Reverting toward childhood

Talk about Coon Hunting
david
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Reverting toward childhood

Postby david » Tue May 24, 2016 1:14 pm

I had a Freind who suggested I should be banned from the bobcat section since I don't hunt bobcats any more. He has a point.

I know at a certain age, some things start going back the way you came from. No diapers yet, but I have started coon hunting again and running coyotes. And I am just far enough gone, evidently, that it has been an absolute blast. It sure beats driving around for days on end trying unsuccessfully to find a cat track. The dogs are learning every day, and so am I.

I have taken to coon hunting at dawn, same as I loved doing for bobcats. It is so much more fun than night hunting, in my opinion. I get to see the dogs every move, and sometimes get to see the coon as well. And mornings out on the prairie are the best. The sunrise is usually glorious, and the vast numbers and variety of game birds, song birds, and waterfowl is amazing to witness each morning. The ducklings are hatching out as we speak. There are more ducks hatched in North Dakota than any of the lower 48 states.

There are not big numbers of coon, but I have located a few, and I try my best to keep them alive. It actually is entertaining to see them getting smarter and smarter and harder and harder to catch. We treed one this morning that we have caught a few times before. I got soaked in the swamp saving that rascal last Tuesday morning. I thanked him for climbing a tree today.

I don't let the dogs switch tracks, but if we find a coyote first, and I have the time, we run that. They have not caught one, and I don't know if they will, but it gives them practice on something that runs long. It's fun too, and I usually at least get to see the coyote.

So, While the oil is slow, I've been trying to dig in and bloom where I am planted. It sure beats moping around wishing I was somewhere else!
Last edited by david on Tue May 24, 2016 1:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Mike Leonard
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Re: Reverting toward childhood

Postby Mike Leonard » Tue May 24, 2016 1:41 pm

David,



I spent many a prairie morn out on the Dakota sod and I agree there is something special about spring there and all that new life bursting forth. Should be a good hatch there in the duck factory, and I hope the sharptail grouse and huns have good hatches as well. This old hound guy cut his hunting teeth in North Dakota and you can bet I am never far from my trusty shotgun and my faithful labs.

Oil booms come and oil booms bust but like my Mother always said one think you can bank on is that sun is going to come up in the east and set in the west, and when the last drilling rig stacks out the coons and the coyotes will still be around.


Keep having fun!
MIKE LEONARD
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david
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Re: Reverting toward childhood

Postby david » Tue May 24, 2016 1:59 pm

Thanks Mike. If any one asks why I am having so much fun I will tell them, "just obeying orders". Mike told me to!

Somebody's gotta do it.
Mike Leonard
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Re: Reverting toward childhood

Postby Mike Leonard » Tue May 24, 2016 4:59 pm

You have my permission......LOL!
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horshur
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Re: Reverting toward childhood

Postby horshur » Tue May 24, 2016 10:58 pm

shut up david..if you didn't post bobcat section be a bore..don't stop please!!! I got hurt under a horse couple years ago now..don't have much time have a real job now..was good timing cause I had some good dogs but it is gonna be tough for time never stands still..I have a pack of old dogs now...
david
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Re: Reverting toward childhood

Postby david » Wed May 25, 2016 2:11 am

Horshur, I didn't know that happened to you. Am real sorry to hear that.

I guess I could post up there about how to train bobcat dogs by coon and coyote hunting. Hahah.

Actually, I am just having so much fun with day time coon hunting, I am just hoping to flush out some coon hunters to talk to.
Man, I got all kinds of pictures and videos of these crazy North Dakota Coons in the daylight, and coyotes too, and all my cat headed friends don't even want their phones contaminated with such back-sliding and heathenism.

We trailed one a few days ago probably three miles in a loop before they caught it about 8:30 am. He had been to three different sloughs and an old farmstead. It is just excellent practice cold trailing. And there are several other great benefits too.

No waisted time. I know five different coon within five miles of where I live. We hit each one about once a week and give him a week off. Can usually have them working a cold track within fifteen or twenty minutes of going out the driveway. Then back in time for work.
It is pretty ideal. And I never thought I would be saying that here.

I know of potential problems, but have weighed them against the problems with not hunting young dogs in their prime development months. And then, I ask the dogs if they would rather not hunt today since we can't find a bobcat. Then I open the gate for their answer. They always crash into the back of the truck as fast and hard as they can fly. I take that as a "we don't mind, let's go hunting!!"

Good hearing from you Horshur, and sorry about the hardships your family has had to face. Don't stay away so long.
Gary Roberson
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Re: Reverting toward childhood

Postby Gary Roberson » Wed May 25, 2016 11:35 am

I am in the same boat as you for different reasons. 5-6 years ago, something moved through this country and killed the few bobcats that we had and the populations have not rebounded. Several of my cat hunting buddies went so far as to sell all of their hounds and no longer hunt. I, too am coonhunting in the mornings to train my pups and keep the older dogs in shape so that when I get ready to go west to hunt lions, dogs can hold up to the long hours and rugged terrain. I agree that hunting in the daylight on coon is the best way to teach a hound to trail as I rarely strike a hot track.
I am a little different in that I don't allow my potlickers to run coyotes as the coyote populations are pretty big in some of the areas where I hunt lions.
Adios,
Gary
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Re: Reverting toward childhood

Postby Emily » Thu May 26, 2016 11:39 am

I've been known to chase coon in daylight. In my experience, the coon are out as long as the light is dim and the human population is sparse. Where I live, in the Catskill Park, the raccoon are out in the hollows all day long, except when the sun is direct overhead. We're shut down on everything in spring until July 1. But one old lady with bad knees and one old hound can go for a slow amble in the woods and find something to do without getting in trouble as long as the hound has enough sense not to pick up a porcupine kit. We avoid dawn for awhile because of spring turkey season (May mornings). But the old hound and I always learn something or at least see or smell something interesting and don't make the husband so frantic when we come home later than intended!
esp
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Re: Reverting toward childhood

