Proposal to extent MT 2023 Upland Bird Season to end of January...please comment by Jan 21.

winmag

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Colorado
Obviously the issue here is that these decisions are not being made by biologists. Although you can buy a biologist just like you can buy a politician, so they’ll get a biologist to go along with their proposal soon enough.

Having said that, the pheasant season goes to the end of January here in CO. That’s when I hunt pheasants most frequently since I’m busy hunting big game prior to the end of the year. I walk many miles and pick up a bird or two, typically not seeing another pheasant hunter all day.

Yes, the climate is different in CO and MT. Will hunting during the harsh January Montana weather negatively impact populations? Will hunters actually hunt it due to the same harsh weather?

I’ll point out that I am against the extended deer/elk muzz season in Montana, as it will clearly have a negative impact on herds going into winter. I’m just not convinced that this will result in significant enough negative impact on pheasants for me to knee-jerk oppose the extension.
 

Gerald Martin

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Just because you can doesn’t mean you should.
Please update your attitude to come into harmony with the New Manifest Destiny Model of Science Based Wildlife Management. This is 2022 after all. Your conservation ethos is obviously rooted in the 1930’s. Back when folks wanted to grow wildlife populations instead of reduce them to token numbers.

Get wit the program. M’kay?

😏
 

Beignet

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Because one guy wrote a handwritten letter to the commission asking for more opportunity to hunt pheasants through Jan.31.
Commissioner Tabor presented it to ensure he could prove they took considered his request. FWP personnel testified there was no biological reason the season couldn’t be extended.

The conversation expanded to include all upland birds, not just pheasants.

#sciencebasedproposals
I was going to mention that handwritten letter and was surprised that that’s all it took.

If only FWP would respond as such to thousands of comments about other subjects.
 

brockel

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Sharptails are already hunted for 4 months. Go watch them this time of year in the drifts and -30 degrees like this past week. Even if they do flush wild and aren’t easy to kill, allowing another month of disturbance in these types of conditions is dumb. Especially when we’re in the middle of a period of extreme drought and poor habitat conditions. That added disturbance is not without impacts and that goes for all our upland species, at least in eastern MT.

Just because you can doesn’t mean you should.


Running trapline in the winter time I can tell you how much easier a limit of sharpies will be. Sitting in the tops of the buffalo berry bushes. Put pickup in park. Get out grab shotgun and shoot a couple. Watch them fly to the next bush and repeat. They are dumb when it’s cold
 

brockel

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Please update your attitude to come into harmony with the New Manifest Destiny Model of Science Based Wildlife Management. This is 2022 after all. Your conservation ethos is obviously rooted in the 1930’s. Back when folks wanted to grow wildlife populations instead of reduce them to token numbers.

Get wit the program. M’kay?

😏

But if we don’t have all this hunting opportunity then people will lose interest. Then there’s no reason to own guns. Then they will come for our guns. You know how many times I’ve heard this.
 

AlaskaHunter

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interior Alaska
The proposed extension is not all upland birds (not sage grouse) but huns, sharptails, forest grouse, pheasants.

I enjoyed hunting roosters until the last day this year...I would love to hunt an extra month.

But I think the proposal is a bad idea. With heavy snows and frigid temperatures, pheasants
typically seek heavy woody cover for as a winter refuge which has a warmer microclimate, berries for food,
and shelter from predators, especially owls and hawks. By hunting these areas in January,
hen pheasants would likely be flushed from winter refugia out into more open country.
This might not be beneficial due to potential increased vulnerability of predation on hens
and increased stress during this critical survival period. Why risk increased hen mortality?

The second consideration, less important from my perspective, is increased conflict between
trappers and bird hunters in January and also increased conflict between land owners and January bird hunters.

If the season is going to be extended to the end of January, why not extend it to the end of March?
Seems like there is not rationale and a bad idea from my perspective.

