The day after the pheasant opener this year I headed up to a tolerable spot for such things. Its big enough that even on busy bird hunting day like the day after the opener, you have a few fields to yourself.
Driving along in the pre-dawn haze nearing my destination I noticed a dog with a beeper collar on running along the road. I slowed down to a near crawl and he darted right out in front of me. I slammed on my brakes and nearly threw my dog for a loop in the back. I avoided calamity, but only barely. I looked out my passenger’s side window to the adjacent grass field. The owner gave me a thank you wave. I chuckled and thought yeah, mine would probably do the same thing, your welcome.
After searching for a spot a bit, we found a likely looking pull off without a truck in it. The dog was visibly excited, if not down right loony, to get out there and track some birds. As soon as I set foot out of the Jeep I heard a rooster cackle in the field across the road. So thats right where we headed.
We hunted that entire field and found nothing. We had some hot spots, some likely looking almost points, some birdy looking turns, but nothing to write home about. We hunted back across to the thicket next to the road and headed towards the car to get some water and rest. We were no more than 50 yards from the road and I heard gun shots right on the road not too far away. What the?
I step out onto the road and there’s a couple of guys parked on the side it. I leashed the dog up and slowly made my way over to them. They told me they were driving down the road and a rooster ran right out of the thicket. They pulled over, got out of their truck and shot it. They shot my bird, those bastards.
Then he says, “are you the guy in that Jeep parked back up there?”
“Yeah,” I said.
“Oh, well your the one that my dog ran out in front of earlier. Thanks for not running over him,” he said with and air of apology. “Oh and sorry we shot your bird.”
Not a problem, Thats the way it goes I suppose.
But I am a taxpayer, and it was MY bird.