Author Topic: Is Pass shooting on public land a bad thing? Can I do better?  (Read 2520 times)

Offline Stein

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Re: Is Pass shooting on public land a bad thing? Can I do better?
« Reply #15 on: October 20, 2021, 01:04:58 PM »
During my first couple seasons, I used to pack around a cheap laser rangefinder to gauge how far overhead birds were flying.  The first couple times I ranged snows I was pretty shocked how far away they really were.  After looking at ducks all day the bigger birds seemed much closer.

It also helps a lot if you are 20-30 yards from your decoys, pretty easy to pace that off.  If you set them in the dark and aren't paying attention I find they are usually closer than you think when the sun comes up which hurts your ability to fool them into decoying.

Most importantly, get a good hide.  I really need to work on that one more, I invested in a few things this year to help make better hides.

Offline GWP

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Re: Is Pass shooting on public land a bad thing? Can I do better?
« Reply #16 on: October 20, 2021, 06:06:30 PM »
My wife and I mainly use/used to jump shoot or pass shoot unless we were taking a break from ‘hiking with a shotgun’. We each carried one decoy. We would stop by a pond, toss out the two decoys, little or no calling at all, eat lunch, and would OFTEN have birds drop in.
We use/used premium (Hevi Shot, Bismuth or Tungsten) shot ONLY, and can shoot like lead used to with all of them.
Killed a wounded goose at 70 yards with #2 Hevi Shot. It is heavier than lead. The guy we were with was amazed. He used steel.
Yes it costs more. Yes it works better.
If you only get 15 shots, wouldn’t you rather increase your odds on those?
If you find the right area, and are not too close to other hunters, pass shooting can be great. Hiking a distance is usually the key.
An easy way to judge if they are close enough is “if you can see it’s eyeball, you are good.”
« Last Edit: October 20, 2021, 06:13:02 PM by GWP »

Offline metlhead

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Re: Is Pass shooting on public land a bad thing? Can I do better?
« Reply #17 on: October 20, 2021, 06:17:59 PM »
If the shots are legit, bang away. You have every right. Definitely look around to hook up with folks that have been hunting for awhile. Feet down in the decoys is addictive, and not difficult to have with time in the field.

Offline follow maggie

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Re: Is Pass shooting on public land a bad thing? Can I do better?
« Reply #18 on: October 26, 2021, 03:15:38 PM »
When I lived in Washington I did pass shooting & jump shooting a lot. If they’re in a range you can knock them down, shoot ‘em. You have as much right to be hunting how you like on public land  as anyone else.

Offline Guzman

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Re: Is Pass shooting on public land a bad thing? Can I do better?
« Reply #19 on: October 29, 2021, 09:38:47 AM »
This is complicated one. Yes you can shoot away. You can shoot just to shoot. You can set up 30 yards from people at most areas. You can put your decoys out at shooting time.

Deer hunting a person can go out and shoot at 10 deer. Maybe shoot a few in the legs. Blow a few horns off. You can also sight your rifle in opening morning of deer season at a popular area. That is legal to do.

In terms of ethical you have a huge grey area. I would say if you are dropping a bird out of a flock every opportunity you are ethical. That is my 2 cents. If there are 4 of you and you are dropping and retrieving 3 birds a flock that is ethical. If you are shooting and things aren’t falling you are probably just wounding birds which I would say probably isn’t ethical.

Then you get into the subject of common courtesy for everyone else. This is a huge grey area and will very greatly accross the state. For instance along the dike at skagit my understanding is no one will care. If you are by yourself and no one is within miles no one will care. If you are on private property no one will care. Some high density areas on the east side of the mountains blatant pass shooting is very frowned upon in many areas. Some of these areas there are 20 other groups in the area. Every time you shoot everyone else has to sit and wait 10 or so minutes until the birds settle back down even a mile away. They might be working birds and every time they start to get birds close a pass shooter may scare them all off and they are going to start to get frustrated. Now if you are dropping birds every time no one will say anything. But if it is just shooting they aren’t going to be very happy. And like I said this will vary a ton from area to area on what is acceptable.

Offline dilleytech

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Re: Is Pass shooting on public land a bad thing? Can I do better?
« Reply #20 on: November 01, 2021, 05:46:57 PM »
I have a couple of suggestions. 
1 keep a journal. Write down all weather conditions.  Your location and your observations about the birds and where they are traveling.
2 keep you decoy bag light.  My best hunts were with 2 mallards 2 Teal decoys for 2 guys.  I notice lots of small groups of birds in all kinds of weird locations. I dont think they are out of place.
3 learn how to quack. When I was taught that was the first thing i had to learn to do really well. Soft quack. Never seems to have an inappropriate time to use and will take you time before you can do it great.  Later in the season a soft quack is almost exclusively what I use.
4 polish your barrel and pattern it at difference yardages. The below picture represents the diminishing nature of a shot shell. As a component of this learn how to tell distance. If you dont have a good dog those shot cripples wil sail off to become eagle food.

5 JOIN the Washington Waterfowlers Association depending on where you live near Snohomish  the Seattle chapter meets at Kemore, and the NW chapter meets at Twin City Sportsmen Club in Stanwood.  Meetings practice shooting and mentorship.

That poster is a old outdated joke lol. 20% at 50? Lol no.

So is pass shooting bad? Depends if your surrounded by people trying to decoy you better make sure you are going to kill the duck that your shooting at. Personally I find a lot more pleasure from shooting a duck30-50 yards over head then fluttering over the decoys. And I’m very affective at these ranges. But if I’m around other decoying people I will keep my over head range to sub 30. Is shooting 30 yards overhead sky busting? I don’t think so. Is it bad if they are 60 plus and you suck so bad at decoying your shooting anyway then yes that is bad. Sit down. And be patient. If the hunting isn’t good learn from what you did wrong and pick a different spot next time. I recommend a small quality spread like 6-12 decoys with a pull string to get started. Specially in calm conditions. Nothing looks worse then a large spread on a calm day.


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