Good places to go bird hunting in Indiana?


May 3, 2007, 10:20 PM
Some friends of mine are looking for places to go wild (non-caged) bird hunting. Quail, pheasant, etc are the type of birds they are looking to hunt. I don't think they they want to hunt turkeys. We live in Indianapolis. Do you guys have any recommendations as for hunting grounds?

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May 4, 2007, 09:03 AM has a list of places to hunt on public land.

May 4, 2007, 01:06 PM
The game bird situation (other than turkeys) in my area of Indiana has been pretty dismal for almost thirty years now. This, IMO, is mostly due to the discontinuation of the "Soil Bank" program and the incentives which used to be offered to farmers to leave an 8-10 ft. strip along fence rows, etc. to provide for both cover and food plants for small game, especially birds. A part of the deal was providing brood stocks of game birds at no charge if the landowner would agree to permit some hunting there.

The horrible winter of 1977-78 resulted in massive losses of both bobwhite and pheasants throughout the entire northern 2/3rds of the state. Coupled with the steady losses of habitat where cover and food were available in sufficient quantity to enable a large enough percentage of the remaining populations to survive the subsequent winters to rebuild the numbers, it was a disaster of insurmountable proportions.

When the incentives dried up, fence row-to-fence row tilling became the rule for the farmers to recoup the lost income. "Marginal" agricultural land that was formerly left fallow under the "Soil Bank" program and was the major sanctuary for small game species went back into cultivation, or was lost to suburban sprawl.

While there are scattered pockets around the state where the wild populations of bobwhite and pheasant are large enough for hunters to enjoy some limited success, they're nowhere near as common or as large as they formerly were.

In my area, landowners who've set aside portions of their holdings to support good populations of game birds do so primarily to generate income from leasing the rights to hunt there. It's both reasonable and proper that they should; the state and federal governments no longer provide the incentives which supported and encouraged their permitting free access to hunters.

May 5, 2007, 11:08 AM

thankyou for the response. Very informative... and sad.

El Tejon
May 5, 2007, 11:23 AM
My uncle Irvin worked for decades in Hendricks County with Quail Unlimited preserving habitat. Of course, now Hendricks County is good strip mall country.:uhoh: My grandfather told me of quail and rabbit hunting along the White River in the '20s the '30s.:)

Lots of pheasant places around me, few quail too. Are they willing to drive over an hour?

May 5, 2007, 07:20 PM
Are they willing to drive over an hour?


El Tejon
May 5, 2007, 08:20 PM
Cool, send them on up. Plenty of places this way.:)

It's funny how people moan and groan about their situation but are unwilling to travel to change it. It is almost like being self-limiting is inate to human nature.

Reminds of the time I had a guy whining about "the lack of good payin' jobs." I asked him what he did and where he lived and he replied "welder and Mulberry". I responded that a large factory was paying 3.5 times minimum wage and guaranteed overtime here in Lafayette.

He looked at me, with an infant son, and told me that "he wanted to stay in Clinton County for work." (Mulberry is on the Clinton/Tippecanoe line and closer to Lafayette than the county seat of Clinton County, Frankfort).

That was the last time I felt any empathy for people in bad spots.:D

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