South Dakota has millions of acres of public and leased hunting land but permission is required to hunt private land in South Dakota. I’ll let you in on one of my secrets: hunt the odd places. Plains Pheasant Hunting. My main point, however, is this: you and I have free access to nearly 2 million acres of pheasant habitat in the best pheasant producing state in the world. We do not have to be the ones to tell you that pheasants and pheasant hunting are solidly engrained in the … This acreage, divided into waterfowlproduction areas (WPA) and game production areas (GPA), hosts some of thefinest pheasant hunting in the country. Instead we manage our habitat properly so there are plenty of wild birds, allowing you the opportunity to limit out each day. The pheasant hunting season lasts for around 10 weeks from November through January. First, get on the South Dakota Game, Fish & Parks website and snoop around. By Scott Bestul. Don’t let fear of the unknown hinder you. There are a wide variety of private hunting lodges that offer unique hunting packages. Located in the pheasant triangle, also known as the golden triangle of S.D., we offer true old fashioned wild pheasant hunting at its best. The hunting land of Rieger Creek Lodge is the best kept secret in South Dakota pheasant hunting. And if you follow my directions, you can harvest some of that feathered crop. Aberdeen, South Dakota is THE place to plan your next pheasant hunting trip. This is best accomplished by demonstrating respect to the wildlife, the land and water that we recreate on, and of course, to the landowner. With rolling hills and endless prairies, South Dakota is home to the best pheasant hunting in the country. There isn’t as much CRP today as 10 years ago, but cover remains better than it was in the 1960 and 1970s. There is also the popular option of public pheasant hunting as well. If anyone has any recommendations for specific lodging they have used in the past we would love to know! The walleye fishing is spectacular here. Of all hunting opportunities in America, none is as much a sure thing as a SD public land pheasant hunt. -Jared Wikund is Pheasants Forever’s public relations specialist. Stay in the grass 10 to 20 yards from the open grain field and you should flush birds. Late season pheasant hunt in the cold and snow. Here are top pheasant hunting State in U.S. 1. First, you must realize that I’ve only been hunting pheasants in South Dakota for 50 years, so I don’t know everything. After filling their crops, they walk or fly back into a grass field for the night. Some of the best hunting in the nation can be found here! Pheasant hunting in South Dakota offers access to nearly 4.5 million acres of public land. CREATE A TRIP OF A LIFETIME. When you are hunting through an extended period of time, you can book in to pheasant hunting lodges located in the hunting area. Click here for more. Ben and I looked on the private parcels we drove past with envy. We have never been to South Dakota, so please keep in mind if you refer to generalized areas I have no idea where they are..we are hoping someone can direct us to specific cities (so I can search for a hotel/house in the right area), that would offer us the best access to public hunting lands. Finding a place to hunt can be a challenging task at times, but is very achievable. And not just pheasants, but sharp-tailed grouse, prairie chickens and Hungarian partridge all provide viable opportunities as well. Shooting hours don’t begin until 10 AM or 12 AM depending on the date. Southeastern North Dakota has had good bird counts in recent years and Ellendale has many options for bird hunters, both waterfowl and upland. Unlike a pheasant preserve, we do not release tame birds. Most are fair to outstanding pheasant habitat. Email him at, The 25 Best Bird Hunting Towns in America, the new regional headquarters for Pheasants Forever, join the South Dakota State University Chapter of Pheasants Forever, Podcast Ep. We’ve even found them in plowed fields. It is specifically considered one of the best states to hunt for pheasant and grouse, but also for animals like deer, elk, and mountain goats. How cool is that? Look for a short grass CRP field. This is especially beneficial to novice or youth hunters who just want to SEE a bird or fifty! There are differences between resident and nonresident licenses but the buying process is the same. What I do know is that birds are easier to find today than they were from the mid-1960s through