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Old December 21, 2011, 12:15 AM   #1
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Game Farm Hunts

Since we don't have pheasants to speak of in Wisconsin anymore my BIL and I went on a pheasant hunt where the guide had the dog and they put out the birds. It was okay but just not real pheasant hunting.

Now this place also had elk and deer hunting. And I mean they grew the deer in pens and had about any "score" bucks you'd want. Same with the elk. Pens of huge racked bulls. It all seemed so wrong.

The part that got me the most was, this place was booked solid. They came from all over the country to hunt elk in Wisconsin of all places.

Of course these so called "hunters" had the bucks because if you wanted a 160 class buck you pay XXX amount of dollars and bigger much more. And they had the bigger bucks!

The place was totally fenced in. What do they do? Park the guy or girl in a blind, roll up a wagon with the specified buck or elk in it and release it so the hunter has a shot? It's all so pathetic.

But they are getting rich doing this and so are many other places. I've seen hunts for red stag in one of the northeastern states and as was stated in another thread, exotics in Texas.

These are not sportsman. These are not hunters. These are just killers. I thought this might be okay for handicapped people but if these handicapped people are true hunters they'd have no part of it. Am I wrong here?

I know I won't be going on any more canned pheasant hunts.
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Old December 21, 2011, 12:27 AM   #2
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I feel just the same way.
I once went to a game farm for pheasants and that was it for me. Now I will concede that if I was to train a new dog I would use a game farm but that's it.
As for big game trophy's, I will always believe it is the hunt not the size of the game that makes for the trophy.
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Old December 21, 2011, 01:06 AM   #3
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I agree you guys. I hunted Antelope in Wyoming this year on private property.
these animals were wild with no hunting pressure, when we got out of the truck to make a stalk, if they saw us they bolted. So even on private property with no hunting pressure, wild animals are still wild. It was a very challenging hunt and I loved every minute of it (spot & stalk). When they felt too much pressure from us they just jumped the fence and ran onto another property.
They came back in a couple of days and we all tagged out. But those Antelope wanted nothing to do with us.

Shooting animals released from a cage; is just shooting animals. IMO
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Old December 21, 2011, 08:08 AM   #4
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I'd rather shoot a CTA bus than shoot animals on a game farm. At least I have a hatered for those darn buses.
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Old December 21, 2011, 08:32 AM   #5
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The bird thing has been common for a long time. Goes back to at least the 1800s.

SFAIK, most of the hunting for exotics in Texas is in wide-open pastures. The deal there is that as ferals, it's always open season. Rancher's aren't limited to deer-season-only for hunter income.

The only reason I don't get all harumphy over breeding programs and such is that I know that there are people who don't have the time or skill to do proper hunting. For those people, I take the attitude that something is better than nothing, and there is at least the chance, the hope, that they might eventually learn righteousness.
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Old December 21, 2011, 08:50 AM   #6
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What you describe is not hunting. I agree, it is pathetic. When I raised cattle I could have shot cows in the pasture also. But it is legal and someone is making money. Each to his own.
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Old December 21, 2011, 08:52 AM   #7
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I once hunted hogs in idaho on a game farm. I think that its not hunting. I think its ok for testing out a new weapon (I used a cross bow)
Shot placement is everything! I would rather take a round of 50BMG to the foot than a 22short to the base of the skull.

all 26 of my guns are 45/70 govt, 357 mag, 22 or 12 ga... I believe in keeping it simple. Wish my wife did as well...
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Old December 21, 2011, 09:34 AM   #8
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I belonged to a pheasant club that stocked pen-raised pheasants into open habitat. It was technically a "game farm". Other than the dogs occasionally catching a bird on the ground, it was still pretty sporting and birds did get away. Not "shooting chickens", as my dad liked to call it. It was a great way to break in new dogs, and a great way to get old dogs some easier action. I have no problem with those hunts.

The big game hunts are where I draw the line. Fences, in particular, are where I draw the line. A neighbor of mine used to go hog hunting in PA annually. He said that you never really saw the fences. Eventually he realized that the "guides" were carefully placing him in a scenic area, telling him not to move around, and ultimately pushing the pigs over the hill for him to shoot. Ugh. No thanks.

Do a Google search on "trophy whitetail" or "trophy elk" outfitters, and you'll be disgusted. 100% fair-chase on big game for me.

I killed one button-buck with my .44 handgun at 75 yards on the last day of the season. That's a far better trophy than a 150-class buck that I paid $10,000 for the privelege of walking up to and shooting.

