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Discussion Starter #1
First, a confession: I have never killed an animal. It's not that I am morally opposed, nor physically inept, I've just never had the need or opportunity to kill my own dinner. That being said, I would like to try my hand at rabbit hunting. I already have my NJ Hunter's License (and have had for years, for the sole purpose of being able to use the range at Stafford Forge) as well as a general idea of the equipment I will need. My question is this: How does one go about rabbit hunting in NJ? Explain it to me as you would explain it to a child. I simply park my car, take out my shotgun, and walk around till I see a rabbit? Etiquette for encountering other hunters? Specific do's and do not's? I'm excited to finally try hunting, but apprehensive as to how to go about it. I plan to hunt the Assunpink WMA, but would be open to suggestions closer to Scotch Plains, where I currently live.

Thank you for your time and patience.
 

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I asked about rabbit hunting in NJ about this time last year. The response was "there are none" essentially. Apparently the coyote population has decimated the rabbit numbers.
 

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Well....not as much fun without some beagles....but totally possible. First, find where the rabbits are. Indian grass....no rabbits. Look for thick, thick and thicker. They well eat the bark off the lower portion of some vegetation. Rabbit drooping are always a good sign. Slow is an operative word with or without a dog. A rabbits prime defense is not moving. Out wait them. Should you see one sitting, turn away and then be prepared to shoot as they will take off with the break in eye contact.
As far as other hunters, just be nice. Don't crowd anyone. If you see a hunter, go the other way.
If you see someone with dogs, certainly do not crowd them and certainly do not shoot at or near a dog.
You can ask for permission on private land. Ditches or creek areas are always good. First thing to say is "after deer season closes, can I hunt here for rabbits".

There are plenty of rabbits.....just have to know where to look[smirk]
 

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[QUOTEWell....not as much fun without some beagles....but totally possible.][/QUOTE]agreed...[QUOTERabbit Hunting for Dummies][/QUOTE] the rabbit's are the dummies they circle back where you jumped em.Hunt with a freind jump a rabbit,one of you hold tight and the other follow it.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the replies. I get the sense that it'll be tough, but not impossible. I'm looking forward to going out and giving it a go.
 

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I would suggest starting with something easier. If you are interested, squirrels are a small game species that a very numerous and very fun to hunt.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
So, and keep in mind I'm VERY new to this, I can (provided it's the right season, and I'm using the right equipment, etc.) just walk into the woods at a WMA and pop off at the first squirrel I see? Sorry if it's a stupid question, it just sounds like fun...I can't believe everyone doesn't do this.
 

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Thanks for the replies. I get the sense that it'll be tough, but not impossible. I'm looking forward to going out and giving it a go.
tomorrow would be premo them rabbits can't cover there tracks in the snow lol good luck!
 

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I have killed lots of rabbits Without dogs. Look for anything thick they love woods piles, thick bryers, thick layed over grass. They like when the sun is out. Good luck.
 
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What he said^. Track them in the snow and you will see the trails lead into small clumps of thicket. Walk up to the clump, kick it, and be ready. Jump shooting rabbits is a blast.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
WHAT?! RocknReel's pic has me so excited! Don't know if I'll be able to get out there tomorrow, but I have a feeling we'll see plenty of snow before this winter is over...gonna have to get out there while the tracks are fresh.
 

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Rabbit Hunting for Dummies
[QUOTEWalk up to the clump, kick it, ][/QUOTE]and call it dummy.........
 

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What (deer) zone are you in?

This is upstate NY farmers let me hunt for all the rabbits I want. If you ask, most of them are happy to let you hunt.
 

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I'm at Assunpink at least once or twice a week. It's not a rabbit hot spot, though I have seen them there. I'd research other WMA's and let me know what you find. I love rabbit and it was the first thing I ever hunted/killed.
 

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Look for the stuff nobody wants to push. Like all the brier patches that are over your head start pushing. If your hands arent all cut up and bleeding your not doing it right. Iv kicked up thousands of rabbits while pheasant hunting at assunpink. Suckers are hard to hit. Good luck to ya
 
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