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  #1  
Old 10-08-2019, 7:48 PM
moisesanguiano moisesanguiano is offline
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Default Where to hunt rabbit near Merced

I've been debating whether I should go hunting again this season. Last year was my first time hunting, and didn't have too much luck (only bagged 2 doves). I hunted at the army corps land at Eastman, and a few shooting spots near Los banos and el nido area, primarily for dove, rabbit, and pheasant. I want to try to go for rabbit this year, but didn't see a single one at the spots I went to last year. Can anyone recommend some good hunting areas for rabbit? I was considering trying up in D6 zone, but heard it's mostly big game up there. I was also thinking trying hunters valley blm, but not sure how the wildlife is up there after all the fires. Thanks.
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  #2  
Old 10-08-2019, 10:57 PM
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KIDRR KIDRR is offline
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Would GPS coordinates be OK for you?
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Old 10-09-2019, 1:55 AM
moisesanguiano moisesanguiano is offline
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Would GPS coordinates be OK for you?
Sure. I think I can type them into Google maps and it'll bring up the location.
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Old 10-09-2019, 9:20 AM
CVShooter CVShooter is offline
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I'm in the Central Valley. If I want to hunt rabbits or doves, I never go to the foothills. Farmland is where all the action is. I've seen a few rabbits, doves and even deer in the foothills but just not in the same densities as other places. If you don't know somebody with some acreage, I suggest finding some ponding basins (a.k.a. percolating basins) with adjacent farmland. I don't know if it's legal or not but near here, they're sometimes the unofficial shooting ranges, ATV race courses, etc. Make sure there are no houses or farming operations happening nearby. I've driven out 45 minutes only to have to turn around & come home because crews are out pruning vines, spraying or something. Of course, if you find one of these little gems, there will also be a fair amount of illegal dumping, too. Looking presentable avoids a lot of trouble.

If you find a good place, there will also probably be some coyotes around as well. If there are houses anywhere nearby, you may want to avoid taking the usual predator caliber rifles -- the blast will upset some folks. But shotguns, rimfires & such don't alarm folks as much. I think it's perfect for .22 WMR -- shorter ranges, low report, etc. Even archery gear & PCP air rifles are perfect out here, although it's harder to get that close in the open terrain.

If you can find a basin closer to you, look for the brushy/grassy areas near the sloping berm. By grassy, I mean that you can't readily see the dirt without kicking the grass out of the way first. The best areas around here are about waist high grass. Sometimes you can see the grass parting as the bunnies run away but they're so far down, you can't actually see the rabbit. You'll likely find enough cottontails to keep your heart content.

Just make sure to check the livers for spots. Tularemia is rare but still around.
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  #5  
Old 10-09-2019, 11:47 AM
moisesanguiano moisesanguiano is offline
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Originally Posted by CVShooter View Post
I'm in the Central Valley. If I want to hunt rabbits or doves, I never go to the foothills. Farmland is where all the action is. I've seen a few rabbits, doves and even deer in the foothills but just not in the same densities as other places. If you don't know somebody with some acreage, I suggest finding some ponding basins (a.k.a. percolating basins) with adjacent farmland. I don't know if it's legal or not but near here, they're sometimes the unofficial shooting ranges, ATV race courses, etc. Make sure there are no houses or farming operations happening nearby. I've driven out 45 minutes only to have to turn around & come home because crews are out pruning vines, spraying or something. Of course, if you find one of these little gems, there will also be a fair amount of illegal dumping, too. Looking presentable avoids a lot of trouble.

If you find a good place, there will also probably be some coyotes around as well. If there are houses anywhere nearby, you may want to avoid taking the usual predator caliber rifles -- the blast will upset some folks. But shotguns, rimfires & such don't alarm folks as much. I think it's perfect for .22 WMR -- shorter ranges, low report, etc. Even archery gear & PCP air rifles are perfect out here, although it's harder to get that close in the open terrain.

If you can find a basin closer to you, look for the brushy/grassy areas near the sloping berm. By grassy, I mean that you can't readily see the dirt without kicking the grass out of the way first. The best areas around here are about waist high grass. Sometimes you can see the grass parting as the bunnies run away but they're so far down, you can't actually see the rabbit. You'll likely find enough cottontails to keep your heart content.

