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Second season with no dove in central Texas(Hamilton county) #7995429 10/02/20 11:36 AM
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shalor Offline OP
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I am 42 years old and have grown up and hunted in Hamilton County since I was a little kid. We almost always had good dove hunting. In fact about five or six years ago I thought it was better than ever as our dove would stay until October. The last three years have been terrible, but the last two years there’s not even enough to go hunting for. I know a few guys that are planting sunflowers and shredding them but the birds don’t even come into that. There just aren’t any. Last year we had a small migration in mid to late October and were able to hunt a little bit but that was it. I planted Milo this year and I have not been able to hunt at all because there are no birds to speak of. I’ve had about 50 birds on my milo at most and did not hunt them. My dad farms wheat and he’s just sewed all of it, there is plenty of waste seed on the surface and very few birds.(There used to be thousands when he sewed) Kind of depressing. I hope the dove are not going the way of the quail in central Texas. I realize West Texas and South Texas are still good, but it sure was nice to hunt birds after work every day that I wanted to in Central Texas. Those days are gone for now. Considering doing some sunflower plots this winter for next year but I’m honestly not sure if it will make a difference. There is much less Milo in our areathan there was 25 years ago, but I can’t say that that changed in just the last five years. I think there’s more to it.

Re: Second season with no dove in central Texas(Hamilton county) [Re: shalor] #7995440 10/02/20 11:52 AM
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Maybe there is too much GMO crap that there nutrition needs aren't being met.


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Re: Second season with no dove in central Texas(Hamilton county) [Re: shalor] #7995481 10/02/20 12:44 PM
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I have fond memories of dove hunts in Hamilton County in my youth.

Re: Second season with no dove in central Texas(Hamilton county) [Re: shalor] #7995533 10/02/20 01:42 PM
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Same thing at my lease in Callahan County, near Putnam. Very few last year and almost none this year. Don't know why.

Re: Second season with no dove in central Texas(Hamilton county) [Re: shalor] #7995536 10/02/20 01:44 PM
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You might be able to contact TP&W or even Federal biologists to find out something.

Re: Second season with no dove in central Texas(Hamilton county) [Re: papa45] #7995584 10/02/20 02:19 PM
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Originally Posted by papa45
Same thing at my lease in Callahan County, near Putnam. Very few last year and almost none this year. Don't know why.


I've noticed the same thing. Hunted a couple sunflower fields north of Putnam this year that actually held quite a few birds which was a nice change.

Re: Second season with no dove in central Texas(Hamilton county) [Re: TBS12] #7995598 10/02/20 02:31 PM
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shalor Offline OP
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I have been told if you get West near Abilene it’s good. But there aren’t any in a 50 mile radius of me that I’m aware of. I think they have some near Cross Plains.

Re: Second season with no dove in central Texas(Hamilton county) [Re: shalor] #7995625 10/02/20 02:56 PM
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They are few and far between in Western Bastrop county where I live.
There is quite a bit more dove weed this year than I have seen in a few years too.


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Re: Second season with no dove in central Texas(Hamilton county) [Re: shalor] #7996578 10/03/20 02:53 AM
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Centex is shot out. Hamilton County used to be the shizzle. Maybe the pattern has shifted or changed.

Re: Second season with no dove in central Texas(Hamilton county) [Re: shalor] #7996629 10/03/20 03:47 AM
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Just got back from Alice; very few doves. No White Wings, no Eurasians. dove seem to be fewer and fewer.


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Re: Second season with no dove in central Texas(Hamilton county) [Re: ndhunter] #7996765 10/03/20 01:26 PM
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Hamilton county is not shot out, very few people are even hunting dove. At best you can go kill three Or four if you’ve got a good spot. I do think the flight pattern has shifted to the west... But in the last three years our resident Dove seem to have vanished. And we really have had pretty good habitat conditions. There’s not as much Milo for sure, but there are a decent number of people that leave sunflowers for birds with very little results these days. We do get some birds sometimes in mid October or after the season in November. And if you have sunflowers you might get a decent hunt in the second split around New Year’s.

Re: Second season with no dove in central Texas(Hamilton county) [Re: shalor] #7998675 10/05/20 12:21 PM
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Same with Marlin area. No birds


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Re: Second season with no dove in central Texas(Hamilton county) [Re: shalor] #7998737 10/05/20 01:33 PM
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The haven't been huntable numbers of dove in Mason County for several years now. I gave it up (dove hunting here) around 5 years ago. Lots of white wings in town, but the local sheriff gets positively huffy when I do skillet shots on the courthouse lawn with my 12 gauge, so I gave that up, too.

