California Chukar Hunting Info, Guides, Maps, Links

If you have any pics or stories you would like to share here, please email them to us at Jesse's Hunting & Outdoors webmaster email.
 

2013-2014 California Chukar Hunting Info

They say you hunt chukar the first time for sport and for revenge every time after that. Dang birds!

http://www.dfg.ca.gov/regulations/upland-summary-12-13.html

CHUKAR SEASON:

Archery - During general season and this archery-only season: Aug 17 2013 - Sep 6 2013.
Archery and shotgun - Oct 19 2013 - Jan 26 2014.
Falconry - Aug 17 2013 - Feb 28 2014.

DAILY BAG LIMIT: Daily Bag Limit 6 chukar per day.

POSSESSION LIMIT: New Change for 2013. Possession is now TRIPLE the daily bag limit, 18. You must also fill out a "Declaration for Entry" form to comply with Importation law: Section 2353 of the California Fish & Game Code if you bring any game into California from another state or country. You can get the "Declaration for Entry" form here.

LICENSE REQUIREMENTS: Hunting License: You must possess a California hunting license in addition to the Upland Game Stamp. The cost of a hunting license is:

Annual resident hunting license - $44.85.
Junior annual resident hunting license - $11.62. (Required for any resident or nonresident less than 16 years of age who takes birds or mammals. To qualify, hunter must be less than 16 years of age at the beginning of the license year (July 1).
Non resident annual hunting license - $155.52. (Required for any nonresident 16 years of age or older who takes birds or mammals).
One-Day Nonresident license, age 16 and over (not valid for big game) - $21.34. IMPORTANT! This license is only available for nonresidents taking resident and migratory game birds on Licensed Game Bird Clubs (Upland Game Bird Stamp is also required) or Licensed Domesticated Migratory Game Bird Shooting Areas (Federal Migratory Bird Stamp and California Duck Stamp are also required).
Two-Day Nonresident license, age 16 and over (not valid for big game) - $44.85. Required for any person 16 years of age or older, for taking resident and migratory game birds, resident small game mammals, nongame mammals and furbearers for two consecutive days. IMPORTANT! This license is NOT valid for deer, bear, antelope, elk, bighorn sheep or pig.
Reduced Fee, Disabled Veteran - $7.05.
Duplicate Hunting License - $9.98.
Hunter Education Stamp - $3.75.
Harvest Information Program Stamp (HIP) - No fee. Required for any person hunting ducks, dove, gallinules, geese, band-tailed pigeon, black brant, coots, and snipe. This validation is free to hunters who complete the Harvest Information Program (HIP) Survey. The validation is available where hunting licenses are sold. The HIP Validation is imprinted on your hunting license document when you answer the HIP Survey questions. If you hunt migratory game birds, verify that a HIP Validation has been printed on your hunting license. The HIP Survey provides wildlife biologists with data needed to make wildlife management decisions and formulate hunting seasons. More information about HIP.
Upland Bird Stamp - $9.21. Required for any person taking upland game bird species, excluding juniors hunting under the authority of a junior hunting license.

The California hunting license is good from July 1, 2012 through June 30, 2013. California resident and nonresident hunting licenses are nonrefundable and nontransferable.

Definition of Resident. A resident is defined as any person who has resided continuously in California for six months immediately before the date of application for a license, tag or permit; persons on active duty with the armed forces of the United States or an auxiliary branch; or Job Corps enrollees.

Disabled Veteran Hunting Licenses. A $7.05 hunting license is available for qualified disabled veterans. Available to any resident or nonresident honorably discharged disabled veteran with a 50 percent or greater service-connected disability who takes birds or mammals. Certification from the United States Department of Veterans’ Affairs is required at the time of application or a copy of a previous year’s California Disabled Veteran’s Hunting License. The first license must be purchased from a DFG License Sales Office. Subsequent licenses may be purchased from any license agent or online.

Hunter Education Special Requirement. Hunting licenses shall be issued to hunters only upon presentation of one of the following:

An annual California hunting license from a prior year or evidence of having held such a license; a California hunter education completion or equivalency certificate; a certificate of competence or completion of a California approved hunter education training course from any state or Canadian province; or a current year hunting license from any state, province, European country or South Africa. For further information, contact any DFG office or license agent. A California hunter education validation stamp must be affixed to hunter education certificates from California.

Hunter Ed classes: Classes are given throughout the state. Classes are listed below by county. Check the list to find a class in your area.  If you cannot find a class, phone the Regional Hunter Education Coordinator and request information. Information on classes may also be obtained from sporting goods stores, license agents and sport shooting and hunting clubs.

http://www.dfg.ca.gov/huntered/classes.aspx

Home Study / On-Line Classes

On-line courses are available at Hunter-Ed.com HunterExam California and International Hunter Education Association . The on-line course in itself will not get you a valid hunter education certificate. Once you have completed one of the above on-line courses, you will still need to attend a 4 hour follow-up home study/on-line class with a certified hunter education instructor. Access is permitted to the Home Study and On-line 4 hour follow-up class only after a student has completed the written Home Study or On-line component of the class. Contact the local District Coordinator for more information on the Home Study or On-line class.

Hunting Mentors And New Hunters Looking For A Mentor: We have forum where mentors and new hunters can hook up with each other. This is a great way to give back to the sport if you are a seasoned hunter. This is also an excellent resource for the new hunter to learn from a mentor who can help show them the ropes.

BAITING: According to the California Fish and Game Code, resident game birds and mammals may not be taken within 400 yards of any baited area. (a) Definition of Baited Area. As used in this regulation, “baited area” shall mean any area where shelled, shucked or unshucked corn, wheat or other grains, salt, or other feed whatsoever capable of luring, attracting, or enticing such birds or mammals is directly or indirectly placed, exposed, deposited, distributed, or scattered, and such area shall remain a baited area for ten days following complete removal of all such corn, wheat or other grains, salt, or other feed.

ELECTRONIC CALLING: Electronic or mechanically-operated calling or sound-reproducing devices are prohibited when attempting to take resident game birds.

