Hunting for upland game
Hunting for upland fowl is very interesting, poetic and, perhaps, the most multifaceted of all sports hunting in the feather. The hunting of pine forest with a gundog on the capercaillie and black grouse, on autumn raids of woodcock or on flocks of white partridges is very exciting. There is a lot of poetry in the autumn hunting for hazel grouse with semolina, and with stuffed animals for grouse from a hut or in holes, and in impassable thickets by a candle rising pheasants, and in all other types of hunting for pine forest.
Hunting for pine forest takes place in the most beautiful forest lands. In the process of hunting, hunters of pine forest often visit the most impassable, deaf, untouched wilds. Hunting in forest conditions makes serious demands on the hunter: he must be well-versed in the forest; to be able to spend the night in the open air under any conditions with maximum “comfort”; to be able to shoot perfectly, as well as be prepared for all sorts of accidents, including until a very likely meeting with a predatory beast.
Black grouse hunting
Capercaillie is one of the largest representatives of chicken, growing almost from a turkey. The weight of males ranges from 3.5 to 6.5 kg, females – from 1.7 to 2.3 kg. This is a big clumsy and shy bird. His gait is quick, when he searches for food, he often runs on the ground. The capercaillie rises from the ground heavily, flapping its wings loudly and making a big noise. The flight is heavy, noisy, almost direct, and without emergency, short. The capercaillie usually flies above the forest itself or at the height of half a tree; only in autumn, making more significant movements, it is held high above the forest. The male capercaillie is significantly larger than the female and differs sharply from it in the color of its plumage. Unlike a gray female, from afar it appears black, but in fact his head, neck, back and sides are grayish-gray with a small dark streaky pattern. Black goiter with a green metallic sheen. The belly is dark with large white spots or white with rare black-brown spots. The wings are brown, the tail is black with white blurry spots and a jet pattern. The female has a common color of the top yellowish-red in the transverse strip, with brown and buffy tops of feathers. The throat is buffy, red goiter, sometimes with streaks. The rest of the bottom is light red with streaks, the middle of the belly is almost white. The wings are brownish, the tail is buffy-red with dark transverse stripes.
Capercaillie is a real forest bird. Capercaillie inhabits large tracts of large and old forests of various types, preferring, however, burs and oak groves. Most of the year is a terrestrial tree way of life, as it feeds on trees, and only during the nesting period it becomes: a completely terrestrial bird. In coniferous and coniferous-deciduous forests, wood grouse live sedentary within a small area, making only insignificant local movements. For the winter, they regularly migrate from pure deciduous forests to pine forests or in forest areas mixed with pine, the needles of which serve as the main food for the capercaillie in winter. At the end of winter, birds return to their nesting places.
Spring hunting on currents requires great skill and knowledge of the habits of birds. Capercaillie usually flow on the outskirts of mossy marshes among the tall forest, along swampy lowlands, on the manes and slopes of ridges. As a rule, currents are located away from human habitation and are visited from year to year. Currents begin early: in the middle lane – at the end of March, in the northern regions – at the beginning of April.
It is very important to know in advance not only the current location, but also the location of the birds flowing on it. For this, before sunset, they go to the current body, carefully approaching it, and, having hidden themselves, wait for the capercaillie to arrive (“earshot”). The noise made by these heavy birds when planting on trees determines their approximate number and location.
Some capercaillie, before falling asleep, talk; however, this evening song lasts no more than 15-20 minutes. You cannot shoot at a sung or near-flown bird in the ears. A shot of careful capercaillie can disperse and ruin the hunt for many days. When it gets dark, you need to move 1-1.5 kilometers from the current site and spend the night somewhere around the fire.
In the morning, approaching the current lead should be dark and silent. 200m from the place where the capercaillie was overheard, you need to stop and wait for the current to begin.
At first, the capercaillie flows on top, average height, or even on the lower branches of a tree; at the height of the current, it descends to the capercaillie on the ground. There are often fights between males.
The current-song consists of two knees: “clicking” and “turning”, or “scraping”. They follow one after another with short breaks. Clicking, the capercaillie hears the slightest rustle, while chirping it sees everything well, but it stalls so much that it does not even respond to the sounds of a shot. The ability to use short periods of “dead” songs for the approach also determines the success of the hunt. Lurking, the hunter waits for the beginning of the chirping. Then, having taken 2-3 fast wide steps or jumps to the capercaillie, he again freezes in place.