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Thread: Bear calling fail

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
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    Vancouver
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    Bear calling fail

    I tried calling bears last spring with no action at all.

    I tried a cottontail call, a Haydel bear call, and a fawn bleat. Nothing responded despite being in a location laden with bear scat.

    On one trip, on my way through Manning Park I saw three grazing together in a field near the road so I pulled off and blew the rabbit call. Only one of the three even bothered to look up.

    What's up with that?

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
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    Walnut Grove, Langley
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    Re: Bear calling fail

    They're like people, some will come running some bail. I've had them come in like a Ferrari and yet others never saw them just know they were exiting FRN! Watch for muile does in the spring. I've had them so close and pissed off I had to throw rocks at their feet to get them to leave.
    Take a kid hunting its more rewarding than shooting an animal yourself!!

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
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    Rat Race
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    Re: Bear calling fail

    How long did you try calling for in a given calling session?
    “Want to be an effective political advocate? Keep these 10 things in mind:

    Avoid Personal Attacks, Relationships Matter, Facts Matter, Timing Matters, Don't Burn Bridges, Understand Your Opponent's Argument, Know Your Issue, Offer Solutions, Build Coalitions, Pick Your Battles”

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  5. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
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    Abbotsford, BC
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    954

    Re: Bear calling fail

    Quote Originally Posted by MichelD View Post
    I tried calling bears last spring with no action at all.

    I tried a cottontail call, a Haydel bear call, and a fawn bleat. Nothing responded despite being in a location laden with bear scat.

    On one trip, on my way through Manning Park I saw three grazing together in a field near the road so I pulled off and blew the rabbit call. Only one of the three even bothered to look up.

    What's up with that?
    Bears know that humans use the road. How many times do you think a bear hears a car stop and then hears someone trying out their Cabellas bear call. You did get the response - at least one was curious enough to look in the direction of the call. Maybe your truck didn't look like a rabbit. lol. Maybe it was more than he could chew.

    I've never tried calling in a bear - I've always tried to be quiet with spot and stalk. A distress call might put an interesting spin on things and I think I'll pick one up for experimenting with. Never know, might call in dogs or cats or other hunters. Thanks.

  6. #5
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    Jun 2015
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    Re: Bear calling fail

    I guess your element of surprise was ruined by sitting off a busy highway in your truck

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
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    Northern BC
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    Re: Bear calling fail

    Your percentage sounds about right. I would be surprised if I had more than a 30% response rate. And by response, I mean anything from a bear lifting its head to look to a full on freight train run at the caller.

    Also, bears on good feed where they are eating fast and hard are pretty unlikely to leave that unless you sound really appetizing.


  8. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
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    3,960

    Re: Bear calling fail

    I call for bears every year and it's so hit or miss I can't say with any certainty what will work from one situation to the next. More often then not, I get no reaction to the call or the bear takes off.

    But I did shoot a decent bear about 7 years back that my buddy called back into range after we had spooked it off while driving an old logging road. I was shooting my grandpas old lever action 303 savage with open sights and wanted him no farther than 75 yards. The bear had saw us, buggered off and when my buddy started squealing at him he stopped came straight back at us like he was on a rope. You never know!!!

    I always like to share this photo when the topic of bear calling comes up. I had been calling to a bear in a cutblock (with no luck) and heard something. Turned around and this guy was there. Watch your 6!!!!!

    Last edited by Ron.C; 03-24-2021 at 07:58 AM.

  9. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
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    Re: Bear calling fail

    Quote Originally Posted by Ron.C View Post
    I call for bears every year and it's so hit or miss I can't say with any certainty what will work from one situation to the next. More often then not, I get no reaction to the call or the bear takes off.

    But I did shoot a decent bear about 7 years back that my buddy called back into range after we had spooked it off while driving an old logging road. I was shooting my grandpas old lever action 303 savage with open sights and wanted him no farther than 75 yards. The bear had saw us, buggered off and when my buddy started squealing at him he stopped came straight back at us like he was on a rope. You never know!!!

    I always like to share this photo when the topic of bear calling comes up. I had been calling to a bear in a cutblock (with no luck) and heard something. Turned around and this guy was there. Watch your 6!!!!!
    Yep, sounds about right, all of it.

    Had more bears than I can count just appear startlingly close in behind me before I started hanging a white cloth from a branch 10 or 15 yards out. For whatever reason they really seem to key in on that. They'll appear next to it if they sneak in, but they will keep looking in your direction when you are calling.

    To be fair though, even when they pop up behind you they generally look more confused than anything when you aren't a tiny little bunny. Not much consolation though when the hair on your neck stands up and you swivel your head around and make eye contact with a bear that has his head stretched out as far as he can to get a good sniff of you, and then he spins around to blow out of there and you get splattered with scared bear shit.

    Not sure if anyone else has done this, but we used to call to bears that we could see, specifically sows with cubs. Sows with little cubs usually ran them up trees, and then come in hot, huffing and popping and breaking brush. Boars more often than not came in quietly.


  10. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2016
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    Walnut Grove, Langley
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    Re: Bear calling fail

    Quote Originally Posted by KodiakHntr View Post
    Yep, sounds about right, all of it.

    Not sure if anyone else has done this, but we used to call to bears that we could see, specifically sows with cubs. Sows with little cubs usually ran them up trees, and then come in hot, huffing and popping and breaking brush. Boars more often than not came in quietly.

    I was wondering about if calling would be better or worse for targeting boars rather than sows with cubs. A sow that trees its cubs and then comes in on a rope seems like a less than ideal scenario for making sure you're shooting the right bear. Interesting feedback.

  11. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Northern BC
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    Re: Bear calling fail

    We had the same concern, especially considering sometimes they are too close to judge and it can happen fast. I was a bit curious if there was any differences in how they approached the call, which is why we started calling to the ones we knew were sows.

    Wasn't always the case, that sows made lots of noise, but more often than not that is how they came in, trying to push a threat away.


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