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prairierat

Has upland hunting been abandoned?

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Brad Eden
$40 per mounded pick-up load.

Interesting measurement calculation. Never heard of that. How much would that be compared to a cord of cut and split wood? Sounds like a good way to promote upland tradition, chain saws are good for upland hunting.

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vabirddog

Ahem,  Back to the subject.

If you want to reinvent upland hunting then take a young person or anyone who hasn't experienced it and teach them while you hunt. Tell em what you're doing it that way for, tell them about the birds, about the dogs, why you love it. If we don't build a love for it in others then it will die. We also need everybody's help in getting birds back, hunters, landowners, nonhunters too. Healthy bird habitat is healthy habitat. We need to educate people that a clean green field is not habitat.

Pardon me if this has already been said I did not read it all.

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trust me
Others have been more eloquent in responding to this topic than I - so I'll start by saying I agree with most of what has been said here so far, and I'm warmed by the tenor of the response...

Eloquence is overrated and can become tiresome.  Hitting the nail on the head, as you have just done, is always welcome. Thank you.

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valuman
We also need everybody's help in getting birds back, hunters, landowners, nonhunters too. Healthy bird habitat is healthy habitat. We need to educate people that a clean green field is not habitat.

This is something I believe is very important as I see more and more city folk moving to our area and attempting to turn the woods on their property into something resembling a park. "Clear out all that ugly understory so I can see the trees!"

This same issue carries into the vocal public's strong aversion to clear-cuts by the logging industry. There seems to be a widely accepted misconception that mature forest is the best habitat. Education could help with that. Maybe the G.C. could dedicate a portion of the weekly show to understanding habitat.

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Larry Brown

My next column (Jan) in Pointing Dog Journal will deal with a piece on that subject.  Couple of examples:

In 2009, the MN DNR's ruffed grouse drumming count was the highest in about 40 years.  Yet the total number of grouse hunters was about 60% of the total of the last cycle's peak number of hunters (1998).

In South Dakota this past decade, the number of pheasants bagged totals about twice the average total back in the 1980's.  However, the largest total of resident pheasant hunters this decade has never topped the smallest number of resident hunters during the 80's.

There's a lot more work involved becoming an upland hunter (or waterfowl hunter) than there is becoming, say, a deer hunter or turkey hunter.

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nickwilliams
$40 per mounded pick-up load.

Interesting measurement calculation. Never heard of that. How much would that be compared to a cord of cut and split wood? Sounds like a good way to promote upland tradition, chain saws are good for upland hunting.

Tacoma or Silverado?

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Dave Gowdey
My next column (Jan) in Pointing Dog Journal will deal with a piece on that subject.  Couple of examples:

In 2009, the MN DNR's ruffed grouse drumming count was the highest in about 40 years.  Yet the total number of grouse hunters was about 60% of the total of the last cycle's peak number of hunters (1998).

In South Dakota this past decade, the number of pheasants bagged totals about twice the average total back in the 1980's.  However, the largest total of resident pheasant hunters this decade has never topped the smallest number of resident hunters during the 80's.

There's a lot more work involved becoming an upland hunter (or waterfowl hunter) than there is becoming, say, a deer hunter or turkey hunter.

If the bird populations are better than they were ten years ago, how is the access?  

In South Dakota, the rate of leasing and rise of pay to play has been well documented.  It would be hard to believe that access is as good as it once was.  

In Minnesota - that question seems more nuanced.  Is focusing on Grouse Hunting only perhaps skewing the numbers?  Are pheasant numbers better than they were ten years ago - and could some portion of former grouse hunters simply have been grouse hunting because there were no game birds nearer home?  If upland hunting is down across the board despite abundant birds - does this track with other outdoor pursuits?  Is a greater portion of the population located in metropolitan areas without good access to birds - or the outdoors?   Not sure of the answers - but would be interested in hearing them.

