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Wanderer

Higher rooster limit

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I'm looking through the pages of posts here and am suprised I don't see anything like what I read this morning in one of my Outdoor News issues.

Maybe the Coco Puffs and coffee didn't have my eyes clear yet, but I'm certain I read that MN passed a new law increasing the rooster limit to 3 in the late season. Something like starting on Dec. 1st and continuing to the end.

I'll re-read it tonight but I'm wondering what your guys' thoughts are on this.

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I like the idea. And if its true it spells bad news for the roosties in mankato and good shooting for my crew and my springadore bailey

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Killing off as many roosters as possible in the late season is a good idea. Roosters always seem to grab the best food and cover and push the hens out. Since it take so few roosters to breed all the hens I'd think this would actually help the population. The only downside for me is that on the hard hit public land I frequent taking two birds let alone three is pretty tough in the late season.

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With gas prices so high it will help justify a few more outings without hurting the resource. It should help some hens make it through the winter in areas with little prime cover monopolized by big old roosters.

On heavily hunted public land it will be tougher to scratch up a rooster, because there is just only so many to go around, but if you do get into them you can hunt longer. After duck season and before hard ice there isn't a lot to do on a late season hunt if you pick up your two in the first ditch you hit. So for this I like it.

There will be some enforcement problems with possesion limits around the switch date that could lead to more labeling rules and proof of date of hunt, but other than that I like it.

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Just because the limit will be 3 doesn't meen people will get 3...Late season roosters are tough to pin down at best, and impossible on some days...even more so on heavily hunted public land...Even on the land I hunt and I'm the only one that hunts late season is sometimes an exercise and I do mean exercise in futillity....Running and gunning huffing and puffing sweating when it's 2 below....man that's fun... After all that work I think I deserve that extra bird .... That is if I can some how get him in gun range and catch my breath long enough to make the shot.....I'm all for it!!!....shoot fast...or 2thepoint will kill the bird before you do........uplander

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Personally I'm against it, I know they say it will do no harm, but I just don't agree, if I shoot one more rooster, he is not there next year. I also have never seen this behavior of roosters pushing hens out of prime wintering cover, often late season and after close I see mostly hens with a few roosters mixed in by all the choice spots. Those roosters aren't dumb, they want the hens around for spring....

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The odds of a rooster making it from Dec to opening the next year are pretty small. The studies they have done (most notably the one where Iowa closed its season altogether and MN kept its open along the border which resulted in NO difference the following year) suggest it wont matter.

I am all for it. Even if you dont get the third bird, you can still be out hunting after you get 2. I could have really used it last year as we had some awesome hunting late in the year.

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Tell all those roosters I saw running around road ditches this spring that they had long odds of making it through winter, they are alot better odds out there than in a freezer...

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The over harvest of roosters would be a very hard thing to accomplish. 1 wiley rooster can service the motherly needs of 4 or more hens with ease and a smile! Many states around us and many studies have been done on this and with a good crop of young up and coming males we will be just fine. With a life span of 4 years being old, I find if hard to loose the build, I am in much more fear of losing habitat than losing roosters to breed.

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Yep, I just re-read the May 23rd issue again. Its a for sure thing according to Outdoor News, along with the other changes such as crossbows being legal for bear and turkeys.

3 bird daily limit from Dec 1 to close of season. 9 in possession.

I wasn't sure how I thought about this when I first read it, but have had time to think about it.

When I hunted both North and South Dakota it seemed to be a well known fact that you couldn't shoot down the rooster population too far. It was just impossible. Like Muc said, 1 rooster can and will breed many hens. I would venture to say the number is way higher than 4 per rooster. And he'd still be smilin! grin

The reasons the Dakotans cited were the competition for food and cover when winter got hard. It makes sense.

Bringing the MN population into question: We have less birds - maybe because we don't shoot enough roosters after all? And yes, state land can be pretty hen ridden in late season, but how far away is private that still holds the roosters? They'll be back with the hens in spring.

And anybody who has spent time out there late season knows that you just can't get them all.

Any coincidence that the thick concentrations of roosters are isolated to the best winter habitat in late season? So if you're lucky enough to have access to it, thin em out so the hens have it easier.

Kinda made me start wondering why the limit didn't go up for the whole season. But I suppose that might come in some years if this plan works out.