Re: Second season with no dove in central Texas(Hamilton county) [Re: shalor] #7998741 10/05/20 01:37 PM
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The haven't been huntable numbers of dove in Mason County for several years now. I gave it up (dove hunting here) around 5 years ago. Lots of white wings in town, but the local sheriff gets positively huffy when I do skillet shots on the courthouse lawn with my 12 gauge, so I gave that up, too.

Re: Second season with no dove in central Texas(Hamilton county) [Re: mikei] #7999775 10/06/20 02:45 AM
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What the heck is the deal? TPWD says the state has more dove or as many dove as ever. And I understand West Texas and South Texas still have a good hunting, but I feel like 8 to 10 years ago they had good hunting and Central Texas still had plenty of dove. Has the migration changed or they’re just less dove statewide? I would say both. But I really don’t know. And I don’t think TPWD does either. I’m thinking about spending significant effort and money to plant multiple sunflower fields with a group of friends, in our county, but I really don’t know that it will make any difference.

Re: Second season with no dove in central Texas(Hamilton county) [Re: shalor] #8000012 10/06/20 12:50 PM
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I am not seeing as many and mostly morning dove

Re: Second season with no dove in central Texas(Hamilton county) [Re: shalor] #8000397 10/06/20 06:43 PM
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I live in Central Texas and feel what we're seeing is the result of homes and subdivisions sitting on what used to be thousands of acres of farmland. You don't see as many dove in general these days because they tend to be more congregated in a few select areas where more expansive areas of farmland and such exist. I'm referring mostly to mourning dove. Whitewings tend to be all over towns and cities while Eurasians are often sighted in rural settings.

Something that stuck with me was a farmer friend telling me a few years ago that those fields where homes now sit were some of the most productive fertile lands in all of Texas. What used to be miles upon miles of corn, milo, and cotton fields are no more in many cases. And, when you do come across crop land, 95% of it is planted in corn. The variety is gone.

Re: Second season with no dove in central Texas(Hamilton county) [Re: shalor] #8001868 10/07/20 10:28 PM
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food and water is key- feed is down significantly in area, water all over the place in Central Tx- I would focus on tank shoots w shallow flats- probably your best bet for PM hunts-


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Re: Second season with no dove in central Texas(Hamilton county) [Re: shalor] #8004274 10/09/20 08:18 PM
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I used to see big flocks of white wings flying over starting from mid August in central Texas 10-15 years ago. Now, it is very rare. I do agree that the residential house development may be one of the major reasons.

Re: Second season with no dove in central Texas(Hamilton county) [Re: shalor] #8004294 10/09/20 08:28 PM
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I shot a limit in Floresville yesterday, granted that's not central Texas. All were mourning doves, no white wings.


Originally Posted by Scott W
Re: Second season with no dove in central Texas(Hamilton county) [Re: Scott W] #8004862 10/10/20 12:14 PM
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We still have some whitewings that hang around town. I can’t really comment about their numbers very accurately, I would say they’re down a little bit, but the remarkable thing is just a lack of mourning dove in the country. There is still wheat seed just sitting on top of the ground after my dad sewed. No dove eating it at all. I read Stompy saying in another thread that we’ve had two or three bad hatches in a row, which I certainly wouldn’t argue with. But we had good conditions this spring and early summer, what conditions do dove need to hatch in?

Last edited by shalor; 10/10/20 12:15 PM.
Re: Second season with no dove in central Texas(Hamilton county) [Re: shalor] #8004872 10/10/20 12:30 PM
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Beats me shalor. But it seems every year TPWD says this is gonna be the year of the dove.

Exhibits A and B:
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Weather, Habitat Conditions Promising for 2020-21 Dove Season

2019
Conditions Ripe for Prime Texas Dove Hunting


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Re: Second season with no dove in central Texas(Hamilton county) [Re: shalor] #8004936 10/10/20 02:00 PM
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I think their flyway has moved west for some reason. It's the same in Woodson.


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Re: Second season with no dove in central Texas(Hamilton county) [Re: shalor] #8005642 10/11/20 10:24 AM
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Same here.
For years, I hunted dove from opening day to closing, at least a couple times a week.

The birds just aren't here anymore. We've hunted all over West Texas since we were young, always plenty of birds.

I noticed several years ago that the fly way seemed to move further West, Abilene and beyond, but I'm not sure even that has held up.

With quail, it's weather, rain and hatches.
Don't know what's going on with dove.


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Re: Second season with no dove in central Texas(Hamilton county) [Re: shalor] #8005706 10/11/20 12:39 PM
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The dove are not here either weird deal

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