Safety considerations are always important when hunting, but safely planning a group pheasant hunting trip requires specific awareness. Pheasant hunting is often done by groups with dogs accompanying, and pheasants can be quite unpredictable. This combination makes awareness even more important than on other types of hunting expeditions.
Make a Plan and Follow It
When hunting in a group, sticking to a thoughtful plan is imperative. Talk about your plan before going out into the field, and stay in a line. You should always know where your hunting companions are standing and walking.
Keep Your Muzzle Up
To keep both dogs and humans safe, always point your muzzle skyward. Shoot at pheasants flying at least at eye level, and remember that it is easy to lose track of your canine companions in areas with thick ground cover.
When dogs point, it is easy to get excited. Keeping your excitement in check is essential for safety. Maintain a controlled pace, stay in formation and shoot safely.
Even if you are planning on a short outing, bring water for yourself and any dogs accompanying you. Warm temperatures, excitement and strenuous activity can cause dehydration. Pause to drink throughout the day to stay safe.
Carry a Compass
Dogs follow scents while hunting, and what they smell may lead you astray from where you planned to go. Always bring an analog compass when hunting. Relying on your phone can lead to trouble should the battery fail or service be lost.