Postby john porter » Fri May 27, 2016 11:31 pm

Day time coon hunting isn't allowed here in NC but I am a coon hunter at heart. Been bear hunting and cat hunting here but lately, I just go out nights and run a few coons. Grew up doing it all through high school and it feels great getting back to my roots...
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Re: Reverting toward childhood

Postby ethertonee » Sat Jun 18, 2016 7:26 pm

David do you think you could do this in an area where there are a lot of coons. This is much more appealing then staying up waiting until 11 or midnight until it cool enough to hunt much going to bed at 3 and getting up at 7 for work. I could go to bed at ten up at 4 get more sleep keep a regular scheduled and still get to work by 800. Seeing the sunrise if very appealing as well. It was still 81 at 330 in the morning the other morning with humidity around 80%. I am thinking more to beat the heat. In the fall you can hunt at 800 PM and be to bed at 1200 AM since it is dark earlier and much cooler. As far as switching tracks with so many coons unless it is cold with a little snow that is still hard for me to follow. This also will allow for me to not miss out on much family time as well.

Thank you for sharing your stories and experiences with us all

Ed Etherton
david
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Re: Reverting toward childhood

Postby david » Sat Jun 18, 2016 7:51 pm

Ed I think it would work well. It is harder and more work for the dogs and we don't get one caught every morning. But the dogs get a chance to work on cold trailing every morning and the improvements in their ability has been very noticeable. In the daylight I am able to watch them. For the first time in my life, I have developed a command that means "get moving! He is not here any more!" The dogs understand it now, and they move out beyond what they can smell to search for traces of scent somewhere out there that would indicate a direction of travel.
They hear it as encouragement and you can see them intensify their efforts. Then, when they eventually end up looking at a coon that morning, after tremendous effort, it is the best possible reinforcement.

It would be much harder, if not impossible, to read them correctly in the dark.

I don't know if it is just these North Dakota coons, but it seems to me they really do not want to climb a tree in the daylight because they don't feel hidden. I have had them come out of trees as soon as they feel their cover is blown. We are getting some pretty good races at times, and I think it is because it is daylight.

I think it is extremely valuable to hunt at dawn. It is so much easier to get the dogs squared away. Just take the attitude that we are going to get some excersise, get you guys cleaned up and handling the best, and get some practice cold trailing. You can't loose. And have your camera phone ready because those day time pictures and videos of coon hunting are fun!
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Re: Reverting toward childhood

Postby ethertonee » Mon Jun 20, 2016 3:51 am

This sounds like a good deal. I bet the trails are fairly good till the dew burns off then they get a lot harder. I bet if I just go to the mulberry trees this time of year we could get good starts and work from there. Went out tonight and got a couple of deer and a fox chase which i was kind of figuring on since i had the newer dog and we hadn't been out for about 6-8 weeks. Treed one in a mulberry tree and chased a cat for a bit saw it in the crouch of a tree. The river is really high and i just called them off as we were close and headed that way. I figured since it was still 83 and humid they would jump in to cool off and there are lots of snags in that area that they would end up in. Do you focus on feeding areas to start instead of dining areas just the opposite of at night. I always try to start at the dining areas at night to keep them out of piles hollow trees etc. and run them to the open or smaller trees if possible. Thanks again.

Ed Etherton
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Re: Reverting toward childhood

Postby david » Tue Jun 21, 2016 3:06 am

It sounds like you are further along in your coon hunting theory than I am Ed. Keep us posted on your progress And what you learn. I am all ears. Sometimes I feel the coon we start are already "denned" before we even find the cold track. But lucky for us some times they bed down in cattails and with a little work, we can get them up and running. I am trying to learn from the dry land lion hunters as far as cold tracking attitudes go. It makes it a challenge to find them when not much is left for scent. We have trailed around as much as three miles, if you straightened the line out, and end up jumping it around 9 in the morning, when it is getting light at 5:00. Wouldn't make much sense for a hide hunter, but It sure is good for getting the dogs shaped up and reliable.
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Re: Reverting toward childhood

Postby mike martell » Tue Jun 21, 2016 2:41 pm

ethertonee
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Re: Reverting toward childhood

Postby ethertonee » Thu Jun 23, 2016 1:32 am

Tried to road the dogs the other morning about 830 for some exercise before it wormed up and we had an east wind which isn't normal for hear. Didn't think much of it had roaded them there during the day when it is cooler a lot with no chases. Ended up in a cedar tree wind break and had to get the dogs out they we cold trailing but on the wrong side of the fence. Went another quarter mile and ended up in a brush pile diging all 3 dogs including my lab out guessing that it was a hot track as he won't go with the hounds unless it is really hot. I think that most will be dined up by 800 or so. If I went 3 miles David it may take 3 hours do to all the piles and dens I would end up at. I may try some areas that are not a populated and see how that goes. I have ran coon in the daylight about 5 times when I have caught them in the open near tree groves or crossing roads between corn fields. In my little experience with that they don't like treeing well and you don't get to see them much. I bet it will be different with the silent dog though he will most likely end up with them in his mouth. I will keep you posted on my theories and adventures.

I have a friend in North Dakota and he says they try to cross hounds with labs to run them in the bogs because the have more natural ability to work in the grass from the lab side and not as much problems with debris in the eyes and nose. They rig them from the down wind side and let them go. He is having me look for a couple of labs for him right now for ducks and geese but i bet he will try to cross them to his bluetick once to try and get a couple of these dogs.

Ed Etherton

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