Just make sure to check the livers for spots. Tularemia is rare but still around.
What you described sounds alot like the shooting spots I hunted at last year. The San Joaquin river runs right next to them, and there's lots of fields and farmland around. That's one of the reasons why I tried those spots last year, I was sure to at least see a few bunnies, but I didn't. What's the best time of the year for rabbits in the central valley? I think last year I went out around this time, and I stopped around nov/dec.
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Old 10-09-2019, 12:01 PM
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Would GPS coordinates be OK for you?

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Originally Posted by moisesanguiano View Post
Sure. I think I can type them into Google maps and it'll bring up the location.
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  #7  
Old 10-09-2019, 6:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moisesanguiano View Post
I've been debating whether I should go hunting again this season. Last year was my first time hunting, and didn't have too much luck (only bagged 2 doves). I hunted at the army corps land at Eastman, and a few shooting spots near Los banos and el nido area, primarily for dove, rabbit, and pheasant. I want to try to go for rabbit this year, but didn't see a single one at the spots I went to last year. Can anyone recommend some good hunting areas for rabbit? I was considering trying up in D6 zone, but heard it's mostly big game up there. I was also thinking trying hunters valley blm, but not sure how the wildlife is up there after all the fires. Thanks.
Go to orneal forebay recreation area on 33 past Gustine on your right before you go over the lower forebay .Also there are a few more areas open to the public at this link..
https://www.wildlife.ca.gov/Lands/Pl...s-Reservoir-WA
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Old 10-10-2019, 11:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moisesanguiano View Post
What you described sounds alot like the shooting spots I hunted at last year. The San Joaquin river runs right next to them, and there's lots of fields and farmland around. That's one of the reasons why I tried those spots last year, I was sure to at least see a few bunnies, but I didn't. What's the best time of the year for rabbits in the central valley? I think last year I went out around this time, and I stopped around nov/dec.
I wouldn't even bother before November. Rabbits can't dissipate heat very well. So they often stay in their warrens until it cools down at night. By November, it's sufficiently cool enough that they'll get out earlier in the evening and be out longer for the morning. Sometimes, you can catch them sunning themselves in the early rays of sunlight if you move slowly.
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  #9  
Old 10-10-2019, 12:46 PM
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RANDO RANDO is offline
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Cottonwood creek. There’s an upper and lower, hunt both and figure it out. Good luck
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  #10  
Old 10-10-2019, 8:45 PM
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RIFLERACK31 RIFLERACK31 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CVShooter View Post
I'm in the Central Valley. If I want to hunt rabbits or doves, I never go to the foothills. Farmland is where all the action is. I've seen a few rabbits, doves and even deer in the foothills but just not in the same densities as other places. If you don't know somebody with some acreage, I suggest finding some ponding basins (a.k.a. percolating basins) with adjacent farmland. I don't know if it's legal or not but near here, they're sometimes the unofficial shooting ranges, ATV race courses, etc. Make sure there are no houses or farming operations happening nearby. I've driven out 45 minutes only to have to turn around & come home because crews are out pruning vines, spraying or something. Of course, if you find one of these little gems, there will also be a fair amount of illegal dumping, too. Looking presentable avoids a lot of trouble.

If you find a good place, there will also probably be some coyotes around as well. If there are houses anywhere nearby, you may want to avoid taking the usual predator caliber rifles -- the blast will upset some folks. But shotguns, rimfires & such don't alarm folks as much. I think it's perfect for .22 WMR -- shorter ranges, low report, etc. Even archery gear & PCP air rifles are perfect out here, although it's harder to get that close in the open terrain.

If you can find a basin closer to you, look for the brushy/grassy areas near the sloping berm. By grassy, I mean that you can't readily see the dirt without kicking the grass out of the way first. The best areas around here are about waist high grass. Sometimes you can see the grass parting as the bunnies run away but they're so far down, you can't actually see the rabbit. You'll likely find enough cottontails to keep your heart content.

Just make sure to check the livers for spots. Tularemia is rare but still around.
^^^^^ Spot on!
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  #11  
Old 10-10-2019, 8:46 PM
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You can also try hensley lake for dove. A few of my buddies hunt dove and turkey there.
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