John's Journal...


Making Your Spreads for Doves

EDITOR'S NOTE: Decoying and calling doves makes dove hunting an exciting, fun-filled sport. It also allows the land-bound hunter to experience the thrills of waterfowl-type hunting, calling and decoying, while actually hunting doves. It makes the sport of doveing on the same level as good waterfowling without the inclement weather. Dove season will open soon all across the U.S. This Click to enlargeweek we’ll give you tips and information to help you enjoy better dove hunting this fall.

A dove hunter soon learned that the decoys and calling would lure birds in to hunters around water and loafin' trees. So, he incorporated calling and decoying into his dove-hunt plan and tried these two tactics in other locations.Click to enlarge

If you observe doves, you'll also notice that they like to sit and rest on the edges of fences. Putting decoys on fences makes luring the doves in relatively easy. However, the kinds of fences that doves like to light on generally cross open fields where no trees or bushes grow. Then the hunter has a hard time finding a place for the hunter to hide so the doves won't spot him when they come in to his calling. Therefore, don't utilize fences for decoying doves unless a ditch runs at the edge of the fence where you can hide or unless the fence goes across the top of a hill behind which you can hide. If a Click to enlargedove can see the decoys, it also can spot a hunter, unless the sportsman hides well, or a backdrop of bushes breaks up his silhouette.

A roosting area provides the easiest place to decoy doves. In the South, doves like to roost in cedar thickets. By putting the decoys on the outer edge of a cedar thicket and then blowing on the owl hooter, you can encourage most of the doves that want to roost to fly in right over your decoys. Many times, the doves will come in, begin to cup their wings and look for a place to light right beside the decoys. So, when you set up a roost spread, you don't take a stand under the decoys. You move 20 yards away from the decoys and watch the birds work into your spread. Good luck this dove season.

Check back each day this week for more about “HOW TO DECOY AND CALL DOVES”

Day 1: Dove Hunting
Day 2: Dove Hunting After Opening Day
Day 3: Dove Decoying
Day 4: Moving Doves from the Water to the Field
Day 5: Making Your Spreads for Doves



Entry 315, Day 5