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Thread: Moose calling scenario-Fail

  1. #1
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    Default Moose calling scenario-Fail

    Time for everybody to be arm chair quarterbacks.

    I had an interesting scenario this season calling a nice big bull moose. I would like to know what I could have done better.

    First of all, we shot a nice bull on a lake about a mile from camp after calling for less than an hour right at dark. We did the quick (relative term) butcher job and hung it up on a meat pole right there and went back the next day to make carries back to the boats. We made one trip and were joking around at our second about seeing another moose and then one popped up about 800 yards away and started talking to us. No calling was done this day, but we were not quiet at the kill sight. We did not have a rifle, but did have a pistol. I left one person there with the pistol and booked it out to the river where the other people in our party were just coming back in order to bring the next shooter in for a kill. Half way out I realized that the person I left behind would probably try and shoot the thing with the little snub .44 if left to his own devices. I booked it back and told him not to shoot, then went back to the river, and brought the other person it. The moose stopped coming in about the time I came back to tell the .44 person not to shoot and we did not hear a peep after that for a few hours of trying. Next day we had the moose out and were getting fire wood up the river and making a racket (about a 1/2 mile from the kill sight). We called at the place were we saw the moose that day too, no go. The next day, we went to where we cut all the wood. Sat down for 10 minutes to listen then made one bull grunt. A moose was 20 yards behind us bedded down behind very thick cover. He made some grunts then stopped and walked off. The weather was VERY bad that day, and we needed to do some repairs so we went back to camp and made a racket taking apart a 351W. That evening while sipping Basil Haden and pondering the two moose we has scared up, a moose called from right behind us. We made our way down the beach 50 yards then made bull calls and thrashed some brush. Immediately the bull hung up and it got dark 20 min later. The next day we saw very big tracks walking down the beach and assumed the bull headed away from camp. We called all day in different spots down river to see if he was still hanging out. We then called from a spot closer to camp for about 2 hours before dark and a bull started coming in. The curious thing here was that it sounded like he was a 1/2 mile off in front of us, then all of a sudden he was 500 yards behind us. We were hearing on echo and I am sure the moose was hearing ours since we were not calling behind us. When he got closer, he heard the calls we were making more directly and hung up. Then we went home.

    I have a few assumptions. This was probably one bull, and he was the big one we saw on the first day. Therefore, a little smarter than some of the littler bulls. He did not like my calls, bull or cow since every time I made one he went away. However, he came to calls when they were echos. He did not care a hoot about the noises of camp, in fact it seemed like all the noises attracted him.

    So, what to do with a weary bull that still is showing some interest but stays just out of sight? A much more experienced hunter may have come up with a plan that worked instead of having the moose chase us around (notice we did not chase it) only to be disappointed by my calls.

    Let the "advice" begin.

  2. #2
    Member mod elan's Avatar
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    How loud are your calls? Some folks think they need to really put some volume into their bull grunts when in fact they can hear rather well when they are tuned into something.

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    Out on the lake we belted out calls with the moose magnet to attract from a distance. By the tree cutting, just one call and we spooked him I would think. By camp, loud I would guess but without the magnet. The last day belting out calls loudly with a moose magnet for hours before the thing responded, then hung up.

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by Daved View Post
    Time for everybody to be arm chair quarterbacks.

    I had an interesting scenario this season calling a nice big bull moose. I would like to know what I could have done better.

    First of all, we shot a nice bull on a lake about a mile from camp after calling for less than an hour right at dark. We did the quick (relative term) butcher job and hung it up on a meat pole right there and went back the next day to make carries back to the boats. We made one trip and were joking around at our second about seeing another moose and then one popped up about 800 yards away and started talking to us. No calling was done this day, but we were not quiet at the kill sight. We did not have a rifle, but did have a pistol. I left one person there with the pistol and booked it out to the river where the other people in our party were just coming back in order to bring the next shooter in for a kill. Half way out I realized that the person I left behind would probably try and shoot the thing with the little snub .44 if left to his own devices. I booked it back and told him not to shoot, then went back to the river, and brought the other person it. The moose stopped coming in about the time I came back to tell the .44 person not to shoot and we did not hear a peep after that for a few hours of trying. Next day we had the moose out and were getting fire wood up the river and making a racket (about a 1/2 mile from the kill sight). We called at the place were we saw the moose that day too, no go. The next day, we went to where we cut all the wood. Sat down for 10 minutes to listen then made one bull grunt. A moose was 20 yards behind us bedded down behind very thick cover. He made some grunts then stopped and walked off. The weather was VERY bad that day, and we needed to do some repairs so we went back to camp and made a racket taking apart a 351W. That evening while sipping Basil Haden and pondering the two moose we has scared up, a moose called from right behind us. We made our way down the beach 50 yards then made bull calls and thrashed some brush. Immediately the bull hung up and it got dark 20 min later. The next day we saw very big tracks walking down the beach and assumed the bull headed away from camp. We called all day in different spots down river to see if he was still hanging out. We then called from a spot closer to camp for about 2 hours before dark and a bull started coming in. The curious thing here was that it sounded like he was a 1/2 mile off in front of us, then all of a sudden he was 500 yards behind us. We were hearing on echo and I am sure the moose was hearing ours since we were not calling behind us. When he got closer, he heard the calls we were making more directly and hung up. Then we went home.

