Yamaha Outdoors Tips — Groundhog Day
By Bob Humphrey
For serious hunters the season never ends; it just changes. Hunting groundhogs or woodchucks is a great way to wile away the days between spring turkey and fall deer hunting. And you might make a friend of the landowner.
Chuck hunting is typically a long-range game so you’ll need high visibility conditions. The season begins as hungry chucks leave their winter hibernation to munch on the first green shoots of grass. There will be a bit of a lull as the grass grows taller, followed by a second flurry after the first mowing opens things up again. Under prime growing conditions, you may get several opportunities after successive mowings.
Most any field or pasture will do. Livestock pastures are great because grazing livestock keep the grass groomed down. Furthermore, farmers and ranchers often welcome chuck hunters as their livestock could step in a chuck hole and break a leg. Be sure to ask where and when you can hunt as they may not want you in certain pastures at certain times.
As mentioned, chuck hunting is often done at long ranges. That calls for flat-shooting guns with good optics. Most hunters prefer smaller centerfire or larger rimfire calibers and scopes with at least 10x or 12x power. Set up some distance away and use a tripod, bipod or other solid rest, and always be sure of your target and what lies beyond.
That’s about all there is to it. If you’re looking for a way to fill the void between spring and fall, as well as honing your shooting skills, load up the ATV and head for the pastures this summer.