calling moose



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  • calling moose

    Ive hunted moose in Ontario Canada for eleven years, I've never had experiences hunting like when I've been at the moose camp. I consider myself a good moose caller but still have lots to learn, I'm not an expert by any means but I've been able to call bull moose out almost every year,the last few years unfortunately our gang hasn't had a bull tag. So my question is this, is it possible to call a cow moose out and whats the best way?
    Thanks Jeff H

  • #2
    Calling Cows

    While calling useing a bull grunt and or mixing it up using cow call along with a immature moose call I have called in cow moose during the mid-rut! Cows can be pretty curious during this time. Good luck!


    • #3
      cow calling


      I've never "targeted" Cow Moose, however we have them come in to our calls on a fairly regular basis.

      The timing needs to be right, in other words the Moose in your area will need to be full-swing into the rutt for it to work best.

      Of course there are several ways to call Moose, and different folks use different methods. The fact is that its seems like a lot of "moose callers" are not every good at it, but think they are. Now I don't mean to sound aragant, because by no means am I an aragant person, just stating the facts.

      At any rate, sometimes when we are targeting the herd-bull and can't get his attention, and "direct" him to my shooter we'll do a switch-up tatic in which we get complety obnoxious w/ the cow calling. Once you have located thier main bedding area, and know about where they do most of the feeding, and have them timing patterned so you'll know when they are traveling back & forth, also you'll need to know where the largest bulls are scraping & rubbing tree's. Anyway, the main traveling time is first thing in the morning, and its at this time where you might have an opportunity to lure a cow away from the group, I belive they come to another cow call more out of curiosity than anything. Once the stage is set and you've done all the homework nessesary to make you a good "hunter", leave your camp in the dark and access an area 300-500 yards downwind of where you last seen then the night before...which is typically a feeding area. Well before daylight start in w/ your cow calling. Make longgggggggg groans, and pitch your sound up & down. You can get into a rythum of alomst like a siren. About the time you feel like you're getting really outta control, keep doing it. Sometimes I'll call (cow call) 4-5 in a row, take a breath and another deep series of breaths and then start all over again. Stay in one spot and have you're shooter about 30-50 yards in front of you where you can see each other. Use hand signals for communication if you need to move when they come in. A lot of times they will start to circle you as the come whithin good bow range. Most of the time there will be several "smaller" bulls around the main herd bull, and of course many cows. For the most part the cows are very curious and not as weary as the bulls. The cows WANT to be breed. If they here another reseptive cow sometimes other cows will come because they think there is another bull in that area so they might also get a chance to be breed.

      I hope this helps. In my Moose hunting operation our main hunting method is calling & raking. We hunt Moose in very dense timber so spot-n-stalk is generally not an option, we almost exclusive call in all of our Moose and see MANY cows at close range every season.

      good luck and good hunting...>Byron


      • #4
        For what its worth

        I don't know if this works in Alaska, Ontario or anywhere else but when we call moose in Maine it is rare for cows to come to call and if they do it is usually out of curiosity as some here have said. But I have found that when the time is right and they are in heat or close to it they will respond to a cow call by calling back. Something like "hey" were over here come and join us!!! This seems to work best when they are grouped up. It's hard for me to put a cow call into words, Byron described it well. If they don't come at least they gave you a point of reference to stalk up on them.
        If you take the woods out of the woodsman you have nothing left but a man in the woods.


        • #5
          remember that bulls in the rut will quiet often have cows with them...if a bull is leary to pull into your call while your cow hunting, go to him, he's probably got a few there he dont' wanna leave. acting agressive when your moosing hunting is a good thing, don't shy away from making noise and letting the moose think theres other moose in the area. no point in calling for 20 minutes then "sneaking around", they know your there already, make them belive its a moose.

          Master guide 212


          • #6
            Foxpro FX3

            Last fall I used my Foxpro digital call that has 3 moose calls downloaded into it. Towards the end of the season, I had jumped a cow in a muskeg and thought I'd see how she would react to my cow in heat call. As soon as I turned it on, she started walking straight towards me. She got so close, that I actually was scared that she might charge and I was backing down with my rifle at the hip. The following evening I called in 2 bulls with the same sound. They knew that I was a human but all they had on their mind was the sound coming out of my caller. I truly believe that cows can be called in with the right sounds.


            • #7
              I have had several cows walk-in to bull grunts. I usually hunt from a stationary position by the edge of a large round-shape field, and have killed moose at 7:00, 10:00AM, 11:00AM, 2:30PM, around 5:00PM, and even 9:30PM. A few I don't remember the time, but most have been from 10:00AM to maybe 3:00PM.

              I have called bulls early on the rut, and late in the rut. Being in the rut helps quite a lot, but I have noticed that a lone bull (one that has no cows) may more readily respond to calls. At the beginning of moose season I am not too aggressive with calls, and that seems to help. By mid rut the stronger bulls may already have cows with them, so they don't like to respond to grunts and leave the cows behind. They may respond to cow calls that are within close distances, however.

              Like one of the poster said, instead of sneaking around I just make noises that moose make: such as scraping the tress as I walk loudly. I use a moose's shoulder blade I have for that purpose. Scrapes work well at the beginning of the season, but again, lone moose eagerly respond most times. Not so with bulls that already have cows. As I walk I make soft grunts every now and then, and may stop every here and there to scrape a tree or branch.

              But I have been most successful when standing still, not when moving around. In fact, I have never shot a moose when walking. By the time I see it they have seen me first and disappeared. I remember several times when I have been sitting down on the soft ground enjoying the day, not moving around, just enjoying the sunlight, birds, whatever, and out of nowhere a bull appears in the middle of the field. This has happened to me a couple of times when the rifle had been a few paces away, but I have managed to stay out of view when reaching for the rifle.

              I don't think there are clear rules in relation to moose hunting, except that they can hear you or smell you before you can, and that staying still and not taking with a hunting partner does not threaten them. They hear a human voice and they are gone.
              Last edited by RayfromAK; 05-20-2006, 21:46.


              • #8
                The real reason...

                Cows at that time are just as intent as bulls...
                Therefore, bull-calling will bring a cow.

                See page 165 of Book Two, available here at O.D.D. Bookstore.



                • #9
                  Moose Calling

                  Calling moose is not rocket science by any means. But if they don't seem to respond, it's natural to blame yourself. The truth is that sometimes they just aren't going to come in no matter what you do. I've seen them stand there and look in our direction, then walk away. Other times, I've seen them so ticked off that they tore everything up around them, and other times they came straight in.

                  My best advice to you is to become familiar with basic calling, thrashing and scraping, and STICK WITH IT. Don't second-guess yourself, and be patient. Moose have no appointments to keep, and may take upwards of two hours to mosey in. Perhaps the hardest thing to do is to wait for them if you're not sure a moose is in the area. In my view, if you can hang in there for two hours, you'll see more moose than if you move on after forty minutes. Patience is the key, more than anything else.

                  I agree with what the others said about making noise in the woods, but sometimes a bull can come in quiet as a mouse. Expect anything.

                  I skimmed this thread and didn't see a recommendation for Wayne Kubat's video (it usually comes up in moose calling discussions). If you don't have it, get a copy of "Love, Thunder and Bull" from this website. It will improve your calling skills.

                  Michael Strahan
                  Site Owner
                  Alaska Hunt Consultant
                  1 (406) 662-1791


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