Well, not sure it has been coined yet, but if it is defined as harvesting one of each bird in the United States, the average upland hunter has a ways to go. Of the 27 huntable species in this country, most have likely seen two. Narrow the area to the contiguous US and 18 species still remain — not counting sub-species.
The Grouse Slam, The Quail Slam, The Ptarmigan Slam……. there is a lot to add to a hunter’s bucket list.
Our forefathers continuing through the ’60s elected to release numerous species in order increase hunting opportunity. Turning a blind eye to the scourge caused by so many other non-native species, upland hunting opportunites have increased exponentially.
How about The Native Bird Slam? Well, now the number’s down to 15 by most tallies. The point simply, upland season is more than just an opening weekend in the open prairie.
Very few of these species inhabit the same area, employ the same evasive tactics or appear similar. The color pallet of plummage alone could keep Crayola busy for a decade. Some hold for a point while others bail before you put two feet in the same field. And they don’t all taste like chicken.
The first game bird bag limits in this country were established by the state of Iowa in 1878 as a way to protect remaining populations of Prairie Chicken, Ruffed Grouse and Woodcock. Iowa didn’t employ game wardens until nine years later, so it remains a mystery how such limits were enforced.* Today, bag limits are … Read more
Release the Birds It’s a bitter sweet day. The quail project we conceived in the spring (Part 1) is winding down as the leaves begin descending and first frosts are painting the pasture. We’ve gotten attached to these birds, invested in their condition, entertained by their antics. We’re just a few zip ties away from … Read more
I often see bird hunters profess that they hunt for food. But when I think about my days afield, meat is often the last thing that comes to mind. Don’t get me wrong, I love my Sharptail Fajitas and my Pheasant Chowder but eating game birds has always been one of the bonuses of being … Read more