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i am for it i have a few spots that only get hunted after deer hunting also i think more people will spend more money in mn border towns if they can go for 3 days and come home with 9 birds there is no reason to go to the dakotas . also there is state land that doesn't get hit that hard most people are to lazy to walk any distance pushing cattails.with the nicer winters that we are having there alot more carry over birds but i don't think it is going to last we are due for a bad winter.

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What happens to the hens when they are being constantly pushed out of cover late in the season. I have to disagree with this, if the increase in the bag limit is going to mean more hunter hours in the field during more drastic weather wouldn't that increase the stress on the hens and subsequently increase their mortality? I am not a biologist but just a thought. I think they should repeal this. Tim

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If I remember correctly I believe they say you only need about 10% of the population to be roosters. Even if the number is 20% then I would say there's plenty more roosters that could be bagged. I would much rather have a feew more hens getting the good cover and food than roosters.

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Actually now that I think about it unless there's really nice weather there'll only be the diehards out there anyway. This may make a few more people go out but at that point unless they're real serious they aren't willing to go where the birds are since it generally requires a heck of a lot more work/brains/good dogs.

Also, you don't have to shoot the third bird if you don't think there are enough in the area, we can limit ourselves at any time. If you see a ton of roosters in an area then take the third bird, if not don't.

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Raising the rooster limit from 2 to 3 won't affect too many hunters very often. Most folks will have a hard time getting 3. Most the time I didn't get my two birds. Raising the possession limit will have more of an impact than the daily limit.

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Those that lease land may benefit - some.

Birds get pretty wild by December. Some will get 3 per person others will not.

Ruffs have run at 5 per day in high cycle and low, has not shown to make much difference in next years population.

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Raise the limit. The bird population will be fine next spring and fall. If we are really concerned about the bird population, the key is habitat.

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Raise the limit. The bird population will be fine next spring and fall. If we are really concerned about the bird population, the key is habitat.

What he said!!!

One rooster can take care of a whole bunch of hens in the spring.

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What happens to the hens when they are being constantly pushed out of cover late in the season. I have to disagree with this, if the increase in the bag limit is going to mean more hunter hours in the field during more drastic weather wouldn't that increase the stress on the hens and subsequently increase their mortality? I am not a biologist but just a thought. I think they should repeal this. Tim

I'm with 101winchester on this one, any hardcore pheasant hunter worth his salt knows the best late season hunting is when the weather is bad and the birds are pushed into heavy cover. Do we really need to be pushing the hens - the future for next year - out of their survival cover?? On a big cattail swamp its probably not a problem but in an area with marginal cover, you're driving those hens up into the plowed fields and fencelines.

If nothing else you're scattering the birds out. Pheasants are a flock bird and key off each other, when one detects danger they all take off. For those of you that have hunted in SoDak, have you noticed how when you surround a patch, once a few birds start going out one side, pretty soon they're all escaping out that gap. One pheasant off by themselves is more vulnerable than a flock of pheasants.

Hunter numbers may be down in the cold, tough weather but I still see plenty of pickups sitting in public areas on cold Dec mornings. Several times I've arrived at my designated spot at 9 AM and found hunters already there, even at 5 above with a wind.

This whole issue isn't about having enough roosters around to breed in the spring, we know that enough will survive to get the job done, the issue is about hen survival.

A higher limit means more hours spent pheasant hunting and more hens driven into marginal cover.

I also hope that MN never goes to a three bird limit. They'll get slaughtered early in the season, leaving less for later.

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Three sounds good to me. Can't wait my brother in-law has land in central MN and it barely gets hunted or not at all for pheasant. We always have a blast in Dec.

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The birds will be just fine with a three bird limit. A biologist I work with said lots more hens will be saved by lower numbers of roosters (roosters push the hens out of the better cover ALL WINTER) than will be hurt by hunters pushing them out a few times before the end of December. Personally I love the late start for the higher limit. I think there is way too many people hunting early in the season for the 3 bird limit, buy like everyone has said so far, late in the year is prety much diehards anyways so it will have little effect. I like that MN is actually going to try to use the high number of birds we have right now. South Dakota shot down the bill to extend the pheasant season to the end of January because a bunch of armchair biologists thought it would hurt the population when the real biologists are trying to get the point accross that it would have no effect.

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I will put it to good use. I usually don't get in a lot of rooster hunting until the duck season is over or the ponds are froze up...in which case you can hunt those thick cattails for roosters! The timing seems to work out pretty well. I know I won't have a problem driving as far for an extra bird in the bag.

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