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Thread: quail opener

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    115

    Default quail opener

    Good luck this weekend Folks! It's a little warmer than I would like but it's still better than not going out at all!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    115

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    It's rough out there! I was in the rolling plains, ran a couple of sections of "solid " private properties and I did public land-no birds.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    Location
    Hamlin, Texas
    Posts
    21

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    I live and also hunt in the Rolling Plains of Texas, basically one of the last, best wild quail hunting areas in the country. I took the dogs out on Halloween day, with ideal hunting conditions and my summary is as follows; things are looking grim for the 2019-20 quail season in my neck of the woods. The dogs found one covey, and it had so few birds in it I didn't even fire a shot.

    I was in South Dakota pheasant hunting last week and talked to some guys from Kansas that were staying in the same motel that we were. They said the quail numbers in Kansas were really good this year. So, I guess I'll be making a trip to Kansas to get my dogs into some birds. I'll still haul the dogs out and let them run and work where I live and hunt, but I doubt I'll shoot a single quail in Texas this year, unless we stumble across a big covey while pheasant hunting in the panhandle in December.
    Larry Bills
    Retired Public Educator
    Hamlin, Texas

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    115

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    Larry-glad to see that someone else besides myself also has respect enough for the birds to not shoot when they are in this condition. I've been up there 1 more time since the opener, I went to another property I am blessed to have permission to bird hunt. It wasn't any better, I got on one covey, 7 birds got up-no shots fired. I prolly wouldn't have drove the 4 hrs one way if it wasn't for a young 11 month old female I'm working at the moment. I made it a point to not hunt too late in the day when these birds are assembling to roost for the night. I'll probably hit some "public" down south.
    Kansas and South Dakota will be getting my money this season also...

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    Location
    Hamlin, Texas
    Posts
    21

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    Itís just really frustrating considering we had all time record quail numbers in 2016, and now weíre right back where we were in 2010-2014. Also, the habitat and vegetation is better than Iíve ever seen it this year.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    115

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    i hear ya...very frustrating. Cover is the best I've seen it in a long while.
    We started out good this spring. I think the summer drought did the little ones in. August and September were super tough on birds. The eyeworm epidemic isn't helping things either.
    I hear there is a lot of birds down south this year...

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    100

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    It's true that the birds are good down south. Was on a deer hunt a couple of hours south of San Antonio last weekend, and we saw tons of quail.
    Usually hunt quail in the SW part of the panhandle, but haven't been yet this season. Plan to go sometime in the next few weeks.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    Location
    Hamlin, Texas
    Posts
    21

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    We have moisture here now. It started raining Wednesday night and rained all night and into the morning on Thursday. I had over 3 inches here around Hamlin. So, scenting conditions should be much improved!

    I agree on the eye worm issue. Word from Dr Rollins at the Rolling Plains Quail Research Ranch is a medicated quail feed to fight internal parasites will be approved by FDA in late 2020. We sure need it. I hunt on the Jones/Fisher county line and that has been ground zero for eye worm infestation the last couple of years.

    Please post a report on the southwest panhandle after you get back. If things are good there I figure eastern New Mexico might be worth a try. Thereís tons of BLM and state land in New Mexico so access wouldnít be a problem there.

    What is the general area of south Texas you are referring to? Isnít pretty much everything down there locked up in deer hunting operations?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    100

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by lbills View Post
    Please post a report on the southwest panhandle after you get back. If things are good there I figure eastern New Mexico might be worth a try. There’s tons of BLM and state land in New Mexico so access wouldn’t be a problem there.

    What is the general area of south Texas you are referring to? Isn’t pretty much everything down there locked up in deer hunting operations?
    We were in the area between Alice and Falfurrias. I don't know much about south Tx hunting, it was my first time to hunt down there. The ranch we were on is definitely a deer hunting operation. I was there with my brother and dad, and by Sat morning we had shot our deer, so that afternoon we were able to chase birds a bit. Was pretty much impossible though, the mesquite/brushy cover was too thick to walk through. Tons of birds, but you'd mostly just see them running in the brush. I'm sure that the properties with a bit more open/grassy cover have outstanding quail hunting.

    I'll post a report when I've been to the SW panhandle. I'm seriously considering trying for blues in SE New Mexico this season too. I think the numbers will be good there, based on the precipitation data I've looked at.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    115

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    Generally speaking, deer season trumps bird hunting during the rifle season. I have some folks I'll be reaching out to once buck season is over. But until then-not even going to ask...

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