LIVE DECOYS: The use of live decoys is prohibited when attempting to take resident game birds

SHOOTING FROM VEHICLES: DFG reg. 252. No person shall pursue, drive, herd, or take any bird or mammal from any type of motor-driven air or land vehicles, motorboat, airboat, sailboat, or snowmobile, except: 1) When the motor of such motorboat, airboat, or sailboat has been shut off and/or the sails furled and its progress therefrom has ceased, and it is drifting, beached, moored, resting at anchor, or is being propelled by paddle, oar or pole. (2)if they have a Mobility Disabled Persons Motor Vehicle License.

RADIO USE WHILE HUNTING: It is legal to use and posses two way radios while hunting in California.

DOGS: You can use dogs to hunt quail in California.

TRESPASS: If the land you hunt on is not your own, it belongs to someone else. Make sure you have a legal right to be there. Contact the owner or person who administers the property, and secure written permission to hunt. A hunting license does not entitle you to enter private property. It is unlawful to enter any lands under cultivation or enclosed by a fence, belonging to, or occupied by, another, or to enter any uncultivated or unenclosed lands, including lands temporarily inundated by waters flowing outside the established banks of a river, stream, slough, or other waterway, where signs forbidding trespass are displayed at intervals not less than three to the mile along all exterior boundaries and at all roads and trails entering such lands, for the purpose of discharging any firearm or taking or destroying any mammal or bird, including any waterfowl, on such lands without having first obtained written permission from the owner of such lands, or his agent, or the person in lawful possession thereof. Such signs may be of any size and wording, other than the wording required for signs under Section 2017, which will fairly advise persons about to enter the land that the use ot such land is so restricted. Section 2016, Fish and Game Code.

What is the fine for a trespass infraction ticket? Look it up here: http://www.courtinfo.ca.gov/referenc...009_jcbail.pdf

Page #117 starts the Hunting infractions.

2016 M Trespass While Hunting = $760

2000 M Unlawful Taking or Possessing of Fish or Wildlife = $760

Click the link below to get the trespass permission slip you can print.

http://www.jesseshunting.com//pdf/permission-slip-1.pdf

SAFETY: It is always unlawful to: Place on, or carry or possess a loaded rifle or shotgun in a vehicle or conveyance or its attachments on any public road or other way open to the public: Hunt while intoxicated; Shoot at any game bird from a powerboat, sailboat, motor vehicle, or aircraft while under power or still moving from use of sail or motor. (See Section 251) Shoot any firearm from or upon a public road or highway.

DISCHARGING FIREARMS OR OTHER DEADLY WEAPONS SAFETY ZONE: It is unlawful for any person, other than the owner, person in possession of the premises, or a person having the express permission of the owner or person in possession of the premises, to hunt or to discharge while hunting, any firearm or other deadly weapon within 150 yards of any occupied dwelling house, residence, or other building or any barn or other outbuilding used in connection therewith. The 150-yard area is a “safety zone.”

CALIFORNIA DFG WEBPAGE is at http://www.dfg.ca.gov

Top of Document


2013-2014 California Chukar Forecast Report by Jim  Matthews

Reports from the JHO Upland Forum say the hatch was NOT GOOD this spring. Not many chicks spotted, mostly holdover adults. A few reports of small groups of chukar so you never know, get out there and check your spots and see what you can find. Scout some new spots for next year, you just might get lucky and find some shooting.


Chukar Hunting and Scouting Tips

STRATEGY WITH A DOG

The key to any dog being of value to you, whether it is a pointer, flusher, or retriever, depends upon control. A dog under poor control is more likely to cause you trouble than be of any enjoyment or service to you. The greatest asset that a dog can be to a California pheasant hunter, besides companionship, is as a retriever. Chukar are not too hard to find without a dog, but finding and retrieving downed pheasants can be very difficult.

The strategy is to start by letting the dog range freely and find fresh scent. Dogs of the pointing breeds are useful here. Once the dog has found some chukar and come to point, the hunters must quickly decide on a strategy and maneuver into position. How well the pheasant holds depends largely on how good the cover is they are hiding in and whether they have been shot at recently. If the cover is poor or the pheasant has been hunted recently, they will most likely not hold for very long, if at all. In most cases, it is therefore a good idea to move quickly to where the dog is on point.

Anticipate that chukar always seem to be aware of the location of every member of the hunting party, and will flush in a manner and direction to put the greatest amount of distance and obstacles between the hunters and themselves in the least amount of time. They will also try to head toward the thickest, most impenetrable cover nearby. If this is your situation, try to position yourselves either to prevent them from getting to this cover, or to at least get a shot before they bury themselves in it. Once everyone is in position and the chukar is still holding, it can then be flushed

STRATEGY WITHOUT A DOG

There is no question, hunting chukar with a good dog is the best way to go. However, there are a good many of us that for one reason or another must get by without a canine companion. For those of us in this situation, there is still hope, although there are several things that generally cause problems when hunting chukar without a dog. One is finding chukar initially and then after they have flushed. Another is finding a chukar once you have finally managed to knock one down. The solution to the first is to know something about the behavior of chukar . The solution to the second involves concentration and discipline.

The first step is to locate a chukar, this goes for persons both with and without a dog. There are two keys to this puzzle: one is cover, the other is water. When given the space and time, chukar prefer to run away rather than fly. So if you spot a chukar running on the ground ahead of you, you have to keep up with them. Otherwise they will disappear like ghosts, But before you head out after them at a frenzied pace, it is wise to take a moment or two to think out a strategy.

One of the most frustrating things about hunting without a dog is finding downed chukar . With a little concentration and discipline, this can largely be avoided. There are a pair of rules that must be followed to avoid losing birds.

