It’s time for round two, the winter dove season is here.
With deer hunters focusing on filling last minute tags in states where the season is still open, there’s a select group of dove hunters ready to spend another day in the winter dove fields. Time to breakout the shotguns, the decoys, and a thermos full of hot coffee, round two is here. Here are four reasons why you want to hunt the winter dove season.
1. Very few hunters
When Labor Day rolls around each year, it seems as though sometimes there are more dove hunters than actual doves in the fields. The beauty about the winter dove season is that substantially less hunters take advantage of this short season due to a variety of reasons.
Whether they’re away for the holidays, out in the deer blind or just plain forget that there is winter dove season, it won’t take you long to discover you’re probably the only one out there. Now is the time to take advantage of the low hunter volume and find yourself a new killer dove spot.
2. Concentrated food sources
Late in the season, doves will be much more concentrated then they appear to be during the regular season. Because farmers have already harvested most grains, doves will be searching for the few remaining food sources in your area. You might have to scout these birds much like you would a new deer spot, but the reward will be a plentiful field of doves.
Doves are creatures of habit, so take some notes when your scouting about which direction the birds approach the field and which way they exit the field. Set yourself up according to the wind direction and you’ll be in business.
3. The decoys still work
No surprise here, doves can’t turn away from a couple of decoys early or late in the season. Break out your decoys, fill them up with fresh batteries, and use them as you would earlier in the season.
It’s always a good idea to mix up your faux flock by setting out multiple flying birds with several stationary birds placed on the ground. The more of a scene that you create within gun range will only help but to attract more passing birds. The Mojo Voodoo dove decoy is one of the best battery operated decoys that you can bring with you on your late season hunt.
4. Mature birds
By this time in the year, the smaller birds have migrated south and what you’re left with are big mature doves. Additionally, now is the time that both mourning and white-wings will be flocked up and flying together in some areas of the country. This makes filling your limit easier and more exciting with a mixed game bag of birds.
Whether you’re a diehard dove hunter or you just need to escape some unwanted visitors on a winter afternoon, you won’t be disappointed getting back out into the dove fields and taking another limit during the winter dove season. As always, refer to your state and local game laws regarding season dates because this additional dove season is typically a short one!