Anyone hunting Woodcock this year?

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Anyone hunting Woodcock this year?

Postby Jofa » Wed Oct 03, 2012 9:09 am

Well it's opening day for woodcock and the pup and I just had a great morning!

She flushed a dozen birds ( the most I've seen in one day by far! ) and she had a rock solid point on 3 or 4! I missed on two shots, & the rest had brush so thick I couldnt get a decent shot off, but it was certainly great ol' fashioned New England woodcock hunting thats for sure!

We've got one tired, wet bird dog resting up for her next hunt, hopefully her partner can shoot what she points this time? :biggrin:
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Re: Anyone hunting Woodcock this year?

Postby seaneen » Wed Oct 03, 2012 9:40 am

Been hearing a lot of Woodcock are about. Heading to Pittsburg NH this weekend, to chase Woodcock,and Grouse.
What u have for a pooch? GSP?

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Re: Anyone hunting Woodcock this year?

Postby SMSovis » Wed Oct 03, 2012 9:50 am

Headed to NH for a couple weekend to hunt them. Have never found a concentration in MA....
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Re: Anyone hunting Woodcock this year?

Postby spreademandshootem » Wed Oct 03, 2012 11:59 am

Headed up to the North Conway fryeburg area this weekend might give it a go. The weather outlook does not look good though. Very depressing.

On a bright note monday should be good!
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Re: Anyone hunting Woodcock this year?

Postby Jofa » Wed Oct 03, 2012 5:42 pm

Here's the opening day's catch! :yes:

Did much better this afternoon, got my act together and was able to drop a couple birds!
Pup did absolutely awesome!! Rock solid points on numerous birds, even had a great point on a hen pheasant she found. She is new to retrieving and can be a little shy picking up dead birds or dying birds, with a little coaxing she did retreive the birds pretty well for a newby. She is 'home schooled' - so we take it one hunt at a time...

Very happy with my pup's performance and our ability to get on so many birds the first day!
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Re: Anyone hunting Woodcock this year?

Postby Baymen Moe » Wed Oct 03, 2012 6:12 pm

Way to go. That's upland hunting New England style. Throw in some grouse in a few weeks and I'll be very envious. I do get out on occaision with a buddy that runs english setters.
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Re: Anyone hunting Woodcock this year?

Postby mawtrfowler » Wed Oct 03, 2012 7:27 pm

Plan on heading out tomorrow with a buddy and my springer, Should be able to get onto a couple of birds.
Jofa, what part of the state are you hunting? I've had days like that in central ma but never around here in north eastern ma
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Re: Anyone hunting Woodcock this year?

Postby Jofa » Wed Oct 03, 2012 7:56 pm

mawtrfowler wrote:Plan on heading out tomorrow with a buddy and my springer, Should be able to get onto a couple of birds.
Jofa, what part of the state are you hunting? I've had days like that in central ma but never around here in north eastern ma


im hunting in eastern mass, & i've never seen so many woodcock in my life as i saw today, dont know what was going on, but i know that one of the areas i hunted this morning has absolutely no bird hunting pressure at all, just me on rare occaisions.

I hunt deer, pheasant, duck, etc and i keep track of all the woodcock i see in my travels, and am revisiting those sites. it's not an easy task hitting these little buggers, they are off like a bottle rocket and often are through the brush before u can get a bead on them. very fun hunt though, the dog and i had a 'blast' for sure
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Re: Anyone hunting Woodcock this year?

Postby mawtrfowler » Wed Oct 03, 2012 8:40 pm

Jofa wrote:im hunting in eastern mass, & i've never seen so many woodcock in my life as i saw today, dont know what was going on, but i know that one of the areas i hunted this morning has absolutely no bird hunting pressure at all, just me on rare occaisions.

I hunt deer, pheasant, duck, etc and i keep track of all the woodcock i see in my travels, and am revisiting those sites. it's not an easy task hitting these little buggers, they are off like a bottle rocket and often are through the brush before u can get a bead on them. very fun hunt though, the dog and i had a 'blast' for sure

I'm going to be doing the same thing, I'm going to hunt one of my pheasant spots which is usually good for a few woodcock during pheasant season. I'm thinking that if they're there during pheasant season should be some around now. From your experience today sounds like they've started migrating which should lead to some good shooting.
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Re: Anyone hunting Woodcock this year?

Postby Jofa » Thu Oct 04, 2012 1:03 pm

If i can give any advice for woodcock, i would say look for damp, old clearcuts or abandoned fields that are slowly going back to woods. the woodcock seem to like being under the thick brushy young trees and vines for habitat, even better if this type of brush is right next to very damp ground, say swamp or wetlands.

Pheasant and the occaisional woodcock are often found on the edge of fields, but i've seen most of the woodcock in the brush that only a dog can get through without tremendous difficulty. if you can barely get through the vines and brush and light mud, than you are probably very near the birds.

Would love to hear any advice or input from others hunting these crazy little birds...
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Re: Anyone hunting Woodcock this year?