The first rule is to ask yourself  WHERE WILL THAT BIRD LAND WHEN I ROLL IT? This question should be asked as you are raising your shotgun and tracking the bird; the question has to be answered before you smack that trigger. It does your body and the resource no good if you land a bird in the middle of a blackberry patch. A dog might be able to retrieve it, you won't! This question is especially important if you are having one of those all-to-common days where you are not quite on and are knocking down cripples. If you shoot only when they cross open areas, you are much more likely to follow and find cripples. The thing to remember about cripples is that they will fly or run to the nearest, nastiest cover, and the further they are from it when hit the less likely they are to get to it. Trying to answer this question while they are flying all about is not easy, but it will help improve your recovery rate and leave you much more satisfied. Mistakes will be made, but with practice you will improve and you won't come home with a body that looks like it's been through a shredder.

The second rule is MARK YOUR BIRD. The instant you pull the trigger on that first bird, your mind should be focused on the following series of questions:

Is the bird dead? If not, shoot it again. Live pheasants will hit the ground running if they can and disappear quickly. If the bird is still alive when it hits the ground, DO NOT take your eyes off of it. Do not even think about taking a shot at another bird. Immediately head over there and get that bird. Do not shoot the bird on the ground if you are within 15 yards of it, this is unsafe and will only destroy the bird. Humanely dispatch the bird upon retrieval.

  If it is dead, where is it falling? Don't take your eyes off of it until it hits the ground, and don't move. Note the landmark nearest to where you think it landed. Next note where you are standing. This will come in handy if you can't find the bird initially and need to replay the shot in your mind, which only works well from the original location.

Are you positive the bird is dead and you have it well marked? If you can answer yes to both of these questions, you now have the choice of going for another shot or retrieving the downed bird. It is always wisest to retrieve each chukar first before shooting another. You will be amazed at how often a "stone dead" chukar that landed on bare ground 50 feet from the nearest clump of grass disappears on you. The same set of questions should be answered for every chukar you shoot at. If you do shoot a second or third chukar before retrieving any of them, start with the most recent one shot because it is usually the easiest to find. Finding at least one of them is better than none, and gives you confidence that they can be found.

Once you have worked a field and you are not able to find them anymore, calling can sometimes produce a little more action. Find a spot where you can sit down and see some openings around cover. Give a few calls every few minutes. This can be done by mouth or with a call. It may take as long as 30 minutes or more to get any responses, so patience is necessary. You will first see them creeping along or through nearby cover. When you get them close enough, stand up quickly and they will usually take to the air. If they start running, rush toward them to get them into the air. It is tempting to "ground sluice" them, but this is not sporting and usually results in badly shot-up pheasants.

LOCATING DOWNED CHUKAR

DEAD CHUKAR

You are standing in the area where you know the dead chukar fell, but you don't see it. Now what? Look for loose feathers on the ground. Feathers are almost always left where they hit the ground. However, there often is another group of feathers dropped by a chukar when shot that can be misleading. The reason they can be misleading is that the bird often travels a considerable distance beyond where it was hit, and if there is even the slightest breeze the feathers can drift a considerable distance from where it might be. The two groups can usually be told apart by where the feathers are found and how tightly the feathers are grouped.

The feathers left on the ground where the bird lands are usually tightly bunched. Feathers from the in-air hit are usually found widely scattered and on top of shrubbery. Don't expect to find the pheasant sitting right there among the feathers. Most often they bounce or roll a few feet from the point of impact with the ground. When you find these feathers remember the direction it was heading when you rolled it. Search the area beyond the feathers in the same direction. If you have searched this area with no success, double the distance beyond the feathers and search again. They usually travel further than you think they did. It is not unusual to spend 30 minutes searching for a single downed bird. You owe it to the bird to keep trying.

CRIPPLED CHUKAR

When you knock down a crippled chukar it is your moral and ethical obligation to retrieve and humanely dispatch the bird as quickly as possible. The problem is that finding crippled pheasants is commonly difficult, and this is the single most frustrating aspect of hunting without a good dog. The key to successfully finding a cripple is to get to where you knocked it down as quickly as you safely can.

The first thing you do before taking a step is to reload your gun and put the safety on. Flying cripples should always be shot again, as your chances of finding one of these if you don't knock it down near you is next to nothing. Assuming you have lost visual contact with the cripple and you are standing where you thought it should be, the first thing you should do is to listen for any sounds that might reveal its location. If you are met only with the sound of your pounding heart, look around for feathers. These will often give you the area and direction in which to look.

There are several things to keep in mind when looking for a cripple. One is that if the bird landed on sloping terrain, look downhill from where you think it landed. They almost always tumble or run down slope. Two, look for the nearest cover around where the bird landed. They may crawl into it and tuck themselves underneath whatever they can. Three, look down any holes in the area as quail will often try to hide in these holes. Don't forget to look under the edges of rocks or other debris.

CAUTION: All of the places you should be looking at to find a crippled chukar are also good  places to find rattlesnakes! Do be careful and never stick your hand into places you cannot see into.

When you do get close or find it, the chukar often try to run or fly away. There is a great temptation to shoot it as it runs away, but don't unless it is at least 15 yards away or going to dive into cover that you will not be able to retrieve it from. The reason for this is that at close range there is danger of a ricochet and destroying the bird beyond use. If it is flying away, do shoot it again, but let it get a least 15 yards away before shooting. Again, shooting at it any closer will just make the bird inedible.

CAUTION: Your gun should always be on safety when looking for downed birds. Always keep your muzzle pointed in a safe direction when trying to catch a cripple. If the bird cannot fly it is best to unload the gun and put it down so that you can use two hands.

Because the chukar's primary defenses are hiding and running, hunters profit from working cover slowly and methodically. A zig-zag style of hunting is not only effective on birds hiding in heavy cover, but helps to interrupt the run-ahead, circle, and run-back tactics used by other chukar . Quick, accurate marking of downed game also helps hunters find birds. Hunting partners who assume responsibility for marking each other's downed birds increase their chances of finding them by "homing in" along two lines of sight. Solo hunters can mark the spot where a bird drops, then work around it in ever-increasing circles, pausing frequently; often a brief pause is enough to make a wounded bird break cover.