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Larry Brown

Dave, pheasant hunting has been a lot better in MN in recent years, and that's one factor:  pheasants, plain and simple, are easier to hunt than ruffed grouse.  However, you do have to throw in the access factor, because MN does not have a huge amount of public land in their pheasant range--but they certainly do in their grouse range.  As far as where most people live, the vast majority of Sotans all live in and around the Twin Cities.  However, that's not really a long ways from good grouse hunting.

As for the SD situation . . . yes, I'm sure it's far more common to have to pay to hunt private land now than it was during the 80's.  That being said, there was no Walk-In Areas program during the 80's, and that gives residents another option.  And they get first crack at pheasants on public land, before it's opened to nonresidents.  As a long-time Iowa resident and pheasant hunter, I can't imagine ever complaining about a lack of access for pheasants if I were a SD resident.

When it comes to upland hunting, if we eliminate parts of the Northeast (northern New England and maybe upstate NY), Michigan and Wisconsin, and Louisiana for winter woodcock, then everything east of the Mississippi plus MO and AR is pretty much one large, dark hole for the sport.  And that's where half the people in the country live, and they all have to travel--often a long ways--if they want good upland hunting.  So if we're talking nonresident hunters, then a bad economy is certainly going to have an impact as well.

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bosco mctavitch

...When it comes to upland hunting, if we eliminate parts of the Northeast (northern New England and maybe upstate NY), Michigan and Wisconsin, and Louisiana for winter woodcock, then everything east of the Mississippi plus MO and AR is pretty much one large, dark hole for the sport.  And that's where half the people in the country live, and they all have to travel--often a long ways--if they want good upland hunting.  So if we're talking nonresident hunters, then a bad economy is certainly going to have an impact as well.

How is anyone ever supposed to introduce a kid or a new hunter to bird hunting if it takes a 1000+ mile road trip to get there?  No wonder the sport is shrinking/getting more grey-haired.  No matter how interesting any new media looks if you're working against that it's hopeless.

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Brad Eden
I heard from a reliable source that ESPN is canceling all their deer and turkey shows. Seems Upland isn't alone.

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Briarscratch

Not to mention the option of joining a stocking club.  Memberships range anywhere from $800 to $2500 for "blue collar" clubs.  Throw in the fact that kids can only hunt on the weekends which can impact with school athletics, etc and the problem is compounded.

No amount of 80s hair metal soundtracks, slick editing or product positioning can get around this.

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PartridgeCartridge
 pheasants, plain and simple, are easier to hunt than ruffed grouse.

I love that line Larry. Some won't though.

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Briarscratch
 pheasants, plain and simple, are easier to hunt than ruffed grouse.

I love that line Larry. Some won't though.

Truth hurts.

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bobman
...When it comes to upland hunting, if we eliminate parts of the Northeast (northern New England and maybe upstate NY), Michigan and Wisconsin, and Louisiana for winter woodcock, then everything east of the Mississippi plus MO and AR is pretty much one large, dark hole for the sport.  And that's where half the people in the country live, and they all have to travel--often a long ways--if they want good upland hunting.  So if we're talking nonresident hunters, then a bad economy is certainly going to have an impact as well.

How is anyone ever supposed to introduce a kid or a new hunter to bird hunting if it takes a 1000+ mile road trip to get there?  No wonder the sport is shrinking/getting more grey-haired.  No matter how interesting any new media looks if you're working against that it's hopeless.

Loss of access followed leasing across the south I ran from Texas to Georgia to get away from it.... yet it followed

kids cannot just walk down the street and go hunting and thats killing the sport if kids dont start early they are not likely to get into hunting

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erik meade

$40 per mounded pick-up load.

Interesting measurement calculation. Never heard of that. How much would that be compared to a cord of cut and split wood? Sounds like a good way to promote upland tradition, chain saws are good for upland hunting.

Tacoma or Silverado?

Think older -  

Custom Deluxe.

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