I was out this morning and have come to the conclusion that birds can become pressured, not just by us humans, but I think their natural predators can spook them out of an area as well.
I've been to a property I've taken birds from for years. Like our friends online here that have seen their honey holes go dry, mine has too. Over the weekend I heard there was a cougar sighted in the area so I was extra vigilant this morning. So, I'm nestled against a great tree in a great spot across the field where for years the birds have roosted consistently. What goes bopping by my set up? It was either a fisher or a martin
, not sure which, but a predator none the less. I watch him go and continue to wait. Well, after a couple of hours without a sound, other than some distant gobbling far to the south, I decide to see if I can get any kind of response. Nope, nahdah, nothing.
If they were there they were all hushed up and didn't fly down to their usual spot either. So I pack up and move to a new spot on the other side of the property. While walking, I'm checking the ground looking for turkey tracks, cougar tracks, anything. The only tracks I find are coyote tracks, and they're everywhere.
So, here's my conclusion. Not only do we as hunters pressure the birds, and I know there is more than just me hunting and working this particular bunch. But, I think certain predators have figured them out too and have been hitting them hard as well. Combination of hunters, coyotes, martins/fishers, owls and the alleged cougar, I can see why they've moved on out.
Thus, I think I've decided to write this property off for this season as after 3 mornings and 1 afternoon out, I've yet to have a response or even a visual of a huntable bird, saw 1 lonely hen opening morning. I do have other places to go and have taken one dandy 22 pounder on the 1 morning I went elsewhere, so I know it's not me.
Any one else have any theorires? Love to hear them,