Chukar Biology 101

HISTORY - The Chukar, Alectoris chukar is a Eurasian upland gamebird in the pheasant family Phasianidae of the order Galliformes, gallinaceous birds. Other common names of this bird include 'Chukker' (sometimes misspelled as 'Chuker'), 'Chukar Partridge', 'Red-legged Partridge', 'Rock Partridge', 'Indian Hill Partridge', 'Chukka', 'Chukkar', 'Chukor', 'Chukore', 'Chikone', 'Kabk', 'Kau-Kau', and 'Keklik'.

The Chukar is the National bird of Pakistan and the name is derived from Chakhoor in Urdu. In Indian mythology, the bird is said to be in love with the moon and to look at it constantly. In the United States, the Idaho Falls Chukars are a minor league baseball team in the Pioneer League.

BIOLOGY - The Chukar is a rotund 32-35 cm long bird, with a light brown back, grey breast, and buff belly. The face is white with a black gorget. It has rufous-streaked flanks and red legs.

It is very similar to Rock Partridge, Alectoris graeca, but is browner on the back and has a yellowish tinge to the foreneck. The sharply defined gorget distinguishes this species from Red-legged Partridge. The song is a noisy chuck-chuck-chukar-chukar.

This species is relatively unaffected by hunting or loss of habitat due to its remote and physically demanding terrain preferences. Its numbers from year to year are most largely affected by weather patterns during the breeding season.

DISTRIBUTION - This partridge has its native range in Asia from Pakistan and Kashmir, into the Republic of India (Himachal Pradesh and Punjab states). And Afghanistan in the east to southeastern Europe in the west, and is closely related and similar to its western equivalent, the Red-legged Partridge, Alectoris rufa. It has been introduced widely, and became established in the United States, Canada, New Zealand and Hawaii. In Great Britain, hybrids between this species and the also introduced Red-legged Partridge are common.

REPRODUCTION - The Chukar is a resident breeder in dry, open, and often hilly country. It nests in a scantily lined ground scrape laying 8 to 20 eggs. Chukars will take a wide variety of seeds and some insects as food; however, Downy Brome (Cheatgrass) is this species' strong food preference. When in captivity, they will lay 1 egg per day throughout the breeding season if the eggs are collected daily.

DEFENSES - When disturbed, it prefers to run rather than fly, but if necessary it flies a short distance on rounded wings.

Chukar Hunting Safety and Ethics

SAFETY

Chukar hunting is a relatively safe sport. However, it is imperative that to remain a safe sport that certain safety rules be adhered to without exception. When you take a newcomer, especially children, into the hunting experience, part of your responsibility as a hunter is to teach that person proper safety. The following rules are good ones to LIVE by:

THE ELEVEN COMMANDMENTS OF CHUKAR HUNTING SAFETY

1) Always treat the gun as loaded.
2) Never have a loaded gun except when hunting.
3) Always make sure that the barrel and action are clear of obstructions.
4) Always carry your gun so dig you can control the direction of the muzzle, even if you stumble.
5) Always keep the safety on until the gun is brought to shoulder.
6) Always make sure your target is a quail and your backstop is not a hunter or a dog.
7) Never point a gun at anything you do not want to shoot.
8) Never leave guns or ammunition within reach of children or careless adults.
9) Never climb trees or fences with a loaded gun.
10) Never shoot at a flat, hard surface or water.
11) Never drink alcohol or take other mood-altering drugs before or during a hunt.

Always know where all members of your hunting party are. The more members in your party the more difficult this will be. It is recommended to keep hunting parties as small as possible, preferably two, but no more than three. If you are with a large party, try to spread out or split into several groups of two.

If your party has found some chukar, determine in which directions it would be unsafe to shoot. Each person should wear some safety orange, a little is better than none. Camouflage clothing is not necessary for chukar hunting, they know where you are regardless of what you wear. Take extra precautions during deer season. Wear plenty of safety orange and talk with your buddy while hunting.

If you have to chase down a crippled bird, make sure your gun is on safety.' Almost all good chukar country is good rattlesnake country. Be careful around brush and water. When hunting in the deserts of California, always be sure to carry plenty of water. If you are hunting with a dog, make sure to carry additional water for your dog. It also pays to avoid hunting during the mid-day hours when it can be quite hot. Be prepared for cold temperatures at night.

HUNTER ETHICS

Hunting in this state and country is not a right, but a privilege. In order to preserve this privilege, it is essential that each chukar hunter, as a representative of all chukar hunters, conduct him or herself in an ethical manner. Without the public's support even if this support is in the form of indifference, we could lose our cherished privilege. The following are some suggestions:

1) Respect other's property: don't trespass without permission; don't litter, leave gates as you find them; if driving on someone's property, drive slowly, and don't drive off the roads; don't harass livestock; and do offer to repair or compensate for damage you may have caused.

2) Be kind and courteous: don't interfere with other hunters, campers or bird watchers; and always be helpful - whether it be telling a landowner about a hole in his fence, or offering to help fix the fence.

3) Conduct oneself as a sportsman: always hunt safely! always follow the regulations - nobody likes a game hog and don't shoot birds of prey (this includes Cooper's hawks).

Chukar Hunting Gear List

You'll need Acrobat Reader to read and print this .pdf file gear checklist, you can get Acrobat at

http://www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/readstep2.html

Please click the link below for a gear checklist you can print out.

http://www.jesseshunting.com/hunting-gear-list.pdf


Chukar Meat Care and Recipes

 

HOW TO HUMANELY KILL WOUNDED CHUKAR

Most hunters have developed some method to humanely kill a crippled bird. For those that are not sure, here is an easy-to- learn method that is quick and humane.

1) Place right or left thumb on base of neck where it hits the skull. Wrap the index finger underneath and grasp firmly.

2) With other hand, place a finger under the bill and lift sharply back toward your thumb. This breaks the neck.

FIELD DRESSING AND CARE

The chukar should be dressed (gutted) as -soon as possible. It is a good idea to dress them as soon as there is a lull in the action. The basic method goes as follows:

1) Hold or place the chukar belly side up and pluck the feathers from between the vent (anus) and the bottom of the breast bone. Pluck a few feathers at a time by pulling with sharp jerks toward the tail. Caution, the skin tears easily.

