August 11, 2007, 11:33 PM
I'm Proud to say my daughters aged 7 & 5 asked if they could go dove hunting with me this year!
Obviously they won't be shooting, But I'm thrilled that they have taken an interest in hunting and want to participate.
I've bought them some Camo, dove stools, and earplugs.
Any advice from other fathers out there to help make this a positive and fun experience?
We'll be hunting on family land with family and friends only.
BTW I cant wait to try out my new CZ Redhead Deluxe O/U!
August 12, 2007, 05:20 AM
You are a lucky man. My experience with my little girl (8yrs) is that she is really excited to go hunting with me as long as it is not too cold (Minnesota, duh), it doesn't take overly long and there is some action. I think you are going to be just fine with that. I also give my daughter the important task of checking with everybody in the hunting party if the safeties are on in between shooting and it is funny as heck.
August 12, 2007, 08:07 AM
My boys used to carry their Red Ryders when they would go duck hunting with me when they were very young . . . it was a hoot whenever I'd tumble a bird they had shot at, then claimed that I had missed. Enjoy the gift . . . they grow up entirely too quickly.
August 12, 2007, 12:52 PM
Don't forget the eye protection. My 14 year old recently got peppered and missed losing an eye by an inch. Needless to say, we're pretty anal about always wearing it now! Edit to add that I saw you will be on private land with friends. Doesn't change the scenario a bit. My kid was peppered by a close friend totally on accident. No matter how careful you are, you can't control others around you. Several companies make junior sized glasses that would fit better.
August 12, 2007, 09:28 PM
Adopted Uncle here.
Age 7 and 5. Yeah I know about this, then again "we" have them come out even younger.
I never did camo, just how raised and most folks I hang with never did either.
Rubber soled, leather upper boots like LLBean brought to fame...well kids "gotta have these". Because I and others wear them.
18 month old gal all excited having her own "hunting boots".
Buckets. Oh yeah, we gotta have the green , orange, blue even white ones like down on the property. I mean the doves and other critters are used to seeing these , just part of the property.
"Can't use a pretty one, it has to look used" - 3 year old.
So scuff them up and bit, and the old board used for a seat, has to look weathered too.
Shop Rags - Gray.
Now folks can go buy decoys if the want.
Gray shop rags set out various ways, looks and does the same thing, plus used for range markers.
Just regular britches, khakis, grays, whatever earth tone is used, then again I wear jeans.
Hats. Well here we have to be careful. If grandpa has a Stetson, well, hard to find a Stetson for a 7 year old.
Kids pay attention. So Grandpa got to wearing a Feed&Seed Store cowboy straw hat. "Bit cooler kiddo's"
So his twin 7 year old girls wore cowboy straw hats.
His 9 year old had taken a shine to LLBean ball caps, that is where his boots come from.
Shirts - again, no camo, just natural earth tones.
Dove Hunting is big Tradition here in the South.
This includes hitting the Do-Nut place en -route and getting umpteen bazillion do-nut holes, the dawgs get their own little sacks of do-nut holes, real important.
Kiddo's get milk, white or chocolate.
It is customary to put a shot of coffee in the milk. :)
Not sure who is more excited about all this stuff, the kids, the dawgs or the adults, but for about a week before season starts, there is excitement in the air.
Tradition is to give the new folks, on first dove hunt a knife.
You cannot put a dollar value on these knives.
Years past we used Case Peanuts, with carbon steel blades.
The Old Timers when Shrade was Shrade and that little single carbon steel blade with brass liner lock.
SAK Classics work, Pink for the ladies and Blue for the boys.
WE prefer a carbon steel knife. One fella has already gotten Case Peanuts, with Yellow Handles , carbon steel blades and had his kids initials engraved for this year.
It is all about the kids, then the new adult shooters.
We already had the sit down , and practiced this in the backyard, down by the barn, whatever.
Littlest kids and I mean even 18months old, with her Cork Pop Gun get to shoot first.
Get umpteem bazillion corks at the hardware store for the kids with cork pop guns, the adults are going to want to shoot these as well.
Everyone has a range buddy, or buddy's.
All explained before hand, but that 18month with a little help, popped her first dove, it was on the ground.
That first dove went to taxidermist.
So the littlest kids, get that one "gimmee". This one gets pictures taken and the whole bit. Taxidermist fixes these up.
Kids understand the newer folks, get their turn. Last year the mom's and kids I hang with went on their first hunt ever, doves.
Kids went first, then the moms turn.
How we do it. It all about "them" and "we" don't go expecting to shoot, or hunt.
This all shared and agreed beforehand.
Plugs in the Gun , license and all legal.
Funny, Deputy all arranged, kids did not know, and we wanted the kids to see the legal aspect of all this.
18month old is asked to see her gun and license.
Well she just watched the other kids and adults get asked.
So she hands this Deputy her Pop Cork gun and this crumpled piece of paper that was her "license".
She was legal, Deputy could only get one "cork" loaded and no way to load more than 3.
[he was real professional about all this, and the 18 month old was sorta hoping she was going to be okay :p she had this look on her face]
Plenty of water, juice and bug dope, sunscreen...
Still the doves get felled. Smallest , newest, and then we adult "might" shoot.
We usually just back up.
Pictures taken and the whole bit.
We have a .410 single shot, Neon Yellow tie dye paint job that will show under blacklight.
It has felled a lot of doves, I get a kick out of using this gun.
I felled the limit of 15 with 14 shells and kids all got pics with the gun and these doves. Sorta blows the normal dove hunting methods...
Kids, new folks help clean, feathers in hats and the whole bit.
Feathers, some are saved, for fly tying. We share how all this is "not wasted" and life lessons.
BBQ! Traditional Lunch.
Kids and new shooters have a good time, most times we have kids nod off and fall asleep on the way home.
Taxidermy for the first doves, and those knives are priceless!
Kids, get involved in the cooking and fixing side dishes.
Now later on, these same kids, go out from time to time. Sometimes they shoot, sometimes they sit and watch.
Out of season, they are paying attention to doves and flights patterns and the whole bit.
August 12, 2007, 10:26 PM
I commend you . . . thanks for sharing & sounds like a wonderful tradition AND educational experience for all!
Big Az Al
August 15, 2007, 02:27 PM
Sounds like my type of hunt.
til my teenager, got the bug. FINALLY!
I was the kid, 40 something, making sure the the adults, (young'en there is 69 or 70 bad wheels to boot) got to have thier fun, set up chairs fetch birds water shells whatever.
Shoot what I can, hopefully limit quick. start on the BBQ.
Now I have my teen, to sheperd along also. My daughter says the newest, HUNTING buddy will go with me when he's old enough, 5 months won't quite make it! next year maybe if his mom comes along?
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