I was the so-called "photographer" that the hunter was talking about.  I got out there to try to digiscope a video of the CGDO at 8:15AM. .   As I walked the path, I encountered the hunter exactly where Marc said he saw him.  Lucky for me, the hunter (around 40 years old) saw me and made some remark about the 'dang rabbit being too smart to cross the path' and the hunter then walked out into the field.   Waiting at the fork, the hill, and the gravel mound area a couple of times with no luck on seeing the CGDO, I left at 9: 30AM, just minutes before it seems you arrived, Marc.   I think those pellets were meant for me cause he was getting frustrated with me walking back and forth.  Every time he thought I was leaving the area, he came back out onto the path but then he'd see me and go back out into the field.  It was making me a little nervous.  Sorry Marc.  He was definitely sick of me getting in his way by the time I left - and probably more than eager to scare me off.  I am so glad you are okay.  I might be wrong.  He's probaby just an idiot.

Oh, and I had on no orange.  I was lugging my scope and bag of equipment around.  But if anything, that probably made me look like a buck. 

Andy Reago
St. Louis MO
[log in to unmask]

 


On Tue, Nov 29, 2011 at 12:07 PM, Marc Lund wrote:

 I was out looking for the CGDO on the Blue Grosbeak Trail around 9:40 this morning.  Just after I walked over the first hill, I saw a hunter about 40 yards away in front of me, but facing the other direction.  Suddenly his dog ran across the trail from the other side of the trail, chasing a rabbit across the trail to the side where the hunter was.  All in one motion, the hunter whirled around and fired his 12 gauge into the middle of the trail where I was walking (the rabbit was long gone). 

He saw me at the last second and pulled up.  I got hit with a few pellets in the shoulder, but was totally uninjured.  It happened so fast that I really didn't have time to be scared until after the fact.  While he was apologetic, his explanation that he had been careful when he observed a photographer on top of the hill earlier,  but had seen him leave and thought no one else was around wasn't very reassuring.  I was wearing a bright red hat and a maroon jacket.  I'm not sure that I would have fared any better with hunter orange since he was totally reckless and did see me until the last second.  Nevertheless, I will be buying an orange hat & vest before I go back.

Frankly, I don't know what else I could have done to prevent this.  I don't know that yelling out to alert hunters that someone is behind them is a good idea. 

So I have a new item for my list of the Top Ten Reasons Birdwatching Is A Dangerous Sport: "Hunters will shoot you because you look just like a rabbit."

I walked the right fork up to the top of the second hill before the trail curves, but did not see the dove or much bird activity.  The wind was not conducive to birding and I doubt that the dog running all over helped much  either.

Marc D. Lund
St. Louis County


" Service is the rent we pay for the privilege of living on this earth ."

                                                                                         - Shirley Anita Chisholm





--- On Tue, 11/29/11, June Newman <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

From: June Newman <[log in to unmask]>
Subject: Re: Common Ground Dove today?
To: [log in to unmask]
Date: Tuesday, November 29, 2011, 11:38 AM

Yesterday there were at least two parties of hunters along the road, one of which had a pack of beagles.  An MDC truck drove in and out on the road.  Our party of 4 walked to the fork area, meeting Clark Creighton coming out (looking quite spiffy in camo covered business clothes).   The commotion may have been what prompted the bird to move from the lower area where the road forks, back near the gravel  pile.  While we watched it there, two hunters walked past us, toward the dove.  They came within 15 feet before it flew, apparently to the parking lot where we saw it as we packed up to leave.

June Newman
Carrollton

On Nov 29, 2011, at 10:41 AM, Shawn Clubb wrote:

Did not refind it at 8 a.m. There were hunters with a dog in the area where it was reported

Sent from my iPhone

On Nov 29, 2011, at 9:10 AM, Kathleen Anderson < [log in to unmask]" TARGET="_blank">[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> Please report on the Common Ground Dove today.  We are planning to try to see it tomorrow.
>
> We are interested in trying for the Scoters also.
>
> Thank you,  Kathleen Anderson, Columbia
>
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