There is a zoom meeting(link) Tuesday Jan 4 at 6-8pm MT time, so perhaps then the rationale for this proposal will
be explained.
 

brockel

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I know this is of little concern to most but the trapper is going to take it in the teeth on this one. A lot of your great snaring areas are pheasant habitat. Snaring is already losing the prime month of December holding of until January to set good areas to avoid conflicts with bird dogs. Pushing this to the end of January makes it completely worthless to even try snaring these areas after January.
 

Hunting Wife

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Almost North Dakota, not quite Canada
I know this is of little concern to most but the trapper is going to take it in the teeth on this one. A lot of your great snaring areas are pheasant habitat. Snaring is already losing the prime month of December holding of until January to set good areas to avoid conflicts with bird dogs. Pushing this to the end of January makes it completely worthless to even try snaring these areas after January.
Excellent point. I hadn’t even considered trapper conflicts for some dumb reason. I know two folks who have lost bird dogs in snares in North Dakota, and I enjoy tagging along on snare checks with one of my coworkers. He always sets in prime pheasant cover, and I’m always nervous hunting in ND late season on private land for that reason.
 

Gerald Martin

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@Gerald Martin My bad. From now on, bird season be like

View attachment 207656
@Hunting Wife, one thing I have always appreciated about you is that you are willing to change a previously held viewpoint when shown it isn’t correct. Thank you for demonstrating a teachable attitude for the rest of this forum. Well done.👍👍

Also, your choice of upland game bird weaponry is exquisite and completely in harmony with the ethos of freedom protection’, Merica loving, 2nd Amendment advocating, patriotic citizens of this beautiful land.
You deserve a public shout out from Uncle Ted. Much respect. ✊✊👊👊
 

Hunting Wife

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Almost North Dakota, not quite Canada
@Hunting Wife, one thing I have always appreciated about you is that you are willing to change a previously held viewpoint when shown it isn’t correct. Thank you for demonstrating a teachable attitude for the rest of this forum. Well done.👍👍

Also, your choice of upland game bird weaponry is exquisite and completely in harmony with the ethos of freedom protection’, Merica loving, 2nd Amendment advocating, patriotic citizens of this beautiful land.
You deserve a public shout out from Uncle Ted. Much respect. ✊✊👊👊
F41164FD-A7A9-4228-97AB-DC753075D153.jpeg
 

JLS

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Mar 26, 2012
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Almost Arkansas…..
I know this is of little concern to most but the trapper is going to take it in the teeth on this one. A lot of your great snaring areas are pheasant habitat. Snaring is already losing the prime month of December holding of until January to set good areas to avoid conflicts with bird dogs. Pushing this to the end of January makes it completely worthless to even try snaring these areas after January.
Probably the most salient reason to NOT extend the season. However, logic has been cast to the wind.

May as well have the shotty for roosters with you while you’re hunting elk in February and March.
 

BuzzH

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Laramie, WY
I know this is of little concern to most but the trapper is going to take it in the teeth on this one. A lot of your great snaring areas are pheasant habitat. Snaring is already losing the prime month of December holding of until January to set good areas to avoid conflicts with bird dogs. Pushing this to the end of January makes it completely worthless to even try snaring these areas after January.
Well on the plus side, the lack of snaring the predators that eat pheasants, huns, and sharptail's will help get the over objective upland bird populations back to objective quicker.
 

Brittany Chukarman

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Richland,Or
Our upland season for quail, chukar and huns in E. Oregon runs through January. There's parties that wait until heavy snow so they can shoot from the road. To make it through the night these birds depend on the warmth of the covey huddle. Every chukar hunter has come across a huge pile of droppings where they spent the night. When they get broken up late in the day I wonder how many make it. It's not unusual to find dead singles in the snow that appear to have just died from exposure. These sports also have no qualms about shooting into coveys on the ground crippling more than they kill. The bad winter of 16/17 some of us called ODFW to close the season. They said the birds would die anyway so let the hunters kill them. Obviously they won't all die and the more left over the quicker they recover to my way of thinking. Starving, hatchet-breasted birds aren't fit to eat anyway.
 

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