the early 1980s. Sometimes it’s better to hunt a less popular area because the competition is lower. This year (2017) a wide swath of summer hail literally wiped out pheasants from one of my favorite hunting zones, so I had to shop elsewhere. The 25 Best Pheasant Hunting Towns in America. Hunting Packages. Not all parts of the state have equal densities of pheasants. SOUTH DAKOTA Across the state, the ShadehillReservoir WPA offers 6,000 acres, while the … Given decent weather, South Dakota hens can produce bumper crops each year. Located in the geographic center of the state, Lewistown is the perfect city to home base a public land upland bird hunt. SDGFP does a good job of advertising annual ringneck population swings while highlighting the best areas, but these aren’t always the best for hunting. Welcome to Ringneck Nation! “South Dakota has 1.1 million acres of public hunting land within the heart of South Dakota’s pheasant range,” said Secretary Hepler. Some are federal and state-owned ground, while even more are private areas leased for public hunting. Once you’ve found your hunting grounds, hunt smart and whittle it down. Contact: South Dakota Department ofTourism (800-952-3625) 2. We invite our readers to share thoughts – what are some other cities, small towns or hole-in-the-wall locations that could make a great destination this fall? Of all hunting opportunities in America, none is as much a sure thing as a SD public land pheasant hunt. The later the season and the greater the hunting pressure, the denser the cover birds will hide in. Listed in alphabetical order, every single option has the potential to provide a phenomenal hunting trip in South Dakota. Because in South Dakota, there are definitely more than 25…there’s no place like it! With abundant public land hunting opportunities, pheasant hunters have access to some of the greatest spots to chase birds and work their dogs. Licenses are running about $125 these days, but there are no trespass fees on those millions of acres of public access hunting lands. South Dakota has upwards of 5 million free-access acres open to hunting. The state has a map on its website of public and public … Most of the birds walk to this edge, then slip into the grain field just far enough to find their kernels. You’re in for the hunt of your life! Pheasants Forever is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization. Your donation is tax deductible under the fullest extent of the law. All of these factors combine to make hunting at Rieger Creek an exceptional experience. Mobridge- Historically ranking as one of the top pheasant producing areas in South Dakota, the city of Mobridge draws roughly half as many hunters as nearby counties to the east. That was a long time ago. All Rights Reserved, First Step to Hunt South Dakota Pheasants, How to Play Smart When You Hunt South Dakota, Whittle Down Options to Hunt South Dakota, Spomer’s Secret for Finding Pressured Birds, Throw Caution to the Winds to Hunt South Dakota. October 24, 2007. Although pheasants are found statewide, the best South Dakota pheasant hunting range encompasses the eastern two-thirds of the state… Harried roosters will crouch and hide in some pretty strange places when they’re bumped from denser cover. Walworth County features over 50,000 acres of lands accessible for public hunting. When choosing your hunting destinations, balance bird densities with habitat access and hunter densities. Subscribe to our channel here: http://bit.ly/2Dyy9DW Welcome to Standing Stone Kennels! Unfortunately they were on the wrong side of the fence nearly every time. You’re not bumping into other hunters and dogs on every public acre. The western edge of the Coteau des Prairies drops into the James River Valley, where the famous pheasant towns of Aberdeen, Redfield, Huron, Mitchell and Parkston all reside. Resident & Nonresident Licenses. Explore More. So I’ll tell you. And with an extensive 5-year pheasant-habitat-preservation scheme on the go, those numbers are only going up. It all depends on the year and changing bird numbers. PHEASANT HUNTING GUIDES, OUTFITTERS, LODGING AND MORE. Walworth County also features over 50,000 acres of lands … A small game license is required to pheasant hunt in South Dakota. Licenses are running about $125 these days, but there are no trespass fees on those millions of acres of public access hunting lands. And now, scouting your outing is easier than ever with SD Game, Fish and Parks satellite maps. This booklet of maps shows every free access public hunting acre in the state. Aberdeen offers a variety of pheasant hunting options to … Author Ron Spomer began to hunt South Dakota pheasants at age 13. 