMHO.

 

That being said, mentoring takes some thought and planning.  I am happy to take anyone hunting with me as long as they jump through the hoops I set up.  Everyone must take the State's hunter safety course.  First, it is required in Colorado, but it also teaches the basics of safety and ethics by an "authority", as well as being a great first barrier to overcome.  

 

Then, unless the person is an experienced bird hunter that I personally know I can trust, he/she must spend at least one season shooting clay birds with me.  The background conversation during the clay birds shoots is a steady stream of gun safety points, including the fact that my dog will be out in front of us when hunting.  Muzzle awareness doesn't just happen based on a conversation, it takes time to learn so that it becomes an unconscious act.  If they stick with it that long, then I know they are serious and willing to put in the work to be safe and ethical.  The highly controlled conditions of clay bird shooting is the perfect venue to ingrain good gun safety habits.

 

Once they are proficient with their gun safety and shooting skills, then I will take them hunting.  And when I do, I watch them like a hawk to make sure they maintain gun safety in the excitement and confusion of flushing birds, running dogs, and re-positioning hunters.

 

I've done this with older adults, younger adults, and more than a few women with the help of Ms. Shinbone (who is great at diffusing the innate fear of guns some women have).  It is great when the person becomes an enthusiastic hunter, but not everyone makes it to being invited on a hunt.  However, each person has enjoyed and appreciated the experience, and, further, gained a better understanding of the importance of gun rights and that real hunting isn't the BS crap shown on TV and in the movies that gives the sport a bad rap. 

 

BTW, Greg H. that is a great photo and a wonderful service you did for that kid.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Reeba

Learned in high school to screen out reckless personalities.  Have taken quite a few young folks first time for them. No problems.  Being they were young I could get away with being bossy. Also hunters safety course required here.  For grouse beyond the usual safety rules,  STRESSED ABSOLUTELY NO SHOOTING LOW. No problems and a few have continued with "outdoor lifestyles". For adults I was less bossy but again STRESSED NO SHOOTING LOW NO MATTER WHAT. Always went well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Cooter Brown

Edit: how did this post get so long?  Sorry.

 

Folks are making good points about the need to expose others to the sport--and also about how damned discerning and careful you need to be.

 

I guided for a few seasons on a preserve and always started the "hunt" like Greg did, including the "joke" about "If you shoot the dog, you'd better just go ahead and shoot me real damned quick..."  It usually got the point across.

 

There was only one hunt got stopped.  It was the first season I was guiding.  I should have known from the start there was gonna be trouble.  One of them had a shotgun for the other.  An 1100 trap gun.  The guy with the shotguns was a big, cocky smart ass SOB.  They refused to shoot a few clays.  Should have either called it or insisted on shooting a bit first right then.

 

When I put the dog on the ground the cocky one said, "That little thing?  She's the dog?  Really?"  Failing to note the nutsack and pecker "she" had.  "What do you call her?"  I said "Fluffy."  Rebel didn't care one bit what I called him in the field.  The first two points were chaotic and I cautioned them--the third point both shot low and I told them the hunt was over.  They were not happy.  The big one offered to whip my ass.  I declined and laughed at him, gathered the dog went to my truck and headed back to the lodge, leaving them to walk back.  I offered a ride but the the big jerk was too busy stomping around cussing.  Bullies hate to be laughed at.

 

By the time they got back to the lodge I had told the owner what had happened.  They walked up raising hell with him.  Harold Hendrix survived 25 bombing runs over Ploesti and didn't react well to being raised hell at.  Really amusing.  I learned a lot from that "hunt", mostly to trust my gut, and had good experiences after that.  I doubt I'd ever guide again, especially as Greg said over pen raised quail.

 

I've taken a fair number of new folks out for their first upland hunt, mostly on wild birds.  Young and older folks, what I've learned is to get to know someone and their character and temperament before offering to take them or allowing them to come if they ask.  All good experiences and a couple have stuck with it.  But I get to know the person and go with my gut before they get a ticket to ride.  Damned good feeling to spark that something we all know in someone.  A buddy of mine and I are going to take his 13 year old boy on his first upland hunt soon--hopefully we can put him on a few woodcock.  The boy is nuts for hunting and fishing.

 

I don't think anyone has mentioned this yet, but some of my worst hunts have been with "experienced" folks who thought they knew a lot more than they did, or were too excited to kill a bird and got sloppy, or however they came up hunting was a hell of a lot different and more lax about safety than the way I go about things.   Otherwise safe hunters who have a very different way of going about things or ethics I don't share are another issue but there's no point in hunting with them either.  Or those that constantly hack at a dog.  Blech.

