Railbird/Marsh Hen hunting
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  1. #1
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    Default Railbird/Marsh Hen hunting

    How many of you guys on here hunt Rail? I was recently in a discussion with a friend about shooting the birds while they are swimming. Just curious about the general consensus of shooting them on the water. Do most people feel it is unsportsmanlike or does the time and effort to take them legally (no shooting while boat is under power) make it ok? Not trying to start an argument, just looking to see how other people think.

    Thanks,
    Rex

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  3. #2
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    What's the point in shooting a bird in the water, takes no skill so most would not.

  4. #3
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    When we used to hunt them on the eastern shore the wardens were on you thick. Make sure all forward movement from the motor has stopped. We did not shoot them on the water as it takes the sport out of it to us. Just go over your gear and shot (steel only) and make sure youo are within the law, you will be checked.

    Good luck
    Dave
    Island Bound

  5. #4
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    I have never frowned upon shooting a bird on the water. I typically hunt public land so I'll take them any way I can get them.

  6. #5
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    I've never hunted rail but I've had ducks land or swim into my decoys and had pheasants that would rather run that fly. I always flush these birds before shooting. I'm out there for wing shooting first and foremost, not to feed my family or rack up a body count. I know your frustration though; when you've put a lot of time, effort and resources into hunting and the birds don't fully cooperate. It makes the days they do that much better.

  7. #6
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    Skillet shoot them on the water!! If thet don't fly it's not your fault, it may not be the most sporting but it's legal and they taste so good

  8. #7
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    In maryland they finally changed the rules for using lead shot on webless species specifically the rail. Before they were considered a webless migratory species like dove and you could shoot lead at em.
    In VA I think you could still shoot lead if you desired but I have not check the rules this year so dont shoot me. I have never shot a rail on the water but do like to shoot them when the tides are very high during the fall tides. They are also good tablefare and they provide us generous limits. I would always pole or kayak to them. Once I got stuck and had to call the coast gaurd but luckly I saw a crabber who I knew and got in, the boat was still dry the next day.

  9. #8
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    So I checked and it has been changed to non-toxic shot now required for rails in VA

  10. #9
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    Wonder when they will make us shoot non toxic shot at dove?

  11. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by eastduck View Post
    Wonder when they will make us shoot non toxic shot at dove?
    Soon....bet your bottom dollar on that...Lead will outlawed in a matter of years.

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