On a chilly October morning, several recent hunter education graduates from around the Magic Valley gathered to hone their hunting skills for upland birds at the Niagara Springs Wildlife Management Area. The excited youth were joined by staff and volunteers from the Idaho Department of Fish and Game, Mule Deer Foundation and the High Desert Pointing Dog Club who taught shotgun shooting skills, mentored the youth in a pheasant hunt, and then taught them how to field dress and cook their birds.
“Watching the kids using the skills learned in our hunter education classes is extremely rewarding” event organizer and Hunter Education Coordinator TanaRae Alberti said. “Being able to offer a hands-on event after their hunter education classes both reinforces what they learned, but also gets everyone excited about keeping our hunting heritage alive.”
Alberti reminds all youth 17 years of age and younger that the youth pheasant season runs from Oct. 5-11, and that they must be accompanied by an adult 18 years of age and older when in the field hunting.
Youth can also hunt during the general pheasant season, and they are not required to have a WMA upland game permit to continue hunting stocked pheasants.
Volunteer instructor Tara Ortman provides a trap shooting orientation to youth attending the mentored youth pheasant clinic at the Niagara Springs Wildlife Management Area.
Volunteer instructor Travis Sheppard teaches how to aim the shotgun when shooting upland birds.
Stocking ring-necked pheasants at the Niagara Springs Wildlife Management Area.
High Desert Pointing Dog Club provided hunting dogs at the mentored youth pheasant clinic at the Niagara Springs Wildlife Management Area.
A successful pheasant hunter shows off his ring-necked pheasant with a pointing hunting dog provided by the High Desert Pointing Dog Club .
Ring-necked pheasant tail feathers sticking out of your hunting vest is a sure sign of a successful hunt.
Smiles after a successful ring-necked pheasant hunt at the Niagara Springs Wildlife Management Area.
Hunting is a family activity!