Youth dove hunting events provide high-quality experiences

Dove hunting can be a perfect opportunity to get a young hunter started in wingshooting. The weather is mild, action can be fast and shot opportunities numerous. It is safe and allows close supervision by a mentor as hunters sit quietly and wait for doves to fly into a feed field or water source. With a little pre-season shotgun practice, a young hunter can enjoy a fantastic hunting experience. And to improve the odds of success, a youth dove hunting event like those listed below offer limited access to fields specially managed to attract doves.

In northcentral Kansas, the Osborne County Pheasants Forever (PF) Chapter and the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism (KDWPT) will host an opening weekend dove hunt. This hunt is expected to provide young hunters with plenty of shooting action as the birds flock to grain fields for morning feeding.

Youth between the ages of 10 and 16 who have had limited dove hunting experience are invited to register. Applicants who have not hunted before will be given preference to participate. Only the youngsters will be hunting, and each hunter will have at least one adult mentor at their side. All hunters must be strong enough to handle their guns safely.

The hunt will begin early Saturday morning, Sept. 2, on the Glen Elder Wildlife Area near Waconda Lake in Mitchell County. A managed crop field on the lake property will be reserved exclusively for this event. Hunters will meet before sunrise on the morning of the hunt at the Glen Elder Wildlife Area shop in Cawker City to organize and be paired with adult mentors before heading to the field. After the hunt, all participants will enjoy a free lunch provided by Osborne County Pheasants Forever where stories of the morning’s hunt can be re-lived and shared.

Young hunters who would like to participate in the hunt must pre-register by calling the Glen Elder Area Office at (785) 545-3345 (8 a.m.-4 p.m. weekdays). The sign-up deadline is Wednesday, Aug. 30, 2017. Spots are limited, so hunters are encouraged to register early.

Shotguns can be provided for kids who do not have one. Twelve- and 20-gauge non-toxic shotgun shells will be provided. Hunters 16 and older must have hunting licenses and Harvest Information Program (HIP) permits.

For more information or if you would like to assist with this event, contact Chris Lecuyer (KDWPT) at 785-(545) 3345 or John Cockerham (PF) at (785) 346-6527.

In northeastern Kansas, the Jayhawk Chapter of the Quail and Upland Wildlife Federation (QUWF) and KDWPT will host the chapter’s 10th Annual Youth Dove Hunt on Sept. 2. Hunters 16 and younger are invited to register for the hunt, which will take place at Clinton Wildlife Area west of Lawrence and begins at sunrise. Mentors will accompany all participants, but non-hunting family members are encouraged to attend.

Non-toxic shells and eye and ear protection will be provided to participants, who are encouraged to dress in camouflage or dark-colored clothing. Shotguns are available on request. Participants age 16 must have a Kansas hunting licenses and HIP permits.

For more details and to register, contact Dr. John Hill at (785) 841-9555 or (785) 550-5657, or by e-mail at [email protected].

The Westar Energy Green Team is hosting its annual youth dove hunt at Jeffrey Energy Center near St. Marys Sept. 1-4. Early-morning and late-afternoon hunts will be offered.

Youth 16 and younger are invited to register. Hunters must bring their own shotguns and be accompanied by a non-hunting adult. Sixteen-year-olds must have hunting licenses and HIP permits. Non-toxic shells will be provided. Wheat and sunflower fields have been prepared to attract doves, so action should be lively.

Hunters will be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis. To request an application, call Jeanine Heinisch at (785) 575-6355 by Friday, Aug. 25.