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SD and ND trespass fee hunting


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Chukarman
1 hour ago, Don Steese said:

My thoughts exactly, but some folks look at you funny when you say you aren't interested in hunting South Dakota because there are "too many birds!"

I also much prefer hunting sharptails and Huns, but I'm a bit odd. Since I don't hunt back east anymore the one bird I miss most are woodcock. How many would admit that??

I also don't exactly agree with those who say that pheasants are much more difficult for a pointing dog. Yes, they do run but once a rooster decides to hold in thick cover a dog can get right on top of them and they won't budge. Just my limited experience. Mearns quail are probably the most challenging I've found for a pointing dog.

All that having been said I plan on being out there chasing those gaudy buggers come Saturday!ūüėČ

 

Don - - Gambel's quail opens on the 6th and Mearn's opens on Dec 3rd. When you are out this way, let me know and we can met and greet.

 

Mike

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The more people who are willing to pay a trespass fee, the more private land will be off-limits to local hunters.

I've knocked on doors in MT, OR, WA, CA. Never been asked to pay a trespass fee. If you are knocking cold calls you might be asked because they don't know you from Adam. If I can say that a neighbor o

In every state hunting regulation booklet there’s a section with a reminder to respect private property and the safety and sensibility of landowners. Got no problem with that.    I just wish th

Don Steese
51 minutes ago, Chukarman said:

 

Don - - Gambel's quail opens on the 6th and Mearn's opens on Dec 3rd. When you are out this way, let me know and we can met and greet.

 

Mike

Will do. We should be in AZ sometime in early Nov.

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Doubleplay
On 10/4/2021 at 1:59 PM, Dave Quindt said:

Do you have any concerns that the paper companies are buying pen raised ruffed grouse and releasing them in hopes of repeat gate fee business? Are you seeing paper companies take government subsidies to improve the landscape (and the bird production), only to then lease it out to the highest bidder?

 

Pheasants and mallards drive behaviors different than every other game bird in North America.

C'mon man you can't be serious with a reply like that.  So hunting anything other than ruffed grouse on private land is buying birds huh? Have you ever hunted private ground for pheasants or any other wild bird? or can you tell the difference between a wild and released pheasant? 

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sbertram

Not everywhere in South Dakota has as many birds as the Mitchell area but the situation described above is not unheard of at all in that part of the state. Other areas offer a bit more dog work, varied birds etc. South Dakota is a big state, I have a house up there that I spend a lot of time in during hunting season and my area does not have the numbers of Pheasant that the Mitchell area does but the bird hunting can be very good, including Sharptail and Chickens. 

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bennelli-banger

Fwiw, Mitchell is very different than it was 10-20 years ago, trust me on that!  Starting west, moving east, land gets increasingly expensive to buy or rent, and every inch possible gets plowed under in order to be farmed and ultimately paid for.   Heartbreaking but true.   Areas that are fairly dry have become better for pheasants, IMO, as it has more pasture and less farm ground…ultimately more habitat.

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To the OP.  I wouldn't feel at all obligated to defend exploring the pay to play option. You are coming from a long way and wanting to secure some better odds than public land for a couple days is more than reasonable. I would talk to the locals where you are staying. Motel owner/operator, cafe/bar owner etc.  They usually know someone who accepts a trespass fee.  As BB says larger operations will be harder to get on with only two people and buyer beware if you do go with a small operation but at the same time they are not putting out birds for two people either.

 

Probably just me but I never found knocking on doors to be all that productive on a single hunt. Better off spending that time scouting out the best public cover. If you plan on going back to the same area year after year then door knocking can be a good investment.

 

Hunting roosters on public land in SD has never been close to a put & take experience.  Even during the mid-2000's & especially for one or two hunters.

 

The large lodge operations even today are absolutely intended to be that kind of experience. How else would they be able to charge the rates that pay for building on site lodging, food service, guides etc.