2) Make a small cut through the skin- across the area you just plucked. Make sure not to
cut the guts.

3) With a small gutting hook or your finger reach up into the body cavity (toward the head) and gently pull out the guts. Pull or cut off the intestine and the vent.

4) Be sure to remove the lungs (the red-pink spongy stuff up in the body cavity). Also wipe or rinse out any blood. If you wash the body cavity out be sure to wipe it dry.

5) Next remove the crop. With the bird on its back, you will find a lump at the front of the breast at the base of the neck. Slit the skin and you will find a thin leathery pouch about the size of a large marble. It may be filled with seeds, grass, insects, and water, or nothing at all. Pull in out and discard.

You are done with the field dressing. This allows the bird to cool as quickly as possible, and removes as many sources of bacteria as possible. Small numbers of these bacteria promote aging, but large numbers will spoil the bird quickly. It is always important to get the birds cooled down and kept cold as soon as possible. It is especially so during the early part of the season when it can be quite hot. So get the birds on ice quickly. It is also important not to let them get wet in the ice chest. Water promotes the contamination and growth of bacteria.

ALWAYS KEEP THE BIRDS AS CLEAN AS POSSIBLE - DIRT AND FLIES INCREASES CHANCES OF SPOILAGE.

DO NOT LEAVE CHUKAR IN GAME BAG, TRUNK OR DIRECT SUNLIGHT.

When you get home, remove all internal organs that may still be in the bird. This includes the heart. kidneys, and the wind pipe. The next task is to pluck the birds. The bird can be skinned very easily, but the skin should be left on because it adds flavor and helps keep the meat moist  when cooking

There are two methods of plucking chukar. The dry method involves simply pulling a pinch full of feathers at a time toward the tail of the bird (with the grain). However, it is not uncommon to tear the skin when doing this. The second method, wet plucking, makes it easier to pluck without tearing the skill

To wet pluck you need a good sized pot of hot water (about 130-140 degrees Fahrenheit) filled about half way. The water should be deep enough to allow complete immersion of the pheasant. Dunk one chukar at a time for about one minute. Remove from the water and pluck the feathers. Wipe both the outside and inside of the bird dry. Cut off the feet at the first joint above the feet, and the head. Place in refrigerator if you are going to eat it soon, or freeze it.

If you dry Pluck, wipe the body cavity dry if internal organs were not ruptured. If they were, you should rinse Out the body cavity with water and wipe dry.

STORAGE

If the chukar are not going to be eaten within about a week, they should be frozen using one of the following methods:

1) Freeze them in water. For example: Place cleaned chukar in a large carton. Fill with water to within 1/2 - inch of the top crease of the flat sides. Staple the top shut and label with  contents and date frozen. They will keep this way almost until next season.

2) Ziplock bags - place cleaned birds in bag and squeeze out the air and seal. Warning: if water gets onto the seal it may fail when freezing. This will result in freezer bum. You should check to see if the seal held.

3) Tightly double wrap the chukar in heavy butcher paper and label with date and contents.

If they are going to be consumed immediately or within a week the cleaned and dry chukar should be placed in a scaled container in the refrigerator (plastic wrap or re-sealable plastic container).

AGING

You do not have to age chukar to have a fine meal, but to get the most out of them and if you like flavorful, tender game, you should age it. It has been found through taste tests on game that well aged meat was always rated the highest for taste, texture and tenderness. The gamey taste and tenderness of meat is caused by the breakdown of muscle tissue by certain bacteria. These same bacteria will cause spoilage of the meat if they become to numerous. This is usually recognized by a strong off-odor. The French do not consider their game sufficiently aged until it is in a condition most of us would consider rotten. Another type of bacteria can cause food poisoning, but does not grow in cold places like your refrigerator. Therefore, so long as you age your quail in the refrigerator you don't have to worry very much about food poisoning.

Aging of upland game can be done nicely in your refrigerator. Place cleaned - dry chukar in a sealed container into the refrigerator (plastic wrap or other airtight container). They can be left there up to about 7 days (at 47 degrees Fahrenheit or less). The longer you leave them, the more gamey the taste. Birds left over 7 days may become too ripe. How long it takes to get to your favorite level of gaminess depends upon several factors:

1) How warm it was in the field. In hot weather they can spoil in a day.

2) How quickly you cooled them down. The faster the better.

3) How well they were cleaned and how badly they were shot up - Poorly cleaned or badly shot-up chukar will age very quickly. Whenever shot has passed through the gut and into the meat aging will occur much more quickly there. These chukar should not be aged more than three or four days before eating.

4) The temperature at which they were aged. The higher above freezing, the faster they age.

The aging process begins as soon as you kill them. Therefore, birds bagged, cleaned, and placed in the refrigerator all on the same day will take longer to age, or keep in the refrigerator longer than one bagged Saturday, cleaned and put in the refrigerator on Sunday night. The best way to tell when the game has reached a desired level of aging is by smell. It will take some experimentation to familiarize yourself with the smell of meat that has aged to your liking.


 

 

Maps of Legal Chukar Hunting And Shooting Areas

FirearmsMaps.com - Being a hunter and living in California has its challenges. The biggest problem is knowing where you can legally discharge a firearm. Each county in California has its own firearms ordinance, so Netcomp creates its maps starting with the County Ordinance. There are also many other agencies involved such as Federal, State, County, City, BLM, Private, Fish and Game, OHV, Forestry, University, Indian and Preserves. The average hunter has no way of knowing which jurisdiction prevails. The collection of data we use tries to account for all these factors and agencies. With land ownership constantly changing, it requires us all to verify that one can discharge a firearm in that area before going hunting. JHO Sponsor.

San Bernardino County Shooting Map. The county revised their shooting in the summer of 2010 and the maps are online now. The printed version is available for sale at Bass Pro in Rancho Cucamonga. Other vendors will be carrying the maps in the future. Right now you can use a cellphone to pull up the online maps but the color coding is not working.

