|A limit of late season doves is a worthy pursuit!|
The final 30-day sprint to the conclusion of dove season on January 15 is now underway. Late season dove fields are almost always under extra pressure from being depleted of food, but in 2016 a new challenge arose when Hurricane Matthew blew down much of the corn in Colleton County. Supplemental feeding is not legal, but some manipulation of the blown down crop is allowed, so tuning up your dove field for a holiday hunt is still very possible.
After the November holiday I had time to notice that the dove field still seemed to be holding some doves, so I looked closer at the blown down corn. Besides the ears being on the ground, where it is much more likely to be consumed by deer, it seemed the doves were still making use of the bare ground and other sources of food, like native plant seed. The solution for this predicament if you have similar conditions in your dove field, is to bring in a wood chipper in order to chop up the ears on the ground.
A wood chipper in a dove field? The same machine that is in use in yards all across the Lowcountry after Hurricane Matthew, chewing up small limbs and debris, can be utilized for dove hunting. A typical gas-powered wood chipper is small enough to load up into the back of a pick-up trick or an UTV cart in order to haul it to, and then through the dove field. This process takes some extra time doing field work, and requires at least two workers, but any time spent in the dove field usually equates into some of kind of outdoor recreation.
To read the entire feature article in the newspaper click on Colletonian.