I know some people feel the same way about pen-raised pheasants but, literally, it's a different animal.
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Old December 21, 2011, 09:47 AM   #9
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I totally agree with you Warbird, it is not hunting. A couple of years ago I went on a canned pheasant hunt and it was nothing like real pheasant hunting, we actually watched the guy put the birds down. Where is the sport in that? And the money they charged was outragous IMHO.
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Old December 21, 2011, 10:08 AM   #10
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High fence pay-to-hunt operations (and the trade in deer and elk to stock them) were what brought CWD to Nebraska (from WI, incedently) ...... I despise these operations and the people that run them. Canned pheasant hunting is the same crap, only on a smaller scale.

Money is killing the hunting heritage in my state.

Some cube dweller from suburbia pays a couple grand for a hunt, another grand for gas, food and lodging to drive out for opening weekend of deer season and shoot a deer that is not afraid of people....... and then pays somebody else to package his meat, which he than gives away to a food pantry...... all so he can say he's a "hunter". He could not find a deer on his own if he had to, and is not interested in learning how..... and processing his own meat is too much work, and he does not eat the stuff anyhow....

Once upon a time, I hunted that ground ...... It's posted because it's leased by a big guide operation now.....
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Old December 21, 2011, 10:45 AM   #11
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I am almost certain "canned" hunts are illegal in Texas. IF what you are saying is true, that Elk and deer are released from a pen right before a hunt is about to start, that is a "canned" hunt and should be illegal there too. As far as exotics in Texas, it all depends on your point of view. I took an red deer with a bow on a high-fenced 5,000 acre ranch. Took several outings just to see it, as it roams free inside the fence. I do not consider this a canned hunt just because it is in a high fenced area. Ranchers in Texas have allowed those of us who will never be able to afford an over-seas hunt for exotic game a chance to have an experience we would not otherwise be able to do. They spend a lot of money and time on these animals and fence them in so they are not poached or taken by some yahoo neighbor. Would I hunt on a high-fenced 500 acre But that is me as I have been blessed with a decent paying job that allows me to hunt on a bigger but more expensive ranch. However, I have nothing against someone who does not have as much income and can only afford to take an exotic on a 500 acre ranch. You can make "hunt" out of it if you want by using a bow or handgun to make it more challanging. As in life, you get out what you put in. I will not pass judgement on any hunters as long as they are within the limits of the law.
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Old December 21, 2011, 11:12 AM   #12
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Took several outings just to see it, as it roams free inside the fence.
"roams free...... inside the fence"

You don't see the disconnect there?

I took an red deer with a bow on a high-fenced 5,000 acre ranch.
That's less than 8 square miles....... fenced in. You might be in a bigger can, but it's a can nonetheless.

The animals are not wild- they are livestock owned by the landowner, and you are paying to shoot them.

I am not for making this illegal, mind you: Ranchers can do what they want want on their land with their property..... including taking your money to allow you to go shoot his livestock...... Just don't go tellin' everybody you "hunted" that animal, where it had a chance to leave the area, and you were competing for the same game with "neighbors" and "yahoos".....

The biggest problem I have with high fence operations is when they move "wild" animals around the country (often from conditions where they are concentrated together beyond what is found in nature-prime conditions to contract diseases) ..... that's how CWD was spread from WI to the Nebraska panhandle .......
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Old December 21, 2011, 11:19 AM   #13
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I went along with a friend on a 'buffalo hunt' in Montana. We got to the ranch, were driven to a pasture and my friend was told 'Shoot that one, third from the left.' My friend shot it three times with his Shiloh Sharps 45-70 and it finally fell over. End of hunt. My friend got a lot of meat and a buffalo hide.
It was pretty pathetic, but I suppose it wasn't all that different from shooting buffalo back in the 1860s, other than the buffalo didn't seem to mind our presence.
I'm not necessarily against shooting driven game. It has long been an honorable way to hunt in Europe and, to tell you the truth, on more than one deer hunt I've walked through an area with the hope that I might push something up to a partner or have the partner push something to me. Is that 'driving deer' or 'party hunting'? Seems like sort of a grey area.
As for birds, I have no problem shooting pheasants on private property as long as the pheasants aren't raised there for the purpose of hunting them.
Pheasants aren't native to the U.S. but they have been around so long they might as well be considered wild game, like brown trout.
Perhaps if hunting is to survive in America we will eventually have to go to the European style of hunting game with drivers pushing the stag or roebuck towards the 'gun'. But I sure hope not.

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Old December 21, 2011, 11:28 AM   #14
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"Driving deer" is not illegal.... I push deer to my kids on stand all the time. It's fair chase, as the deer is free to go anywhere he wants to, including across the property line where we can't follow...... the trick is using my big fat brain to figure out which way the deer will run, and put a stander there.....

