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Annual Dove Hunters Sound Off


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Beg to differ about dove tasting like liver.  If it did, it was overcooked.  

As for gamebirds tasting like liver, author Stephen Bodio has this to say:
“Also notice the color of the cut flesh. Like all good Woodcock (and snipe) cooks, he sort of passes them through a very hot oven. I get tired of hearing how dark- fleshed birds “taste like liver”- good LIVER doesn’t taste like liver when it is cooked rare, turned over quickly in hot bacon fat and butter. My disgusted French- born gourmand friend Guy de la Valdene, after he read an American recipe for woodcock that involved two cans of cream of mushroom soup and an hour and a half in the oven, wrote (in Making Game in 1990): “As this recipe negates the whole reason for killing the birds in the first place, why not take it a step further and poach the Woodcock overnight in equal parts of catsup, pabulum, and Pepto- Bismol.” Gil

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I moved to Missouri in 2003 not knowing anybody.  Met a contractor we use at work that loves to bird hunt and happens to have a few farms of his own plus knows everybody within 100 mile radius.  He ha

I like to dove hunt, it kicks my season off on Sept 1st. I don't do the social thing tho, just hunt by myself or with one other person. Mostly hunt public land. Most guys give up after the first week,

What is a dove season without some dove poppers to eat.   These I peeled the breast filet off with my thumb (used to filet with a knife, but found all you gotta do is apply some pressure wit

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Sage Hen

I like doves, both the shooting and the eating. My dog Maggie not so much. Since both blue and ruffed grouse open at the same time here in Idaho they usually win out.

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sidepass

We hunt the borders of a friends Almond orchard with great success most times. Most of the doves have Almond in their gullets and many have grape seeds from nearby vineyards . I do put out robo doves and the birds coming into these is fast and furious as the sun goes down.  Starting to get excited!

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DennisMcFeely

I'm taking a trip south (of NJ) with some guys from the gun club.  Hopeful for a good shoot, but it's always a good trip to start the season.  Sporting clays, BBQ, beer and doves are delicious  (the popular bacon wrap jalapeno cream cheese)

 

Debating whether to bring a 12 or 20, I can miss equally with both.  What types of guns and gauges does everyone use?

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I've never once thought it tasted like liver. I sometimes substitute shishito peppers in the traditional jalapeno popper. That milder/sweeter spice is more in line with what my kids will eat. 

 

I suggest taking both a 12 AND 20. Why limit yourself?

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23 minutes ago, DennisMcFeely said:

Debating whether to bring a 12 or 20, I can miss equally with both.  What types of guns and gauges does everyone use?

Dennis, I use a 12 ga auto with heavy target loads (1 1/8 oz of 7.5/3 drams EQ).  If I went to a 20 ga I'd still take the auto.  It's been a long time since I've gone but would still prefer the auto's for the simple reason that I can use a shoulder strap to and from the fields.  You may be carrying a lot of items including a small stool and lot's of water.  One free hand is nice.  

 

Thankfully no one has ever had to experience my cooking of doves.  Gil's recipe is a good one.  My wife does a rumaki with WC we could use with dove.  A former next door neighbor hosted an annual dove feast - he grilled them quickly at a very high heat.  While bacon is nice, I prefer more of the dove or WC flavor being unadulterated by much more than butter.  On their own, flash fired, WC and dove need no assist. 

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In younger days when I lived in Illinois we had really excellent dove hunting and a 20 bird limit. I had access to some great farmland and dove and squirrel were the menu for the opening of the hunting season. Water melons, cantaloupe and musk melons were a big crop around that area and most crops were chuck full of musk and cantaloupe seeds. We'd set up on the outside edge of a tree line and take the birds as they passed through. Overhead, gong away, crossing with birds zipping along at near top speed

(up to 70 mph) I believe the only other gamebird faster is the canvasback. You went through quite a few shells and our dogs got plenty of exercise. Monarch butterflies were migrating at the same time and in the tens of thousands and would sometimes cause false alarms when caught in your peripheral vision. Shooting hours started at noon and went till sunset. As a bonus we found out that plenty of these doves would roost in tight rows of shelter belt spruce. My buddy Phil or my Father and I would creep up a deep ravine and sneek into the evergreens without the dog/s and slowly advance until the birds spooked and you had about a minute and a half of some really wild and intense 

shooting. O/U with 2 shells in the gun and two between your left hand's fingers. ( Phil too shot a double, Dad a Model 37) It sounded Omaha beech for a bit. One of us would go back to my Jeep and let the dogs out to police up the area. Some great memories hunting doves.

      We usually plucked, cleaned and rinsed them off and started a simple stock going in a large soup pot. added chicken stock and once boiling turned it down for a bit till the meat started to leave the bone. We separated it from the stock, strained it and placed it back into the pot. Added veggies and potatoes, the meat picked off the carcasses, a tad of butter and wide egg noodles. Turned the heat up till the pasta was just done. added final seasoning and Dinner was served. Zero liver taste and meat was mild and tender. You could feed several people their fill without a huge amount of meat and still satisfy the bunch.

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39 minutes ago, DennisMcFeely said:

I'm taking a trip south (of NJ) with some guys from the gun club.  Hopeful for a good shoot, but it's always a good trip to start the season.  Sporting clays, BBQ, beer and doves are delicious  (the popular bacon wrap jalapeno cream cheese)

 

Debating whether to bring a 12 or 20, I can miss equally with both.  What types of guns and gauges does everyone use?