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bennelli-banger

   Look at the GFP public land atlas, find areas that are heavy with WPA’s (good winter cover), and drive around between 7-10am looking for harvested crops…crops will be out by opener this year.   You’ll see birds by doing this…you can walk ditches, keep in mind.   You’ll have action!  CREP land is good, too, it’s fairly new, so the grass is still pretty decent.   Hunt midweek.   Chat it up at cafes and C stores and bars and grocery stores.   Stay 40 miles away from towns of 5-10k or more if possible.   Ask around about paying to get on land…you might get on for free!  I would focus on areas that have WPA’s and CREP, and GMA’s and walk-in are a bonus.    Look at UGUIDE’s website, look at his 5-6 camps and what he charges, where they are, and how they did last year…good intel!

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43 minutes ago, bennelli-banger said:

Ask around about paying to get on land…you might get on for free!  

 

Great advice from BB but, I'd ask to get on first and hope paying a fee doesn't come up. 

 

Charging a fee has a domino affect. There was an area in west river that I had hunted in the past with a polite request. A few years later, a couple of ranchers started charging a fee. They then complained to their neighbors that they were losing potential fees because everyone else was letting guys on for free. Then area owners all agreed that no one hunts for free. I was met with apologies, but "everyone gets $100 a gun a day now". I thanked them for allowing me to hunt in the past, drove 20 miles, and kept knocking. 

 

 

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11 minutes ago, Randy S said:

 

Great advice from BB but, I'd ask to get on first and hope paying a fee doesn't come up. 

 

Charging a fee has a domino affect. There was an area in west river that I had hunted in the past with a polite request. A few years later, a couple of ranchers started charging a fee. They then complained to their neighbors that they were losing potential fees because everyone else was letting guys on for free. Then area owners all agreed that no one hunts for free. I was met with apologies, but "everyone gets $100 a gun a day now". I thanked them for allowing me to hunt in the past, drove 20 miles, and kept knocking. 

 

 

I believe this was the point some had been attempting to make. While it is good for the landowner, it’s not good for the hunter.

 

 

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bennelli-banger

Yes, I’d ask about access without offering $…time of year sometimes dictates what landowners expect…later season, maybe not expected as much?

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bennelli-banger

I also feel that it’s important to let landowners know that I appreciate the habitat that they have, and that there’s a financial impact by having that habitat…the farmers who hunt, and whose family hunts, seem to value habitat and propagate it to the extent they can..,

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I have heard of making friends with landowners, and gaining access, by bringing items unavailable in the area you wish to hunt, Fruit, fish etc..

 

While it’s bribery, it also shows appreciation, good will goes a long ways.

 

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Dave Quindt
14 hours ago, Doubleplay said:

C'mon man you can't be serious with a reply like that.  So hunting anything other than ruffed grouse on private land is buying birds huh? Have you ever hunted private ground for pheasants or any other wild bird? or can you tell the difference between a wild and released pheasant? 

No, hunting non-grouse species on private land isn't buying birds.  But when a game farm in the upper midwest is running a rooster-only special in March because their bird supplier sold and shipped all of his hens to someone in South Dakota what do you think is happening with those birds?  I don't think it's because the preserves out there are short hens!  And it's not the SD DNR releasing birds either.    

 

Now, do I think that all landowners in the Dakotas who charge a trespass fee stock birds, either roosters before season or hens in the spring?  Nope, not at all.  But do I think the ones who do charge a trespass fee or are an established "wild bird" lodge are more likely to do so?  You better believe I do.

 

Pheasants have become a business unlike any other upland game bird in North America.  When you can walk into a restaurant in Winner, SD for breakfast the waitress rattles off various private land options she can hook you up with based on group size and budget faster than she can rattle off the specials of the day it doesn't exactly make you feel good about the future of wild bird hunting for folks of average means.  And this isn't a recent phenomenon as I listened to that waitress rattle off options back in 2000.  And it's only gotten worse; back then you'd never hear of someone charging a trespass fee west river.  It's a different story these days as @Randy S can confirm.

 

 

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Chukarman

All this discussion points to the reasons that I don't hunt pheasants. I'll shoot them if we find some in season while hunting my preferred birds, though. They taste good. The rest of it... meh.

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