Its about this time of year that i start to get serious about small game hunting. After a tough outing for ducks yesterday i decided to try getting the small game ball rolling today.
After checking the weather, i found i had a open window in the weather this morning before the storm came in. My thoughts were the squirrels would be foraging for acorns in any open spots in the woods to beef up before the weather. I was was wrong. In my travels it came to my attention that the squirrels were on the move, big time, yesterday. I saw dozens of holes dug in the snow with a slight covering of this mornings dusting of snow. The woods were empty today, and i could not even buy a glimpse of a squirrel running through the woods.
I use my 12ga for a lot of my squirrel hunting. Ok, i know you are all thinking, "a 12ga, boy that's a lot of gun and pellets in the meat". No. I shoot the light 1oz. game loads in number 6's. I also choke up to a modified. The trick is you have to be patient. Picking your shot is very important or else you will blast the animal apart and have a nice gammy meal with a side of lead. The hunter simply has to wait for the squirrel to go behind a tree and stick his head out. When he does let it rip. Most of the shots are around 40 yards, or he is in the top of the tallest of oak trees. Also, i would like to mention these loads will knock them out of the tree so you don't loose out on dinner. Another great reason for carrying a shottie while hunting small game is it gives you the option of taking birds.
After 2 hours of seeing no squirrels i decided that i better start thinking of a bird hunt. I walked down the hill to a clearing and sat down on a stump. I reached into my hunting bag and pulled out my secret weapons, a crow call and an owl call. In CT you can hunt crows from a stationary position with no blaze orange, so i took the vest off. Yeah, thats right, the crow hunt is on! I find that crows are one of the funnest of all birds to hunt. The added owl call infuriates them! I had about 30 minutes to hunt left so i started letting out a few soft crow calls. After hearing a response off in the distance i picked up them tempo and got the group of crows going. Once i herd them carrying on i started mixing in a enraged crow call. To make an angry call add a lot more throat into the call kind of like using a duck call. After hitting them with a more excited call i could here them moving around. Now for the clincher. HOOOT HOOOT HHHHHOOOOOO......followed by an angry crow call. Sure enough 4 came into sight headed right at me!! as soon as i got a shot i let one have it and he fell right out of the sky. two of the others high tailed it and one circled and he fell out of the sky too, but into an ice filled river. So i was able to salvage the day with a little crow action. Its a slow start, but i think if i went yesterday and duck hunting today things would have worked out better.