12 or 16 ga. 1 1/8 oz  7 1/2's and plenty of them. If you average 1 bird for every 4 shots your a Daisy. Full choke but Mod. will do in a pinch. Doves are fast and can shift to either side of line of flight or dip while doing top speed. Looks like a jet fighter avoiding enemy fire. This is pass shooting at birds that are are very fast fliers.

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Last year we had much overcast to the sky, made for a pleasant way to survive the dove fields.  Found out the little girl Gordon wasn't opposed to retrieving them, she got the hang of waiting for birds to come in rather than searching them out, other dogs of ours have taken a while to adapt to that.  Lots of tail wagging, even while lying down, and the 28ga Ithaca makes for a really nice "dove gun". 

Hoping for pleasant weather this year as well.

 

 

IMG_20200901_143726.jpg

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Zkight89

I've been stocking up on shells for the last two months in anticipation. Our family really enjoys Dove season.  Opening day will probably see us tucked into a fence row at our friends wheat field. 

 

 I imagine I'll be shooting a 20 gauge opening day, but only because they will decoy good then. As soon as they get wise I'll bring Big Iron out. 

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52 minutes ago, Spin said:

As a bonus we found out that plenty of these doves would roost in tight rows of shelter belt spruce. My buddy Phil or my Father and I would creep up a deep ravine and sneek into the evergreens without the dog/s and slowly advance until the birds spooked and you had about a minute and a half of some really wild and intense 

shooting. O/U with 2 shells in the gun and two between your left hand's fingers. ( Phil too shot a double, Dad a Model 37) It sounded Omaha beech for a bit. One of us would go back to my Jeep and let the dogs out to police up the area. Some great memories hunting doves.

 

In W PA we found a spot that had a lot of doves.  It had a long shelter belt of deciduous trees that ran parallel to a stream with tons of weed fields and briar bushes mixed in the open areas.  My hunting buddy and I would walk the shelterbelt and jump shoot doves.  For that I'd carry an O/U as though we were upland bird hunting.  Once we walked the belt we'd set up shop and wait for the birds to return.  The pass shooting gun I used back then was a Browning BPS in 12 ga.  My favorite feature on the BPS was ejecting the shells straight down for easy pick-up.  Back then my buddy carried a Winchester 1300 in 20 ga then a the Ruger Red Label in 20 that he still uses today.

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wife says no to shooting doves.....fine with me as they taste like shix........if I even knew someone that wanted them maybe.....but it would be like trying to give away mudhens.....or diver ducks.....

 

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3 minutes ago, gunut said:

wife says no to shooting doves.....fine with me as they taste like shix........if I even knew someone that wanted them maybe.....but it would be like trying to give away mudhens.....or diver ducks.....

 

"There are No Bad Morning Doves, only Bad Cooks" 

                                                                       quote;   G.H. Kmack

 

canvasbacks are diving ducks as are a number of other excellent table ducks, you paint with too broad a brush.

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Treerooster

I like to dove hunt, it kicks my season off on Sept 1st. I don't do the social thing tho, just hunt by myself or with one other person. Mostly hunt public land. Most guys give up after the first week, those are your dove shooters. I actually hunt them and can find good hunting 3 or 4 weeks into our season in N Colorado.

 

Shooting them at a water hole is ok but I really like to get on a flyway where they are just zipping by. Those kind of shots can improve your shooting skills.

 

I use my 12ga duck gun for doves, Benelli SBE with IC choke and light target loads in 8 or 71/2 shot. I may go to a modified choke later in the season as birds get more scarce. I have 2 different styles of shooting. An instinctive type shooting for upland (think Churchill method) and a swing through method for waterfowl & doves. Thats why I use my duck gun for doves.

 

Spinners can work but I don't use them a whole lot. If doves are around in good numders I just try to set up in a good position. When their numbers thin a bit then I use decoys more. Decoys can work well but most guys don't set them properly. The doves need to be able to see them and from the more further away the better.

 

I always take my dogs, they would hate me if I didn't. The heat can be a challenge tho but I just work around it. They retrieve doves just fine and actually allow me to hunt some areas I otherwise might not be able to if I didn't have a dog.

 

I don't really care for liver but I do like doves. Everybody has their own taste tho.

 

Some pics from previous hunts.

 

1801474773_06DoubleondovesResized.thumb.jpg.02a96420cec5767b837d88a2651e7220.jpg

1035164904_06RackfetchingdoveResized.thumb.jpg.31cf81ac143a203f08b815f9499c3d15.jpg

786694690_06RackrunningwithdoveResized.thumb.jpg.4f73a5b85559cb5b29b8be0eeab50af5.jpg1239547649_06DovehuntRackwfeathersResized.thumb.jpg.f108b937c34f64eb331615114bd0da79.jpg 

 

 

 

 

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Just now, Spin said:

"There are No Bad Morning Doves, only Bad Cooks" 

                                                                       quote;   G.H. Kmack

I try everything I shoot with salt and pepper..doves dont pass that test...with all the stuff you have to do to make doves palatable ...I say you could do the same with a dog turd.....

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