Virginia Hunting

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Virginia Hunting

Postby PAwingshooter » Wed Sep 25, 2013 8:03 pm

Hi Guys,
My employer had told me for the last few months that I'd be moving to Texas, and last minute it got changed to Fairfax! I just moved here last week from my last assignment in NJ. I have a mud boat with a mud buddy surface drive, more decoys than I can fit in any boat, and a bird dog that loves to retrieve. I'll be spending the next few weeks scouting and looking around for places to hunt with my boat or hike in. I have no problem hunting alone, if anyone is looking for a hunting partner, I'd be glad to take someone along. I've learned from experience that although I like hunting alone, it's a whole lot safer with two people. Time to study the waterfowl rules and regulations in VA, every state has its own set of unique rules to learn! Here's a few pictures from NJ, good luck to all the hunters out there this year.
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Re: Virginia Hunting

Postby bay gunner » Wed Sep 25, 2013 9:16 pm

Wow. A visiting hunter from out of state who actually has all his own equipment, knows how to hunt, has visual proof with a stack of dead ducks, talks of going out to scout or even hunt alone, and doesn't ask to be provided with a turn-key hunt. "I'll pitch in for gas and donuts!"

I applaud you young man. My advice to you is to beg your employer to reassign you to Texas.
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Re: Virginia Hunting

Postby NOVAggie » Thu Sep 26, 2013 5:38 am

Echo the the TX reassignment!

Unfortunately you arrived in VA at the worst time for duck hunting. All blinds have bee licensed so you can kiss big wart God bye this year. Your can still get on the mil bases and was, so it's not 100% loss! just won't be a banner season. I'm betting you will be making road trips back to jersey or PA.
I SUPPORT SUNDAY HUNTING IN VIRGINIA!!


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Re: Virginia Hunting

Postby dwhipper61 » Thu Sep 26, 2013 6:14 am

Good looking dog. Is it a Shorthair?
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Re: Virginia Hunting

Postby gooosehunter » Thu Sep 26, 2013 6:31 am

Welcome to VA. Follow the rules and we will all get along just fine.
Cheers
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Re: Virginia Hunting

Postby cut_un » Thu Sep 26, 2013 7:51 am

Welcome to VA. Enjoy what VA has to offer! Good luck this season :thumbsup:
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Re: Virginia Hunting

Postby Tangier Island Slacker » Thu Sep 26, 2013 9:53 am

VA isn't nearly as bad as most make it out to be (I happen to think it's pretty good, actually). Exceptional variety is probably the biggest plus.

As others have said, you're in a HIGHLY competitive area, and coming in at a bad time, but determined guys get it figured out before long and have good hunts.
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Re: Virginia Hunting

Postby kahunna » Thu Sep 26, 2013 10:04 am

NOVAggie is right about tough timing for your move...you're late to the pre-season party! Virginia is a very crowded state as far as waterfowl opportunities, especially where you live/work. What area in Fairfax are you located? Close (travel time) hunting this first year is going to be tough to find. BUT...
Just remembered the deadline for applications is tomorrow, but get on the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries site and sign up for the lottery waterfowl hunts (deer, if you hunt them also) you can travel to. Go to craigslists for Virginia and Maryland and see if you can find clubs seeking members (might not be highest quality hunting, but it is a start), good spots on Maryland's Eastern Shore are only 1.5 hours drive. Join The Refuge Forums (in addition to this site) and do research on The Virginia Forum for Virginia clubs (not many around), The Chesapeake Forum for Maryland clubs(tons around), the Virginia Game and Inland Fisheries public hunts, etc.
Ditto on planning to go back to PA/NJ to hunt some this season, with Virginia/Maryland as a first year experiment!
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Re: Virginia Hunting

Postby lbhansford » Thu Sep 26, 2013 1:27 pm

dwhipper61 wrote:Good looking dog. Is it a Shorthair?



I think Dwhipper just popped one when he saw the dog pic :clapping:
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Re: Virginia Hunting

Postby VA Bull Can » Thu Sep 26, 2013 3:06 pm

Nice looking GSP. Do you chase grouse?
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Re: Virginia Hunting

Postby PAwingshooter » Thu Sep 26, 2013 4:50 pm

Thanks everyone for the warm welcome, I appreciate all of the advice. I can already tell from all the responses that this is going to be a great state to hunt in. Unfortunately I do get reassigned every few years and so I'm constantly scouting for new spots, but it's something I'm used to and have learned to enjoy exploring new areas. I can't tell you how many little bodies of water I've located on google maps and hiked back into hoping for ducks. Most are busts, but it always feels good when you find that one honey hole tucked back in the woods! It's pretty neat hunting different parts of the country as well, I'm always surprised by what states have to offer. I had no idea about the lottery hunts, Kahunna thank you, really appreciate that info, I'm going to apply tonight. If it's located in Virginia, it's close enough for me to drive! And I definitely see myself going back to New Jersey to hunt this year, that place surprised me with the amount of waterfowl.