Seems a lot more ethical than feeding them corn and apples all fall and then shooting them from ambush on opening morning......
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Old December 21, 2011, 11:45 AM   #15
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I'm still torn on the buffalo hunt. My wife wanted to get me one for an anniversary, and they have those "hunts" half a day's drive from here. But it seemed to be more "buffalo harvest with big gun" than hunting. OTOH, they used to organize buffalo hunting from trains when there were still wild buffaloes on the plains, so it never seemed to be all that much of a challenge once you got big guns involved.
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Old December 21, 2011, 12:23 PM   #16
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When we hunt quail, most of the birds are pen raised birds, very few good wild coveys are out there anymore. Its what we have and the birds do sometimes get away and raise, though not with enough regularity to establish covey groups.

However, I cannot see hunting pen raised and to a degree trained "livestock" as being a form of hunting. I know its popular in some areas but to me its laughable to call it hunting. Now our deer aren't corn fed. cold weather monsters but I'd rather take an old swamp donkey thats avoided getting shot during a 4 month season than a mega racked, geneticlly bread freak released from a pen.
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Old December 21, 2011, 12:54 PM   #17
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The animals are not wild- they are livestock owned by the landowner, and you are paying to shoot them.

Wow jimbob, they must call you the "deer whisperer" around the hunitng camp being able to walk up to "livestock" and pet them. Where is the "hunting" in that? I am being sarcastic, of course, but if you think you can walk up to these "canned" animals like you can with a cow, you are seriously mistaken. You are entitled to your opinon on what is a fair-chanse hunt or what other people are allowed to say is hunting, but you might want to try it before you start badmouthing something you have no experience with.
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Old December 21, 2011, 01:20 PM   #18
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From what I have read, CWD was unknown until the mid 80's. I absolutely believe that it was brought into the country with exotics. The other poster is right about how it was spread in the east. So far, here in Pa. the only positive CWD was confirmed at a deer farm.
Being for or against is not a grey area. Either you are or are not. I remember wild pheasants in Pa. and there is not a stocked bird like them. I was sitting on a steep hill bow hunting and some small game guys kicked some out of the swamp below me. They flew into the woods where I was at and started dropping around me. They were hitting the trees trying to fly in the woods. One guy told me two birds followed his truck in the parking lot. They must feed them off trucks when they raise them. These were Game Commission stocked birds. The wild birds I used to hunt were as smart as turkeys. When all hunting gets like that I will quit.
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Old December 21, 2011, 02:14 PM   #19
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I agree it is not hunting. However, there is a lot of so called hunting that isn't, such as a blind over a feeder.
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Old December 21, 2011, 02:30 PM   #20
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Unlike some on this forum my opinion is not the verdict on what is hunting and what isn't. If a man wants to do it and it's legal I cannot figure out what business it is of mine.
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Old December 21, 2011, 02:48 PM   #21
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I could never pay what these places ask to go shoot something they've (basically) chained to a pole at 300 yards for me to shoot at.

What I think places like this should be used for is to raise animals that have good genes and then release "X" into the wild each year so that they might breed with wild animals and get strong genes out there. Or maybe the farm raised and fed animals wouldn't make it out in the wild because they wouldn't know what to do so maybe just trap wild females, artificially inseminate, and release.

Or something similar. I think these farms should be used for bettering the wild population and nothing more. Shooting penned up animals, as has already been said, is not sporting at all through my eyes.
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Old December 21, 2011, 02:58 PM   #22
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There is no way it can be considered hunting. I just don't get it. The only way I could see this being acceptable is 1) someone is disabled and can't hunt but still wants deer meat or 2) training hunting dogs. My best friend owns a cattle farm and It sounds to me like shooting a cow from his kitchen window would be just as much a sport. I don't have a problem with it other than those who do it consider it hunting and bring home far superior trophies they didn't earn. If they called it shooting, I wouldn't have an issue with it.
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Old December 21, 2011, 02:58 PM   #23
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It is what it is !!

It was okay but just not real pheasant hunting.
Go back to the reason you went there, in the first place; no pheasants, in Wisconsin. Here in Iowa, we are faced with the same situation but you can still find pockets of them. These are areas that are kept secret. Most hunters I know, have just given up. However, some occasionally go on canned hunts, just for old time sake. A few years back, I helped guide on such hunts and we had lots of folks from the large cities, who didn't have time to invest in open hunts. You are right in that most were not real hunters but some were. Ten years ago, I suggested to our DRN to close the season, for five years with no success. I understand that South Dakota is seeing few numbers these days. .....

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Old December 21, 2011, 03:05 PM   #24
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ZeroJunk hit the nail on the head. Who am I to judge? If it stimulates the economy with jobs and money especially in times like these why would I bash something that.
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Old December 21, 2011, 03:29 PM   #25
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If some guys want to do this I don't care. It's when they come around boasting what mighty hunters they are and how they get the good animals and we don't or can't. We had a guy like that at work. Had all these giant trophys. Went all over the world spending money like water on whatever animal he wanted to hunt (he married a well-to-do woman) even though he was an inspector in a factory. He was just "buying" his trophies. It had nothing to do with skill yet he bragged like it did. THIS is what po's me.
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