Getting ready for dove season requires practice
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If you want to be fully prepared for a successful dove hunt, take advantage of regular weekend practice with shooting clubs at the Adair Park shooting range facility approximately 15 miles northeast of Yuma off Highway 95.
Shooting fees are fairly reasonable and the location is ideal with everything safety first. In addition to shooting at Adair Park, there are a good share of other fun opportunities open to us as we prepare for the hunt.
To get started in the right direction, make the time to get together with the Yuma Trap and Skeet club at the shooting facility that hosts “open” trap and skeet matches 8 a.m. to noon Saturdays and Sundays. It's great practice, and other shooters are there to help if you have questions or concerns with your shooting. For details, call Gary Knight at 210-0805.
There will also be a share of realistic practice — a real fun get-together — Aug. 28 when the trap and skeet club hosts their Annual Turkey Shoot at the Adair Park range beginning at 7 a.m. lasting until they run out of full squads. The day is open to adults of all ages as well as youngsters from “big enough to hold a gun” to 16 years old accompanied by a parent or other adult. They are still looking for adults to help mentor the kids (keep it safe and enjoyable for the youngsters)in case you might want to help with that. Friends of NRA will provide shotguns.
The shoot fee is $5 per adult per round and free for youngsters. Ear and eye protection will be on hand that day. Food and icy cold bottled water will be available at reasonable prices. Call Gary Knight at the above number for details.
“Rough enough to shoot pink” is the motto for this year's XXIII Big Breast Contest Sept. 1 and 2 hosted by Sprague's Sports, 345 W. 32nd St., for white-winged and mourning dove only; be sure to leave one feathered wing attached (per Arizona law). No entry fee and no pre-registration. Enter daily.
We can all try for great prizes: 1st place $500 value, 2nd place $400 value and 3rd place $300 value. Sponsors are Federal Premium Ammunition, Benelli and Bud Light Lime. Call Sprague's at 726-0022 or visit Spragues.com.
The annual Youth Dove Hunt will be held on Saturday, Sept. 3, for Yuma-area youngsters who would like to hunt dove and who are accompanied by a parent or other licensed adult, this year closer to town at a designated location in the Dome Valley. The Yuma Regional Office of Game and Fish will be assisted by the Southwest Arizona Habitat Partnership Committee.
Once the hunt is done for the day, there will be hot dogs with all the trimmings to “feed the hungries.” Interested youngsters and their adult must sign up prior to this hunt; call Game and Fish at 342-0091. Check the Sunday Outdoors Column in the Yuma Sun as well to get any further news of this event.
Taking part in the Youth Dove Hunt will be great practice for kids who want to sign up with Game and Fish — call 342-0091 — to get in on the Oct. 15-16 Junior Quail Camp for kids (a truly great experience for all kids interested in hunting) and their adult at the Kofa National Wildlife Refuge area off Highway 95 just past Stone Cabin; more on this in the Outdoors Column as time draws near.
Also Sept. 3, Yuma Valley Rod and Gun Club will be holding a Dove Derby for members, with awards for men, women and youth divisions. Sign up at Sprague's, Yuma Coin and Gun or with Paul Williams at 343-9099 prior to the event. Plans for those hunters are to meet after the hunt that morning at 9 at Smucker Park, above Kofa High School for prizes and a pancake breakfast for all the hunters.