Postby mawtrfowler » Thu Oct 04, 2012 5:06 pm

Went out this morning. Flushed one bird within 20-30 minutes of leaving the truck, no shots. Then saw nothing for the rest of the hunt. Now its time to hunt some ducks monday and thursday and pheasant on saturday and then deer on the 15
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Re: Anyone hunting Woodcock this year?

Postby Jofa » Thu Oct 04, 2012 7:46 pm

Well we went out and bagged another bird tonight, very nice hunt, dog is doing better and better! She pointed a pheasant rooster earlier on a local WMA, but we went back to the honey hole and got onto a few more woodcock.

Cooked up the three breasts for supper, was a really nice treat
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Re: Anyone hunting Woodcock this year?

Postby Baymen Moe » Fri Oct 05, 2012 3:02 pm

Wow Jofa, I am truly impressed with your woodcock hunting success. There has always been a love of woodcock and grouse in my blood ever since I started hunting. Though I have never had a dog, I have had a lifelong friendship with and hunted all these years with my friend with the setters. As many pheasant as we have taken over the years, I much prefer the wildness of grouse and woodcock, and the covers they frequent. Great stuff, my buddy will be excited to hear of this.
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Re: Anyone hunting Woodcock this year?

Postby JustinNH » Wed Oct 10, 2012 6:48 am

I just want you all to know how jealous I am! :thumbsup:

never got a woodcock, but always go for grouse on Oct 1st, but missed out this year due to work.
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Re: Anyone hunting Woodcock this year?

Postby conservation guy » Wed Oct 17, 2012 4:11 pm

got zombie eyes on these pointers, guess they are woodcock zombies.
this was a little hunt with the dogs.
I hope your season is as good as these pointers are having, they also retrieved some ducks as of late but thats another post.
Have fun out there, be safe, meet some new people
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Re: Anyone hunting Woodcock this year?

Postby Jofa » Thu Nov 15, 2012 12:55 pm



Had a nice woodcock season, got a couple up in maine, and a few localy, then they all disapeared.

Here is a good video on woodcock hunting if anyone's interested in taking a try next season...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gCxQnYotVXY&feature=related
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Re: Anyone hunting Woodcock this year?

Postby Jofa » Thu Mar 21, 2013 7:03 pm

Well I guess Spring has sprung! My birddog just flushed a woodcock out of the brush in our snowy backyard! I'm assuming it was going to spend the night here before continuing its migration northward to someplace slightly more wooded than suburbia ... Always exciting to see one though!
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Re: Anyone hunting Woodcock this year?

Postby JTR » Sun Mar 24, 2013 7:12 am

I just flushed one in the woods behind my house. Pretty cool. I have never seen one around my house before.
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Re: Anyone hunting Woodcock this year?

Postby Jofa » Thu Oct 03, 2013 8:10 am

Well I got out yesterday morning for opening day of 2013 woodcock season, and only saw one bird in two prime places that usually have quite a few birds. The Dog got onto a single big woodcock, but the brush was so thick, i couldn't get a shot off when it flushed.

I just looked back at this post and saw i had at least a dozen flushes in those 2 spots last year, so i'm hoping the birds come back soon!
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Re: Anyone hunting Woodcock this year?

Postby MIKE J. » Thu Oct 03, 2013 8:16 am

Saw quite a few last week while out doing some scouting! Good Luck
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Re: Anyone hunting Woodcock this year?

Postby Jofa » Fri Oct 04, 2013 7:11 pm

Pup and I bagged a fat bird today, fall is officially here!
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Re: Anyone hunting Woodcock this year?

Postby Professor_Leakey » Fri Oct 04, 2013 8:21 pm

jofa, congrats. hope you start seeing more. i am curious on how good they are to eat? im thinking theyre probably pretty darn good. how do you normally prepare them?
I would rather have a bottle in front of me than a frontal lobotomy.
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Re: Anyone hunting Woodcock this year?

Postby Jofa » Fri Oct 11, 2013 8:13 pm

woodcock is a dark meat and there's not much of it, but i think its pretty good eating. someone recently said it tasted like liver, and i guess it does a little, but having said that, i'm not a liver fan and i still like it a lot.

I usually pan fry it with whatever is laying round, maybe some peppers or something. im not much of a chef, but if i do anything special cooking little birds, i just grill them or pan fry them for lunch w jalapenos, cream cheese, and sometimes wrapped in bacon.
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Re: Anyone hunting Woodcock this year?

Postby NGrace » Mon Oct 14, 2013 8:04 am

We've had them here on the north shore since mid March. My pup has been finding them a few times per week on training runs. This has been the second year in a row that we've also found chicks. Their numbers are starting to pick up. We found 6 on Saturday, but no shots possible. Just too thick in places to get the gun up and swing it.

If anyone is interested, I am selling a Johnny House quail recall pen for training bird dogs. Built it and never really got to use it. It is great for quail and will hold 20-25 birds easily. Stick it in the woods or a field and train your dogs during the summer. Check out the classifieds if interested. I've attached a video link of the pen too.


Best,
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