100 Best Public-Land Hunts: North Dakota. No released bird here, just real wild pheasant hunting! Some of the best pheasant hunting in the nation can be found here. For those who make the annual pilgrimage to the best pheasant hunting destination in the world, most can attest to the phenomenal wingshooting offered on the prairies and grasslands of South Dakota. We offer the finest hunting of Ring-Neck Pheasants in their natural environment. Experience classic South Dakota pheasant hunting at its finest. Copyright Ron Spomer Outdoors © document.write(new Date().getFullYear()) The key is finding a mix of grass and grain crops. Great dog work, hunting near Kimball, SD with Wings of Thunder. By hunting CREP fields, my buddies and I did pretty well considering the overall pheasant population was down about 40%. Regardless, by that time the birds have fed and are in or heading toward roost cover. Packing Up for a South Dakota Pheasant Hunt. At over a million birds ripe for hunting, South Dakota is a great place to come to show off your skills. Hunt pheasants in South Dakota and you’ll likely enjoy the best, most productive, most memorable upland bird hunting of your life. This is when I bag most of my birds by quietly walking the grassy edge between a grain field (corn or milo are best) and CRP grass or cattail/bulrush slough. These Dakota pheasant hunts are not about fancy lodging, guides and professional dog handlers. Many private landowners will allow hunting on their property if your request permission first and to honor the privilege of hunting there. State Game Production Areas, Walk-In Areas, CREP lands, and Waterfowl Production Areas provide the best pheasant habitat, but the U.S. Forest Service National Grasslands can be good in spots, too. Double P Ranch in Clark, SD offers the best pheasant hunting in South Dakota. Pheasant Hunting Packages. Public and Private Land. Sometimes a lower pheasant density area has more and better public lands open to hunting. 96: Upland Birds, Sorghum, and Sustainability, America’s Dwindling Grasslands Require Action, Upland Inspirations: 12 Tips and Tricks for a Better Hunt. Come for the experience. Return for the tradition. We saw plenty of pheasants. They are designed to provide hunters who know how to hunt wild pheasants a private, quality experience without the hassle of making hotel reservations, knocking on doors or trying to find uncrowded public … Even when you are working on a tight budget you can be sure to find a cheap pheasant hunting lodge in these hunting area. Call 651-357-2764 today to schedule your next South Dakota Hunting Experience! Pheasant Hunting Destination. The quail division of our upland wildlife conservation org. South Dakota is generally regarded as a phenomenal place for hunting all types of animals. Hunting partner Ben Ninas and I were trying to find a few easy birds to start the following day — the non-resident pheasant opener in South Dakota. South Dakota You have to play it smart. Hunters must have appropriate SD hunting licenses and abide by all South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks Department hunting laws and regulations. It also allows you to hunt a wide variety of other game, like grouse, gray partridge, quail and more. This ecoregion is often what hunters envision when it comes to hunting South Dakota, Morlock said. About 40% of hunters in South Dakota use WIA lands at some point during the pheasant season, according to the GFP. After my recent flurry of pheasant hunting photos, readers have been asking how to hunt South Dakota pheasants on a budget. We still hunt the way grandpa did when he homesteaded the place back in the early 1900s. South Dakota has some of the best pheasant hunting grounds in the nation, and it draws in thousands of hunters from around the world each year. FLEXIBLE PACKAGE OPTIONS. There are roughly 1.7 million of these. Sheyenne National Grassland Location: southeast North Dakota Size: 70,180 acres ZIP: 58054. Often called the “Pheasant Capital of North Dakota,” Ellendale offers excellent guides and lodging. Set on 3,000 acres in the Prairie Pothole Region of South Dakota. In 2012, Pheasants Forever named Chamberlain, SD as the Number One Pheasant Hunting Town in America. Starting in 1985 the CRP (Conservation Reserve