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Wind and Pheasants?

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Looking for some opinions.

What is your experience with pheasants holding (late season birds in particular) and wind speed?

I like the days with a nice 5 mph wind, but it seems that when the winds gets too much above 10 mph the birds get real jumpy. I have hit the same piece of public ground about 6 times over the past 8 weeks. I figured the birds had been pressured some much that they would not hold anymore. Then last week I hunted the area and had to step on 2 rooster to get them to fly. I hit the same area yesterday, saw about 25 birds and 90% of them flushed 100+ yards from me. Is it the wind that makes them so jumpy on some days and hold tight the next?

Anyone have the perfect recipe for an ideal pheasant hunting day (as far as weather goes)?

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There's no cut and dried rule.

There are so many variables that go into it and frankly it really doesn't matter because I'm going to hunt them whether they are running like Carl Lewis or velcro'ed to the ground. I think it's a combo of humidity, wind speed and direction, barometric pressure, the cover they're in, the bird's lifetime experience, time of day, surprise factor, etc.

I just go with this... The bird is calling the shots. They hold when they want to and run when they want to. You have to deal with it as best you can.

Perfect weather? Whenever I can go bird hunting, it's perfect. grin.gif For me, I'll take 20-40 degrees with a 5-15 mph wind with low pressure and high humidity and overcast skies.

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Couple of quick comments....

Agree that high humidity or damp conditions will help dogs find birds easier. Do the birds hold better ... or is it the dogs are finding the birds that are holding .. better??

In dry/windy conditions -- dogs may not be able to pick up the scent of birds that are holding tight (not moving much).

Windy => birds certainly escape faster when they are flying cool.gif

birds generally are more jumpy, but I am not so sure this rule is written in stone. I also find birds less interested in hanging out in grass/CRP when wind is strong. They search out heavier cover and hold very well if you find them in this heavy cover.

Pheasants may also tend to flock up more in higher wind days - thus one goes they all go effect.

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Don't get me wrong, I will hunt them in any conditions as well. I will hunted them in below zero temps if I can get out. I wish we would have some snow and cold temps, then the cattails would be a little more productive.

Just looking for opinions. These past 2 weeks I had the choice of burning a day of vacation each week when I decided. I am just seeing if anyone has a magic recipe for a great pheasant day. I know when to take a day for ducks, but pheasant are not as clear. I do avoid the 30 mph days for pheasants that one is clear to me.

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Stay on the couch when it is:

1) Windy

2) Raining

3) Both

Get off the couch for pheasants when:

1) Morning/Day after a snowfall

2) Cool weather and sunny

3) The last week of the pheasant season

4) Your mother-in-law comes over to visit smile.gif

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With my experience in hunting on some very windy days in S.D. I've noticed that the birds are very jumpy and on the ball. We had 30-40mph winds and we figured we may have a better chance going into the wind. Well, birds were still getting up 50yds+ ahead of us. Why is this some may ask. Pheasants really on vibrations in the ground to help with sensing danger. Obviously, they didn't hear us or see us, so this sense of vibrations in the ground is a killer protection tool for them.

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This year late season pheasants have the edge. We are past 2 months into the season and no snow. They are spread-out and know their escape routes (in all directions). The fact that there are just so many pheasants out there this year make for a successful hunt ... always one or two that hold tight or fly back over you -etc...

I have had decent luck in high winds - just not as fun smirk.gif

Rain. If you know where to look in a steady rain - you will spend more time driving in the truck than hunting. That is true if you live 1 mile or 100 miles from your spot.

Hint: not in the grass blush.gif

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I like a little wind, 10-15, seems to cover the noise I make a little bit. This time of the year, there just are not many dumb ones left. Got out today, after the snow. Went to a WMA, birds were in the cats, but very jumpy, only thing that held tight were three four hens and one rooster that held for a point but not long enough to get into position for a shot. Knocked on some doors later and got onto a brushy cattail piece of private property, saw 9 roosters run in off the plowing, quiet approach, no slamming doors, no yelling at dogs, no talking between me and my hunting partner, we saw 4 roosters break wild and Duey pinned one down for me near some willows, that made the bag. No clue where the others went. Saw a lot of birds feeding today, some places 25-30 birds with lots of roosters mixed in. Only 3 days left, hope to get out a little bit each day. Oh and my favorite weather for a late season rooster hunt, moderate snowfall, 10 mph breeze, 20 degrees.

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went out to western MN yesterday with 4 guys and a german shorthair, all public land, we shot one that we couldnt find. it was pretty winding and damp, the dog had alittle trouble finding the birds i think. Kicked 2 roosters out of the cattails, the one that was hit and one that should have been hit blush.gif. would have been nice to be one some fresh snow~!

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humidity is key for the dogs. i prefer less wind, less than 10. even less than 5. the scent doesnt disperse as much. if it is dead calm, the dogs know a bird is near but may not have it perfectly pointed. i can deal with that. however, i have had a couple of days this year that stumped me. days that i thought i should have seen a bunch of birds and didnt...where did they go?? days that the birds held super tight. i scratched my noodle on that the whole day and came up with.....nothing. couldnt figure it out.

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