Retro WON: 7 Tips for a Successful Dove Season
Dove season is a time of enjoyment, competition, fun and skill. Dove are fast-flying birds, very similar to ducks, but smaller and quicker, making them harder targets. Around our house, dove season is when we gather with our family and friends, have fun competing against one another, share stories from past years, eat good food and enjoy good company. After a good harvest, we pluck and clean our birds and enjoy a large potluck BBQ, where dove is the main course. There are many things a hunter can do to prepare themselves for the upcoming dove season. Here are 7 ways to assemble your inventory and be ready for the hunt.
2 Girls Hunting is sponsored by Girls with Guns Clothing
Dove Season Tips
- Practice makes perfect. Getting in your practice before season gears a hunter for the fast-flying birds. Going to your local trap shooting range is an excellent way to get your practice in with realistic flying targets. Remember, practice, practice, practice.
- Ammo plays a large part in the field of hunting. Getting the correct ammo for your gun is crucial. You also want to try out different brands of shells and figure out which kind works best for your shotgun. A good way to try out a variety of ammo is also a good way to get in some extra practice. Again, a couple trips to your local trap range prior to season is a good way to be extra prepared.
- Acquiring the right clothing is a must. Depending on the environment you are in, you might need different colors of camo. Also, if you are hunting public or private, it’s always safe to wear blaze orange as a signal that you are in the area. Long pants are a must where scrapes and stickers could slow you down. A good pair of hunting boots also is an integral part of your hunting outfit, not only for all day comfort, but you never know where rattlesnakes live. Girls with Guns Clothing is a great place to outfit yourself from head to toe.
- Having a clean shotgun is a necessity. A quick wipe down of your gun before you shoot will help you stay on top of any defects. A thorough cleaning when you are done hunting will make sure your shotgun will stay functioning for years to come. Staying on top of the working condition of your guns will make sure you have a successful hunt and limit malfunctions. Don’t forget to check your choke while cleaning your shotgun; if you went on a duck or goose hunt last fall or winter – or maybe a turkey hunt this past spring – you probably put in a different choke.
- Ear and eye protection are a must! With the correct protection, you are saving yourself from any injuries that may be caused by raining pellets, falling birds and the loud reports from not only your gun but also from nearby hunters.
- Knowing the laws of the area that you live in is critical. There may be certain laws regarding the amount of birds that may be harvested or the shooting times associated with this game species. Also, depending on where you live, you may have to purchase and shoot steel, instead of lead, shot. Before you head out in the morning, it’s always nice to know your property boundaries, public versus private land and where you can and can’t hunt. You can down load an App on your phone, such as Outdoor Ally for laws and regulations, or onX Hunt to help guide you to a legal hunting location.
- When cleaning your birds, pay extra attention to shot that may have stayed in the meat, that will not be comfortable to bite into. If you are new to hunting, check out the book Hunting for Food for a few tips on cleaning your bird and some helpful recipes. We have a few recipes that we always seem to fall back on; our favorite is the bacon-wrapped dove poppers.
September 1st is right around the corner: make sure you take a little extra time to practice, line up all your gear, check your regulations and get some friends on board for a good time. Good luck this year, but most importantly, remember to be safe and have fun.
Read more dove hunting posts at The WON here.
This Retro WON first appeared August 20, 2018.
About Morgan Mason Baseley
Morgan and Mason Baseley are just everyday girls who love the outdoors and who happen to be identical twins that also love hunting – from waterfowl to big game. "We are here to empower girls and shooting sports. At 17-years old, we are the next generation of female hunters and need to be able to speak up to protect our hunting rights and protect the Second Amendment." Sponsored by Girls with Guns Clothing, these young women are given the platform to make their voices heard in their column at The WON, "2Girls Hunting." They also speak at banquets about hunting and write a blog for the Sportsmen’s Alliance.
View all posts by Morgan Mason Baseley