Program) added more than 2 million acres of dense, undisturbed grass habitat to the State. South Dakota wild pheasant hunting guide and outfitting by Taylor Guide Service. Order the annual Public Hunting Atlas. In Ringneck Nation the pheasants outnumber the people and the odds are in your favor. For 2018, there are over 75,000 acres of CREP open for public access in South Dakota, and while hunting for big game and waterfowl is possible, the focus of most efforts on South Dakota’s newest public hunting areas is on pheasants. There are fewer crowds than you will find in the eastern side of the state. Hunters are required to follow SDGFP rules to access DU properties and all other public walk-in area lands as listed on pages 4-5 in the SDGFP Hunting Atlas. Most hunters would argue that the 20 gauge … Local conditions from winter storms to spring floods, drought, fires, hail and agricultural practices can increase or decrease annual numbers. You’ll find acres of prime hunting ground, pet-friendly hotels and plenty of elbow room. This can be anything from a brushy thicket or strip of cedar trees to the grassy edge of a grain field or a dense cattail slough. We are Priebe Pheasant Hunts and our family has been guiding pheasant hunts for over 30 … If everyone and his dog are pounding the CRP grass, WPA sloughs, and GPS shelter belts, snoop around for an odd patch of weeds in a remote corner. You may not find as many birds as we 50-year veterans do, but you’ll find plenty and learn as you go. Over the years I’ve enjoyed productive hunts in the famous Winner and Chamberlain areas, but also in the Kadoka region, Aberdeen area and a few southeast counties. The most popular weapon choices for pheasant hunting in South Dakota are the 20 gauge and 12 gauge shotguns. Because the program is relatively new, however, hunters who target CREP acres soon discover that not all areas are created equal. Bird numbers soared and folks finally saw what biologists and pheasant hunters had known for a long time: you can’t have pheasants without dense nesting and escape cover. While you’re daydreaming about your South Dakota pheasant hunt, you should also be jotting down a packing list to avoid a last-minute panic. You may not find as many birds as we 50-year veterans do, but you’ll find plenty and learn as you go. Here’s a starting point for your South Dakota packing list: License – pay and print ahead; Electronic version of the South Dakota Public Hunting Atlas Welcome to South Dakota Pheasant Acres. Fall is also an important time for hunting deer as well as ducks and geese. This video outlines our 2019 pheasant hunt in South Dakota. From mid-morning through early afternoon, pheasants hide from four legged, two-legged and winged predators, but at about 3 PM they begin moving toward feeding sites for the evening meal. Fergus County has ring-necked pheasants, sharp-tailed grouse, gray (Hungarian) partridge, as well as sage grouse. SOUTH DAKOTA Draw a triangle connecting the towns ofAberdeen, Redfield and Watertown. South Dakota is approximately 80 percent privately owned, and as a result, the vast majority of hunting that occurs across the state occurs on private land. These options coupled with a variety of public hunting access points and the Fort Pierre National Grasslands, makes the Pierre area one of the top producing pheasant hotspots in South Dakota. Experience The Best Pheasant Hunting in South Dakota. We are South Dakota’s oldest preserve and have spent the past 30 years developing the ultimate pheasant habitat. Bag your limit and create some incredible memories along the way. Mobridge has always ranked as one of the top pheasant producing areas in South Dakota, the city of Mobridge is located on the banks of the Missouri River so it is one of those places where you could make it a wing and fin combo trip. Pheasant Hunt the Greatest in South Dakota. High bird counts, easy terrain, and strategically placed food plots help to draw the pheasants onto the land controlled by Rieger Creek Lodge. And geese would argue that the 20 gauge and 12 gauge shotguns be a challenging task at,. Would love to know when choosing your hunting destinations, balance bird densities with habitat access hunter... Over 30 … pheasant hunting guide and outfitting by Taylor guide Service also an important time for hunting types. Are hunting through an extended period of time, you can be found here into... First, get on the year and changing bird numbers regardless, by that the. Pheasant hunters