For a PDF file of the San Bernardino County Shooting map click here

Some tips on printing the new San Bernardino County shooting map.

Zoom in to where you want your view of the map, usually 150% to 300% depending on how big an area you want and how much detail.

1. Click on "print", then on "Print Range" click on "Current View" and that will print the area you're looking at.

2. In the "Page Scaling" section choose, "Fit To Printable Area". That will enlarge the print to whatever size paper your printer is using.

3. Then in "Page Scaling" choose, "Fit to paper". That will enlarge the print to whatever size paper your printer is using.

4. Select "Advanced" and check "Print As Image". This will just print the screen image (what you see) and not all the layers you don't see or need.

Then print.

Mammoth Lakes No Shoot Area Map


 

Chukar Hunting Publications

Western Birds NewsletterCalifornia Sportsman ....Many of the writers from Fish & Hunting News are here.
California Upland Game Magazine .... No longer plublished due to DFG budget and staff reductions.

California Game and Fish Magazine .... Excellent monthly magazine for $14.97 yearly. PH# 1-770-953-9222.

Fishing and Hunting News .... No longer around.
CA DFG "Guide to Hunting the Quail of California" .... is a good quail hunting publicaton to have in your library. Due to budget cuts these guides are  hard to find now, check your DFG regional offices.
Western Birds .... A great 8 page newsletter published by Jim Matthews, with maps and insider info on all kinds of upland birds. $100.00 per year. Get 2 or 3 of your buddies to split the cost and you're into the birds. P.O. Box 9007, San Bernardino, CA 92427-0007 or call Jim Matthews at PH #1-909-887-3444. Email odwriter@charter.net.
Western Outdoor News .... Fine weekly newspaper with maps and tons of timely reports. $36.95 for 52 issues. Ph# 1-714-546-4370. Call the 'Hunter's Hotline' to give your story for publishing. Ph # 1-714-546-4370 ext. 48 or fax: 1-714-662-3486 or e-mail: wonmail@aol.com.
Wing Beat News .... No longer plublished due to DFG budget and staff reductions.
 

 

Chukar Hunting Links

Ammo

Active Ammo .... is no longer in business. Kent Cartridges bought the company in 1997 and Kent does not make the nickel plated shells anymore, sorry.
Alliant Powder (formerly Hercules) .... check out the online reloading data.
Cheaper Than Dirt .... Shooting supplies and hunting gear.
Dillon Precision Products .... One of the best reloading companies.
Federal Ammo ....
Graf and Sons Inc. .... The reloading authority.
HEVI-SHOT™
.... Revolutionary, non-toxic lead shot alternative. With HEVI-SHOT™ shells, you can shoot a smaller shot size with more lethality. More pellets at a higher energy means more knock-down power. This new shotshell pellet is actually heavier than lead with the hardness similar to standard steel shot. It is made from a tungsten alloy and the hardness and density allow hunters to use smaller shot sizes to get equivalent energy as in larger lead or steel pellets. Because the pellet is smaller, this allows for more pellet to be in a shotshell cartridge which makes for a denser pattern, increasing the likelihood of multiple hits on the target. Both penetration and retained velocity are also greater with these pellets. Darryl Amick, who holds the patent on the tungsten-nickel alloy used to make this new shot, said he set out to offer something heavier than lead that would be even more effective for hunters. "My passion for this product is that I hate the fact that we wound these birds, that we have to shoot steel. I'm also absolutely committed to making this product as inexpensive as possible, and we'd like to be significantly under the other non-toxic alternatives to steel," said Amick. "It's going to perform better. I don't think anyone can argue that. It's just a matter of keeping costs down so guys can afford it," said Amick. You will be hearing more about Hevi-Shot in the near future as it becomes available for both reloaders and in loaded offerings.
Hodgdon Powder Company .... Reloading powder.
Hornady .... Bullets and reloading equipment.
Kent Cartridge ..... IMPACT™ shot shells are specifically designed to deliver the pattern density and down range lethality required by dedicated turkey hunters. These loads may be used in any Nitro-proofed shotgun without fear of barrel or choke damage. Standard choke restrictions and lead shot size recommendations apply, including X-full Turkey.
Lapua .... Makers of match grade ammo and Vihtavuori powders.
Lee Precision Inc. .... The Lee family has been providing affordable reloading products since 1958.
MEC .... Reloading equipment.
Midsouth Shooters Supply Co. .... Your complete source for shooting accessories and supplies.
Midway USA .... The world's largest mail order shooting and reloading superstore.
Powder Valley .... Offering the finest in reloading components at the best possible price.
Precision Reloading Inc. .... Unique and hard to find reloading products.
RCBS .... If you're into reloading, bookmark this page now. All the info you need to be a top-notch re-loader is right here:
Redding Reloading Equipment ....
Remington .... Guns and ammo.
Western Powders .... Western Powders is the largest Master Distributor of reloading powders in North America. We carry a full line of smokeless and black powders, and have also released our own line of high-performance, smokeless powders called RAMSHOT.
Widener's .... Here you will find great deals on all your hunting needs. From Ammunition to Powder. Featuring all the top name products such as Hornady, Nosler, Remington, RCBS, REDDING, SPEER, Winchester and much more.
Winchester Ammo .... Makers of great ammo.

Calls

Acorn Naturalists .... Quail calls.
Haydel's Calls .... They have valley and mountain quail calls.
Homemade Quail Call .... Bob Gillis neat little quail call you can make yourself.
Jim Matthews Custom Quail Calls ....  PH# 909-887-3444. P.O. Box 9007, San Bernardino, CA 92427-0007.
Jone's Calls .... Quail call.
Lohman Calls
.... They used to make a wooden and plastic California Valley quail call. Website no longer shows these for sale as of 10/17/01.
Primos .... Valley and mountain quail calls.
Scott's Dog Supply .... Quail calls and dog gear.
Sureshot Game Calls .... Western Quail call.

