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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
How was your opener? I hunted Wells County today. Extremely windy, showers off and on. Few hunters out, all said birds were holding very tight. Last year I hunted this same area that was then cut CRP, regrown, and this year zip for birds. That is beautifull country though and it was good to just be out.
 

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Got one bird in southern Stusman, then shot at a dove as I was walking a low area of wheat stubble. Flushed 10 birds at 60 yards right on my path. GRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
 

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I was hunting north of Belfield for antelope and saw several covies of grouse along un-told #'s of hunters . Everything i saw was huntable,except the lopers. Maybe next time!
 

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Hunted Kidder County, just me and poochie. Per my typical grouse hunting experiences, it was a feast or famine kind of day. Walked 5-6 tracts over 5 hours and hadn't so much as seen a grouse. Next field, found them widely scattered and holding pretty well and despite some less than stellar shooting, bumped four singles in the next couple hours, got three and was done around 4:00. Dog and hunter still feeling the effects of the annual crash course into "shape".

Hunters were not oozing out of every pore in that area, but there were plenty. Mostly res, but a few groups of 'sconies too. Seemed like about the right amount of pressure. Based upon the amount of shooting, it seemed like guys were having to work poretty hard to get their birds.
 

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Saw lots of birds north of belfield, they werent holding very well in morning on saturday but started to hold in the berries better in the afternoon. Dog got bit by a rattlesnake just after we got two birds so that put an end to our grouse hunting weekend pretty fast. Dog is doing much better this morning. After seeing what rattlesnake venom can do, it is doubtful I'll hunt rattlesnake country again for a very long time. It was fun hunting but a couple of birds aren't worth a dead dog. I wouldn't wish a rattlesnake bit on my worst enemy! :(
 

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M, I've hunted snake country probably 25-30 days lifetime. Only saw snakes once, and then saw two in just 15 minutes.

Have always worried about this, but our experience has been so snake free i think we've gotten complacent. Have several questions.

How did you know he'd gotten bit? Where did you take him? How long from bite to treatment?

We looked into carrying anti-venom at one time. While it was kinda spendy, I recall we could have got it. Seems like there may have been some logistical issues like shelf-life, need to keep cool or something else. What did you find out about the ability to carry your own treatment from your experience.
 

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I'm a PT and had a pretty extensive first aid kit, but to be honest it hurt my dog so bad that he would just scream in agony when I would even barely touch the foot to examine it a little. I wasn't sure exactly what happened as my dog went on point, I went in to the bush expecting a grouse to flush. I kicked around in the bush and nothing came out, instructed my dog to continue hunting, and started walking away. At that time my father in law heard him yelp, he came out of the bush not bearing any weight on it. At first I thought he stepped in a hole and broke his leg. Drove to dickinson and called the 24 hour vet service and they weren't answering page or cell phone #. Stopped in dickinson and ankle was a little swollen. Drove about 90-95 to bismarck and his leg was swollen from his paw to his shoulder like the diameter of a peach. My dog is a skinny30# brit. I knew something was bad. Vet gave him antibiotics and antiinflammatories. No anti-venom. Said rarely does anyone die from snake bite. Usually the bacteria in the snakes mouth is more deadly than the venom as it will literally eat the skin away. Anti-venom is extremely expensive and many times it can take many doses to help. Bite marks were tiny little needle looking pricks. Was probably a baby and I guess they are worse as they can't control how much venom they inject. I was leary about snakes before I went out there, but many people I talked to said the same thing. "Been out there many times and have never seen a snake". They are out there and they aint nice! It probably was about 2 to 2 1/2 hours before he was treated.
 

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Rattlesnake venom can kill people and dogs. Usaually dogs will survive it and one good thing about this is that dogs that do get bit will not go near a snake again. I've had several dogs bit by copperheads which are common down here and you couldn't drag them to a snake after it happens. Keep away from rocky areas thats where you will find most of them. Hunt early when its cool. Rattlesnake venom is neurotoxic while copperheads are mostly cytotoxic which means that rattlesnake venom attacks the nervous system and is really dangerous and copperhead venom just damages the cells around the bite area. We have rattlesnakes around here you would'nt believe 8 - 10 feet long and big as a firehose. See one of those puppies and your hair litteraly stands on end! But hunting all the time for 22 years in Georgia I've only seen two in the woods, usaully see them crossing roads. Your lucky your dog was bit on the foot a rattle snake bite to the neck is really bad. I doubt your dog will go near another one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
You guys made a believer out of me! And I was heading for the badlands next weekend. I'll wait til it is cold.
 

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pharpies were hollding extremely tight for us this weekend, had to practically kick them to get them to jump up. saw about 4 or 5 covies got 6 total saturday, didn't go hunting at all sunday.
 

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We hunted Kidder County this weekend. Geese in the morning and sharptails in the afternoon. We had been seeing lots of grouse up to Saturday but had to walk and walk to find them. Dog got them all up and we got our birds but plenty of walking. The Ruger 20 ga IC/M still hits where you point it and my 15 year old shot his 20 well also.

Saw a couple of road hunters and in two days of hunting heard 2 shots Sunday morning while goose hunting.

After 5 days of goose hunting I am convinced those Canada Geese are decoy crazy or just simply the dumbest bird in the air.
 

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Dog is doing better, I'd say he is back to about 75-80%. Is peeing some ugly looking stuff but is running and retrieving the frozen pigeon I keep in the freezer. After this weekend I've come to realize that many of us put way too much pressure and expect so much from out 4 legged buddies, and a rattlesnake bite is what he got for doing his job. From now on hunting is just a walk in the park and birds are a bonus. What we get is what we get as long as my dog and I are having fun, not in rattlesnake country for awhile. I've heard the woodworth area typically is a pretty good sharptail area, anyone have experience hunting this area? I live in Jamestown, this would be an easy drive.
 

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M, my experience is the farther west you go the more reliable bird numbers will be. Have hunted grouse mostly way west but some central. In central, most of my grouse hunting has been between wing and woodworth. All told, probably 8-10 days in that area over the years.

Don't think I've ever gotten blanked, haven't always filled, and I've always worked very hard for my birds in that area. I don't mind working hard, so I keep going back. The immediate area around woodworth can be tougher for access.
 

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I've hunted in rattlesnake country for years and only ran into them on a couple of occasions. First and foremost, when hunting out west you have to always expect to run into them, this is there home not ours. Hot days you will have a better chance of running into them, colder days you really don't need to worry about them. My dad saw one on the opener but I didn't see one all last week. My dog has never even seen a rattlesnake before, since on hot days I know better than to take her with. I know the first time she runs into one she is going to get bit. I have decapitated rattlesnakes before with the ol' 12 gauge. Does anybody else kill them when you find them or do you let them live?? Dad decided to let the one he saw go but normally we always kill them. Hate to hear stories of peoples dogs getting bit, only furthers the ideal to "kill at will". :sniper:
 

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went out yesterday and was just amazed at how many sharpies there are out there, must have seen over 200 sharpies within an hour felt good to see that many birds out again
 
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