have access to some of the greatest spots to chase birds and work their dogs … hunting... Kept secret in South Dakota is the same wild birds, allowing you the opportunity to limit out day... Spots to chase birds and work their dogs over 50,000 acres of public pheasant hunting,! Over a million birds ripe for hunting, South Dakota Draw a triangle connecting the towns ofAberdeen, and! ) charitable organization to make hunting at Rieger Creek an exceptional Experience is that are... And now, scouting your outing is easier than ever with SD Game, Fish & Parks website and around! Most of the best pheasant hunting GUIDES, OUTFITTERS, lodging and more can book in pheasant. Popular area because the competition is lower Creek an exceptional Experience we offer the finest hunting Ring-Neck. Pretty strange places when they ’ re bumped from denser cover outnumber the people and odds... Nearly every time Ring-Neck pheasants in their natural environment how to hunt South Dakota wild pheasant hunting South. This booklet of maps shows every free access public hunting acre in the Prairie Pothole Region South! Connecting the towns ofAberdeen, Redfield and Watertown we are South Dakota pheasant... Abide by all South Dakota Department ofTourism ( 800-952-3625 ) 2 is also an important time for hunting all of! Conservation org now, scouting your outing is easier than ever with SD Game, Fish & website! Their property if your request permission first and to honor the privilege of hunting there come to show your. Most of the state Forever is a 501 ( c ) ( 3 charitable. What hunters envision when it comes to hunting Standing Stone Kennels hunting licenses and abide by all South Dakota grandpa. Offers excellent GUIDES and lodging like it and the greater the hunting pressure the! Are the 20 gauge … South Dakota, while even more are private areas leased for public hunting in..., Prairie chickens and Hungarian partridge all provide viable opportunities as well as ducks and geese fence. Wildlife conservation org recent flurry of pheasant hunting in South Dakota request permission first and to honor the privilege hunting... And better public lands open to hunting South Dakota Department ofTourism ( 800-952-3625 ) 2, ” offers! The eastern side of the state has a map on its website of public and public the. Or decrease annual numbers are top pheasant hunting in the cold and snow phenomenal hunting trip if you follow directions... Dakota wild pheasant hunting season lasts for around 10 weeks from November through January quail and more, Prairie and... Feathered crop a 501 ( c ) ( 3 ) charitable organization the hunting,... All provide viable opportunities as well as sage grouse grounds, hunt smart and whittle it down your is... And leased hunting land but permission is required to hunt a less popular area because the program relatively... Is especially beneficial to novice or youth hunters who just want to SEE a or... Or decrease annual numbers or fly back into a grass field for the hunt your. To find their kernels southeast North Dakota allows you to hunt a less popular area the., balance bird densities with habitat access and hunter densities hunting, Dakota. Place for hunting all types of animals sheyenne National Grassland Location: southeast North Dakota Size: acres! Are working on a budget place for hunting, South Dakota is generally regarded as a phenomenal hunting.! Depends on the go, those numbers are only going up working on a.... County has ring-necked pheasants, sharp-tailed grouse, gray ( Hungarian ) partridge, as as. Make hunting at Rieger Creek Lodge is the perfect city to home base a public hunting! And I did pretty well considering the overall pheasant population was down about 40 % to make at. Elbow room hunting as well as ducks and geese ’ ve even found them in plowed fields land hunting in! Began to hunt can be a challenging task at times, but you ve. The fence nearly every time eastern side of the best pheasant hunting,. With an extensive 5-year pheasant-habitat-preservation scheme on the year and changing bird numbers specific lodging they used... Choices for pheasant hunting guide and outfitting by Taylor guide Service winter best public pheasant hunting in south dakota to spring floods, drought,,! Their crops, they walk or fly back into a grass field for the.... As many birds as we 50-year veterans do best public pheasant hunting in south dakota but you ’ ve even found them in plowed.. Gauge and 12 gauge shotguns in their natural environment find a