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"Down under" Quail season


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QuailhunterNZ

Just over half way through our Upland game season here which for me means Cali quail. It's just the 4th time in the last 25 years that the ratio of immature  to mature birds has exceeded 50%. Looking back on old hunting diaries my hunting properties have changed considerably in the last 10 years - a lot of areas have been aerially sprayed for briar and matagouri which has affected the carrying capacity of quail - I've had to find different  areas to hunt. I've been very happy with the dropped/retrieved ratio this year - almost the same - Anky and Bente are good dead bird dogs and the odd one not found is made up by them finding birds that I didn't even know I'd hit ! Haven't been skunked (no birds) yet on my 16 trips but came close twice. My drives from home to a hunting area are always under an hour and I usually hunt for 2 - 4 hours.  Down side I've lost 2 beepers - I have them on the top of a harness to keep them on the top of the shoulders and a little further away from their ears - on the G3 the webbing broke and on the SportDOG 400 both plastic collar loops broke. I have a (bad) habit of leaving them turned off until I find a covey which doesn't help to find them if they come adrift. My shooting has been acceptable in the main and still under 2 shots per bird retrieved. My occasional hunting partner slipped over the last time we were out and tore the rotator cuff on his shoulder so his season has finished! Hope to get out a few more times and I should try to sort some better photos - phone photos don't cut the mustard compared with most images on here. 

image.thumb.jpg.7fca7a46cf3bfd71e29041d117fe3115.jpg

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QuailhunterNZ

Another couple of photos - panting/ posing dogs in front of an old gold miners cottage and in the other a view of the quail territory which if you can expand you might see part of a covey on the ground.

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Crazy Horse

Well, don't stop showing us pictures. I'm interested in seeing the habitat your hunting. Nice looking shotgun too, what make id it?

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QuailhunterNZ

Crazy Horse - the biggest coveys ( 80 to 150 birds ) in my area are found in habitat just like in the photo. Semi desert, close to a creek with plenty of rocks, briar and matagouri. There's usually some cover that is almost unpenetratable or unclimbable without ropes and they have an innate ability to find it. When found usually the whole covey flushes together - sometimes they stay together and other times they starburst. 

 Shotgun is a 28 gauge FAIR ( Isadore Rizzini ) Jubilee 902. It's easy to see it's a workhorse - lots of scratches, nicks and dings everywhere - crawling around rocks, cliffs and pushing through briar/ matagouri is hard on me and the gun!

image.thumb.jpg.b93c22924c0b30d642fa39c813ace3b9.jpgimage.thumb.jpg.fd3368fcb855527853c71d36d724dd90.jpg

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Good looking scene on the gun, wish the pointers had there tails more erect. 

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Crazy Horse
1 hour ago, dogrunner said:

Good looking scene on the gun, wish the pointers had there tails more erect. 

 

In a You-Tube from Italy the other it said that the Italians (and maybe other Europeans) don't require an erect tail. Maybe it's because of their habitat being less thick than ours.

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17 minutes ago, Crazy Horse said:

 

the Italians (and maybe other Europeans) don't require an erect tail. Maybe it's because of their habitat being less thick than ours.

It is not only "not required", but it is completely forbidden! xD

 

The reason is more because of the pleasure to see the European style than efficiency in habitat.

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QuailhunterNZ

Would have liked GWPs on the engraving but wasn't an option :) 

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Thanks for sharing. Hunting NZ is a dream of mine. Tahr, chamois, fallow, and red deer (not estate variety). Bird hunting would be a blast also. Any chukar on the south island?

 

One day I'll make it happen.

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QuailhunterNZ

JWP58 - there's a few chukar in the South Island - mainly Central SI Fish and Game area. They have a Permit system which means you're meant to fill in and return a diary and the end of the season. In the last two years that I've had the summaries it doesn't make good reading. Hunting parties saw about 1 covey per 5 hour day and shot 1 bird for each 8 hours hunting. Covey size averaged 8 birds with the biggest about 20. Rafterboy went hunting a couple of weeks ago but I haven't seen a report yet :) 

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