Chokes

Ballistic Specialties .... Angle Porting chokes.
Briley Chokes ....
Carlson's ....
Gun Docc
.... Custom turkey gun work.
Hastings Chokes .... PH# 913-632-3169
Johnny's Shotgun Chokes and Forcing Cones
....
Kick's .... They make the famous "Gobblin' Thunder" choke
Patternmaster ....
Seminole Gunworks
.... Seminole specializes in the making of precision choke tubes for most makes and model of shotguns.
Trulock Chokes .... Manufacturers of superior shotgun chokes.

 

Dogs

Bryce Mann's Gundogs & Guide Service .... Gundog training near Visalia CA.
Foothill Brittanys .... Very Birdy, Natural Pointers and Retrievers (Land and Water).
Fresno Dog Training .... Realistic training and behavior solutions for dogs and their owners.
Gameland Kennels Dog Training Center ....Gameland Kennels is no longer in business.  Sadly, Patrick Callaghan passed away on September 29, 2009.  His wife, Shirley, tried to keep the business afloat, but suffered several small strokes in the months following Patrick's death.  In early January 2010, Shirley suffered a significant stroke from which she is currently recovering.
Grouse Mountain Brittanys .... John & Debbe Coyle. Redding, California. PH# 530-242-5801.
Gun Dog Supply .... Lots of gear for the upland hunter.
High Desert Brittanies .... We breed hunting dogs of the highest quality with great temperament, good looks and bird desire and provide wonderful family members to approved homes.
High Desert Kennels .... Bird dog training for 30 years. Family owned and run. Jimmy Berneathy Owner/Trainer.
High Test Retrievers. .... 1021 Lower Honcut Road, Oroville, California 95966
Hunting Dog Trainer .... Carl Porter. We are the complete hunting and field trial dog training program. We are located in the beautiful Southern California High Desert community of Lucerne Valley California. Our training grounds include our own 20 acres of real "Wild Bird" high desert habitat with quail and chukar available year round and pheasants upon request with thousands of unfenced wild acres surrounding our facility.
Lowell's Gundogs .... Gun dog training in the high desert near Victorville CA.
Reibar Kennels .... Grady Istre's excellence in dog training. 7480 Domingos Rd. Lompoc Ca. 93436, PH# 1-805-736-5309, e-mail reibar@impulse.net
Scott's Dog Supply .... Quail calls and dog gear.
Starlight Kennels .... Paul Cacciatori. We understand that hunting is more than a hobby, and that your dog is more than an animal. It's a lifestyle for which we share our clients' passion. That's why we devote so much to providing a complete array of hunting dog services so you can rely on Starlight as the single source for all your hunting dog needs.
UplandBirdDog.com .... Bill West. Information for bird dog and hunting enthusiasts.

If you know of any other trainers, dog links or info please e-mail us at Jesse's Hunting & Outdoors webmaster email and we will update the listing.

Gear

2nd Amendment Sports .... Stores in Bakersfield CA. and Tucson AZ.
Bass Pro Shop .... One of the biggest hunting and fishing gear suppliers. Stop by one of their 'Outdoor World' stores, you'll be amazed. They have calls, decoys, shells, sights, blinds camo and tons more.
Badger John's Huntin' Stuff .... 5400 Date Ave. , Sacramento CA. PH# 916-489-1022.
Bass Pro Shop .... One of the biggest hunting and fishing gear suppliers. Stop by one of their 'Outdoor World' stores, you'll be amazed. They have calls, decoys, shells, sights, blinds camo and tons more.
B&B Bait .... 10380 8th Ave. Blythe Ca. 92225. Between 7th and Lovekin. PH# 760-921-2248.
Brigade Quartermasters .... Outdoor gear, military issue gear, GPS, everything you need.
Cabela's .... One of the biggest retailers of outdoor and hunting gear. They have calls, decoys, shells, sights, blinds camo and tons more.
E.A.R. Hearing Protection and Hearing Aids .... Protect your precious hearing with these fine quality ear plugs.
Field Time Sports & Guns .... 14542 Beach Blvd. Suite A, Westminster, CA  92683. Ph  714-891-3131.

Being a hunter and living in California has its challenges. The biggest problem is knowing where you can legally discharge a firearm. Each county in California has its own firearms ordinance, so Netcomp creates its maps starting with the County Ordinance. There are also many other agencies involved such as Federal, State, County, City, BLM, Private, Fish and Game, OHV, Forestry, University, Indian and Preserves. The average hunter has no way of knowing which jurisdiction prevails. The collection of data we use tries to account for all these factors and agencies. With land ownership constantly changing, it requires us all to verify that one can discharge a firearm in that area before going hunting. JHO Sponsor.
Lacrosse .... Excellent boots and waders.
Mack's Prairie Wings ....
Midwest Turkey Call Supply .... Everything you need for turkey and quail hunting.
Ranger Joe's .... Military, Law enforcement and outdoor gear.
REI ....The biggest outdoor store on the net.
Schnee's Boot's ....These guys make the best cold weather elk boots I've ever owned. I like the 'air bob' soles.
Schumachers Waterfowl Supply .... 1122 W. Struck Ave., Orange, Ca. 92867. PH# 714-288-0465.
Shomer-tec .... Law enforcement and military equipment. Box 28070, Bellingham, WA. 98228 ph# 360-733-6214. Call for free catalog.
Sprague's .... 345 W. 32nd Street, Yuma, Arizona, phone # 800-440-3892.
Turner's Outdoorsman .... Southern California's best hunting and fishing store.
Uncle Lee's Wing Supply .... PH# 1-800-388-9464 for your free catalog. They have GPS, clothing, and turkey and duck hunting equipment.
U.S. Cavalry .... World's finest military and adventure equipment.
Yellow Mart .... 82740 Miles Ave., Indio, CA 92201 Ph# 760-347-1107
Yellow Mart .... 228 W Hobsonway, Blythe, CA 92225. PH# 760-922-4215.

