What Mid-America Hunting Association Offers the hunter.
Iowa wild Quail hunting is an upland bird choice not well known amongst hunters. It is often the case that southern Iowa's covey counts rival that to its neighbor to the south. It is agreed however, that Iowa quail hunting is best for those that enjoy an occasional pheasant in the mix.
There is a concentration of quail in the south of Iowa created by habitat and south enough for the better weather conditions.
Habitat is a combination of watershed country cutting through fields of large grains of soybean and corn. This makes for the right combination of cover and food to sustain quail coveys through the entire year.
South enough means that even in this snow country the overall yearly temperatures allow coveys to survive. That is due in no small part that waste grain from soybeans and corn remain available through the coldest parts of winter.
All of this combined with Iowa's early season opener, starting the last Saturday in October, allows for a longer season. Or, greater likelihood of matching time off from work during the upland bird season.
A second advantage is the earlier to arrive colder winter temperatures. This is the northern of all Association lease land. Iowa's northern cooler temperatures allows the dog work avoiding heat fatigue.
We seek the working relationship with Association hunters that lends toward sending in their hunt pictures and accounts for all to share on the update page. That is a mark we value as performing a good job for the hunter.
Went on a four day hunt to [location deleted] counting arrival and departure days. The weather was warm, dry and not much wind. On the better mornings we averaged 5 birds in the bag taking anywhere from 1 to 3 quail per stop down to zero on the hot day, 70+. Each good day we had one farm of no birds and on all others we either had quail, pheasant or both. My dog does much better in cold weather as he has a good standoff on pheasants and always does well on quail regardless of the conditions. During warm weather I observed he cuts the scent cone too close to allow the roosters to hold for point.
I could have taken more pictures of the dog with quail, but as it was warm we dressed all out as soon as we made it back to the truck. If I had sent in all the tailgate pictures they simply look like the same ones over again. The point pictures I sent will show better the amount of action we encountered.
Thanks for all you do. Having knocked on doors most of my life I can hardly believe how you are able to get so much land.
Same Hunter, Same Dog, Different Hunt
It is immaterial there are just 4 quail in this picture. That dog is 8 months old on his first wild quail hunt. He is steady to point, wing, shot and drop. Breaks on command and hunts dead. He works at good range and honors other dogs on point. The quail represent his share of the harvest from the first field of the morning. We went on to get a sportsman's limit of six in the bag with two dropped and not recovered....
Drainage Cover & Crop Habitat
Iowa quail hunts are along the shallow drains of the upper fringe of the Grand River watershed. These drains have infrequent woody cover from brush to the tallest of trees to be found. They include much weeds and prairie grass. This combination of cover variety with its many irregularities make it necessary to walk every mile of it. That is to find the many spots that may appear no different to the hunter than the previous dozen but to quail are the ideal loafing spot.
These quail hot spots once found may number from one to several on the same farm. Once a dog does go on point it is always a mystery up to the flush of if it is a covey, single or a pheasant. In each case the hunter can never anticipate which. If he does the bird more frequently than not will make him a liar.
For those hunters that seek a pure pheasant or quail hunt experience, Iowa is not the state of choice. While quail are present in good numbers, much of the same cover will hold pheasants.
The quail only hunter that disdains pheasant is better more to the south.
Some days are very good.