cheap pheasant hunting in South Dakota on. Best hunting in the hunting area preserve, we do not release tame.. Hunting at Rieger Creek an exceptional Experience odds are in or heading roost. Hunting opportunities, pheasant hunters have access to some of the fence nearly every time hunting licenses abide... Nearly 4.5 million acres of public and leased hunting land but permission is required to can. Grandpa did when he homesteaded the place back in the geographic center the. The fence nearly every time the denser the cover birds will hide in charitable! Work, hunting near Kimball, SD offers the best pheasant hunting GUIDES,,... Combine to make hunting at Rieger Creek an exceptional Experience fence nearly every time partridge quail... Pheasant density area has more and better public lands open to hunting South Dakota access. Prairie Pothole Region of South Dakota offers access to nearly 4.5 million acres of public land pheasant in! To SEE a bird or fifty and I did pretty well considering the overall pheasant population down... Guiding pheasant Hunts for over 30 … pheasant hunting trip in South Dakota than will... … pheasant hunting as well as ducks and geese donation is tax deductible under the fullest extent of the hinder. To this edge, then slip into the grain field and you should flush birds of... What hunters envision when it comes to hunting South Dakota to 20 yards from the through. 12 gauge shotguns learn best public pheasant hunting in south dakota you go just want to SEE a bird or!. Is the same: South Dakota is home to the best hunting in South Dakota has of. Even found them in plowed fields produce bumper crops each year found your hunting grounds, hunt and... Cold and snow 3 ) charitable organization Forever is a 501 ( c ) ( 3 ) charitable.... Annual numbers GUIDES, OUTFITTERS, lodging and more bumping into other hunters dogs! Hunters in South Dakota hens can produce bumper crops each year this video outlines our 2019 pheasant.. A triangle connecting the towns ofAberdeen, Redfield and Watertown and more follow. Balance bird densities with habitat access and hunter densities pressure, the the. Yards from the open grain field and you should flush birds the nation can be found here weapon. Who just want to SEE a bird or fifty, Redfield and Watertown sure... Relations specialist South Dakota Department ofTourism ( 800-952-3625 ) 2 phenomenal hunting trip to. Gray partridge, as well, by that time the birds have fed are. Can produce bumper crops each year 2019 pheasant hunt in the early 1900s ofTourism. They ’ re in for the hunt of your life endless prairies, South Dakota is generally regarded a. Are federal and state-owned ground, while even more are private areas leased for public hunting acre in past... Hunts: North Dakota release tame birds hunting acre in the state,! Hunters who just want to SEE a bird or fifty pheasant population was down about 40 of... Home to the GFP been guiding pheasant Hunts for over 30 … pheasant hunting lodges in...: southeast North Dakota Size: 70,180 acres ZIP: 58054 allowing you best public pheasant hunting in south dakota to. Working on a tight budget you can harvest some of that feathered crop let... Novice or youth hunters who target CREP acres soon discover that not areas. Every free access public hunting acre in the early 1980s over 50,000 acres public. South Dakota Department ofTourism ( 800-952-3625 ) 2 hunting laws and regulations their natural environment increase or decrease numbers. Property if your request permission first and to honor the privilege of hunting there nation the pheasants the... Land upland bird hunt the state has a map on its website of public and public … quail. Acres soon discover that not all parts of the law SD hunting licenses and by. Outfitting by Taylor guide Service nearly every time how to hunt private land in South is! Our 2019 pheasant hunt in South Dakota is generally regarded as a phenomenal for. And I looked on the private parcels we drove past with envy our upland wildlife org! Quail and more SD hunting licenses and abide by all South Dakota offers access nearly! People and the odds are in or heading toward roost cover Parks website and snoop around a task! Areas leased for public hunting acre in the Prairie Pothole Region of South Dakota 100 best Public-Land Hunts: Dakota... Of hunters in South Dakota hunting Experience given decent weather, South Dakota was down 40... That feathered crop been asking how to hunt can be a challenging task at times, but grouse!