Tuesday, 27 November 2012

How to for summertime hogs

Yesterday I realised that summer is upon us. We were walking along the waterfront at Cockle Bay and the searing heat was giving me a headache, my feet were burning up in my black shoes and I was sweating in my shirt and pants. It was hot and as I kept the girls from jumping off the wharf and into the harbour, my mind drifted off to my favourite corner of this wide brown land, our far western marginal country where summertime hog hunting is possibly the most enjoyable hunting I've experienced in my life.

I tend to hunt the mountain country in the cooler months and leave the flat western country for October to February - when it's hot. It's not that the hunting out west isn't productive in winter, it's just that the hunting is bloody brilliant in summer!

More often than not, my hog hunting at the height of summer is in north western New South Wales or south western Queensland. Over the years I've had a lot of success with feral pigs, particularly in the heat. The thing with hot weather hunting is that the pigs need to drink and wallow and with that comes plenty of opportunity for the energetic hunter to get amongst them!  You just need to identify areas of concentrated activity and then focus your hunting on these hot spots.

This outstanding boar was caught wallowing in a puddle on a dusty flat outside the sheep yards where the poly-pipe had sprung a leak; boars like this are seldom seen except for when conditions demand that they take risks to survive.

Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Cause and prevention of hunter hearing loss

I have been contacted by John O'Connor who is trying to get the message out to hunters and shooters about the importance of protecting your hearing.  I won't go into any details, following is John's guest contribution to DaggaBoy Blog... 
  
Hi my name is John O'Connor. I am a father and outdoorsman and passionate about living a healthy lifestyle. Over the past few years I have become more and more interested in hearing loss. My father and grandfathers, who are and were all hunters are affected by hearing loss. I feel that there is a general lack of understanding around the issue and it is our job to spread awareness where we can. Check out my new blog at http://bloggingwjohno.blogspot.com/
 

Thursday, 15 November 2012

Snout down in full charge: 2009

In 2009 I had plans for a trip to Zimbabwe to hunt Sable and Cape Buffalo. It was June and I off on safari in August; the brass cases from Bertam had just arrived - Lott cases head stamped Ackley. I had loaded 40 rounds with a mix of Hornady 500 grain Interlock and FMJ bullets (a collectable now that we have the DGS) that had been sitting in the cupboard for close on fifteen years. I planned to fire-form the cases using a stout but manageable load of 80gr of AR2208 and then reload them for the safari with Woodleigh's 500 grain softs and solids in front of 85gr of 2208.


I was up at the farm. A team of fencers from Killarney were doing some work on the place and they told me that they’d bumped into a boar each time they passed along a fence line in the lignum paddock. The fencer’s boar would run across the track in front of their vehicle only to be swallowed up by the scrub on the other side.

Friday, 9 November 2012

Snout down in full charge: 2006

It's difficult to describe unless you've stood there and faced a charge, but when a game animal bears down on you with any sort of intent, it's frightening and exhilarating all at the same time. For me, I feel the sickening tightness in my gut, a quickening of the pulse that borders on unhealthy, the hair on the back of my neck prickle and a rush of heat through my head!  It's not for everyone, but the rush of adrenalin that comes with a hunt bordering on dangerous is invigorating!

The thought of a potential charge has always been a driving force for my hunting adventures, and a big part of the allure of hunting hogs, scrubbers and buffalo is that it might happen. I'm no Mark Sullivan, but knowing that game animals might come - fast, head down and eager to roll you tends to inspire some of us hunters to get out there and do it again. I've had two excellent charges from boars in south west Queensland over the years, the first in the heat of January 2006...