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kirsch
08-15-2010, 08:11 PM
My brother-in-law said I never quit but I hunted one last time:tn: for the year in April for coyotes, and then couldn't quit and hunted one last time in May and you can start to see a pattern, as I did finally hunt the last time for coyotes the first week of June. The bugs were so bad it just became too tough.

I had taken over a year break from shooting geese so I thought I would hunt the early goose season in ND which started on 8/15. The weather turned cooler, so goose hunting seemed like a good idea especially since I had stopped coyote hunting for 2 months.

I found several large flocks to hunt right away on Friday evening. I couldn't take it as I threw my coyote gear along just in case conditions were good and they were. First stand dry, so I thought I had had lost my touch. I had time for one more stand. I got up on the top of a haybale pile and started with some puppy whines and moved to pup in distress. When I followed it up with some pair aggressive howls, the alpha male and female in the area came blasting out of a sunflower field. They stopped at about 300 yards and I thought I was going to have to sweet talk them but I hit them with another challenge, and wow, here they came. The lead coyote stopped at 60 yards broadside. I had decided to take the rear coyote but it was still coming and I couldn't pass up such a chip-shot so I took the close coyote. The 2nd coyote turned and tried to exit, and I rolled him on the next shot. Both coyotes were down for the count. My goose scouting excursion turned into a coyote excursion.

This was Friday evening. Saturday the wind blew 30+ all day, so it wasn't a coyote calling day but I went back to make sure the geese were still feeding in the same area for the morning hunt. They were so I thought why not try to get close to some cover and see if I could pull some coyotes out due to the wind. It worked just as I thought but this time it was 2 pups. I can't say 100% they were pups, but adults would have reacted different, and pups always look goofy because their ears are too big for their heads.

People claim they kill lots of pups in the Fall but it is rare for me as I usually kill all the adults. I finally took a low % shot as all I could see was the head of the coyote and with a 30+ mph crosswind at about 300 yards, I was unsure of the hit. The shot sounded good, but the cover was heavy and I didn't find the pup so I will say it was a miss although I still think it is laying there somewhere.

The wind let up just a bit and I had time for one last spot. I pulled a rookie mistake and thought I had the call far enough from me so the coyotes couldn't circle and get downwind of me. I hit a howling sequence and had 2 packs light up nearby. My calling sequence must of worked because I had both alpha pairs coming from both directions. The problem is they became so pre-occupied with each other, they kind of forgot about me. They ended up getting downwind without a shot. I few other adults came in probably to back up their pack leaders and I should have had one of them. It stopped at about 175 but I didn't have a clear shot at the vitals, and I waited just a bit too long and it took off. I must be rusty because I should have stopped the coyote myself versus waiting for the coyote to stop as the terrain didn't allow me a lot of shooting lanes.

Got up on Sunday morning, shot an easy limit of honkers, had time to clean them, get to church, and have a great family day. So, all in all, I planned to goose hunt which I did, and had 2 bonus coyotes, a few missed opportunities and saw coyotes on 3 of 4 stands. My optimism for 2010 is high right now, and I can't wait to see more fur in my scope.

Have a great 2010 hunting season.

BlueDevil
08-15-2010, 11:35 PM
Awesome story Kirsch have a fantastic season and post up some of your goose hunts too! Season for me starts Sept. 1st, can't hardly wait! :TT:

j12goose
08-20-2010, 08:41 AM
Geez, you guys up North! It's still close to a hundred degrees here. I can't even start to think about hunting yet.

Our coyotes around here, at least the ones in town, took a beating this summer. Mange got into them as well as the red foxes. I took a bunch of calls for both sick foxes and coyotes and had to euthanize several of both. Kinda funny how when populations of animals are crammed into a city, you see one case of mange and you just know it's gonna be a busy summer.

Firehunter
08-20-2010, 10:34 AM
Nice work!! nice way to start your season :TT:

kirsch
08-20-2010, 09:32 PM
j12goose, it had been very hot for ND as well. Temps in the 90's, but I threw in the rifle because a cold front moved through and high temps were in the 70's. 50's for lows and 70's for highs sure felt great and fall seemed like it was in the air. I have killed both geese and coyotes with temps in the upper 90's but it is sure more fun when it cools down.

When actual temps are -40 in the middle of January, my guess is you would not want to switch. It is amazing that a person can call in coyotes with almost 140 degrees difference from fall to winter from 100 to -40.

j12goose
08-21-2010, 06:54 AM
I don't know Kory, I just might switch with you. Cold don't bother me too much, but this heat is brutal.

It is pretty amazing that they will come to a call no matter what the temp is. Do you think it's because they are hungry, or that they just can't resist stealing someone else's meal? I know you say that they are much less apt to come to distress and more conducive to other coyote sounds right before breeding season, and that kinda makes sense. But, you have to wonder about them when food is abundant. They will utilize ANY food source. One would think that with grasshoppers and baby rabbits all over the place, that a coyote would not need to expend the energy to try and steal a meal from another predator, yet you just called several dogs in last week. Could it be a territory thing? Just can't stand to have other coyotes on their turf? Might expalin why not many pups show up???

The Baron of Bufflehead
08-22-2010, 05:34 AM
Great job Korey! I'm not sure when I'll start - maybe September. I'm anxious to try out the new .17 Rem.:)

I would trade -20 for +90 any day. Partly because I just hate the heat and partly because if it's -20 that means there is something to hunt.:D

kirsch
08-22-2010, 08:58 PM
I hate the heat too. But when you are lugging all that clothes around and trouncing through a few feet of snow, it isn't a whole lot of fun either. The more I hunt, the more I have become a believer a coyote can be called in anytime of the year.

j12goose. My philosophy is to try and trigger one if not two instincts when I start a calling sequence. The three instincts I am trying to trigger is either a hunger, territorial, or mating instinct. Under territorial, you could put social, parental, and more and get carried away and have lots of different categories.

You are correct that right now food is abundant, so is a coyote going to run 1 mile across wide open areas to chase down a rabbit when he has all the food they need close by, probably not. Some would disagree with us and that is fine, but I can also make that exact same case for in the dead of winter when energy means everything to a coyote. If the snow is deep or the prey is a long way away, a coyote may not opt to take that risk either.

This is the reason, I may use distress but am always trying to trigger other instincts especially if food is abundant. A coyote cannot reason like a human (at least this is what I have always been told). However, they need to eat, mate, keep their territory safe, serve their order in the pack, raise pups, etc. This time of the year, since like you said the hunger trigger isn't as strong, I focus more on the concept of either younger coyotes coming into the area and messing with pups, or another rival coyote or pair of coyotes coming into their territory. There are a few other strategies but these are a few. You probably have a better chance of calling in singles and beta and alpha members by using younger coyote howls, including greeting, aggressive, and challenge howls. If you opt for a pair or pack howling using agressive or challenge, it can work great but you will scare as many if not more away but have a chance of calling in multiples. You are rolling the dice.

I had a hunter tell me he couldn't understand why he never called in lone coyotes. I sat with him on a few stands and quickly said, it is no wonder as he would go through 6 or 7 different howling sequences and many had many coyotes and he kept switching between them. If you were a lone coyote, would you go pick a fight when there are that many coyotes against you. He wasn't using the howling to hisadvantage but when he got a response, the whole pack was usually coming.

A coyote is territorial all year around, but use this instinct and their others to trigger them.