Guides

Blue Ridge Guide Service .... Call Bill Sweetser for quail, turkey, bear, bobcat, and deer in the southern Sierra Mountains of California. 2 hours north of Los Angeles. PH# 559 789 1954. bill'sweetser@yahoo.com

If you know of any other quail hunting guides please e-mail us at Jesse's Hunting & Outdoors webmaster email and we will update the listing.

Guns

Beretta ....
Brownells .... Everything you need for your guns.
Browning ....
E.A.R. Hearing Protection and Hearing Aids .... Protect your precious hearing with these fine quality ear plugs. JHO sponsor.
Ithaca ....
Knight Muzzleloaders ....
Mossberg .... Shotguns and rifles.
Remington ....
Ruger ....
Weatherby ....
Winchester ....

Organizations

Becoming an Outdoors-Woman (BOW) .... Offers weekend skills clinics to women throughout North America. Explore our pages and discover  what's waiting in the great outdoors!
CalGuns.net .... All gunowners in CA need to help support Calguns.
California Dept. of Fish and Game
California Rifle And Pistol Association (CRPA)
.... Founded way back in 1875, the California Rifle and Pistol Association is an organization of sportsmen dedicated to the preservation of our American heritage. In this age of constant political attacks on the rights of law-abiding citizens to own and use firearms for legitimate purposes, the California Rifle and Pistol Association is the state organization dedicated to protecting firearm freedoms and promoting shooting sports.
COHA .... The California Outdoor Heritage Alliance (COHA) is a partnership of wildlife conservation organizations, outdoor industry, other related interests, and individuals who support science-based wildlife management and the promotion of our hunting rights in California. COHA serves to effectively counter the growing threats and challenges to our outdoor traditions by working all levels of government.
Hunter Education Instructor Association of Southern California, Inc. .... is a non profit corporation, operated for charitable and educational purposes, which operates under the guidelines of the California Department of Fish & Game to provide and improve upon the state mandated certificate training program for safe, responsible and knowledgeable hunters. Secondly, to recruit quality hunter education instructors; provide initial, ongoing and advanced training programs for the hunter education instructors, provide training aids and resources, encourage safe and responsible archery and all shooting sports. Finally, to promote hunting opportunities and encourage hunter retention; act as liaisons with biologists and wildlife management programs; and solicit contributions in support of the Hunter Education Instructor Association of Southern California objectives.
Hunters for the Hungry .... A great nationwide effort for sportsmen to donate extra game meat to help those in need.
Hunt Of A Lifetime .... is a nonprofit organization that grants hunting and fishing adventures to children who have been diagnosed with terminal or life threatening illnesses. We are making a difference. We need your help.
International Hunter Education Association
.... Hunter Education classes explore a variety of topics, including wildlife identification, landowner relations, outdoor survival skills, wildlife management, field care of game, and more. Volunteers teach all types of hunter safety, including the use of various modern firearms, black powder, and bow and arrow.
National Rifle Association .... If you're a gun owner, you really need to join, to maintain your 2nd amendment right to bear arms.
National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) .... The National Shooting Sports Foundation is the trade association for the firearms industry. Its mission is to promote, protect and preserve hunting and the shooting sports. Formed in 1961, NSSF has a membership of more than 6,000 manufacturers, distributors, firearms retailers, shooting ranges, sportsmen's organizations and publishers.
Quail Unlimited .... Quail Unlimited was established in 1981 to battle the problem of dwindling quail and wildlife habitat. Quail Unlimited, Inc. is the only national, non-profit conservation organization dedicated to the wise management of America's wild quail as a valuable and renewable resource.
Quail & Upland Wildlife Federation .... Formed in 2009, the Quail and Upland Wildlife Federation, Inc™ (QUWF), based in Buffalo, Missouri, a rural community whose agricultural roots and moral compass reflect the core of QUWF, was organized to better focus efforts, donated dollars and partnerships on immediate and positive habitat projects to “Turn-The- Dirt“©™ for upland wildlife.
Santa Clarita Valley Quail & Upland Wildlife Federation ....  Facebook Page. These guys are great folks, help them out when you can.
Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Alliance .... The Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Alliance is a huge grassroots effort to give hunters and anglers a stronger collective voice. It's an alliance of individual sportsmen and women, plus national conservation groups, as well as local and regional clubs and organizations who care about the future of wildlife and outdoor activities on the 192 million acres of National Forests and grasslands.
Safari Club International .... Advocate for 45 million hunters and wildlife conservation worldwide.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service .... Conserving the Nature of America.
Water For Wildlife .... This is the group led by Cliff McDonald that rehabs all the guzzlers in the Mojave NP. Working to keep access to ALL wildlife drinkers/guzzlers,springs, tinajas, wells and tanks.  Support the Junior upland game bird hunt in East Mojave.
Wildlife Legislative Fund of America .... The Wildlife Legislative Fund of America (WLFA) provides direct lobbying and grassroots coalition support to protect and advance the rights of hunters, fishermen, trappers and scientific wildlife management professionals. This is accomplished through coalition building, ballot issue campaigning and legislative and government relations.

If you know of any other quail organizations please e-mail us at Jesse's Hunting & Outdoors webmaster email and we will update the listing.

Publications

California Game And Fish ....
California Sportsman ...
Western Outdoor News .... Fine weekly newspaper with maps and tons of timely reports. $36.95 for 52 issues. Ph# 1-714-546-4370. Call the 'Hunter's Hotline' to give your story for publishing. Ph # 1-714-546-4370 ext. 48 or fax: 1-714-662-3486 or e-mail: wonmail@aol.com.

Chukar Hunting Websites, Talk Forums

Jesse's Hunting Hunting & Outdoors (JHO) Upland Bird Forum .... Great place to ask and read about hunting quail.

If you know of any other quail hunting websites please e-mail us at Jesse's Hunting & Outdoors webmaster email and we will update the listing.


Ruler

"A peculiar virtue in wildlife ethics is that the hunter ordinarily has no gallery to applaud or disapprove of his conduct. Whatever his acts, they are dictated by his own conscience, rather than by a mob of onlookers. It is difficult to exaggerate the importance of this fact."
--Aldo Leopold