dwhipper, Yes that is a pointer, I grew up grouse hunting in PA but learned to adapt and hunt ducks once I got relocated to Louisiana back in 2009 (no grouse down there, but they do have woodcock). I still do my best to make a few grouse hunting trips each year, thinking about Maine at the end of October this year. One easy way to have one less duck hunter in Virginia is by telling me there are grouse around to hunt! ;)

Looking forward to hunting with you guys sometime, I'm really excited for the season. A few pics for the grouse guys:
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Re: Virginia Hunting

Postby PAwingshooter » Thu Sep 26, 2013 4:51 pm

Ohh sorry, I missed one question, I'm in the Springfield Area south of fairfax.
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Re: Virginia Hunting

Postby rlh01 » Fri Sep 27, 2013 5:34 am

You can find good hunting in Virginia. My advice is draw a 2 hour circle around Springfield and start outside the circle. The Northern and Middle Necks are good at the 2 hour range. Virginia has a lot of shoreline in tidal marsh land close to the bay. Unfortunately affluent Washingtonians have bought up the tidal lands and put million dollar second homes on the property for water views. But the creeks the flow into the tidal waters are good bets. Find the boat landings and start scouting. Don't expect to find blind locations next to the boat landings.
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Re: Virginia Hunting

Postby lbhansford » Fri Sep 27, 2013 7:39 am

sorry to be that guy but :hijack: ...... and Dwhipper I expect you to weigh in too. Tell me about your dog.

Do you like the breed?
any issues that you know of?
can they water hunt in late season when its freezing?
Easy to train? (i know that easy and train dont go in the same sentence but take in the routine well)

I am pondering possibly getting one as my next dog bc they seem to be a good compromise with the old lady and me. Got a child and hear they are good with kids, dont have the joint problems of labs, a bit smaller than most labs, and shed but not as much as some of the other breeds. Just what ive read would love for you and whipper to weigh in.

Good luck here in va, and if you find yourself on the peninsula id be happy to get ya out for a hunt sometime or if you bring your boat you can use one of my blinds for the day.
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Re: Virginia Hunting

Postby kahunna » Fri Sep 27, 2013 9:30 am

Springfield is a good area to be in up there...easy to get on the road to head south and east of there! 95's a bitch morning/afternoon rush hours, but for waterfowling, you'll be avoiding those time windows. Your are two hours south, southeast, east and west from some good waterfowl hunting. Don't sleep on the eastern shore of Maryland!
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Re: Virginia Hunting

Postby dwhipper61 » Fri Sep 27, 2013 10:04 am

PAwingshooter has good taste in dogs and shotguns.......

Been wanting to do some grouse hunting but have never tried. I travel to PA a couple times per year to train and test my dog. I have a Deutsch Drahthaar http://www.vdd-gna.org/ http://www.jgv-usa.org/Test_Descriptions/HZP.htm I originally wanted a GSP, but after researching and seeing different breeds I chose the DD. They are true versatile hunting dogs and have a very strict breeding program. GSPs and DDs both are excellent retrievers, but I am cautious (probably overly cautions) when the water gets really cold.
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Re: Virginia Hunting

Postby lbhansford » Fri Sep 27, 2013 1:03 pm

didnt realize yours wasnt a wire-haired GP. they look alot alike from the small avatar shot you got at least. Thanks for the info!
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Re: Virginia Hunting

Postby PAwingshooter » Fri Sep 27, 2013 9:04 pm

I'll give you my best summary based on personal experience with different breeds. I am by no means an expert on dog breeds, my father used to train a lot of dogs, so I've been around a lot of breeds, but that was primarily for upland. I never really got into waterfowl hunting until I moved to Louisiana. So most of my opinion will be based on upland bird dogs.

That being said, I love the German shorthair pointer breed and will probably never own a different breed. In my opinion, they are not the best at anything, but they are good at everything. I think they are the most versatile and best all around breed for the entire bird hunting spectrum (upland to waterfowl). I'll be the first to admit that my dad's english setters definitely have better noses than my shorthair, and my friend's Lab can hunt in really cold weather and head strait towards a mark. But my GSP still has a pretty good nose and loves to retrieve, he's also great around the house and with kids. If you are patient, then yes they are easy to train, but I must tell you, they are super high energy! I do not hunt him in really cold water, a wire haired pointer might be a little more durable in the cold, but mine stays at home when it's too cold.

This is just my opinion and I'm not a dog expert by any means. If you want to hunt with him one day, I can take you out if I win one of those lottery hunts so you can see first hand. I applied to them all, so I'll keep you posted once the results get posted.
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