2020/21 Upland Season

ccm75

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F1780632-54B5-4DEA-AFAD-F1CD6BFF7401.jpegGot these two in Westborough with my friend and his wife this am. Fair amount of shooting being done. Unfortunately, Scout chased both these birds down in the woods and killed them. Either they couldn’t fly or wouldn’t. The hen looked like she’d been winged, but no damage on the rooster. Better us than the hawks and yotes I guess....It was a nice morning to be out.
 
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RDG

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Haven’t seen many woodcock since that snow storm in late Oct.

found this guy today. Got a phez too (we don’t talk about the two other pheasants I missed) Still looking for some cottontails.
EE93891C-E1E1-40A4-8793-8302872E884E.jpeg
 

whacko

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When all the woodcock have headed south and we can’t find anymore leftover Phez.... we chase cottontails.

View attachment 433494
Flushed three rabbits last weekend and my brother shot his first game ever. We were driving them....no dogs. Going again tomorrow morning. Rabbits seem to be on a high in the population cycle.
 

RDG

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Flushed three rabbits last weekend and my brother shot his first game ever. We were driving them....no dogs. Going again tomorrow morning. Rabbits seem to be on a high in the population cycle.
I haven’t done nearly enough late season pheasant/cottontail hunting due to work.
was great to get out today and be successful.
 

CrossFaced

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Flushed three rabbits last weekend and my brother shot his first game ever. We were driving them....no dogs. Going again tomorrow morning. Rabbits seem to be on a high in the population cycle.
I was out scouting a potential turkey area this morning and I couldnt believe how many rabbits I saw. I was actually going to take a shot at one with my CCW but couldnt get closer than 15 yards.
 
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Sport of "falconry" uses both falcons and hawks. (ie: peregrine falcon or red-tail hawk) If you want to get precise, someone who hunts with a hawk vs. a falcon is called an austringer vs. a falconer. I am a new apprentice and I am finding that one of the hardest parts of pursuing this sport is finding game in an approved hunting area. Falconry is a hunting and in MA is under the same restrictions as gun hunting. It's weird.
 

CrossFaced

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Hey there, where are you guys seeing all these rabbits? I'm a new falconer looking for places to fly a hawk on some game.
That’s awesome. I was at my gun club in Metrowest Mass. I was pretty deep in the woods. All the vids I have seen of Falconry has been in fields. Do you need woods or fields? How do you get started in it?
 
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That’s awesome. I was at my gun club in Metrowest Mass. I was pretty deep in the woods. All the vids I have seen of Falconry has been in fields. Do you need woods or fields? How do you get started in it?
Woods or field, depending on the quarry. As an apprentice, I'll be flying a red-tail hawk next fall and they go for cottontail, squirrel and pheasant mostly. To get started you contact the MA falconry coordinator (Erik Amati at Fish & Game) and request a falconry packet. That gets you started with some basic info and a long list of reading material. You have to take a test administered by the state and get an 80% or above to pass, find a sponsor who will agree to take you on for two years, build a mews and gather required equipment, have said mews inspected by the state then you get to trap a bird. Unfortunately, I was late in the year getting a sponsor and trapping season ended on the 11th so I won't have my own hawk until late next summer. In the meantime, I go out hunting with my sponsor and his red-tail. There's a lot to it but since I'm in a holding pattern for now, my focus is finding rabbits because if you can't put your bird over game, after awhile they won't really find any benefit to the relationship.

**edit to ask...Metrowest gun club? Southborough Rod and Gun?
 

CrossFaced

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Hopkinton Sportsman Association...
Woods or field, depending on the quarry. As an apprentice, I'll be flying a red-tail hawk next fall and they go for cottontail, squirrel and pheasant mostly. To get started you contact the MA falconry coordinator (Erik Amati at Fish & Game) and request a falconry packet. That gets you started with some basic info and a long list of reading material. You have to take a test administered by the state and get an 80% or above to pass, find a sponsor who will agree to take you on for two years, build a mews and gather required equipment, have said mews inspected by the state then you get to trap a bird. Unfortunately, I was late in the year getting a sponsor and trapping season ended on the 11th so I won't have my own hawk until late next summer. In the meantime, I go out hunting with my sponsor and his red-tail. There's a lot to it but since I'm in a holding pattern for now, my focus is finding rabbits because if you can't put your bird over game, after awhile they won't really find any benefit to the relationship.

**edit to ask...Metrowest gun club? Southborough Rod and Gun?
That’s pretty awesome...Hopkinton Sportsman Association
 

RDG

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Hey there, where are you guys seeing all these rabbits? I'm a new falconer looking for places to fly a hawk on some game.

The Mass Land Viewer is a great way to get started finding lands that's available to the public to hunt.
MassWildlife Lands Viewer.

There's a couple of guys on some upland hunting FB groups I'm on that use Hawks/Falcons in addition to a dog to hunt upland birds and it's pretty good to watch.
Good Luck and keep us u to date on your progress.
 
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The Mass Land Viewer is a great way to get started finding lands that's available to the public to hunt.
MassWildlife Lands Viewer.

There's a couple of guys on some upland hunting FB groups I'm on that use Hawks/Falcons in addition to a dog to hunt upland birds and it's pretty good to watch.
Good Luck and keep us u to date on your progress.
Yeah, the land viewer is great. I've been to some places already (MacCallum WMA in Westborough) and found some rabbits. I was just curious about this thread as they sounded almost abundant. So far that has not been my experience but I am also just starting out. Thanks!
 

pupchow

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Yeah, the land viewer is great. I've been to some places already (MacCallum WMA in Westborough) and found some rabbits. I was just curious about this thread as they sounded almost abundant. So far that has not been my experience but I am also just starting out. Thanks!

They're very good at hiding in plain sight, sitting still and pretending they're invisible. Check for tracks/droppings to confirm they're around. Doing so after a light snowfall is a helpful.
 

whacko

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They're very good at hiding in plain sight, sitting still and pretending they're invisible. Check for tracks/droppings to confirm they're around. Doing so after a light snowfall is a helpful.
My experience with hunting them without dogs is they flush and run when you are almost on top of them. Can't even see em till they bolt.....they are good at hiding.
 

DitchDigger

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I have seen his videos. He's very enthusiastic! I know he ended up releasing his hawk as they never really got hunting since he has so many other pursuits.
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I have seen his videos. He's very enthusiastic! I know he ended up releasing his hawk as they never really got hunting since he has so many other pursuits.
Found this guy on my back porch one AM
I have or had quite a few rabbits around my property !
 
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They're very good at hiding in plain sight, sitting still and pretending they're invisible. Check for tracks/droppings to confirm they're around. Doing so after a light snowfall is a helpful.
Thanks! Today I was out at Bolton Flats WMA looking for signs. Found a bit of poop and what looked like runs through brush but not as much as I was expecting.
 
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View attachment 435763

Found this guy on my back porch one AM
I have or had quite a few rabbits around my property !
That is awesome! I had the same thing happen but the red-tail had a squirrel. This is a blurry screenshot of the video I took through my window. He sat on my porch rail for about five minutes before he flew off.
 

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