December 10, 2015
I recently hunted quail in South Texas on the Dos Condados Ranch located in Jim Hogg and Starr counties. Keith Burns and his family own a fantastic ranch that is home to enormous whitetails and tremendous numbers of bobwhite quail. Due to the plentiful rains of 2015, the quail numbers are the best we’ve seen in years.
Dan Higman and his sons, David and John, returned for their annual hunt at the ranch. Outdoor writer, Gayne Young, joined the trip too. Conditions were tough: high humidity, temps over 80 degrees, and tall green cover everywhere. Regardless of the less than perfect conditions, the dogs found and pointed many big coveys. There was no shortage of shooting. We had fun with a few coveys of blue quail too.
Along with the abundant quail was an abundance of rattlesnakes. I’d heard reports since the spring that snakes sightings were higher than normal. In two days of hunting, we had four close encounters with fully-grown rattlers – two of which I almost stepped on. Crazy! Gayne is the editor at the Texas Sporting Journal and wrote a short piece about the snake encounters.
Next week, I’m headed back to the Burns’ ranch for a deer hunt and another quail hunt. I hope it cools off and the snakes go underground (where they belong during the hunting season).
This is the year to hunt quail in Texas but I advise hunters to wear snake chaps, pay attention, and listen closely for a horrible buzzing sound!