I actually busted a few in Northern Indiana this year for the first time in my life (I'm only 31, though) while pheasant hunting. I think with the very mild winters the midwest has had the last 10 years or so, quail are starting to regain some ground where there is habitat, but overall, they're numbers are still dropping
Rob: Just where did you run into the quail in Eaton County (in general)? There are literally thousands of quail released over the spring, summer, and fall at Ionia for Field Trials (mostly no-kill trials) and I wonder if maybe some of these quail are taking off, surviving, and starting coveys nearby? If you were in the NW corner of Eaton than it might be a possibility. I take my dogs out to Ionia to run the leftover trial quail from the time running season opens up until Grouse season begins as training and conditioning and there are always a few hanging around, especially at the riverside course. Nothing kicks a dog into high gear for running like the scent of a bird!!!!
we also had our first chance to take a wild quail since I've had my dog (5yrs).
I was so surprised I had to call the DNR on my cell after the first flush to see if they were in season! He was cracking up at me. That was up in Verona.
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