 

Good weather to hunt today--don't know why I'm staring at the glowing rectangle but this has been an interesting thread.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
SLR
21 hours ago, Reeba said:

Learned in high school to screen out reckless personalities.  Have taken quite a few young folks first time for them. No problems.  Being they were young I could get away with being bossy. Also hunters safety course required here.  For grouse beyond the usual safety rules,  STRESSED ABSOLUTELY NO SHOOTING LOW. No problems and a few have continued with "outdoor lifestyles". For adults I was less bossy but again STRESSED NO SHOOTING LOW NO MATTER WHAT. Always went well.

 

This reminds me of a close call I had. Being an old guy, back in the day during high school time, we had no regulations or hunter safety courses. One day a couple of us high school buddies went out to do some dove shooting in PA. One of the guys had a 22 lr revolver in his car and he got it out to show us. He pointed it right at me and click-click he pulled the trigger twice. I shouted at him "Stop", he says: "its ok, it is not loaded".  Looking at the revolver pointed at me, I could see 3 loaded rounds in the cylinder. He was pretty shaken when he checked and it was indeed loaded with some rounds. A little Russian Roulette anyone!  This guy was an accident prone person (reckless personality as Reeba said) and during Vietnam he went over there as an army pilot of a spotter plane. Knowing how accidents were a routine thing for him, I gave him little chance of surviving that tour. He told the story of  seeing some enemy in their black pajamas running in the field below him and he went after them with his 50 caliber machine gun on his plane. He said they escaped down some holes, but he got a double on their water buffalo. He survived his war experience and hopefully became a more careful person with maturity. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
forestdump

I'm sure just as many "experienced" hunters accidentally shoot a dog or person as first timers. Which isn't very often. Whenever someone asks me about getting into hunting I'm very willing to help and I also let them know they will probably barely ever shoot their guns. 99.5% of it is walking around in the woods and researching birds.

 

I'm largely in favor of anyone who wants to go hunting to take a safety ed course, buy a hunting license, buy a shotgun, buy a dog, buy some orange gear, join a couple conservation organizations, and go take an expensive walk in the woods. Maybe take some pictures of nice scenery. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
rlambour

I've tried to introduce a couple adults who expressed interest to hunting.  I've never had any safety issues.  The hunter safety courses these days seem far more thorough than the half day class I took years ago.  The Colorado course is two days in the classroom and one day at the range.  You still have to keep a close eye on them, but the newbies I've hunted with understood gun safety and hunting regulations pretty well.  It does help to have broke pointing dogs and wild birds.  Most accidents seem to happen with unbroke dogs chasing poor-flying preserve birds.  A point also gives the shooter time to survey his surroundings.  With pointing dogs, I can also have new hunters keep their guns unloaded or broken open until the dog points.

 

I'd like to hear others' experiences, but the biggest problem that I've found with new hunters is that they usually prefer a different type of hunt than me.  Most would rather do a two-hour hunt at a local preserve than drive for hours and walk all day for a few wild birds.  I have no interest in preserve hunting as long as I have wild birds to hunt, but I can see its appeal to a new hunter for whom preserve hunting is still a challenge.  It takes a few years for masochism to take hold.  The other hurdle is getting them to evolve from someone who owns a gun and tags along when invited to someone who has his own dogs, gear, and honey holes.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
rlambour
On 12/30/2016 at 4:23 PM, steveziv said:

October 11, 2015   "A 75-year-old huntsman was fatally shot during a hunting trip Saturday in Queen Anne’s County, Maryland.  Maryland Natural Resources police said the shooting was accidental. “Generally speaking we have very few hunter accidents where one hunter shoots another,”  said Maryland Natural Resources Police Lt. Art Windemuth.

The incident happened off Ell Downes Road in Henderson. Marvin Bowen Coppage, a resident of Henderson, was hired to lead a guided pheasant and chukar hunt. He worked for Schrader’s Outdoors.  Police said Coppage and his dog were flushing a bird from the brush when he was shot by a teen member of the hunting party.
“There were two 14-year-olds in the hunting party. Both of them fired at the pheasant. Which one struck the guide is currently under investigation,” Windemuth said.  Coppage  was pronounced dead at the scene, shortly before 5 p.m. His body was taken to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Baltimore for an autopsy.

 

I see two problems here.  First, the two teenagers obviously took an unsafe shot.  Second, the guide should not have been flushing birds for the teenagers.  I would never flush birds for someone else to shoot.  I always make the shooter(s) walk in front of the dog to flush.  The non-shooters stay behind the dogs.  Why would you ever put yourself between an inexperienced shooter and the bird?  This disaster could have been avoided by the guide who should've known better.  If the dogs are steady to flush, the non-shooters stay behind the dogs, and the shooters get in front of the dogs to flush, there's very little that can go wrong. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×