    I have a few assumptions. This was probably one bull, and he was the big one we saw on the first day. Therefore, a little smarter than some of the littler bulls. He did not like my calls, bull or cow since every time I made one he went away. However, he came to calls when they were echos. He did not care a hoot about the noises of camp, in fact it seemed like all the noises attracted him.

    So, what to do with a weary bull that still is showing some interest but stays just out of sight? A much more experienced hunter may have come up with a plan that worked instead of having the moose chase us around (notice we did not chase it) only to be disappointed by my calls.

    Let the "advice" begin.

    go to him. most likely he had cows hearded with him or close by, outta sight. most dominate bulls that have cows herded will not leave them. they may leave them
    temporarily to scare off other bulls...my bull had only 3 cows with him, that i knew of, and he wasnt leavin them.
    even in thick cover where as your goin to him, where there is no way of being quite, dont be. obviously you dont wanna be
    talking and makin obvious human noises...but as you make your way to him maybe throw a grunt in every ten steps or so, so he knows
    your coming to him. also, i carry as light colored wooden oar with me as i can find, not only does it sound amazing when u rake with it, i hold it
    up as im walkin thru the woods...as you kno, even if they cant see you thru the trees they may see glimpses of the oar and think
    its a bull. im no expert...but it has worked for me. even if it doesnt get you on him, it may freeze him and his women for
    long enough to take a gander and possibly get a shot off

  5. #5

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    also as mod said...calls do not need to be loud, unless you kno for a fact
    that there are no bulls close to you. then you can kinda belt it out for reach out there

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by mod elan View Post
    How loud are your calls? Some folks think they need to really put some volume into their bull grunts when in fact they can hear rather well when they are tuned into something.
    Yeah them moose have them big ole ears for a reason... I have seen over agressive calling be a hinderance vs help before. If you know which direction he is coming from set up a hunter and call from further away.. maybe try to climb a tree to get a better look... Are you fairly certain it was a big bull and not a lesser... hard to say but congrats on the first one for sure you must of been doing something right...

  7. #7
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    Most of the time I use grunts to get a bulls attention and then just rake. Each bull is different and will react differently depending on the situation. And if a guy gets too aggressive with the calls "sometimes", they seem to know something's just not quite right. But raking alone seems to piss off a lot of big bulls. But I have to agree with "hunt/trap" especially if you know a bull has a few cows with him. Move slowly towards him raking as you go. He'll probably only let you get so close before he comes towards you and shows himself.
    Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

  8. #8
    Member BRWNBR's Avatar
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    i had a client on a bull we couldn't see that wouldn't move outa cover, i know he had at least one cow but we were less than 200 yards and he'd grunt back once and that was it. never move, never answer again.

    i took a guess at a couple things....

    he was huge thus not answering
    had more cows than i thought and care not to leave them
    he was tiny and my bull calls were intimidating him
    i was hearing things

    I moved towards him, and sent my packer away from him, had the packer scrape and grunt and i moved toward the other bull and cow called..nice and sexy like. making it sound like i was a hot cow, leaving my current bull in exchange for the bull that wouldn't move.
    I got as close as i could to where i thought he was, closer to him than my packer/bull grunter. It took about a min or less and the bull that wouldn't move couldn't take it and ran right to me, less than 30 yards. He was tiny, and my bull call must have intimidated him and he thought he'd won my cow over and was gonna come and scoop her up. play the game, if it don't work, change the game and try again...
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    I've run off more than a few with over aggressive calling. Hard to mess up raking brush and that's my usual go-to when they get close and I just can't quite see them. If he's less than 100 yards I will rarely grunt louder than a normal human conversation voice. I need to hunt new places, though, because the 20+ moose I've called in in the last few years have all been those 2 brow tine 40" variety
    Bunny Boots and Bearcats: Utility Sled Mayhem

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by AKDoug View Post
    because the 20+ moose I've called in in the last few years have all been those 2 brow tine 40" variety
    They're everywhere...!!! They're everywhere...!!!
    Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

  11. #11
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    I "over called" for sure a few times. We talked about that in camp. The last day, we thought we were calling to another moose and went on about our usual tricks, oops. I think I am going to use brush sounds more, those sounds cary a good long ways. I have seen lots of people use the oar on TV, but never in the field. That might change next year. I have killed two moose using my cow calls, so I guess they are not all junk. So, when we get one on the hook, I think a little less will be more.

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